Pro PC surveillance for parents, employers

Keep a remote eye on the computer habits of employees and kids with System Surveillance Pro, which offers a full range of tools from keyloggers to screencaps.

This snooping utility provides almost all the features essential for monitoring a PC, but we were especially impressed with its stealthiness. System Surveillance Pro logs keystrokes, IM chats, applications used, and Web sites visited, and can capture screenshots at user-defined periodic intervals.

The interface makes it easy to locate any log file you need to access. System Surveillance Pro can block Web sites via URLs or detected keywords, and includes a scheduler in case you don't need to monitor PC usage at all times. Like most respectable spying applications, it will send you e-mail reports so you can keep an eye on your computer from a remote location. We doubt even the cleverest users will be able to detect the program while it's running or uninstall it.

To open its control panel, you must use the Start menu's Run command, and even if someone finds the application, they'll still need your password to disable it. The utility can't be stopped via the Task Manager, nor uninstalled through the Control Panel or the Program Files folder. Installation is very touchy, and all non-essential programs--even those running in the background--must be shut down for the installation to work. Also, the seven-day trial period is too short for our tastes, but since System Surveillance Pro provides effective protection against even savvy folks, we still think it's a good find.

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