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Sun, Google, Harvard & Oxford Launch Anti-spyware Site

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2006 11:12 pm    Post subject: Sun, Google, Harvard & Oxford Launch Anti-spyware Site Reply with quote

Web search powerhouse Google has joined with Sun Microsystems to fund a new anti-spyware coalition that is on tap to launch on Jan. 24, according to information reaching eWEEK

The nonprofit group is setting up shop at StopBadware.org to help computer users deal with the scourge from adware, spyware, rootkits and other malware threats.

Sources say the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School will run the operations of the coalition with help from Consumer Reports WebWatch, a consumer advocacy group.

Vint Cerf, the renowned technologist who was recently hired as chief Internet evangelist at Google, is on board as an adviser to the coalition.

Former ICANN board chairman Esther Dyson, who publishes the influential Release 1.0 newsletter, is also involved

More @ eWeek

What is badware?

There are several commonly recognized terms for specific kinds of badware- spyware, malware, and deceptive adware. Badware is malicious software that tracks your moves online and feeds that information back to shady marketing groups so that they can ambush you with targeted ads. If your every move online is checked by a pop-up ad, it's highly likely that you, like 59 million Americans, have spyware or other malicious badware on your computer.

What's particularly tricky about badware is that you may not know that you downloaded it. Some badware manufacturers bundle it with other programs without disclosing that it's part of the package. Others put their programs on your PC when you visit certain websites or play online games.

Unfortunately, incessant pop-up ads aren't the only possile side-effect. Sometimes peoples' computers slow down or even crash. Sometimes peoples' personal information is abused, and there have been reported cases of identity theft. What's even more frustrating is that these programs are hidden in your computer, making it difficult to identify and remove them.

Why do badware providers make the effort? Because it is big business, amounting to a $2 billion-a-year industry. It's the Wild West of aggressive marketing and an industry supported by shadowy online marketers, small application vendors, and website operators.

The best and most important thing is for you to learn how to clean badware off your computer and to share your knowledge with those you know. An important factor when installing any software application is whether you have agreed to its installation and understand what it will do. Certain types of badware not only adversely affect your browsing experience, but how your computer itself functions. Some badware is known to interrupt your internet connection or even cause your computer to crash.


StopBadware Google Group

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Joined: 11 Aug 2005
Last Visit: 20 Aug 2009
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Location: NY

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting working group here: http://www.stopbadware.org/home/working_group

Hats off to Eric Howes ! (When will you find time to sleep?)
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