Can Anti-Spyware Software Really Prevent Identity Theft?

Using Anti-Spyware Software to Prevent Identity Theft

If you’re like most prudent people, you’re probably concerned about protecting yourself from identity theft. You probably keep your sensitive documents under lock and key, never give out personal information over the phone and know not to respond to emails that involve phishing. But are you really doing everything you can to prevent identity theft? If you don’t have an anti-spyware program running on your computer, you’re missing a key element in the fight against identity theft.

What is Anti-Spyware Software?

If you’ve never heard of anti-spyware software, it’s time to get brought up to speed. To understand what anti-spyware is, you’re going to need to understand the fundamentals of spyware.

Spyware is a malicious program that you may inadvertently download onto your computer. Some spyware programs don’t even require downloading them -- you can get them just by surfing the web or opening an email.

When spyware is installed on your system, it allows the person who infected you with it to spy on every move you make on your computer. Whether you’re entering passwords, chatting with friends or sending email, every single keystroke you make is being recorded when your system is infected with malicious spyware.

Sounds scary, doesn’t it? Well it should be. There’s nothing worse than the feeling that someone is looking over your shoulder all the time, and when spyware is infecting your computer, that’s exactly what’s happening. So what can you do?

Protecting Yourself

If you want to protect yourself from malicious spyware, you’re going to want to make sure you have anti-spyware software running on your computer.

Make sure the anti-spyware program you choose scans your computer for already installed infections, but also stops new spyware from getting into your system. An anti-spyware program that only performs frequent system scans but doesn’t stop spyware at the door won’t give you the best protection. Make sure the anti-spyware program you choose does both.


If you are not sure that you have eliminated all spywares from your PC and you want to twart any apyware's keystroke recorder, put your password in a spreadsheet file like a password protected Excel spreadsheet. Store your account information and your passwords in the spreadsheet. Instead of typing your user id and password, copy and paste them from your spreadsheet. The spyware can only record your mouse clicks (or CTRL+C and CTRL+V) but not your password. Then immediately clear your clipboard or restart your computer to erase whatever is in your clipboard. Do not save your spreadsheet containing your password in your hard drive but in a removable drive such as memory sticks, compact flash, SD or XD cards and store them under lock and key.

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