Data Security Software

Anti-Spyware Software

Spyware is any of the variety of technologies downloaded with or without the consumer's knowledge that may infringe on a user’s computer experience, privacy, or security. Some are harmless, used by companies to monitor the frequency of consumer visits to their websites or by parents to track their children's online time. Other spyware can slow down or disable a computer or particular program, steal personal information, and open loopholes for viruses and more spyware to invade.

Spyware may be acquired in a variety of different ways: posing as an anti-spyware program, tricking the user by pretending to be another useful program, such as a "web accelerator," or "piggybacking" on other programs the consumer may be downloading off the internet. Anti-spyware combats these tactics by sweeping the hard drive for resident spyware and/or continually scanning incoming downloads. Different programs use these two methods to different extents. When searching for a program, decide which of the methods is desired, depending on personal preference or computer use. These methods are also used in anti-virus software, so anti-spyware is often paired with those programs. Most of the products surveyed by the websites below contain both anti-virus and anti-spyware.

The websites were chosen for the user-friendly presentation of information, links to additional, in-depth resources, and the quality of products being reviewed.

Top Online Resources:

  1. Anti-Spyware Top Ten Reviews
  2. Consumer Product Guide: Antivirus Software Keeps Your Computer Happy and Healthy

Anti-virus Software

It is necessary to have good anti-virus software to protect your computer from viruses, which are continually growing in strength and becoming more widespread. Therefore, when you are looking for anti-virus software, there are a few things that you should look for in the product. First it should be easy to use, whether you are a computer genius or just the average user, it should be fairly simple to use. This includes the set up and installation. It should also be effective in scanning for all viruses and worms and then it should also be able to clean up or isolate any infected files, keeping the virus from spreading. It should give immediate, easy to read and detailed reports about any viruses that it finds. Finally, it should have multiple sources of immediate help including support via email, online chat or over the telephone, and online resources, such as knowledge bases and FAQs available for quick and convenient help. There are many websites that you can look at to see which software they rate as the best. The most important thing in purchasing software is picking one that will give you peace of mind.

Top Online Resources:

  1. Anti-Virus Software Review 2008
  2. Anti-Virus: Reviews and Price Comparisons from PC Magazine


With the increasing use of computers and their connectivity to the internet many people are very vulnerable to attacks from others. This is where a firewall comes in.

A firewall is software that monitors both the information you send from your computer and the information you receive. For example, when you instant message someone you send information (the message) out of your computer and when that person sends a reply they send information from their computer to yours.

Firewalls prevent programs from sending information you don’t want others to see. They also prevent others from entering your system and planting malicious things like viruses or stealing your sensitive information.

When looking to purchase a firewall keep in mind that a limited firewall is included with Windows Vista. Also, many internet service providers provide a free firewall program so before purchasing check your computer to see what you already have. A firewall should meet two basic criteria. The first is that it must monitor incoming information; the second is that it should screen outgoing information as well. Also, be aware that some programs require that you keep a current subscription with them which allows the program to “self-update” against new threats. Expect to pay $20-40 for a good firewall program with customization features. If you don't care about getting "under the hood" and customizing then a free firewall program may be sufficient.

The best firewall out there according to most reviews is ZoneAlarm which costs $40 and provides spyware protection and constant updating for the first year you have the software. For those who don't have that kind of money there is a free version of ZoneAlarm which is scaled down in the comprehensiveness of its protection and updates.

Top Online Resources:

  1. Consumer Search
  2. Firewall Guide
  3. Consumer Reports

Internet Security

Internet Security is a topic that concerns individuals, companies, families, teenagers, adults, children, and the elderly, basically everyone. Security online regards personal information ranging from name, age and location to credit card or social security information. The risks of using the internet to give others your information need to be well understood and taught because there are many places where people can be taken advantage of as well as many securities put into effect to allow people to rest at ease. The government provides many resources for protecting oneself or ones family or company against online predators as do private firms and companies.

Top Online Resources:

  1. On Guard online
  3. Protecting Personal Information: A Guide for Business

Spam Filters

Nowadays, most of the World's information is found and sent between parties using the internet. Anyone with an email address is familiar with the term email spam, also known as bulk email or junk e-mail. Spam is unsolicited email that is sent in bulk to numerous email addresses.

It is figured that over 90 billion spam emails our sent per day and that 80-85 percent of all incoming email is spam. Spam is definitely one of the most annoying aspects of email and many companies have come out with spam filtering software in order to curb the amount of incoming unsolicited emails.

Most email websites such as Gmail, yahoo, and hotmail, to name a few, provide free spam filters for their clients which send spam to a junk email folder. These basic filters do a good job, but still have trouble catching all incoming spam. For those who want even more security, high quality spam filtering software is available for download online and at your local electronic stores for around 20-50 dollars.

When buying a spam filtering program, make sure to see if there are ongoing subscription costs in addition to the cost of purchasing the software. If you are buying the program online, make sure you purchase it from a legitimate company and website.

Top Online Resources: