Webroot Software and EarthLink today released their second SpyAudit Report, which tracks the growth of spyware on consumer PCs.
Among the key findings, the report revealed that, for the year to date, more than 500,000 system monitors and Trojan horses have been discovered from the roughly 1.5 million SpyAudit scans completed. Overall, approximately 41 million traces, at an average of 27.5 per machine, have been found.
The complete report is available here .
"The SpyAudit’s popularity shows that consumers want to find out what is on their computers," said David Moll, Webroot’s CEO. "Based on the overwhelming number of spyware traces identified in just four months, we urge consumers to run an audit as soon as possible to determine if they have spyware on their PCs and then take action to manage it."
"Consumers should be aware of the applications and files residing and running on their machines," stated Matt Cobb, EarthLink vice president of core applications. "While certain types of spyware are malicious, other programs can be used to improve their Internet experience.
"When Internet users discover harmful spyware, they need to immediately immobilize or remove the programs that they don’t want on their machines," Cobb added.
System monitors and Trojan horses are two types of dangerous spyware applications. System monitors are designed to keep track of a consumer’s computer activity and can record virtually everything a user does online. Trojan horses are applications that appear as requested software programs, but instead facilitate theft of computer data by permitting hackers to gain unrestricted access to computers while Web surfers are online.