Examples Of Spyware And What They Are

April 10, 2018

(Zanclognatha atrilineella)

Spyware is a general term used to describe software that performs certain behaviors such as advertising, collecting personal information, or changing the configuration of your computer, generally without appropriately obtaining your consent first.

Spyware is often associated with software that displays advertisements (called adware) or software that tracks personal or sensitive information.

That does not mean all software that provides ads or tracks your online activities is bad. For example, you might sign up for a free music service, but you “pay” for the service by agreeing to receive targeted ads. If you understand the terms and agree to them, you may have decided that it is a fair tradeoff. You might also agree to let the company track your online activities to determine which ads to show you.

Other kinds of Spyware make changes to your computer that can be annoying and can cause your computer slow down or crash.

These programs can change your Web browsers home page or search page, or add additional components to your browser you don’t need or want. These programs also make it very difficult for you to change your settings back to the way you originally had them.

The key in all cases is whether or not you (or someone who uses your computer) understand what the software will do and have agreed to install the software on your computer.

There are a number of ways Spyware or other unwanted software can get on your computer. A common trick is to covertly install the software during the installation of other software you want such as a music or video file sharing program.

Any software that covertly gathers user information through the user’s Internet connection without his or her knowledge, usually for advertising purposes. Spyware applications are typically bundled as a hidden component of freeware or shareware programs that can be downloaded from the Internet; however, it should be noted that the majority of shareware and freeware applications do not come with SpyWare. Once installed, the Spyware monitors user activity on the Internet and transmits that information in the background to someone else. Spyware can also gather information about e-mail addresses and even passwords and credit card numbers

Aside from the questions of ethics and privacy, SpyWare steals from the user by using the computer’s memory resources and also by eating bandwidth as it sends information back to the spy ware’s home base via the user’s Internet connection. Because SpyWare is using memory and system resources, the applications running in the background can lead to system crashes or general system instability.

Because SpyWare exists as independent executable programs, they have the ability to monitor keystrokes, scan files on the hard drive, snoop other applications, such as chat programs or word processors, install other SpyWare programs, read cookies, change the default home page on the Web browser, consistently relaying this information back to the SpyWare author who will either use it for advertising/marketing purposes or sell the information to another party.

Licensing agreements that accompany software downloads sometimes warn the user that a SpyWare program will be installed along with the requested software, but the licensing agreements may not always be read completely because the notice of a SpyWare installation is often couched in obtuse, hard-to-read legal disclaimers.

Examples of SpyWare

These common SpyWare programs illustrate the diversity of behaviors found in these attacks. Note that as with computer viruses, researchers give names to SpyWare programs which may not be used by their creators. Programs may be grouped into “families” based not on shared program code, but on common behaviors, or by “following the money” of apparent financial or business connections. For instance, a number of the SpyWare programs distributed by Claria are collectively known as “Gator”. Likewise, programs which are frequently installed together may be described as parts of the same SpyWare package, even if they function separately.

o CoolWebSearch, a group of programs, takes advantage of Internet Explorer vulnerabilities. The package directs traffic to advertisements on Web sites including coolwebsearch.com. It displays pop-up ads, rewrites search engine results, and alters the infected computer’s hosts file to direct DNS lookups to these sites.

o Internet Optimizer, also known as DyFuCa, redirects Internet Explorer error pages to advertising. When users follow a broken link or enter an erroneous URL, they see a page of advertisements. However, because password-protected Web sites (HTTP Basic authentication) use the same mechanism as HTTP errors, Internet Optimizer makes it impossible for the user to access password-protected sites.

o Zango (formerly 180 Solutions) transmits detailed information to advertisers about the Web sites which users visit. It also alters HTTP requests for affiliate advertisements linked from a Web site, so that the advertisements make unearned profit for the 180 Solutions Company. It opens pop-up ads that cover over the Web sites of competing companies.

o HuntBar, aka WinTools or Adware,WebSearch was installed by an ActiveX drive-by download at affiliate Web sites, or by advertisements displayed by other SpyWare programs-an example of how SpyWare can install more SpyWare. These programs add toolbars to IE, track aggregate browsing behavior, redirect affiliate references, and display advertisements.

oZlob Trojan or just Zlob, Downloads itself to your computer via ActiveX codec and reports information back to Control Server. Some information can be as your search history, the Websites you visited, and even Key Strokes.


  • Alex Smith April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Don't use seagate drives. Ever.

  • Niklas Lundström April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    why didn't you restore the data from a backup?

  • Marian Lacko April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Please help to recover lost data for reward. RaidZ 3x3TB

  • Marcos Oliveira April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    What coused the data loss ?
    Was a disk failure, power outage , both ?
    Could you tell a little bit more bout it ?

  • Michi Lo April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Basically replacing error handling with 0x90, and your good.

    (0x90 is NOP)

  • Anthony Fry April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Should have backups.

