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#1 trzippy

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Posted 26 June 2004 - 12:36 PM

Having just successfully rid a client PC of the latest CWS Hijack -- whew! and thank you to wonderful contributors like LoPhatPhuud et al -- I would like to advise clients to do something proactive to prevent investations of malware. A friend suggested Spy Sweeper from Webroot, which from what I can tell is rarely mentioned in these forums. My experience is limited to using Spybot, AdAware and Hijack This AFTER the fact. I'd appreciate comments from other readers here as to what they think the best app for prevention is. Thanks!

#2 wawadave

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Posted 26 June 2004 - 03:45 PM

if you don,t mind spending money for a program that free ones allready do,than get it! :whistle:
<b>MYTH!!!!
Putting quotes around posts does not protect you from copy right infringement.</b>
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#3 trzippy

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Posted 26 June 2004 - 07:45 PM

Please suggest free ones that provide a similar degree of prevention, if indeed Spy Sweeper does that.

Edited by trzippy, 26 June 2004 - 07:47 PM.


#4 Chris Kelly

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Posted 26 June 2004 - 09:26 PM

I used SpySweeper [unregistered] for around 4 months before I got hit badly by the 'about:blank' curse which prompted me to find out about 'real' prevention methods. After a little chat with a helpful gent in IRC I was pointed toward Spybot, CWShredder and Hijack this. On running Spybot I found 1600 Items. I looked, rather confusedly at the SpySweeper icon that I thought had been protecting me all that time :scratchhead: . I ran a full scan with SpySweeper which happily reported that my system was clean. When Spybot was proving to me that my system was riddled. In short. I found SpySweeper to be innefficient and inferior to Spybot. I would not reccomend it.


Hope this help
Chris.

#5 Jamesharrison_

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Posted 26 June 2004 - 11:27 PM

Chris Kelly, Hi there, is it possible that the reason this malware was not detected is because you were using the unregistered version? thus rendering it impossible to get the latest detection updates from Webroot.

To help assist you with your question trzippy, I have used SpySweeper in the past (currently just use ad-aware and SpyBot S&D, as far as scanners go) found SpySweeper to be a good program, but indeed it isnt free, in addition it made a few false discoveries, although it is better to be safe than sorry they did annoy me. I will say that with the full version SpySweeper updates often and has a relatively large detection database. Since removing the registered version from my PC however, I have come to the conclusion that Spybot and Ad-Aware working alongside SpywareGuard & SpywareBlaster, HijackThis and CWS Shredder is all you need, be sure to have proper firewall and Antivirus software to go with this to ensure protection in the future. I used to try various different scanners and still do as new ones come out, to test them, but in using AdAware and Spybot my PC has been clean for a very long time. Post got a little long hehe, hope I was of some assistance.

Edited by Jamesharrison_, 26 June 2004 - 11:32 PM.


#6 Paranoid

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Posted 27 June 2004 - 10:33 AM

Chris

I would like to confirm when you say 1600 entries do you mean spyware/adware entries only or did you include all the mru and tracks? The later are not spyware.
Please note that the software I recommend above is entirely based on only my own experience and testing. In no way should my comments,opinions and endorsements be construed as an endorsement by the forum, nor do they reflect the advise or recommendations by the experts or helpers at spywareinfo.


#7 trzippy

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 11:45 AM

Jamesharrison wrote, "I have come to the conclusion that Spybot and Ad-Aware working alongside SpywareGuard & SpywareBlaster, HijackThis and CWS Shredder is all you need" - I assume to replace Spy Sweeper. I'm glad that's ALL he needed! ;)

I'm going to post a related question separately, asking for comments about Norton Anti Virus 2004's effectiveness against preventing spyware. Their marketing materials boast that it now addresses malware other than viruses. I also don't see much mention of Pest Patrol in these pages. But again, I'm looking for a preventive measure more than post-attack fix; having finally rid a client's PC of a variant of CWS Hijack (that CWS Shredder couldn't fix), I well recognize the merits of Ad-Aware, Hijack This, Process Explorer, et al.

BTW, no offense intended to Jamesharrison; I appreciate his comments. It's just amazing how much we have to throw at these bastiches yet they don't seem to get the press coverage or big-software-publisher attention that viruses attract. BTW, Pest Patrol and Spybot did not detect the CWS Hijack that my client's PC had. Only Ad-Aware found it, and removed it, then found it again, and removed it, then found it again...

