Spyware Chronicles, Algarve, etc.

Late Tuesday night, in a bit of a cold-induced daze, I downloaded what looked like a cool Bracket Tool for March Madness.  BAD idea!  Next thing I knew I was getting pop-up after pop-up warning me of spyware on my computer.  The pop-up’s took me right to a website where I was helpfully offered a free scan.  Luckily I was too tired to pursue this avenue on Tuesday night and just went to bed bummed about my impulsive click of the download button!

Next morning I found my way to Enigma Software, which offered a free scan.  The scan discovered LOTS of destructive stuff BUT, when I clicked the removal tool I was told that I’d need to purchase and download their SpyHunter program to get rid of the spyware.  Before purchasing and downloading … I thankfully did a little more research and realized that I had stumbled upon a scam that offered some rogue software that would further infect my computer.  What a topsy-turvey mess!  It wasn’t until I was well into this thicket of deception that I started writing down the names of some of the entities and software programs (like Enigma Software and SpyHunter).  I wish I’d written more .. because of course now that I’m back on the solid ground of the non-rogue world, I can’t get back to many of the screens that were popping up, offering to “help” with my problem.

I finally found my way back to Lavasoft’s Ad-Aware program (something we have at work), downloaded their free verson, ran the scan, and removed the “stuff” that I had gunked everything up with.  No more pop-up’s … hopefully no more spyware.  What an odyssey, though!  I lost a good 3-4 hours … wandering in a netherworld of malware and trojan horses and guys who looked a lot like Elliot Spitzer … all due to that impulsive click!

But on to the Algarve – where good news abounds! 

For most, the good news is that the USWNT defeated Denmark yesterday 2-1 to win the championship.  (For CB, the good news is that the Algarve Cup is OVER!)  In the third place match, Norway defeated Germany 2-0.  Here’s Gayle Bryan’s blog – where I am particularly glad to read about the improvement she noted, just over the course of the Algarve.  She’s also posted pictures of the US v. Norway game, and will be following up with others shortly.

The USSF write-up of the match is here.  As Lori Chalupney said, on getting used to a new tactical system of play under Pia Sundhage: “Starting a new system, the more games we play, the more comfortable we get. We’re facing different challenges and learning how to figure them out as the game goes on, so each game that we play we just get a little more confident.”  Read more post-game quotes here.

As for the other Algarve results, I note that Poland played Ireland to a 2-2 tie and then won on PK’s in the 11th place match!  Portugal and China went to PK’s and China took the 9th place match.  Iceland beat Finland 3-0, winning 7th.  Sweden beat Italy by the same score (3-0) and took 5th.  As noted earlier, Norway defeated Germany 2-0 and won the 3rd place match, and the USWNT took first with a 2-1 win over Denmark.

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