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Healthy Passwords

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What are Keystroke Loggers and Form Grabbers

Keystroke loggers are malware that record every keystroke you make. There are many different types of keystroke loggers. From a malware perspective there are three basic types:

Operating System Level (rootkit or kernel) are the most difficult to detect and remove. These programs record every keystroke and may even take a screenshot at every keypress. They record massive amounts of data and will slow down your computer to a crawl. The analysis required to go through all this data is overwhelming to the owner of the logger.

Program Level (api) are the most easy to remove. They may be smart enough to only look for usernames and passwords of specific sites. Once found by the security community, these types can be eliminated by an antivirus package. The problem is when new one’s come out, it may take a while before they are found and added to virus signatures, so the only safeguard in the interim is user knowledge and safe computing.

Form Level are probably the most prevalent. These are commonly found in crime ware kits and sit waiting for users to login to specific sites. The most prized credentials right now are usernames and passwords for online email and web services.

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