#8 Paranoid

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Posted 29 June 2004 - 10:25 AM

Actually I suspect in recent years, spyware/adware is a lot more innovative in spreading and more importantly RESISTING removal than most worms :) To the extent that people are actually learning about unreleased exploits from such samples! That this is very surprising because such exploits that you happen to stumble often but are not publicly known are rare, and generally you don't use them unless you have to and even then at *specific* targets. Such tricks only work once, since to release them means exposing your methods.

Also Compared to typical viruses,worms, spyware has proven a lot quicker in exploiting IE flaws, and are typically very hard to remove.

Part of the reason , I suspect is because from the start, commercial hijackers,adware have the muscle of commercial support behind them compared to viruses, which in the past tend to be one man affairs. Another reason is the nature of the product. What use is adware, or homepage hijackers if they are easily removed? By their nature such malware reveal themselves openly, they have to do it to work! Compared to say a silent Trojan/back-door that lies in the background awaiting commands or a worm that sends emails using it's own smtp engine , they will be noticed and hence have to be very resistant to removal.

Hence the existence of the ultra hard to remove, fast mutating CWS. It's nemesis CWShredder - a specialised tool created just to combat it, has being waging a war with it for a while now, and I can't say the latter is winning.

I kind of agree that commercial software are rather slow in the act at detecting &removing spyware/adware and are less successfully as compared to their cousins in the anti virus industry . I suspect it's partly because the industry hasn't caught up yet (many are hobbyists), awareness of the problem is still relatively new compared to viruses, and as such vendors are still not as motivated yet.

Even now, all the big names (in the AV industry) are still learning and the nature of adware and worse spyware is that it's much wilder in scope than just worms and viruses., so what they have down pat in viruses, doesn't apply much. I don't think the protection they have is much better than the free ones currently. After all they need to divide their resources between detecting viruses (their main focus) and adware (which probably is not)


As for practical advice about preventing spyware/adware, there is no magic bullet.
Unlike worms which are generally neutralised if you are careful with attachments, spyware,adware nowadays are generally installed when you surf the web, or are bundled with other software.

So you need to close down these 2 channels of transmission

1) use a none- Internet explorer , 99.99% of spyware/adware are targeted at IE, and many install via exploits (some unpatched), so using something like Firefox means you are much much safer.

2) Be very careful with installing programs. Download and install only from trusted source.

It's possible to remain adware and spyware free, many of us have done it. Good luck!

Edited by Paranoid, 06 July 2004 - 11:46 AM.

Please note that the software I recommend above is entirely based on only my own experience and testing. In no way should my comments,opinions and endorsements be construed as an endorsement by the forum, nor do they reflect the advise or recommendations by the experts or helpers at spywareinfo.


#9 baz

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 02:33 AM

Well, I know I'm late to this discussion, but I have to say I've been very pleased with Spy Sweeper. Like Jamesharrison_, I suspect the reason Chris Kelly had a problem is that the unregistered version does not allow for definition updates. Four months is a long time to go, considering how frequently Spy Sweeper provides updates.

All that said, I agree it's silly to pay if you think you're getting the same protection from the freebies. (I confess I purchased Spy Sweeper during Spybot's long upgrade process, when I began to despair of it ever being updated again.) For what it's worth, the Window Users Group Network (WUGNET) provides a discount-coupon code that can be used when purchasing the Spy Sweeper download from Webroot. This slashes a full one-third off the $29.95 price so that it's about $19.95. Last time I checked, the code was SWEEPSPOW.

#10 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 04:35 AM

If you uninstall and re-download/re-install SpySweeper (once per month or so) the "Malware Definition Database" will be updated. A cheap way to keep SpySweeper up-to-date.

Long ago I downloaded once a new one called "Omniquad AntiSpy"
I ran Bazooka, Spybot, Ad-aware, SpySweeper and nothing was detected.
Then I ran Omniquad AntiSpy and 245 spywares were detected.
Is Omniquad AntiSpy better ? NO, because all these anti-spyware use a different "Spyware Definition Database" in quantity and/or definitions. The more anti-spywares you have the better. But who has the time to run all these softwares ?

The bottom line is : NONE of these anti-spyware are good enough, neither the free ones, nor the commercial ones.
Even the anti-spyware with the largest definition database doesn't cover 1/3 of all the spywares on the internet and people create new spywares every day that aren't added yet in definition databases.
That's why I never spend money on any of these anti-spyware or any other protection software.
You pay for an ILLUSION of safety, not for a full protection.

