Spyware Purveyors Still Talking Past Critics

from the say-what? dept

As long as people have complained about spyware tactics — surreptitiously installing their apps on the machines of unsuspecting users — these companies have confused the issue by responding to an entirely different claim, namely that they don’t “spy” on people or create pop-up ads. Here’s more evidence that they still don’t get it. First, NY attack-dog AG Eliot Spitzer finally sued Intermix after a six-month investigation into its spyware activities. Besides the expected rejection of the spyware label, the company’s newest trick is to simply blame previous management for anything that drew the AG’s ire. On another front, Claria, aka Gator, is busy promoting its new marketing program at this week’s Ad:Tech conference. Their basic message is that people might be uncomfortable with targeted ads at first, but will get used to it when they realize its benefits. Again, this ignores the actual concern that these targeted ads are being served based on info collected through Claria’s secretly installed spyware. Moreover, it also doesn’t give the user much ability to review or alter the data being collected. Here’s an idea: let users see their profiles, decide what info (if any) can be used, and highlight their interests. That would not only give them adequate control over their data, but would also give advertisers better targeting and more motivated consumers.

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Comments on “Spyware Purveyors Still Talking Past Critics”

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jeremiah (user link) says:

personal data

Wasn’t there a meme a couple of years ago about giving people ownership of their personal data? I recall something (bruce schnier?) or someone trying to pass legislation that would create legal ownership of one’s personal/demographic data, that could then be sold (presumably at a profit for the individual) to companies hungry for this information.

I’m too lazy to Google it at this point, but I think the idea merits a revisit…

thecaptain says:

No Subject Given

I’ve got an even better idea to add on to yours Brett.

Yes, give me control over my profile and let ME decide (not opt OUT, but opt IN) BUT add this:

(Message to Claria/Gator and other SPYWARE/Malware companies)
Stop running your crappy code on MY machines!
Don’t use MY resources to make YOUR money, its bad enough you have to lie/cheat/steal to get my info so you can make a buck, stop screwing with MY PC to do so…

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