  • Roman Barelko April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    is it possible to recover data from FreeNAS raidz-1 consists from 3x3TB disks? Data was accidentally deleted.

  • OpenGL4ever April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Great video. Thanks for showing it to us.

  • amlamarra April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I cannot imagine a universe where this video is can actually help someone.

  • Chris Moore April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    This is a great video. Wish it went into more detail. Too much was cut out. Why do you try to keep your videos so short. Does YouTube charge for the upload?

  • Khandaker Shahriar Amin April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I lost 2 TB hdd few days ago. It was single zfs file system. Freenas unable to import it. Ii was fault by ups. Is there any way to recover it with spend fortune? .

  • Fraser Hughes April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    At 9:04 why didn't you just do, JUST KIDDING I have no fucking clue what he is doing

  • Alexander Necheff April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Out of curiosity how often were you scrubbing the pool?
    I've always sort of hoped that regular scrubbing and full disk surface checks would at least "kick up the dust" and if not identify problems themselves, make me more aware of any issues based on disk behavior.

    Also, not to be that guy, but are you doing backups now? I know it is pretty cost prohibitive but it makes a world of difference; although I doubt it would make for as exciting content. 😀

  • Robert Fontaine April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm


  • The Mysterious Guy April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Wendell – The God!
    Please make some videos on how to start with Linux modding & all advanced stuff. I'm now comfortable with basics

  • Sam W April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I would like the knowledge to debug at that level, but I couldn't help thinking that if it was me I would just reinstall, replace faulty HDD and restore from my back-up. Save hours of time.

  • Stephen Rimington April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    mmm  interesting

  • WesOfX April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I saw the word "Foray" in the thumbnail and instantly knew it was Tek Syndicate.

  • kain hall April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    i bought a WD black 2 tera HDD….model ends in FEZ…. it worked for 9 months and then the drive motor for the read/write heads went bad…. was making a WEERRRR WOOOOO WEEERRRR

    ya… 9 months old…. my old hd blue 1 tera…. with 16,000 hours on it….. works a treat. 

    is it just me…. or are drives like HGST and WD going down hill?

  • RJ_Make April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    What did he say? He lost me @… I wrong my own kernel……

  • Dan Wallace April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Just sent a drive to Gillware and used your referral code. Thanks for the video 🙂

  • Maazaoui Imed April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    i didn't understand much but i love this stuff 🙂

  • zark474 April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    This sounds magical…..because i don't understand even half of it…

  • TheFengLord April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Why go through this trouble? You could just have restored it from your backup?

  • Matt Lovelace April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Wendell FTW!  RaidZ2 all the way, it would have saved so much time.

  • beingatliberty April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Oh the joy of RAID or pools ! ;(( – would a triple mirror have covered you here with less recovery faff ?

  • Weepypostman April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I read the description. What?

  • xsagradoxcorazonx April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    i tried to watch this, gave up at 4 min.

  • Emiroph bel April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    this is fun ^^
    great video

  • EdWittenen April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    At 1:04 is Wendell saying that the drives that failed are the same HGST drives that Logan was praising a few videos back?
    There is no substitute for backups. Today's high capacity drives make traditional backups difficult or impractical, but you could at least make backups to another file server.

  • devjock April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Calm and methodical. That's Wendell the Wise for ya. Great video!

  • ufster81 April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I know you can afford Raidz2, why did you go with Raidz? Also, you obviously know raid is not backup.

    edit: and 4TB drives, have you not read the FreeNas guide at all?

  • toby56 April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    select*from I have no idea what your talking about. Thanks for the knowledge.

  • HUGSaLOT Valkyrie April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    So those HGST Deskstar drives that Logan was raving about being the most reliable HDDs actually failed on you guys? 🙁

  • Steve Burgess April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I will say for myself, "Way, way over my head. Wow intense geek knowledge needed

  • True Love April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    This video is making me not want to try zfs.

  • RayZ fox April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    The best they do a whole segiment about how bad other filesytems are and how good zfs it and how everybody should use zfs only to have it kill their data.

  • Bryce P April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm


  • Hunter April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    i think i figured out a few words..

  • rdbram824 April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Goddamn. If anything this pretty much sold me on setting up chrashplan on my freenas.

  • FatLingon April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Why "ls -al | grep core" and not just "ls -al core" ?

  • rztrzt April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Awesome video!

  • Brimonk15 April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    I think a nice video of UNIX/Linux roulette would be nice and interesting to those below who don't understand what's happening.

    I think some might be interested to figure out how to use this, "Linux" thing.

  • Arkanterian April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    "My filesystem broke so I reverse-engineered it"

    Damn it Wendel, this is some pretty sexy stuff.

  • Sai Namuduri April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    What dozen illiterate chumps disliked this video?

  • Sai Namuduri April 10, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    "I'm a little bit green at this" > proceeds to blow all our minds

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