You better install Mozilla, Firefox or Opera to replace MSIE6 and watch out where you go on the internet and what you download on the internet and that costs NOTHING.
But most people don't care and keep on downloading FREE STUFF that is infected with spywares/viruses and keep on sending HijackThis logs in this forum.
God loves idiots, that's why he created so many of them.

Edited by ErikAlbert, 04 July 2004 - 04:36 AM.

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#11 lonewolf

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 09:34 AM

The free version of SpySweeper is not as good or as up to date as the pay version. So by downloading the free version once a month you are still ending up with an inferior product.

Omniquad is known to be FULL of false positives, even Pest Patrol doesn't have as many FPs. If you have SpywareBlaster (or other similar programs) installed Omniquad will detect alot of it's protection as spyware. Most people i know who have run it get about that number (245 or greater) of detections, most of which are FPs.

How do you know that the best anti-spyware product detects only 1/3 of all spyware? I would be interested in knowing where you got that information. What studies did you obtain that data from?

I agree with your last statements about alternate browsers ect...except, God doesn't create idiots, people are more than capable of handling that one themselves.

#12 New Raider

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 11:02 AM

Please suggest free ones that provide a similar degree of prevention, if indeed Spy Sweeper does that.

I haven't encountered any.
I'm pretty sure I heard Spy Hunter (WindowsXP only) itself is spyware, so I don't think there are any.

#13 New Raider

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 11:10 AM

I used SpySweeper [unregistered] for around 4 months before I got hit badly by the 'about:blank' curse which prompted me to find out about 'real' prevention methods. After a little chat with a helpful gent in IRC I was pointed toward Spybot, CWShredder and Hijack this. On running Spybot I found 1600 Items. I looked, rather confusedly at the SpySweeper icon that I thought had been protecting me all that time :scratchhead: . I ran a full scan with SpySweeper which happily reported that my system was clean. When Spybot was proving to me that my system was riddled. In short. I found SpySweeper to be innefficient and inferior to Spybot. I would not reccomend it.


Hope this help
Chris.

Actually, I found the reverse to be true, but then again I'm using the previous Spybot upon the recommendation of some user reviews.
I recommend it over any version of Spybot.
I also doubt the privacy practices and concerns of Koala itself.

#14 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 11:20 AM

Here is the site
http://www.pcmag.com...,1524249,00.asp

I hear and read so many stories, that I don't even care anymore about someone's opinion. Nobody really knows, nothing but guesses and personal experiences.
Does it really matter how many malwares, they keep on coming every day.
One day, somewhere in the world, a very brilliant programmer will create a total new type of malware and we can start all over again.
Crime is a part of life since the stone ages and can not be exterminated.
ErikAlbert
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#15 Paranoid

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 11:57 AM

My own experience is that spysweeper finds stuff, but false positives. But what do I know?
Please note that the software I recommend above is entirely based on only my own experience and testing. In no way should my comments,opinions and endorsements be construed as an endorsement by the forum, nor do they reflect the advise or recommendations by the experts or helpers at spywareinfo.


#16 baz

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 12:25 PM

Can't say I agree with you on this, Erik. "The illusion of saftey?" Nah. Look, nothing is ironclad. But all good programs work, and work effectively. We lock our home and car doors knowing that any crook who REALLY wants to get in will probably be able to do so. But the locks make it harder. Should we not use firewalls, anti-virus programs and anti-spyware apps because they provide merely the illusion of safety? Of course not. None provides 100% safety, but they significantly slash the odds of being victimized. You do what you can.

And I don't believe the victims of all the cyber beasts out there are "idiots." Why blame the victims? If Microsoft invested in security half of what it puts into marketing, there'd be little need for conversations like this. It's easy for those of us who are regularly online and who read computer forums and news to scoff at those who still open unidentified attachments. But today, thousands of people will be getting online for the first time. Tomorrow and the next day, too. And they're going to make mistakes that savvier users will avoid. No need to blame them.

#17 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 12:28 PM

I'm just trying to get a complete picture of how to protect my pc, like anybody else.
But the more I read, the more confused I get.
- contradicting opinions of users
- contradicting opinions of professionals
- contradicting reviews of softwares
What is really true ???

How do you really know for 100% sure, that your pc isn't infected with malware.
Because all your scanners didn't find anything ???
Do you all have that knowledge to be sure of that ?
Common that would be very naive.

