Spyware, as the English term implies, is spy software that is usually installed on a mobile phone or a computer without the user's consent. Once on the computer, the program monitors online activities, history and personal data to pass on information to third parties. This type of malware is one of the most dangerous because it seeks confidential information that can be used for a variety of purposes, including theft of personal passwords, bank information or credit cards.
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Spyware is one of the hardest malware to detect as it acts silently on devices unlike adware. He performs the operations in the background so that he is able to spy for a long time without the victim finding out. Spyware is often hidden along with the download of free online programs or files, but it should be noted that it can be used for both legitimate and scam purposes.
Spywares can snoop on PC without being discovered Photo: Pond5
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Spyware collects data and transmits it to administrators as desired by malware developers. For example, personal and bank details are often the target of criminal organizations. For advertising companies, spyware can provide insight into potential consumer behavior, online habits, and ad targeting. Governments may also adopt this strategy, in a scheme known as "policeware" or "govware".
Mobile devices are not safe from spyware. Mobile phones and tablets, when infected, can leak information such as call history, browser history and even photos. In more severe cases, malware can track the device's location via GPS, command the device's operations, and direct attacks on the user-operating company through breaches in the device's operating system.
Virtual criminals use spyware to steal data Photo: Pond5
How do they install in my software?
Spyware can install itself from a trojan (also known as a Trojan horse), or from the installation of free programs (also known as freeware). Actions such as clicking on deceptive infected advertisements and downloading content from file sharing sites can also install spyware on your computer.
The most common ways to infect cell phones are to use unsecured connections (such as free Wi-Fi in public places) that allow strangers to access their devices, phones and tablets with outdated systems, and download malware via downloaded illegal applications. on unofficial platforms.
- Screen and network ringtone logging: Also known as "keyloggers", this malware is capable of capturing computer activity, including keyboard history, search history, chat site credentials, and so on.
- Bank Trojans: One of the main purposes of spyware is the theft of personal data, bank information and credit cards for the conduct of financial transactions.
- Remote device control: This software acts in the software configuration and allows remote device control by third parties.
- Device speed reduction: Spyware can reduce operating system speed and efficiency, causing system slowdowns and crashes.
Spywares can act in different ways Photo: Creative Commons / Flickr / elhombredenegro
- Keep your device protected with an antivirus or anti-malware tool updated to the latest version;
- Do not click on suspicious advertisements and keep your browser updated and protected;
- Do not download files, programs, or open email attachments from unknown and / or suspicious websites;
- On mobile devices, it is recommended to download only known applications from trusted sources, and be aware of security breach alerts during installation.
What to do if you get infected?
To remove spyware, it is recommended to use a cyber protection program with an antispyware tool. Therefore, there are some precautions to take if you suspect you have been infected: First, with the help of a robust and efficient antivirus, make sure your computer is clean and free from any threats. Then contact your bank organizations to alert you to the possibility of fraudulent transactions.
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