Sunday, August 23, 2009

Block Spyware Websites With Inoculate

Many spyware infections happen on particularly prepared websites. These websites might take advantage of web browser vulnerabilities or offer software and files for download that infect a computer system once they are executed on it. Web users have several protection mechanisms that they can use to protect their computer system from these spyware infections. Modern antivirus software usually comes with modules that blocks or warns a user whenever a website with questionable content is visited. Another option to protect a computer system against spyware infections is to install browser plugins like Web of Trust that classify websites and report a safety rating back to the user.

And then there are programs like Inoculate that use the hosts file of the operating system to block spyware websites from being opened by routing the address of the spyware removal to the local computer system (which means the website will not be displayed when the user tries to open it).

Inoculate is a portable software program for the Windows operating system that will add more than 14001 spyware websites to the Windows host file. These 14001 spyware websites are blocked from being accessed by users of the computer system. The software creates a backup of the current host file before it begins to add the spyware websites to it so that spyware attacks and spyware programs are automatically blocked.

It is possible to reset the Windows hosts file or restore a previously created backup. One slight disadvantage of this spyware blocking approach is that it is not possible to view the spyware websites before they are added to the hosts file. Another problem is that the program is not automatically updating the spyware list over the Internet which alternatives like Hostsman which offers four different block lists and auto updating. Hostsman on the other hand is not a portable software program.

Related Topic
Detect and Prevent Spyware Infection

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