Meanwhile I keep on searching for preventing methods, because I don't believe
in the fixing methods.
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#18 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 01:14 PM

baz
Don't take it personal.
I know a guy that collects nothing but free screensavers, where ever he can find them on the internet.
I already told him that screensavers can be very dangerous, because they are in fact executable programs, like exe-files and com-files.
In spite of all my warnings, he still continues downloading screensavers.
That's what I call an idiot.
If I found one, I guess there must be alot more of them in the whole world.
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#19 lonewolf

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 02:12 PM

Thanks for that link ErikAlbert. Though i don't put too much stock in what they have to say over at PC Mag.

I'm not really too worried myself about spyware/adware, you can just block alot of that stuff from accessing the internet with a good firewall anyway. As long as it's not causing any problems on my system, i could really care less about it, if it was on my computer.

Keyloggers/trojans/rootkits seem much more of a threat, and much harder to find and remove. Some are so difficult to detect they are nearly impossible to find on your system.

Seems like if we don't find some better ways to get rid of this stuff pretty fast, we'll all be in for some real trouble. But i like your idea of 'preventing' rather than 'removing' malware after it's been on your system and done it's damage.

There are some good apps that can help prevent alot of malware like System Safety Monitor & Process Guard, but even these can be beat by some of the newer forms of malware now coming out.

I too am in search of better ways to secure my pc & defend myself from malware, i think most are on this forum, but no program will ever be perfect, because some genius will always find a way to crack it. So we just do the best we can with what we have and keep searching for new ways to stay one step ahead of the bad guys.

Edited by lonewolf, 04 July 2004 - 02:18 PM.


#20 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 02:19 PM

OK Lonewolf, I agree with your last post.
If you ever find something that prevents malware, whatever it may be directly or indirectly, I'm VERY interested.
I'm not planning to spend hours or days to remove a very nasty CWS-variant, I can reinstall my harddisk faster, if necessary.

Edited by ErikAlbert, 04 July 2004 - 02:37 PM.

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#21 Donna P

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 03:00 PM

:thumbsup:
Well I've been a spyware Program Junkie (tried them all) and Spysweeper is and always will be the #1 Spyware Detector...like I said"tried them all" Spybot deleted a System Folder and I had to format my hardrive (right from scratch) so I wasn't impressed. Adaware is pretty good too...but Spysweeper detect's stuff that all other's didn't. When you think about it...do you want to clog up your hardrive with a bunch of FREE Spyware Programs..or just have 1 reliable PAID Program... Well Spysweeper is the BEST!! It's not expensive when you consider that it also has "Homepage Shield..Cookie Shield... Startup and Memory Shield and more. For 24 Bucks (a year) that's worth it...rather then keep trying all the other Programs and cluttering up your Computer.

Also may I add...that I'm not a "new member" (joined March) but when I went to sign in, it said wrong name...well I think I know my name...so I registered again.

Edited by Donna P, 04 July 2004 - 03:21 PM.


#22 baz

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 04:13 PM

No sweat, Erik. Yeah, I agree there are folks who just won't get it. And for those who try to protect themselves, well -- to use the cliche -- it's like bailing out the Titanic with a teaspoon. Like Donna P., I have found Spy Sweeper to be the most effective teaspoon out there.

#23 ErikAlbert

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 05:08 PM

LOL @ $24 teaspoon, a very close comparison. Funny but true.

Edited by ErikAlbert, 04 July 2004 - 08:41 PM.

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Simplicity is always brilliant.

#24 WyoCowboy

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Posted 09 July 2004 - 06:15 PM

OK Lonewolf, I agree with your last post.
If you ever find something that prevents malware, whatever it may be directly or indirectly, I'm VERY interested.
I'm not planning to spend hours or days to remove a very nasty CWS-variant, I can reinstall my harddisk faster, if necessary.

Since you asked, and I basically remove scumware/malware for a living (in addition to doing about everything else with computers), here is how to prevent getting malware on your pc (I think most of this is posted in the FAQs on this forum)

1. Don't use Internet Explorer for anything except running Windows Update, or for sites that require ActiveX (e.g. your online bank site). Mozilla, Firefox, Opera or Netscape are pretty much immune to scumware, as long as you are using Sun java instead of MS java.

