In a recent email newsletter, I wrote:
Chris wrote to ask:
G\’Day Terry. Wondering if you could recommend software that i can use on my home network to monitor what the teenagers are up to, without them being aware. They are wily little people and they would soon spot the VNC icon. Regards Chris
I responded to Chris that I don’t recommend spyware and that I don’t use it. There are some alternatives for content filtering, but any attempt to monitor what his teenagers are doing is likely to be identified and removed by the antispyware program he should be using. You know which ones I recommend and have recommended, but I would expect any antispyware program to be able to identify and remove commercial monitoring programs.
After that article, another reader wrote to suggest a way that Chris could take care of the problem.
Hi Terry, In your Aug. 24 newsletter, you wrote in response to reader "Chris" who asked about possible monitoring software for his teenager’s computers. You responded that antispyware would detect the software and want to remove it. But, what you may have not thought of is that he could create a rule for the antispyware, so it would ignore the software. After the monitoring software has been installed, he could scan the computer and when it detects the software, just choose to allow it and to always allow it. He may also allow it, if the active scan catches software during the installation. Take care and great newsletter!!
That still isn’t a recommendation for monitoring software, but does present Chris with a way to prevent its automatic removal. Of course, if the kids used some different antispyware, or checked the antispyware settings you selected, they could still turn off the monitoring. I imagine most antispyware has an override capability — I checked VIPRE, which I used, and it gives me the ability to "Always Allow" specific programs that VIPRE would otherwise quarantine.