A couple of months ago I got all preachy about the importance of using an effective anti-virus solution and keeping the virus definitions current. I strongly recommended the AVG Free Edition which I use.
Today, I'm going to strongly urge everyone to download and run two applications that will scan your computer for spyware. For those who don't know what spyware is, here's the definition from BlackICE: "A general term for a program that surreptitiously monitors your actions. While they are sometimes sinister, like a remote control program used by a hacker, software companies have been known to use spyware to gather data about customers. The practice is generally frowned upon."
I have had great success by using not one anti-spyware application, but two. They complement each other perfectly and they're both free. Do yourself a favour and download Spybot and Ad Aware, just don't run them simultaneously. Make sure you've downloaded the latest updates and let these applications scan your entire system. They will detect all the spyware on your computer and allow you to have it deleted. Your computer will thank you for this.
School is out. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
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