How to Safely Download Freeware Spyware and Adware Removal Programs
Now that I have you scared of scareware, let's cover how to avoid it. The market for fake virus scanners is huge and constantly growing, so I can't just give you a big list. The best thing to do is follow some basic tips to ensure that you safely download your spyware remover.
First, don't fall for scareware. If something follows the script I just posted, then don't buy it and try to remove it. The worst that the legitimate companies will do is bug you occasionally about upgrading to the professional version (Avira's a little annoying about this, but their guard program is pretty good). If they're trying to basically frighten you into paying though, then something is wrong. You'll probably need an actual malware remover to get rid of it completely. We generally have guides for the latest fake virus and spyware removers, so do a quick search on Bright Hub for the name to see if we can help.
Second, always download from the official website if you can. These days, most of the major companies will just redirect you to Download.com or a similar site. But it's the main website sending you there. Download.com is pretty good about not letting malware programs into their system, but you never know. The benefit of going to the official website of your desired antivirus program is that you will also get their most recent release. The download mirrors might not be updated yet.
Third, look around before you commit. Bright Hub has a ton of reviews on antivirus programs and free spyware and adware removal programs. See if we have a review on it. Don't just trust one site, however. Google it and look around. Does it have good buzz on tech forums and tech support forums. Download.com has a section for user reviews and editor reviews. Did an editor review it? Major software would receive a review. Did the users like it? Basically, you want to try and get a good overview. Individually, reviews might be biased (especially since some fake virus programs pay for good reviews or use affiliate programs), but if you gather several the aggregate should tell you the truth.