2. Run Windows Update weekly, to patch vulnerabilites.

3. Stay away from file sharing services such as Kazaa, et al (do you really want to share your hard drive with strangers?!?!? and don't try to kid me about their security options - I've tested software for a living for 18 years)

4. Stay away from online gaming sites. These seem to like to install malware.

5. Use more than one general purpose malware removal tool (e.g. Spybot S&D) at least once a month.

6. Don't download/run any programs from anyone in an online chat room.

7. Run a good antivirus and keep it up to date. The line is blurring between viruses and scumware, and it appears to me that the folks that used to write viruses are moving into the scumware field - it certainly pays better. It may only be a matter of time before some enterprising soul figures out how to load scumware programs as attachments into spam email.

Note that some of this is about removing malware or scanning for it as opposed to preventing it. I follow these recommendations and the only thing that scumware scanners find on my system are a few cookies. If you don't faithfully follow steps 1-4, you can get the variety of scumware that downloads additional scumware onto your machine, so scanning once in a while is a good idea.

#25 ErikAlbert

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Posted 09 July 2004 - 09:30 PM

WyoCowboy,
Sorry, but these are the CLASSIC advices. I have read these advices over and over again on the internet and
alot of other advices you didn't even mention.

I apply all the CLASSIC advices, but I don't like them at all, because
- they limit my access to the internet
- they deprive me of ENJOYING the internet and internet looks like a daymare/nightmare to me in stead of having fun with it.
- they force me to become paranoid (wrongly or rightly) on every webpage I see and I don't like to become paranoid,
because it isn't healthy for my mind
- they force me to use too many scanners or shields and I'm wasting too much freetime on running them and
keeping them up-to-date. I have better things to do, you know.
- they aren't good enough and contain too many leaks.

That's why I'm looking for a total different approach, a total new idea and I THINK I found one.
So I'm going to spend all my freetime on this one. If Pete reads this post, he knows what I'm talking about.
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#26 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 07:52 AM

Hi everyone

I have been testing the spysweeper on several computers and it seems like there is a problem with it when it is configured to load on startup when I use it on a computer with Norton Internet Security and XP.
After a while (several bootups), the system starts to hang and the only way to make it work again is to startup in Safemode and disable spysweeper...

Anyone had a similar experience? or am I wrong about this?

First time it happened I didn't find out what caused the problem and I formated and reinstalled xp from scratch. (That was not a fun job...)

#27 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 08:00 AM

WyoCowboy,
Sorry, but these are the CLASSIC advices. I have read these advices over and over again on the internet and
alot of other advices you didn't even mention.

I apply all the CLASSIC advices, but I don't like them at all, because
- they limit my access to the internet
- they deprive me of ENJOYING the internet and internet looks like a daymare/nightmare to me in stead of having fun with it.
- they force me to become paranoid (wrongly or rightly) on every webpage I see and I don't like to become paranoid,
because it isn't healthy for my mind
- they force me to use too many scanners or shields and I'm wasting too much freetime on running them and
keeping them up-to-date. I have better things to do, you know.
- they aren't good enough and contain too many leaks.

That's why I'm looking for a total different approach, a total new idea and I THINK I found one.
So I'm going to spend all my freetime on this one. If Pete reads this post, he knows what I'm talking about.


ErikAlbert,

How about sharing that new approach with us/me?

:)

#28 Paranoid

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 08:23 AM

WyoCowboy,
Sorry, but these are the CLASSIC advices. I have read these advices over and over again on the internet and
alot of other advices you didn't even mention.

That's why I'm looking for a total different approach, a total new idea and I THINK I found one.
So I'm going to spend all my freetime on this one. If Pete reads this post, he knows what I'm talking about.


ErikAlbert,

How about sharing that new approach with us/me?

:)

Let me guess,

1) Forget common sense, and download everything off the net, porn, warez etc

2) Pray that your anti-malware can catch all of them.
Please note that the software I recommend above is entirely based on only my own experience and testing. In no way should my comments,opinions and endorsements be construed as an endorsement by the forum, nor do they reflect the advise or recommendations by the experts or helpers at spywareinfo.


#29 ErikAlbert

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 11:45 AM

neopc,
I said I "THINK" I found a solution.
How can I mention and defend a product, I never used myself. I don't even know how it works.
I have read the commercial blabla about this product, but that isn't enough for me.
I downloaded and printed the user manual, but I still have to translate/read it.
I have to create a test environment on my pc and I have only ONE pc, that needs to be reinstalled for that purpose. Then I have to run several tests and check these tests. Those things take time you know.
Depending on the test results I will talk about this product in the forum, good or bad.

