When I received the link for Double Anti-Spy I did a little check around on the Internet, as this was a product I hadnt heard of before. According to the website, this product utilises exclusive „double scan” technology which is an interesting concept as I usually run 2 different anti-spyware applications on my machine, 1 in a live state and the other as a backup scan.
Source: Hakin9 2/2010 http://hakin9.org
I decided to install this software onto a freshly installed Windows XP SP3 Dell Latitude Pentium III machine (I know its old, but it still works well!) Installing the software went smoothly enough, and then I had a choice of 3 scans to make on my machine. A quick scan that will only scan the important locations, a full scan to scan all the hard drives on the machine and a custom scan that allows the user to specify what they would like scanned. A full system scan is recommended after installation and updating the definitions to find all traces of spyware that might be located on the computer system. Upon reboot I did an initial full scan of the machine. I didnt expect it to find anything as I had only downloaded service pack updates, but it did identify two potentially suspicious cookies. Now it was time to test it against some spyware properly. Using a website available called Spycar, which was designed with exactly this in mind, (http://www.spycar.org/Spycar.html) by offering 17 different tests that all antispyware should really pickup and protect you against.
Auto Start Tests
The following tests were performed on Internet Explorer 8, the website tries to install a registry key at various locations on your machine and execute it. For example
- HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\Run
- HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\Run
Internet Explorer Configuration Change Tests
Again using Internet Explorer 8, and see if it was possible to change the current configuration of your web browser. For example
- Try to change your default home page in IE
- Try to lockout users from changing the default home page in IE
Network Configuration Change Test The following test were performed on Internet Explorer 8 to see if it is possible to make changes to your Hosts file. When trying to add an entry to your hosts file, every one of these tests was captured and blocked by Double Anti-Spy, they were immediately quarantined as soon as they were executed on the web page. Double Anti- Spy doesnt just protect you whilst you are out on the Internet, it also protects your email client as well, whether you are using Microsoft Outlook, Windows Mail or Mozilla Thunderbird Double Anti-Spy will integrate with it. You are able to schedule scans on your machine, just like your anti-virus, and your able to create white and blacklist of your files, to prevent you being prompted to remove the same files all the time (if you feel that you are safe to keep them). There is a lot of chatter about this product (and others by avanquest) on various forums concerning its validity to say it is Number 1 most effective in head to head tests. It uses Sunbelt’s VIPRE (Engine A) + Outpost AntiSpyware combined with Virus Buster SDK (Engine B) as its scanners, and individually they have both performed very well in their respective tests. Even though I was using a quite old laptop, I didnt notice any real performance drop whilst scanning and surfing at the same time. Overall I liked the product, as it would save me time from having to unload one of my current anti-spy programs to then run another on a manual scan.
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