Spyware Removal Software Sales Exploding

    December 2, 2004

I thought a post this morning from eMarketer was quite timely since I spent a good portion of time last night removing spyware from my brother-in-law’s pc.

After 10 minutes of AdAware running it had found over 900 different pieces of adware and spyware… Man I hate that crap!

Read story at eMarketer …

anti-spyware software revenues in the United States years 2003 & 2008 (in millions)

Here are some more stats from the spyware post …

“A recent study by Webroot Software, a provider of corporate anti-spyware solutions, surveyed 275 IT managers and executives regarding their company’s response to spyware. Although over 70% of companies have become more concerned about spyware in the past six months, 96% feel their current anti-virus and firewall software offer enough protection, and only 10% have implemented commercially available anti-spyware software. Demonstrating the ineffectiveness of this approach, about 82% of respondents’ desktops have been infected with spyware.”

Personally I’ve gotten the best results from using two pieces of spyware detection and removal software. The first is AdAware Pro. There is a free version available here but the pro version does the trick for me. The other piece of software I highly recommend is Spybot which is also free and available for download here.

Thoughts On Researching Rogue Processes
Whenever I’m not sure about a process that’s running on my machine the first thing I do is Google it. As an example. While trying to figure out how bad my brother-in-law’s problem was I searched Google for Wsup.exe. Then I scanned the results for a site that has the most comprehensive and concise information about spyware and adware I’ve ever seen. The site is liutilities. So I scanned Google’s results looking for LiUtilities and found them at position 4. I clicked on their result and had the answer to my question immediately.

Here’s their description of the Wsup.exe Process
wsup – wsup.exe – Process Information

Process File: wsup or wsup.exe
Process Name: Ibis Toolbar
Description: wsup.exe is a hijacker which means it will intermittently change your Internet Explorer settings / Desktop to the link of its authors sponsors. This program is usually installed through consent, however is sometimes packaged as another product. It is a registered security risk and should be removed immediately.

Author: Ibis
Part Of: Ibis Toolbar
System Process: No
Background Process: Yes
Uses Network: Yes
Hardware Related: No
Common Errors: N/A
Security Risk (0-5): 2

All of that is followed up by a pitch to purchase their spyware/adware removal program. Honestly I don’t mind that at all since they’ve provided me with reliable information on at least 100 processes in the past 6 months. I’ve also got to hand it to them for creating a great value-add service to cheapskates like myself who don’t want to purchase any software and at the same time they own the search engine rankings for process specific searches in Google. I wonder what their conversion ratios are :0)

Jason Dowdell is a technology entrepreneur and operates the Marketing Shift blog.