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What steps have been taken by common free software OS distributions to protect against it? What can Windows users do? What ways are there to rid a system of it?

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Look for the string "FinSpy" across all files.

"But their most intriguing finding was a small but telling word embedded in the spyware’s code: “FinSpy.”

That quote is from the article at http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/31/how-two-amateur-sleuths-looked-for-finspy-software/

According to that article you could also look for connections to servers answering manual connection attempts with Hallo Steffi".

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