Detect and remove spyware

Spyware is a general term used to describe software that performs certain actions—generally without appropriately obtaining your consent—such as:

  • Advertising
  • Collecting personal information
  • Changing the configuration of your computer

If your computer is running Windows 8, you can use the built-in Windows Defender to help you detect and get rid of spyware and other malware. If your computer is running Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Windows XP, Windows Defender removes spyware.

To get rid of viruses and other malware, including spyware, on Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP, you can download Microsoft Security Essentials for free.

For more information, see How to remove and avoid viruses, spyware, and other malicious software.

About the Author
Eve Blakemore

Group Manager, Trustworthy Computing

Eve Blakemore is a Group Manager for Trustworthy Computing who delivers consumer guidance around the latest trends in security and privacy. Eve joined Microsoft in 1998 and has worked in corporate and field roles with Microsoft Learning, US Public Sector, Read more »

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12 comments
  1. Anonymous

    Is the spyware and virus protection included where one has upgraded from Win7 to Win 8?

  2. Anonymous

    please My ID is Block are you open mY ID please  

  3. Anonymous

    I attempted a few times to change (renew) my account parole (enter code my Outlook) but I could not do that

    Why I cannot renew it?

    Best regards,

    Alexander Kozhevnikov

  4. Anonymous

    I need a real phone number to talk to someone. My desk top home computer has this trail version it says activate ultimate protection n has deleted my normal security Microsoft icon that looks like a green house

  5. Anonymous

    I have 37 denial of service todau. It seems my problem with my emails,  facebook,  craigslist.  I haven't had any reaponses from other sites… if I sign in wont it set the malware and viruses?

  6. Anonymous

    please help, i cant get my 20 updates done,cant get internet explorer need live help on line

  7. Anonymous

    The virus on my pc will not allow microsoft to update the latest virus remover.The error message says the update is being reverted back to what I had.Windows Defender does not work or is useless against this virus.When my pc restarts I get the red shield that tells me I'm not protected.Can anyone help or advise???

  8. Anonymous

    GOOD MORNING EVERY BODY happy New year! and I hope enter in my hotmail account sometime without problems all the time I have change my key thanks

  9. Anonymous

    I didn't change my password and it says it has been.

  10. Anonymous

    I have a question. Is a full system scan with MS Security Essentials equivalent to a scan with Windows Defender?

  11. Anonymous

    "I have a question. Is a full system scan with MS Security Essentials equivalent to a scan with Windows Defender?"

    This is my question too.  I am running Win7.  

    Do I need both to do a complete scan?

    Do I need both MSE and WD if I have another anti-virus (e.g., avast)?

Comments are closed.