How to Detect Keystroke Software

by James Wright

Keystroke software is a malicious type of program that records your keystrokes for others to see. This type of software is commonly used to gain access to passwords, emails and other private data. It's important to keep these programs off your computer, but since they typically run in the background, hidden from view, they can be difficult to locate. There are numerous online tools that can help you find malicious software.

Step 1

Access the Task Manager by pressing the Ctrl, Alt and Del keys simultaneously, or by right-clicking your taskbar and clicking Task Manager. You'll see a window showing your currently running programs, as well as the background processes of your computer.

Step 2

Look for any unfamiliar or suspicious-looking names of processes or programs. A list of keylogging software is available on If you see any processes or programs running you did not approve (and are not system processes) click them and select "End Task." It's important to end these processes as soon as possible.

Step 3

Check your list of currently installed programs for any suspicious applications or software. Uninstall any you do not want on your hard drive and make sure your computer has completely removed the program.

Step 4

Scan your computer with an anti-virus program as well as an anti-spyware program. There are a number of free programs available on the Internet such as Ad-Aware SE, SpyHunter and Spybot: Search & Destroy.

Restart your computer. Access the Task Manager again to verify that none of the programs are running and that they have all been removed from your system.


  • Be very wary when downloading any software from the Internet, including anti-virus and anti-spyware applications. Only download from trusted sources. Most of these programs can be directly downloaded from the company's web site.


  • After removing keylogger software from your computer, if you found any, it's a good idea to immediately change all of your passwords. Even if you removed the keylogger, information still may have been gained from the programs, so change your passwords to prevent any issues.
  • If you still have difficulty removing the keylogging software, contact technical support. They may have specific ways to assist you.


About the Author

Based in California, James Wright has been writing since 1998. Wright's articles have been published on various websites with a focus on technical fields such as computers and the Internet, and were also featured in a now-retired publication for an online artistic community. Wright studied English, journalism, politics and psychology at Riverside Community College.

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