Besides this software, like many other softwares has been discussed already by the members of this forum and without much supporters, when you consider the low number of readings and replies of that topic.
New ideas are never easily accepted by people. It takes time to get used to new ideas.
Aren't there enough examples in the history of mankind. Some people were killed for their new ideas in the Dark Ages.
People prefer to stick to their old habits, traditions, own opinions, own experiences, own preferences, etc. etc. etc. and that happens in the computer world also.

I'm just looking for a solution to use the internet and keep my pc safe at the same time, like anybody else.
I know already the classic method, that's one angle, now I like to see this problem from a different angle.
I didn't join this forum because I had a problem. I'm here to read, to learn and to observe.

As long I'm not sure about this new software, I will keep my mouth shut.
They are already joking about it as you can see.
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#30 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 11:54 AM

Hi ErikAlbert

Thanks for your reply. I will keep an eye on this thread to make sure i get your post on this possible solution.

I'm always looking for new approaches ;)

#31 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 12:06 PM

Edited

Edited by neopc, 11 July 2004 - 12:09 PM.


#32 lonewolf

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 03:22 PM

Hi Neopc

I know what program ErikAlbert is talking about it's called ShadowSurfer. It is supposed to revert your computer back to a time before you had any problems. It's somewhat similar to another program called GoBack, but is superior IMO. You can check it out here: http://www.shadowsto...m/products.html This program is not fool proof and requires you to have a super clean system to begin with. I don't see it as an end to all malware problems, but seems to be a great addition to any security portfolio.

#33 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 05:53 PM

Thanx for the info.

Unfortunately that is not an option for me. I have to be absolutely sure that my pc is free of all malware and so on at all times :)

I'm fanatic about it :)

lol

Regards,

neopc

#34 cnm

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 06:01 PM

Get Ad-Aware http://www.lavasoftu...ftware/adaware/
and Spybot SD http://security.koll...n&page=download
Both free.

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#35 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 06:16 PM

I have them.
And i have spysweeper and hijakthis and a few others :) I have several antivirus and firewalls also :)

Didn't I say I was fanatic?

:):):)

#36 ErikAlbert

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 06:53 PM

WOW, quick judgements here and back to the classic approach of course.
I wished I could evaluate software so quickly at my job. One short note and case closed.

Neopc,
I'm just wondering how you can be so sure that your pc is malware-free ?
Because all your scanners and shields, didn't find anything ?
I would never make such a statement when my pc was connected to the internet.
You better ask yourself : "What was NOT removed by my scanners and shields ?"

Sorry guys, but a little too fast and too cheap for me :D
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#37 neopc

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 07:39 PM

WOW, quick judgements here and back to the classic approach of course.
I wished I could evaluate software so quickly at my job. One short note and case closed.

Neopc,
I'm just wondering how you can be so sure that your pc is malware-free ?
Because all your scanners and shields, didn't find anything ?
I would never make such a statement when my pc was connected to the internet.
You better ask yourself : "What was NOT removed by my scanners and shields ?"

Sorry guys, but a little too fast and too cheap for me :D


Hello again, ErikAlbert :)

Hehe you're pretty fast to draw your conclusions about what you think I have decided :)
I'm not the one evaluating this software, YOU are... I'm still waiting for your report.

But... If it is true that the program you are looking at only restores the computer back to an earlier "time", it will probably not be better than the ones I allready have in that most of these programs don't stop things from being installed in the first place. (We'll see)

Probably I will use it in addition to all the other programs :)

You say that it's impossible to know if your pc is clean...

Yes you're probably right about that.

When I say that "I have to be sure" that doesn't mean that I AM sure but that I WANT to be sure. See? :)

#38 ErikAlbert

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Posted 11 July 2004 - 08:06 PM

neopc,
OK, my knowledge of English is not good enough to feel nuances in words and expressions. I feel like a kid when I'm writing in English.
Don't you worry about the report. One day you will get it. I'm not fanatic but obstinate :-)
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#39 New Raider

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 03:36 PM

It seems Webroot found out about our little trick deleting Webroot cookies and cache before download, uninstalling, deleting Webroot directory in Program Files, and redownloading SpySweeper each month to extend the free evaluation.
SpySweeper will not update anymore, and is pretty much useless conserning new stuff.

I downloaded ssfsetup1_1753578350, and still had to install an old version.

