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Old May 9, 2003, 9:15 AM   #1
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Default Webshots = Spyware

Just thought I'd let you know if you use webshots it installs spyware on your PC, and pretty darned persistent spyware at that - just ran adaware to remove it and it reappeared - think it's gonna require manual removal

Stef
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Old May 9, 2003, 4:22 PM   #2
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Default maybe it wasnt webshots after all

ops:

Hmm have just *****hed some more on this and searched my home PC and no signs of the spyware my works PC was invaded by.

So it seems the spyware did not originate from webshots after all.

How red faced do I feel ? ops:

OK I'm just gonna crawl into this hole that just opened up.

Sorry folks
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Old May 9, 2003, 5:05 PM   #3
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:lol:
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Old May 9, 2003, 5:09 PM   #4
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:shock:
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Old May 9, 2003, 5:10 PM   #5
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I am not really shocked at your courage. One who attempts nothing will make few mistakes.
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Old May 10, 2003, 2:35 AM   #6
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Thanks for your kind (and wise) words, most appreciated

Have a great weekend

Stef
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Old May 10, 2003, 5:34 AM   #7
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The term "spywhere" is loosely applied to a number of different types of commercial intrusion on your PC.

If you install shareware or freeware applications, beware. In some cases they are only available free because they are loaded with a variety of "phone home" type traps or worse. Responsible shareware providers, like CNET, usually advise when a download includes this type of spyware. If they don't, the users soon detect it and are not slow to mention it in reviews.

In most cases, the term is applied to tracker cookies. A number of internet advertising agencies, like doubleclick and googlesyndication leave trackers on your PC designed to identify the websites you visit. The forums at dpreview are a hotbed of these ads and you may have picked up some trackers there. Each time I visit dpreview, these little nasties repeatedly try to extract my email address from my PC - fortunately my firewall's privacy settings block such attempts.

For what it's worth, a few suggestions: in IE6, use Tools|Internet options|Privacy|Advanced and block third party cookies. Use a firewall that will let you block specific information, like your email address. Run Adware or (better) Spybot regularly to remove any trackers that get through. Don't get paranoid - you won't prevent spam and you probably won't get disappeared by some shadowy government agency because you looked at the wrong website. I doubt that the tracker agencies learn anything like as much about you as your local supermarket does each time you use a loyalty card or credit card there.

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Old May 10, 2003, 4:08 PM   #8
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that might well have been the source fenlander - I know I have recently visited the forums at dpreview and it may have well been from my works PC (during my lunch break I hasten to add) so you may well have identified the source.

I did have to go into the registry editor to get rid of the spyware (save.exe) that it installed

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Old May 10, 2003, 10:38 PM   #9
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stefank

If you had to deal with your registry, then you didn't have a cookie which was tracking you, you had real spyware (like all those things attached to Kazaa.)

Adaware is very good about telling you what it found. It should have told you exactly what it found and if it was a cookie or something else. Personally, I use cookie jar to solve the cookie tracking problem. And when I'm really going into the wilds of the net, I use navascope as a web proxy.

Assuming you have been good about patching your OS (and therefor the browser) just going to dpreview shouldn't get you any true spyware. If you have a good firewall (I run both zonealarm and a real hardware linksys firewall) and the proper patches, there should be no way to get virus or spyware without letting it yourself.

I hate those tracking cookies, and the new push to blend them with offline data really pisses me off (doubleclick got roasted over that a few years ago, and I hope the new attempts get the same fate)... but they are a different type of beast next to true spyware. I think that true spyware should be illegal.
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Old May 11, 2003, 3:08 AM   #10
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Thanks for that feedback and info - seems my home PC is better protected than my works PC.

Whilst we have sophos av at work I'm not aware of any firewall or spyware detection software - I installed adaware myself.

Stef
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