New to Forum - Questions from a Knucklehead

Discussion in 'SpywareBlaster & Other Forum' started by FishLips, Feb 2, 2005.

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  1. FishLips

    FishLips Registered Member

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    Hi, I'm new to Wilders, looks like a good site to stick around and learn some things.

    I have a 1 month old Thinkpad, XP Pro SP1. I've installed Ad-Aware SE (free edition), Kerio Firewall (going to buy the full verion for its web filters), and I use Firefox as my browser, EXCEPT when I'm dealing with a site that uses ActiveX controls. I'm talking legitimate sites here, like my bank. Since they use sometype of ActiveX to authenticate into my account, I'm forced to use IE.

    So here I go with some questions about SpywareBlaster and SpywareGuard. (Note: I've done due diligence by searching this and other forums for these answers, but I can find nothing definitive. Many of you may think "we've answered this before" but please rest assured that I've searched for a while, and while there are partial answers here and there, I find nothing that sinks in to my thick head. So here goes:

    This is what I know about SpywareBlaster and SpywareGuard in a nutshell:

    SpywareBlaster will allow spyware (and I'm including trojans, dialers, etc. in "spyware") to be placed on a machine but will disable it before it causes any harm.

    SpywareGuard....hmmm, some say it will prevent SOME spyware, but is really simply a cookie filter - that's why most folks recommend using it with SpywareBlaster.

    Questions:

    1) Almost everything I read about SpywareBlaster and SpywareGuard are said in the same breath with IE. Yes, some folks say that SpywareBlaster and/or SpywareGuard are "nice" compliments to Firefox, but if I use IE only rarely and only use it to go to legitimate sites I know should be safe, then do I really need SpywareGuard? Won't Firefox cookie controls pretty much allow me to filter cookies? Or does SpywareGuard know which cookies are bad guys and which are good guys and warns of that? Firefox will inform you when cookies are asking to be installed, but I don't think it will tell you if they are bad or good. In that case, then I can see where SpywareGuard would be a VERY good compliment to Firefox.

    2) When SpywareBlaster places a killbit to benign spyware, does it tell you what it has done, or does a weekly scan of Ad-Aware tell you its there and you simply use Ad-Aware to clean it? Seems like SpywareBlaster only kills the stuff, but you need something else to remove it?

    3) SpywareBlaster literature states "Prevent the installation of ActiveX-based spyware, adware, browser hijackers, dialers, and other potentially unwanted pests. Block spyware/tracking cookies in Internet Explorer and Mozilla/Firefox. " Okay, I need a little education in ActiveX here, I think. What makes an ActiveX based thing "bad"? Obviously, there are legitimate reasons to use ActiveX (like my bank site). If I install SpywareBlaster, will it differentiate between "good" ActiveX and "bad"? In other words, will it prevent me from getting to legitimate sites like my bank's? If so, can I "turn off" SpywareBlaster, or does one have to uninstall it to keep it from working?

    4) Can SpywareBlaster be turned off momentarily? See question 3 for reasoning.

    Thanks, and you have a great site here!

    Jim
     
  2. Bubba

    Bubba Updates Team

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2002
    Posts:
    11,271
    Welcome to Wilders knucklehead Jim :cool:

    SpywareBlasters Internet Explorer ActiveX protection will block the installation of spyware, adware, dialers, browser hijackers, and other potentially unwanted ActiveX-based software.

    Spywareblaster has a cookie blocking feature....but that's not a function of SpywareGuard. Spyware Guard "provides unique Download Protection (IE-only), which blocks spyware downloads, and Browser Hijack Protection, which alerts of browser hijacking activity in real-time."

    SpywareBlaster on deals with the spyware ActiveX components that is listed in it's database.
     
  3. FishLips

    FishLips Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
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    Bubba, thanks for the clue in. Once again, there in your answers is the reference to Spywareblaster and SpywareGuard in the same breath as IE. Seems to be a theme in my readings.

    Are ALL spyware made from ActiveX controls? IF so then the value these products add to my arsenal is providing protection from ActiveX nasties only when I'm using IE, since Firefox won't allow ActiveX anyway. Is this a true assumption? If I'm wrong about anything in this assumption, please correct me now. Remember, I'm a knucklehead who is only first being exposed to the dark side of the Internet. I won't be offended by anyone who corrects me.

    If spyware, dialers, etc. are not all made from ActiveX, then having something that kills them like SpywareBlaster sounds like it may be the software to go with. If Bubba's quote about SpywareGuard having IE-only download protection, then I don't think I need this overhead on my machine since I rarely use IE except when I absolutely need to. Is this a correct assumption?

    And lastly, I'm still looking for answers to questions like does SpywareBlaster provide a cleansing mechanism for what it kills? Or does it kill silently and I'll only find it on my weekly Ad-Aware full scan? In other words, can it clean up after itself?

    Also, can if I find myself, for instance having something "good" blocked by SpywareBlaster, can I turn it off while I visit the site I need to visit, like you can a firewall? Or doesn't it work that way? Just asking.

    Many, many educated people here. Thanks for the reply from Bubba who became my first corresponder on this forum.

    Looking forward to more educated answers.

    Thanks all!

    Jim
     
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