Tuesday, June 9, 2009

How do Keyloggers work?

You have either been scams one way or the other, and I you would want to avoid getting scammed in the future. You have probably heard of a very popular way to scam people, Keyloggers. Now how do these work and how to avoid it? Here it is!

A key logger is a third party application which can be either installed onto your computer from a website, or maliciously through sent files.

A keylogger works by recording any/all keystrokes that a computer user makes. For example, if I put one onto your computer, everytime you'd go to login into RO, you'd have to put in your password.

The keylogger would record the face that you typed in the password, much like this.

Say your password/username is: Phatman/Phatman

Inside of the log file, this is what you'd see:

Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: P
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Ph
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Pha
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Phat
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Phatm
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Phatma
Time/Date/ApplicationName/Field: Phatman

The log file would save itself, along with the above information, and eventually be exported off of your computer and sent directly to the hacker/person who placed the keylogger onto your computer's e-mail address that they've dedicated to the program to send the keylog files to.

What sucks is, most people don't even know if they have this spyware/keylogging software on their computers, and go around stupidly and get scammed/hacked all the time.

To prevent such a thing, a few measures can be taken.

1) Download a newer version of antivirus software (norton 2005 Helps IMO)
2) Google "Spybot Search and Destroy", download, update, run, and clean your computer.
3) Google "Ad-Aware SE Personal", download, update, run, and clean your computer.

These 3 steps prevent ~99.9% of spyware/keylogging attempts on your computer. Norton 2005 and above will also alert you when/if someone tries to send you a malicious file via AIM/MSN/YIM/General messengers, and these other progams help get them off of your computer in case the keyloggers do make it onto your system.

I'll also note, I've used the above applications for the ~4 years I've been online gaming, and I have NEVER been keylogged/hacked before, so I find it's a very effective way of preventing such a thing from happening to you.

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