The War on Spyware

So I'm sitting here last night trying to settle in more stuff for the new hardware I bought ( subject of another post soon ) wondering why the hell the firewall keeps bitching about something trying to connect to the internet, and complaining about several attempted intrusions which were blocked. I was a bit stumped since Symantec AV wasn't picking anything up, and neither was Ad-Aware. The two utilities I normally rely on to wage war on nasty software.

So I decided to give something new a try. It's called SuperAntiSpyware, available from for free. Not the best of names, but it's worth the effort to go get and use. We've been using it at work to clean out the systems used by our sales force. Within seconds it found a trojan downloader active in memory. I have no idea where the thing came from or how it got past all of the usual filtering I do, but there it was. It might even explain why I was having lag issues on the XP box before. But aside from that, SA found the Vundo adware program also active in the system, along with several inactive registry entries and other spyware related files that Ad-Aware and Symantec both failed to locate.

So even though I sound like one of those lame commercials, you should really give this product a try and see what it might turn up for you. You may just be surprised at what you find. Kudos to the development team, but guys, your marketing people need help. The name is usually red flag material for deletion on site :)
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Apr 26, 2007 9:29 am by Samson in: , | 8 comment(s) [Closed]
I'd have to agree, that's not a very promising name. ;D
But if it works that well, I guess you can't really begrudge them the name too badly. Thanks for letting the rest of us know about it, soon as I get my power supply replaced (tomorrow, hopefully) I'll have to install that one on my windows box and see what it sees.

Oh, btw, I love your little spy vs spy avatar for this article. :)
You really should look into smilies for this site at some point. ;)

No. I forbid the use of smiley graphics. True geeks don't use images. We are the l33t. You will ph33r.

Too late, Whir, he's already got images all over the site. :P

I already tried the smilies thing once before and couldn't resolve the positioning issues in the css for the skin so we'll just have to do without for right now.

The trojan SA found on my system was only just recently added to their detection list, so it is possible it's new enough that nobody else detects it yet. Apparently these guys put out a daily signature update for new stuff they find, and the one I got nailed by was only added 2 days ago. The day I scanned the system :)

AVG updates daily as well. Never found any viruses for me because, well, I don't get them!

I didn't think I got them either, but apparently I did. I don't use AVG so I'm not sure how good or bad it is, or if it would have found what I had. Since everyone names the things they detect using their own scheme it's hard to figure out who can detect what.

I'd been using AVG myself, it seems pretty thorough, but it's not perfect (I suspect none of them are) either. *shrug*
But either way, daily updates are always a good sign, it means that you're not dealing with a lag between the virus and the solution.

Didn't realize the smilies had conflicted with your CSS before, Samson. It's really not a biggie, one of these days you'll find a way to incorporate 'em cleanly, I've got faith in ya'. ;)

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