Spyware is the means through which hackers gain access to your computer and your private information. Spyware is defined as any software that covertly gathers user information through your Internet connection without your knowledge, usually for advertising purposes. It watches everything you do on the Internet and sends that information, including private e-mail, passwords, and credit card numbers to the hacker invisibly, without your knowledge.

Regular system tune-ups can help you avoid these frustrations.

Much like those available for a car, a system tune-up can be as intricate and extensive as you'd like it to be. But, to help ensure your systems will maintain top performance, it's critical that your monthly tune-up includes each of these top six best practices:

  1. Update all security software, including anti-virus, anti-spam and anti-spyware applications.
  2. Enable Windows updates.
  3. Defragment (or defrag) the hard drive.
  4. Remove unused applications.
  5. Remove unwanted and temporary files.
  6. Check and/or activate the firewall.


Think you may have installed a fake or rogue program? There are lots of them out there just waiting for the opportunity to fleece an unsuspecting computer user.

Check them out, using some of these sources.