#40 carcorze

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 06:53 PM

Hello guys.. i don't know is someone else had the same problem but i have Windows Xp SP1 and Spy Sweeper i think is a great program but when it is installed i get a strange error when right clicking o any folder o file in My Documents.... I formatted my PC and got the same error.. after uninstalling the program it went away and then i installed it again and it came back... well anyone had the same problem?? :rofl:

#41 New Raider

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Posted 13 July 2004 - 08:53 PM

Hello guys.. i don't know is someone else had the same problem but i have Windows Xp SP1 and Spy Sweeper i think is a great program but when it is installed i get a strange error when right clicking o any folder o file in My Documents.... I formatted my PC and got the same error.. after uninstalling the program it went away and then i installed it again and it came back... well  anyone had the same problem?? :rofl:

If you're working on IE6 with SP1 (all OSs), you should get the Microsoft patches.
IE Frame Injection Vulnerability

#42 WyoCowboy

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Posted 16 July 2004 - 05:58 PM

WyoCowboy,
Sorry, but these are the CLASSIC advices. I have read these advices over and over again on the internet and
alot of other advices you didn't even mention.

I apply all the CLASSIC advices, but I don't like them at all, because
- they limit my access to the internet
- they deprive me of ENJOYING the internet and internet looks like a daymare/nightmare to me in stead of having fun with it.
- they force me to become paranoid (wrongly or rightly) on every webpage I see and I don't like to become paranoid,
because it isn't healthy for my mind
- they force me to use too many scanners or shields and I'm wasting too much freetime on running them and
keeping them up-to-date. I have better things to do, you know.
- they aren't good enough and contain too many leaks.

That's why I'm looking for a total different approach, a total new idea and I THINK I found one.
So I'm going to spend all my freetime on this one. If Pete reads this post, he knows what I'm talking about.

It sounds like you misunderstood what I said. I only scan my machine for scumware about 2 or 3 times per year (with Spybot S&D), and I only find a few cookies. Period. I have never purchased anti-scumware software, and I surf everywhere, without fear, using Netscape 7.1, with the popup suppression feature turned on.

The reason I stated the "classic" approaches is because they work. They work by preventing scumware from getting on your machine in the first place, and you were asking how to prevent scumware from getting on your PC. If you don't want to follow best practices and are looking for a magic program or solution that will protect you from everything out there, good luck.

#43 ErikAlbert

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Posted 17 July 2004 - 08:06 AM

WyoCowboy,
Well you sure have alot of faith in Spybot.
My version of Spybot detects only 15016 spyware objects while there are 78000 spyware programs on the loose according this website http://www.pcmag.com...,1524249,00.asp
The world counts about 200 countries. Let's assume that each country has ONE malicious spyware-author, who needs a month time to write a malware-program. That's 200 new malware programs per month and this is a very low estimation, considering the world population (6,314,000,000).
What makes you so sure that Spybot removes them all ? Never ran another anti-spyware program for a second opinion ?
Using another internet browser than MSIE doesn't guarantee a malware-free harddisk and one human mistake on the internet, while surfing is enough to get malware.

Each malware is a compiled program, that nobody can read. So nobody knows exactly what these programs are doing behind your back. The only thing you know is that something is wrong and in many cases you can remove the main cause of the trouble but that doesn't guarantee, you removed everything. Maybe these programs installed a very well hidden time bomb on your harddisk as well. Once all conditions are fullfilled this time bomb explodes and you get in trouble again, without knowing the real cause.

You run Spybot 2 or 3 times a year, well I reinstall my harddisk from scratch 2 or 3 times a year to get rid of all the malwares that were not detected or weren't removed completely.
I'm not an expert, not even a professional, but I'm not stupid either.
Programmers are the only GODS in the computer world and they DECIDE EVERYTHING what really happens in your computer, nobody else.
A malicious brilliant programmer can do anything to destroy your computer and will use your screen to fool you and that's why internet is so dangerous.
The very best protection is still disconnecting your pc from the internet.

In this forum I read alot about anti-malware softwares, security settings, repairing tools, ... well, I'm going to test other solutions, like ShadowUser and I'm going to try everything to CRACK ShadowUser during my tests, to prove that the classic methods are still the best solution or maybe not. Only time will tell.
ErikAlbert
Simplicity is always brilliant.

