April 18th, 2006


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jimbojones
02:55 am - lol spyware
180 Solutions, probably the most mainstream famous of the big spyware vendors, has a long history of publicly claiming "oh no we're not a spyware vendor, that was a mistake, since then we've cleaned our act up. Really guys." Then of course maybe a week goes by before one or another of the anti-spyware mavens documents on video one of their spyware apps getting installed via browser exploits, installing even after you click "no thanks", getting installed blindly with no EULA... you name it.

But THIS is a new twist: now, they're installing, I kid you not, a hardcore child-porn browser (link does not contain child porn and is safe for work) on your PC. Wow. Forget slowing your PC down - these guys are looking to make you a felon if you install "ad-supported software" with their crap bundled in.

That's hardcore in more ways than one.

moral of the story: for the love of GOD stop installing "cute games you found for free" on the internet on sketchy-ass sites full of bouncing happy crap!

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Current Mood: boggled

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[User Picture] From: soulranger
Date: April 18th, 2006 - 01:37 pm
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"moral of the story: for the love of GOD stop installing "cute games you found for free" on the internet on sketchy-ass sites full of bouncing happy crap!"


Uh...does downloading animated screensavers on your parent's computer count?


 
[User Picture] From: jimbojones
Date: April 18th, 2006 - 05:57 pm
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Very likely. "OMG FREE SCREENSAVERS!" is one of the most common ways to Trojan people, either with spyware or straight-out trojans.

The rule of thumb is, if you're downloading it from someplace either 1. you've never heard of, 2. excessively cheesy-looking (smilies and bouncing animated crap EVERYWHERE) or 3. with tons of banner ads ADVERTISING "free" stuff, you're screwing up.

In general, downloading from someplace large and reputable - MSN, ZDNet, Yahoo, or similar - is usually safe, WITH the proviso that you NEED TO READ THE EULA. A big site like that may still offer spywared-up things for download, but they will at least WARN you that they're going to install "ad supported software" or something similar in the EULA.

Open Source stuff is pretty much always okay. Anything that's ACTUALLY Open Source is definitely going to be okay, the problem is that eventually shady bastards will probably start lying and calling their products open source to trick you. If you're paranoid, only trust open source stuff from sourceforge.net - SourceForge is always safe.

You can also generally just google whatever it is you want to download before you download it. Check to see if people are complaining bitterly about what it did to their computer when they installed it - if it's spyware, you'll usually find out pretty quick.


 
[User Picture] From: bitchness
Date: April 18th, 2006 - 11:19 pm
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Your link is b0rked.


 
[User Picture] From: jimbojones
Date: April 19th, 2006 - 12:24 am
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[User Picture] From: jimbojones
Date: April 19th, 2006 - 12:25 am
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ps: original link still works for me off-and-on. I think they may have gotten slashdotted?


 
[User Picture] From: marys_second
Date: April 20th, 2006 - 12:51 am
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Jebus. I can't believe that.

for the love of GOD stop installing "cute games you found for free" on the internet on sketchy-ass sites full of bouncing happy crap!

After the third time I talked my mother through undoing whatever my father's click-happy ways had done to their computer, I showed her how to reduce his priveleges and lock the registry.

It never ceases to amaze me how many times people will fall for that stuff and act like it's part and parcel of internet access.


 
[User Picture] From: jimbojones
Date: April 20th, 2006 - 01:45 am
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If surfing the internet was like sex, we'd all be living in Nigeria.


 
[User Picture] From: soulranger
Date: April 20th, 2006 - 02:44 am
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Huh?


 
[User Picture] From: jimbojones
Date: April 20th, 2006 - 02:50 am
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(think sub-Saharan HIV statistics)


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