Common Types of Spyware


Spyware is an ever-evolving type of malicious software that is designed to track and collect information from an individual’s computer system without their knowledge or consent. It typically operates in the background, silently monitoring a user’s online activities and personal information. Spyware can range from relatively harmless tracking cookies to more dangerous keyloggers and trojans. In this article, we will discuss the common types of spyware and how they can affect your system.


Keyloggers, also known as keystroke loggers, are one of the most common types of spyware. As the name suggests, keyloggers record every keystroke made on a computer, including usernames, passwords, credit card details, and other sensitive information. These logs are then sent to the attacker who can use them to steal personal and financial information.

A keylogger can be installed through phishing emails, clicking on malicious links or attachments, or by downloading infected files. It is often difficult to detect and can remain undetected for a long time, making it a powerful tool for hackers.


Trojans are a type of spyware that disguises itself as legitimate software, tricking users into downloading and installing it. Once on a system, trojans can do a range of malicious activities, including stealing sensitive information, installing other malware, and giving remote access to hackers.

One common example of a trojan is Adware. It hides in seemingly harmless advertisements and gets downloaded onto a user’s system when they click on the ad. Adware then displays persistent and often annoying pop-up ads and collects browsing habits and other information, which is then sent back to the attacker.

Browser Hijackers:

As the name suggests, browser hijackers take control of a user’s web browser and redirect them to malicious websites. These websites often contain more spyware or other forms of malware. Browser hijackers can also change the browser settings, homepage, and search engine without the user’s consent. They can slow down the browser, display unwanted pop-up ads, and track your browsing habits.

Browser hijackers can be downloaded through infected software or through malicious websites. Once installed, they can be challenging to remove and can cause significant damage to a user’s system and privacy.

Tracking Cookies:

Tracking cookies are small files that are downloaded onto a user’s system when they visit a website. These cookies are used to track a user’s browsing habits and collect information such as websites visited, search history, and other personal data. While some cookies are harmless and used to improve a user’s browsing experience, others can be used by spyware to gather sensitive information.

Preventing Spyware Infections:

To protect against these types of spyware and other forms of malware, it is essential to have reliable security software installed on your system. Regularly updating your operating system and software can also patch any vulnerabilities that spyware and other malware can exploit. Additionally, it is essential to be cautious while browsing the internet and avoid clicking on suspicious links or downloading files from unknown sources.

In conclusion, spyware can come in various forms, each with its own objectives and methods of attack. Keyloggers, trojans, browser hijackers, and tracking cookies are some of the most common types of spyware that can put a user’s privacy and security at risk. It is crucial to stay vigilant and take necessary precautions to protect your system from these malicious threats. Remember, prevention is always better than cure when it comes to spyware infections.