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Spyware and Adware

What is a Dialer?

SUMMARY: Dialers (dialing software) defined. Some are legitimate yet others may cause expensive problems.

Dialers (dialing software) are software packages that connect your machine directly to the Internet or an on-line service via a modem hooked up to a phone jack. Some dialers are useful; they may connect you to your Internet Service Provider.

However, dialers can also be malicious. Malicious dialers can be installed on your machine, calling up 1-900 #s, adult phone lines, international toll numbers, or other places you did not mean to call. These can add huge expenses to your phone bill.

How can you protect yourself against dialers?

1. When you are not using the Internet, unplug your modem's phone line from your wall phone jack.

2. Examine your phone bill carefully every month. Look for unexpected charges.

3. Perform other safe-computing practices mentioned in MalekTips' removing spyware and adware section. Many anti-spyware software packages can detect and remove dialers from your machine.

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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.