Have you ever wondered how the IT Admin Officer in your company is catching the violators of the Internet, PC and mobile phone usage policy? Are you pondering how to monitor the Internet, PC and mobile phone activities of your kids without the techie skill requirements? Do you know that a keylogger can do those things for you? Well, a keylogger exists nowadays and ranking websites include these as part of their reviews.
What is a Keylogger?
A keylogger as the name suggests, logs all the keystrokes typed in the keyboard. This covers computer activities such as web browsing, file uploads, downloads, chat room activities, instant messaging, and all activities where it involves the keyboard.
There are two types of a keylogger software. One is an application that runs in the background each time you use your computer or mobile phone and the other is a hardware device that can be plugged between the keyboard and the computer. Following are the details to the two types of keylogger applications:
1. Software Keylogger
The software keylogger is installed in the computer hard drive and secretly records all the keystrokes pressed by the user. It can monitor incoming and outgoing internet traffic and all other activities are saved in the hard drive which can be accessed manually or remotely by the administrator. A keylogger is also known as a remote keylogger. Some keyloggers have email notification features and there are some which can capture screenshots.
2. Hardware Keylogger
The hardware keylogger may be plugged between the keyboard and the PC or it may be built inside the keyboard itself. It has its own internal microprocessor and memory chip so it works independently from the main computer. Since it is built this way, logs become safe even if the computer and hard drive crashes.
It records all the keystrokes activities in an unsecured or encrypted manner. However, access to the records cannot be done remotely.
How does Keylogger work?
A keylogger simply records all the input done in the computer via keystrokes and stored in your hard drive. All information including personal details and passwords used in any online transactions are kept, put in record, may be emailed to you, and provided in your FTP account.
While all these keylogger download activities are going on, the user of the computer will not amazingly detect that he is being monitored. The program does not get in the way with the on-going activities of the user since the keylogger is also known as a hidden keystroke logger.
For every computer, mobile phone or online activities being done by the user, the admin will get a notification usually through emails.
What are the Uses and Benefits of Keylogger?
A keylogger is a good monitoring, spy and parental control software. It is mainly used by companies and individuals to monitor and spy on employees and exercise parental control over their children. Moreover, it is also a tool to monitor an old age family member’s online activities if there is a need for it.
For companies, you need to protect and intercept any unauthorized and malicious activities before any serious threat and damage is done. Keylogger helps ensure that their personnel utilize the computer for business purposes only and there are no unauthorized disclosure of confidential information.
Another use for a keylogger is the password retrieval. If the user forgot the password, he or she can retrieve it through the log. On the parental side, it notifies the parents if their kids are attempting to access prohibited websites in the Internet.
The use of keylogger software is beneficial since it is a great monitoring tool for companies and parents as indicated in reviews. However, we have to be careful on how it is being used since it becomes a threat to us when the information gets into the wrong hands and bring in cyber fraud. It is equally important that a company or individual maintains information security while using keyloggers.