What is Immunization?

The Immunization feature provides Internet Protection by preventing users from entering malicious, untrusted or potentially dangerous websites.

This is done by adding a list of known malicious entries to the Windows hosts file.

It also prevents tracking cookies from entering your system, and blocks known spyware installers (and similar baddies) already included in Spybot’s database.


FAQ Category: Immunization, Spybot 2

How do I perform Immunization?

To perform Immunization:

  • Open Spybot’s “Start Center” by right-clicking the icon, and choosing the option to “Run as administrator”.
  • Run as Administrator

  • Go to “Immunization”.
  • Click “Check System”, then click “Apply Immunization”.

Please see here for more information if the immunization does not complete correctly.


FAQ Category: Immunization, Spybot 2

Incomplete immunization: Items are still unprotected

You need to run the immunization with elevated privileges (as an administrator), otherwise all global immunizations will fail.

To ensure that Immunization is applied correctly, please disable all other security programs that you run and close all browsers and any other programs during the work with Spybot – Search & Destroy.

To Immunize your browser:

  • Open Spybot “Start Center” by right clicking on the icon  and choosing  “Run as Administrator”.
  • Run as Administrator

  • Go to “Immunization”.
  • Click “Check System”, then click “Apply Immunization”.

The main reasons why Immunization would fail are:

  • A path is not detected.
  • The object is blocked by something; e.g. a security program.
  • The user does not have appropriate rights for Immunizing an object.

Immunization, Spybot 2

How do I view the Immunization log?

To view the Immunization log:

  • Open the Spybot Start Center by right-clicking the Spybot icon and choosing the option to “Run as Administrator”.
  • Open “Immunization”.
  • Click “Show previous Logs”.

If you cannot access this folder, you may need to change your folder properties:

  • Open Windows Explorer (or any folder).
  • Press the “Alt” button, then go to “Tools”, then “Folder Options”.
  • Click on “View”, then select “Show Hidden Files, Folders and Drives”.

FAQ Category: Immunization, Spybot 2

How do I undo Immunization?

If you experience any issues accessing trusted websites after applying the immunization, this can be undone to see if it affecting your access to the site/sites.

To undo Spybot’s Immunization:

  • Open the Spybot – Search & Destroy “Start Center” by right-clicking the Spybot icon and choosing the option to “Run as administrator”.
  • In the Start Center, click “Immunization”.
  • In the Immunization window, click “Undo Immunization”.

How do I reset the hosts file?

You can reset the changes made by Spybot to the Windows “hosts” file to its original configuration by undoing Spybot’s immunization.

To undo Spybot’s Immunization:

  • Open the Spybot – Search & Destroy “Start Center” by right-clicking the Spybot icon and choosing the option to “Run as administrator”.
  • In the Start Center, click “Immunization”.
  • In the Immunization window, click “Undo Immunization”.

What is the immunization feature and what are the other permanent protection options?

Spybot – Search & Destroy offers the Immunization – a feature to allow you to immunize your computer against certain spyware.
It also allows you to use native browser settings to block cookies, malware installations,
bad websites and other threats via ActiveX.


FAQ Category: Immunization, Spybot 2

Why are some of my favourite internet sites blocked?

In that case the immunization has to be undone. To do so run the Start Center and click on “Immunization“. On the navigation bar on the left you can “Undo immunization“.
Please note: Now the bad downloads will not be blocked any longer! You may have to restart your computer. Then try again to open your favourite pages. Do not forget to Immunize again after visiting that page.


FAQ Category: Immunization, Internet Protection, Known Issues, Spybot 2, Spybot Proxy

Why does the immunization “not work”?

On Windows Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8, you need to run the immunization with elevated privileges, otherwise all global immunizations will fail.
To elevate, right-click the Spybot – Search & Destroy shortcut and choose Run as Administrator.
Spybot 2 will offer you to run the Immunization elevated if you do not run it as described above.
If you have chosen to not have this dialog shown again when it was previously shown,
you can re-enable it by using the Dialogs tab of the Settings window.

If you think nothing has been immunized, please make sure you have clicked on “Check system” which can be found on the navigation bar on the left. This will check for already applied immunization.

In order to immunize correctly please close all open browsers.
Also using more than one security software with resident protection can cause conflicts.
Please take a look at this thread in our forum: Various reasons for incomplete immunization


FAQ Category: Immunization, Spybot 2