What is spyware?

Spyware is software that is put on your computer without your knowledge or permission. It secretly and continuously gathers information about you and relays it to advertisers or other interested parties. Some of the ways it can be installed on your computer are via a virus, by downloading and installing ANY “free” program, or even just going to the wrong site on the Internet.

Ok, so how do I get rid of it?

There are many free programs on the Internet that will scan your computer for any type of spyware and remove it. Some are better than others. Two of the most popular programs are Malwarebytes and Spybot Search and Destroy. We use these program down at the Help Desk and they are quite effective. The functionality is very similar to running a virus scan on your computer and just like scanning for viruses, spyware scans should be carried out as frequently as possible.

What if I need help with this?

If you need help with any of the information on this page, please contact the UMW IT Help Desk at helpdesk@umw.edu or (540) 654-2255 and we will be glad to walk you through installing anti-spyware software and running it.