Spyware by any other name

Spyware by any other name

Summary: Spyware makers know they don't enjoy a particularly good reputation. Last year a representative of WhenU tried to convince me the company was reforming its ways, and recently 180solutions has been sending me presentations and PDF files outlining its new code of conduct.

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TOPICS: Malware
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Spyware makers know they don't enjoy a particularly good reputation. Last year a representative of WhenU tried to convince me the company was reforming its ways, and recently 180solutions has been sending me presentations and PDF files outlining its new code of conduct. In fact, 180solutions joined the Consortium of Anti-Spyware Technology vendors (COAST) to prove it was opposed to spyware. That COAST would let 180solutions join only called into question COAST's own mission and ethics. Both 180solutions and WhenU take the position that spyware is bad, and that they don't make spyware. Apparently, these companies assume they can define the word "spyware" any way they like. The companies' software may not raid your bank accounts, but it does serve ads based on what sorts of Web sites you visit. In my book, that's spyware.

I'd also like to disabuse people of the notion that a marketing campaign shows a company is reforming its ways. 180solutions insists in its marketing materials that its software is now easy to uninstall. A skeptic by nature, I had to test that assertion. I installed Zango, 180solutions' own software platform it uses to serve up free games. I played one of its available games for a while, then chose to uninstall Zango. The uninstaller launched a Web page from 180solutions' site asking why I wanted to get rid of the program, a tactic I particularly dislike. After uninstalling, I looked through the folders on my hard drive and found the Zango folder and the game folder all packed with various files, including installers for Zango. I wouldn't be surprised if Zango could reinstall itself--but, most importantly, this was not what I would call a clean uninstall. If 180solutions and WhenU want to clean up their acts, they should get out of the adware business.

Topic: Malware

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4 comments
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  • I've removed both of these from hundreds of computers...

    Not ONE user ever asked for it to be installed.

    If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck and has bill...
    BitTwiddler
  • Internal screening and cleaning

    You show the free "Ants" software as being 60% positive, performing as advertised. On the other hand, 40 % negative comments clearly state that the software comes with known and injurious adware / spyware imbedded. Does anybody read the users' comments, test the products, and remove any references to something that will seriously burden the unsuspecting person with software that is going to use up system resources while spying on the user's activities?

    Is there an internal audit system that protects your reputation and credibility and give users confidence that y'all know whereof you preach?

    Otherwise, keep up the good work....

    Ginter
    89710848-ginterv
  • I would like to find the morons...

    ....who send out this shit and take a 12 guage shotgon to their servers and unleash a load of double ought buck demolishing their hardwear to smitherenes and then bitchslap all the ones who do this. I recently spent a whold morning trying to get garbage like BARGAINS, ADAMIL, BULLSEYE, and other varments like that out of my computer. Deleting this crap doesnt help, it somehow regernates itself on the next boot. Their uninstall programs go thru the motions of uninstalling but dont do a gawdam thing. The government needs to get after these scumbags and shut them down, this is not ligimate business, its an illegal trespass or a an illegal wiretap.
    wizzzer
  • eBay Spy Tools

    Unless people stop using a site's services (BAN) then spy tool continue to flourish. Also, unless you're using Spybot Search & Destroy, you'd never realize what eBay is doing to you. I can't navigate to any page on eBay without getting warned by Spybot - here's the quote: "Spybot Search & Destroy reports that you want to download "DoubleClick". This is a known threat. Do you want to block this download?
    HA....eBay embedded it into their program to track your surfing habits! Try putting "DoubleClick" into eBay's search engine and you'll see many complaints from members. Members that make THEM money!! Members that are being spied on that have no clue unless they use Spybot Search & Destroy! Boycott sites or this will continue forever!!! Notice eBay has responded by saying they have no reports of complaints. HAHAHA, are they blind?
    metaluna@...