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How to remove spyware from your systems

How to remove spyware from your systems

Today the internet is filled with millions of viruses and malicious software. Companies providing IT support to small businesses should regularly remove spyware and viruses from their client’s machines. This helps their client’s staff to work efficiently and spontaneously.  Your systems can be infected with viruses, malware and spyware as they are used by your employees.  Spyware and viruses attack your applications even through the layered anti-spyware protection.  The situation becomes worse when small businesses are not willing to invest in anti-spyware and anti-virus security.

You can look for the following signs to check if your systems are infected with viruses, spyware or malware:

  1. Diminished system performance
  2. Browser homepage changes without your consent
  3. Frequent browser and system crashes
  4. Blocked anti-virus and anti-spyware programs
  5. Unwanted pop-ups, ads and toolbars appear on your screen

IT professionals offer multiple solutions to remove spyware from your systems. Some advise you to simply format the systems and re-install Windows while some ask you to scan the whole system with anti-virus software. Here are some tips for how to clean your systems of the spyware and viruses.

Restore the System from a Backup

Ideally if you scheduled backups of the system that is affected, the easiest and safest way to be confident that the malware has been removed is to restore the system drive from a backup. However if you don’t have a recent backup then you can try to remove the malware using the steps outlined below.

Isolate the infected Drive

Viruses like Trojans and rootkits hide when a user starts Windows. Even the top anti-virus applications may not detect and remove such type of infections. You need to remove the hard disk from the system and put it into the testing machine and scan it several times with different anti-spyware and anti-virus applications.

Remove the temporary files

You should remove all the temporary files and also delete everything from the temporary folders. Temporary files can be found within the C drive in the documents and settings. Multiple viruses hide in the temporary folders waiting to regenerate themselves upon system start up. It’s easier to remove these files while the drive is being slaved. So you should slave the C drive before eliminating the temporary files.

Return the drive into system and repeat scans

Now put the hard disk back to the system and repeat the scans with anti-virus and anti-spyware applications. You will be surprised find some remaining viruses or spyware that will be removed which repeated scans.  The repeated scans help you remove the remaining threats which may infect your files if not removed.

Test your systems

After finishing the above three steps, boot your system, open the web browser and delete the cookies and offline folders and files. Now open the internet connection settings to check the default proxy settings that might have been changed by the malicious program. Correct if any issues are found in the default settings. Now open 10 to 15 random websites check if any pop-ups appear, hijacked home pages and similar unwanted pages opening on their own.

Probe deeper for remaining spyware

Check if any infected files are still in the system like blocked websites or redirected searches. Try finding the active processes causing the problem. You can use Microsoft’s process explorer, Hijack This, Microsoft System Configuration Utility for locating the trouble causing processes. Restart the system and check again if there are any issues.

If your system is still not working fine and any signs of infection appear, then you need to re-install the operating system. Make sure you take a back-up of all your important data before reinstalling Windows.

Before undergoing any process to remove spyware from your systems, it is advisable to contact your IT support partner. Zero Effort Networking is one of the companies which offers top IT support Sydney and serving clients for more than twenty two years in Sydney and its surroundings.

For more information on system and data security you can call us on 1300 93 94 95 or email us at info@zen.net.au and we will be happy to assist you.

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