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New York Sues A Marketer On Use Of Internet Spyware ! - 4/29/2005 8:22:16 AM   
SiliconFreak


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A broad investigation into Internet abuses led the New York attorney general to file a lawsuit on Thursday accusing a California company of clogging computers across the nation with secretly installed spyware and adware, which can vex users and impede the flow of commerce on the Web.

The attorney general, Eliot Spitzer, sued Intermix Media, a large Internet marketing firm, accusing it of embedding "several types of invasive and annoying" programs on its Web domains that can pop up, route users to unwanted sites or link them to Intermix's services and clients. The accusations were in a complaint that was filed on Thursday in State Supreme Court in Manhattan.

"This is the type of thing that makes users feel not in control of their own Internet browsing habits and less likely to use e-commerce," said Ken Dreifach, the chief of Mr. Spitzer's Internet Bureau. "We are trying to get rid of this nuisance."

Mr. Spitzer's civil complaint comes amid a crush of protests from Internet users about invasive programs. To battle the problem, state and national lawmakers have written legislation to establish or strengthen sanctions for wrongly distributing software. In Albany, several bills to address the issue are working their way through the State Senate and Assembly.

In recent years, companies have tried to sneak what consumer advocates call parasitic software into computers that tracks users' browsing habits, but government inquiries into such practices have been rare, said Ben Edelman, a Harvard University researcher who studies spyware. Last year the Federal Trade Commission brought suit against two companies that made false claims to induce users to install their programs, he said.

The spyware technology erodes the trust of customers, slows their computer functions and wastes time deleting it, all things that hurt e-commerce, said Ari Schwartz, associate director at the Center for Democracy and Technology, a nonprofit group that advocates for Internet privacy.

State officials said that in the Intermix case, the simple downloading of a game, screen saver, cursor or other file-sharing program could download programs to a user's hard drive that summon unwanted pop-up ads or display unwanted toolbars.

"Tens of millions" of downloads have occurred, they said, including more than 3.7 million in New York.
Full story...


Source : NY Times
Post #: 1
RE: New York Sues A Marketer On Use Of Internet Spyware ! - 4/29/2005 2:25:07 PM   
MP3Mogul


Posts: 5743
Joined: 4/11/2002
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It's a great day when they go after these people! HORRAY!


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(in reply to SiliconFreak)
Post #: 2
RE: New York Sues A Marketer On Use Of Internet Spyware ! - 4/29/2005 6:28:45 PM   
SiliconFreak


Posts: 12104
Joined: 7/4/2003
From: Melbourne, Victoria, AUS
Status: offline
YEAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!! GO GO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

(in reply to MP3Mogul)
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