- Why You Should Worry About Keeping Your Computer Safe
- Getting to Everything Security Related in Vista
- What Spyware and Malware Are and How Your Computer Gets Them
- Symptoms of Malware on Your Computer
- Getting Rid of and Keeping Malware Off Your Computer
- Windows Defender
- What to Do If You Suspect Malware But Can't Get a Pop-Up to Close
- What Is a Virus and How Is It Different from Spyware?
- Protecting Your Computer from Viruses
- Determining If You Have a Virus
- The Importance of Automatic Updates
- Turning On Automatic Updating
- What Is Windows Firewall?
- Why You Should Back Up Your Computer
- Backing Up the Files on Your Computer
- Backing Up Your Entire Computer
- Where to Store Backups
- Restoring Your Computer from a Backup
- Automatically Backing Up Your Computer
- What Is Service Pack 1 (a.k.a. SP1)?
- How Do I Get SP1?
- How Do I Install SP1?
What Spyware and Malware Are and How Your Computer Gets Them
Spyware is a term given to software that installs itself on a computer and then tracks that computer user’s Internet usage. Companies who create this stuff do it mainly for marketing purposes, but it feels like they do it just to annoy the living daylights out of us. Malware stands for malicious software. In fact, it’s the new hip term for bad software on computers, and spyware is simply just a category of malware. Malware contains just about every other type of bad software too, though, not just spyware. For example, a virus is also malware (I’ll talk more about viruses later in this chapter). Really, it’s used to describe any type of software that invades your privacy or deliberately tries to damage your computer or the files and programs on it. Malware can be transmitted through a network, a website on the Internet, emails, CDs and DVDs, downloaded files, and documents you have shared with people you know. This is the stuff you want to protect yourself from because it can either harm the files on your computer or just diminish your personal computing experience and make it annoying.