Trend Micro Anti-Spyware 3 is easy to use and control. The main display window gives direct access to the key functions of scanning for spyware, cleaning your history tracks, restoring your system, and viewing log files of the program's activity. Along the top are tabs that offer quick views of your system status, statistics, and any blacklists or whitelists you have defined. The History Clean Up screen is especially nice and offers a finely grained and clear way to remove history tracks.
Trend Micro Anti-Spyware 3 packs a lot of useful features into its friendly and intuitive interface. In addition to the expected range of system spyware scans and monitoring, there is an excellent history-tracking cleaner, a simple cookie manager, a restore utility, and a secure file-delete function that will wipe your files in accordance with DOD standards. Trend Micro Anti-Spyware 3 also includes a rudimentary scheduler that allows you to configure Anti-Spyware 3 to perform a system scan or delete your history items on start-up.
In testing done by CNET Download.com, Trend Micro Anti-Spyware finished scanning in slightly more than 11 minutes. Thanks to the integration of InterMute's highly regarded CWShredder program, Trend Micro Anti-Spyware 3 does a better job of finding and deleting all traces of the notorious CoolWebSearch family of browser-hijacking spyware than most competing products; however, a confusing removal process requires that you first blacklist all found spyware threats. After two scans, the program turned up different numbers of spyware threats and included false-positive spyware traces that were independently found not to be on the test system. When Trend Micro Anti-Spyware finished its removal process, we were disappointed to find that it had left Bookedspace, Search Exe, and 180 Search Assistant, as well as other minor traces.
The integrated help system is adequate to handle basic questions, but Trend Micro's online FAQs weren't exactly helpful when it came to Anti-Spyware 3. The searchable knowledge base wasn't any better; it was confusing and seemed to contain very little information about the Anti-Spyware product. Luckily, technical support is available at no extra charge via both telephone and e-mail, with a guaranteed response time of 48 hours.