New Anti-Spyware Coalition Hopes To Be Less Useless Than The Last One

from the sounds-familiar dept

Just a few months after an anti-spyware coalition fell apart after it admitted known malware creators to the group, a new group has formed that promises it won’t meet the same fate. They say the original group tried to do too much — though, really the problem was just that they let the fox into the hen house. In the meantime, this more “narrowly focused” group plans to start out by “defining spyware.” Good luck. People (politicians, mainly) have been trying to define spyware for quite some time, without much luck. The problem with defining such things is that you never know what the unintended consequences are — and there are some actions that may be perfectly legit in some programs, but a serious problem in others. It’s still not clear why existing fraud laws can’t cover the problems caused by most malware. Besides, as we’ve seen with CAN SPAM, it wouldn’t be surprising if many malware makers figure out ways to follow the letter of the law, but not the spirit — or, failing that, to ignore it completely.

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Comments on “New Anti-Spyware Coalition Hopes To Be Less Useless Than The Last One”

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Paul Hoffman (user link) says:

Maybe don't define spyware

Because defining “spyware” seems like an endless pit, maybe it is better to define the part of “spyware” that people hate the most. At the Cybersecurity Association, we will be testing for “malware” instead of “spyware”, and have come up with a defintion that covers most of what angers users and makes the malware unsafe.

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