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Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Spyware and adware definitions - the consumer doesn't care

"Anti-spyware vendors and consumer groups took a stab at issuing uniform definitions for "spyware" and "adware" in hopes of giving computer users more control over their machines.

The definitions seek clarity that could help improve anti-spyware products, educate consumers and fend off lawsuits from developers of software that sneaks onto computers."

So much for the postive news. At least they talk. But would it bring anything, at least as of now?

"The coalition flags as potential threats - an umbrella definition that includes spyware, adware and other categories such as "hijackers" and "cookies" - programs that:

-impair users' control over their systems, including privacy and security;

-impair the use of system resources, including what programs are installed on their computers; or

-collect, use and distribute personal or otherwise sensitive information."

But they couldn't agree on a to clarify a key issue - is adware a form of spyware or not?

Is it not? They discuss about definitions, which is fine. But anything that is not taking the consumer into consideration. And the consumer doesn't see a difference between adware and spyware. It is bothering them, and after this meeting, it seems likely that the only way is to keep going as they currently do - change their online behaviour and be more alert.

(By Asia Business Consulting)