Terms of Use 

What is Spyware
Spyware is defined as software that captures and sends data back to a third party without asking the user. It can capture your keystrokes while typing passwords, record what sites you visit, read and track your e-mail, pass along credit card numbers and so on. Spyware applications are often bundled as a hidden component of freeware or shareware programs you download from the Internet. (Of course, the majority of freeware or shareware programs do NOT download spyware).

What is Adware? 
Adware is defined as any software application that has advertising banners displayed while the program is running. Typically, a separate program is installed at the same time as a shareware or similar program.
Adware is considered to go beyond the reasonable advertising that one might expect from freeware or shareware. Adware will cause ads to inexplicably pop up on your display screen, even when you are not running the originally desired program or even connected to the Internet.

What can Spyware or Adware do to a computer? 
You may start to notice recurring slowdowns of e-mail and Web browsing, or you may not be able to e-mail or browse at all. You may also start to notice more and more pop up ads coming up on your system even if you are not browsing the web. Spyware and adware use memory and system resources, leading to system crashes or general instability. If you're experiencing performance or instability problems, or possibly even a hijacked Web browser, then it's probably time to scan your computer for adware and spyware.

What can I do to remove Spyware and Adware? 
Several different vendors offer software that is very similar to anti-virus software and can detect and remove Spyware and Adware from your computer. One that is very effective and currently free for use is
Lavasoft.  If you are using Windows on your PC, you may also want to try the free malware removal tool offered by Microsoft.If you have difficulty removing spyware from your computer, try running your spyware removal tools in "Safe" mode, since some removal tools can't remove spyware from your computer while it's running.

How often should I run this type of removal software? 
It's recommended that you run the software one time a week (or more) and be sure to download software updates that will help catch the latest Spyware and Adware programs created, since like viruses, new ones are created every day.  It is also recommended running removal software from a couple different companies since no one software is likely to catch all adware and spyware.  

How can I avoid getting spyware or adware on my machine in the future? 
One recommendation is to make sure your browser settings are tough enough to protect you. In IE, your security settings for the Internet zone should be at least "medium." Deny the browser permission to install any ActiveX control that you haven't requested. Another tip is not to install anything without knowing exactly what it is. Even though filled with legalease, read the end-user license agreement carefully, since some even tell you that if you install the application, you'll be installing some spyware with the software.