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Spyware and Adware

What is a Remote Access Trojan / Backdoor Software?

SUMMARY: Remote access Trojan Horses and backdoor software defined. This can compromise your privacy and system stability.

Malicious software packages exist on the Internet that attempt to gain complete control over computer systems. These programs, sometimes called Remote Access Trojans (RAT) or Backdoor Software (named as the software opens a "back door" on your computer in which it can tell your machine what to do), are sometimes attached to Trojan Horses, viruses, worms, and spyware exploits. If your system is infected, there is virtually no limit to what these programs can do:

* Use your computer to relay SPAM to other individuals.

* Steal your passwords and other stored information, such as credit card numbers.

* Read your e-mail or other private information.

* Use your computer as a Denial of Service (DoS) agent to attack other computers.

* Randomly delete files or change system settings.

The result is downright scary. These malware packages can get on your computer in various ways, including:

* Downloading malicious software from the Internet that looks like something else (Trojan Horse attack)

* Viewing a website that exploits a vulnerability with your web browser.

* Merely turning on a vulnerable, unpatched computer and connecting it to the Internet for a period of time.

To help protect yourself against Remote Access Trojans and Backdoor Software, you should install spyware removal tools, use a firewall to help protect yourself, install an anti-virus scanner such as Anti-Vir, and keep your operating system and software up-to-date.

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The MalekTips website was created in 1998 by Andrew Malek of Envision Programming. The page's goal is to freely disperse computer-related tips, hints, and informative articles. Tips are organized to be easy to find, and are presented clearly, in easy-to-understand language. MalekTips also provides information and links to public-domain, open source, freeware, shareware, and commercial software available for download.