#44 Paranoid

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Posted 17 July 2004 - 09:32 AM

Well you sure have alot of faith in Spybot.
My version of Spybot detects only 15016 spyware objects while there are 78000 spyware programs on the loose according this website http://www.pcmag.com...,1524249,00.asp
The world counts about 200 countries. Let's assume that each country has ONE malicious spyware-author, who needs a month time to write a malware-program. That's 200 new malware programs per month and this is a very low estimation, considering the world population (6,314,000,000).
What makes you so sure that Spybot removes them all ? Never ran another anti-spyware program for a second opinion ?
Using another internet browser than MSIE doesn't guarantee a malware-free harddisk and one human mistake on the internet, while surfing is enough to get malware.


Looks like someone is looking for 100% security. That doesn't exist, even if you put your faith in a number of backups scanners.

Each malware is a compiled program, that nobody can read. So nobody knows exactly what these programs are doing behind your back. The only thing you know is that something is wrong and in many cases you can remove the main cause of the trouble but that doesn't guarantee, you removed everything. Maybe these programs installed a very well hidden time bomb on your harddisk as well. Once all conditions are fullfilled this time bomb explodes and you get in trouble again, without knowing the real cause.


And maybe, you are the only conscious human on the planet and everyone else is a zombie. Maybe life is all a dream....Maybe...

There are no gurantees, using classic or whatever approach. At the very lest, the classic advise is sufficient to protect you from the most common forms of malware that almost everyone else seems to get. Like many I have bought and trialed many scanners, none of have often anything worth reporting, besides false positives.

Am I 100% safe? Cos not, but it does seem that I do have reasonable defences.

If you want certainty against real hackers with custom made trojans, you are out of luck.(Well not really.....)

Using backups is not really a new approach but is of limited utility really. You never know if the safe point you are restoring to is really clean, unless you always restore to the default windows setup, but that's not really realistic.
Please note that the software I recommend above is entirely based on only my own experience and testing. In no way should my comments,opinions and endorsements be construed as an endorsement by the forum, nor do they reflect the advise or recommendations by the experts or helpers at spywareinfo.


#45 WyoCowboy

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Posted 20 July 2004 - 11:17 AM

Sorry - Simplicity is not always brilliant. Sometimes it is foolish. To paraphrase Einstein, "make things as simple as possible, but no simpler."

"Well you sure have alot of faith in Spybot.
My version of Spybot detects only 15016 spyware objects while there are 78000 spyware programs on the loose according this website [url="http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,4149,1524249,00.asp""]http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,4149,1524249,00.asp"[/url]

Yes, I read the article when it first came out. Actually, I don't put anymore faith in Spybot than any other free program, or any program that costs money. I know I don't have scumware on my home machine because I pretty much know the legitimate dlls and such by heart, and take a cruise through the registry if I have reason to be suspicious.

I've sent most of the past 18 years testing software and software-driven hardware for a living, and as long as software continues to be written by humans, no one thing is going to do the job 100%, so you are chasing a dream if you are looking for a single solution that is 100% effective in preventing spyware.

The real way to prevent scumware is to understand the mechanisms of how it gets on your system in the first place, and avoid those mechanisms, and that is what my original post was about. There are a finite number of mechanisms that can be used to install malware on a machine over the web.

If you want to have it both ways, by continuing to do the wrong things (e.g. use Internet Explorer) and at the same time run something that will 100% protect you from yourself, happy hunting.

"Each malware is a compiled program, that nobody can read. So nobody knows exactly what these programs are doing behind your back."

Since you apparently aren't a programmer, you don't seem to know that programs can be disassembled and decoded.

"Programmers are the only GODS in the computer world and they DECIDE EVERYTHING what really happens in your computer, nobody else."

Having worked with many programmers, a number of them do tend to think they are gods, but they are fallable. Anyways, I decide what is happening in my computer, uninstalling programs I don't like and following best practices.

"A malicious brilliant programmer can do anything to destroy your computer and will use your screen to fool you and that's why internet is so dangerous.
The very best protection is still disconnecting your pc from the internet."

Only if you don't follow best practices. Scumware, viruses, trojans, etc are all like Dracula - they can only bite you if you invite them in.

"In this forum I read alot about anti-malware softwares, security settings, repairing tools, ... well, I'm going to test other solutions, like ShadowUser and I'm going to try everything to CRACK ShadowUser during my tests, to prove that the classic methods are still the best solution or maybe not. Only time will tell."

In your case, you are better off switching to Mac. Effectively testing software is a discipline that takes many years to master, and it doesn't sound like you are equipped.

#46 cnm

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Posted 20 July 2004 - 11:21 AM

This thread has crept far afield from the original question about SpySweeper effectiveness. I am closing it. Start new topics(s) with relevant titles if you wish to continue this discussion.

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