Difference Between Spyware and Ransomware

When you include information technology into your operations, it carries your practice to whole new heights.

However, if you don’t develop your IT services practice, your system may get invaded by spyware and Ransomware and your operations may get stalled, which is why having excellent IT support has become necessary to protect your computers from Spyware and Ransomware.

Spyware v/s Ransomware

The main difference between spyware and ransomware is that spyware is a kind of malware that is specially designed to gather all your details. On the other hand, ransomware is another kind of malware that is designed to block or restrict access from your system unless you pay the ransom fee.

Spyware vs Ransomware

Spyware is considered to be any software that gets downloaded on your system by itself and begins to monitor all your online behavior and sites your surf online without letting you know or without asking for your permission.

Spyware is created by a third party which helps them to gather personal information about someone without their consent.

Ransomware is a type of harmful malware that uses the encrypted method to keep information about a person at a ransom price. Then this price is demanded from that person for him to get access.

This type of malware is specially designed for spreading it across the network and then targeting certain file servers and databases which can easily paralyze a whole company.

Comparison Table Between Spyware and Ransomware

Parameters of Comparison Spyware Ransomware 
Definition It is software designed to get personal information about a user without asking for their permission.A software that holds the information of a user at a ransom price and blocks access until payment.
Function Spyware tracks all the activities they carry out online.It spreads through phishing emails or messages that contain harmful attachments.
Malware typeSpyware is an old type of malwareRansomware is the type of malware that was lastest discovered.
Protection Norton 360 is the best tool for protection from Spyware.For protecting your system from ransomware, you need to pay the price of ransom.
Examples Bonzibuddy and Downloadware.CryptoLocker, Bad Rabbit and WannaCry.

What is Spyware?

Spyware is malware software that gets installed into your computer and starts to track all your activities and online behavior without letting you know or giving any indication.

This malware software secretly collects all the data about a person or company and provides this information to other parties.

Oftentimes, these other parties might be some advertising companies or marketing firms, due to which Spyware is also known as adware sometimes.

This malware is downloaded into a system by a trojan which includes a pop-up window. Spyware takes advantage of your network connection to gather your personal information like your name, browsing history, address, interest, and downloads.

Other types of spyware control your browser and point it to another site which then causes your devices to call or send messages automatically. Keylogger is a type of spyware that steals usernames and passwords.

Not all the software programs that collect your data are harmful software or spyware.

When your system performance starts to degrade and has behavior changes, it is a sign that your system has been infected with the spyware infection.

This infection can easily damage or eat up your CPU storage, traffic on the network, and disk usage.

Freezing of applications, instability, failing to boot, unable to connect to the internet, and crashing of the system are also some common signs of spyware infection.

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a harmful threat to your system and you. The term ransom explains everything necessary to be known about.

Ransomware is a type of extortion software that is capable of locking your system or computer and then demanding a ransom price to release your computer.

In many cases, this malware occurs as follows. This malware initially gains access to your system or device.

The entire operating system or a specific file is then encrypted depending upon the type of Ransomware infection. Some amount of money is then demanded from the person whose data has been held at a ransom.

To protect your system from ransomware, it is very important to keep an eye on your system and have the right security software installed right from the start because prevention is always better than cure.

Initially, you need to make sure that your system is not the ideal target for this malware.

Your devices or system should always be updated for practicing the benefits of the latest security patches. All your actions should be made after careful thinking when you work on some rogue websites.

But even some prevention measures can fail sometimes which is why you should always have a backup of your information. A small careless step or click is enough for a Ransomware attacker to attack your device.

Malware is created in a way that stays undetected for a very long time, but security software can detect such infections.

Main Differences Between Spyware and Ransomware

  1. Spyware is malware that collects personal data without consent and then relays that information to a third party, whereas ransomware is another type of malware that holds the data of a victim at ransom money.
  2. Spyware software keeps a record of all the activities you perform online and the browsing history of your system, whereas ransomware spreads harmful infection throughout your network and system.
  3. Spyware infection can be easily detected and removed using the right software, whereas if your device is being attacked by a Ransomware attacker, the only way to protect your system would be to pay the amount of money demanded by the attacker. 
  4. Spyware is beneficial for the third party organization which can be an organization or advertising firm, whereas ransomware is beneficial for attackers to get money from you illegally.
  5. Some examples of spyware are Bonzibuddy, Diwnloadware, and Cydore, whereas some examples of Ransomware are CryptoLocker and WannaCry.
Difference Between Spyware and Ransomware


In conclusion, spyware and ransomware both are types of malware that gather your information where Spyware does this to gather data and provide it to others and ransomware software does this to gain money from the victim.

Regardless of all your prevention measures and careful thinking, there are many chances that your system may get infected by some malware software.

Cybercriminals are very clever and crafty and they mainly attack your system in the most unsuspicious way, when you have least expected it.

When your system has been infected by malware, there are many IT professionals that can guide you in resolving that problem and protecting your information and device from such infections.


  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10658980701576412
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