Spyware news

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Merlin1047, Oct 14, 2004.

  1. Merlin1047
    Offline

    Merlin1047 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,500
    Thanks Received:
    449
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    AL
    Ratings:
    +450
    Perhaps a bit belated, but it looks like there is finally movement in congress to make hijacking your computer illegal.

    http://www.internetweek.com/security02/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=49401238

    House Passes First Spyware Bill



    The U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday passed the first of two anti-spyware bills that it's considering, leaving the second for a vote Wednesday.

    Tuesday night, the House voted 399 to 1 to pass the SPY ACT, which prohibits a whole range of spyware- and adware-style activities, including keyboard logging, home page hijacking, and persistent on-screen ads. The bill also forbids practices such as collecting information without the user's consent or intentionally diverting a browser from its intended destination, and requires software to offer up a "no thanks" dialog so installation can't be done without consumers' knowledge. Programs must also have an easy-to-find uninstall option.

    Violators could face civil fines up to $3 million.

    The SPY ACT, which was sponsored by Rep. Mary Bono (R-Calif.), is one of a pair of bills crafted in the House. The second, called the I-SPY ACT, is scheduled for a roll call vote Wednesday. Similar to Bono's bill, the I-SPY ACT adds criminal penalties of up to five years in prison for using any software, spyware included, to commit a crime, such as secretly logging keystrokes or stealing confidential data.

    The Senate has an anti-spyware bill of its own in the works, but it's not yet been put on the calendar for a vote.
     
  2. insein
    Offline

    insein Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    Messages:
    6,096
    Thanks Received:
    356
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Philadelphia, Amazing huh...
    Ratings:
    +356
    All well and good but how will they monitor it?
     
  3. Merlin1047
    Offline

    Merlin1047 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,500
    Thanks Received:
    449
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    AL
    Ratings:
    +450
    No idea. My guess would be that an individual would have to lodge a complaint. Then he would have to prove where the offending item originated.

    Probably not going to be too easy, but sounds like an earnings opportunity for MicroSoft. Them should be able to create a program which tags and traces spyware.
     
  4. eric
    Online

    eric Guest

    Ratings:
    +0
    I seriously doubt it will do much good, if and that is a big if, it can even be passed. Enforcement would be a nightmare as well. With far more serious threats I doubt it would receive the proper funding, not to mention there are legal issues that will also come into play. Most people do not even realize it, but most of the time they are actually giving their permission for the spyware to be installed on their computer. There is a fine line between marketing and spyware that has yet to be well defined, at least in a legal sense.
     
  5. Merlin1047
    Offline

    Merlin1047 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,500
    Thanks Received:
    449
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    AL
    Ratings:
    +450
    Cookies are marketing. They are passive files which simply allow your computer to load a website faster.

    Anything that sends information without my knowledge is spyware and needs to be banned.

    This should not require any substantial funding since it would be up to the individual to register a complaint. Naturally, there would have to be some staffing, but if the fines levied against violators are stiff enough, the money collected should offset much, if not all of the expense.
     
  6. supermarine
    Offline

    supermarine Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Messages:
    165
    Thanks Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Ratings:
    +11
    FINALLY SOMEONE IS AT LEAST TRYING TO STOP THIS! My computer that i am using right now had to be uninstalled, then reinstalled because i got so much spyware crap on my comp without knowing. The only thing is is that the punishment should be higher, OH YES, EXECUTION. im serious. That would stop a lot of those virus spreaders in their tracks. :chains:
     
  7. Avatar4321
    Online

    Avatar4321 Diamond Member Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2004
    Messages:
    70,550
    Thanks Received:
    8,163
    Trophy Points:
    2,070
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Ratings:
    +12,173
    Avoid the porn sites and you wont have that problem;)

    There are plenty of free programs out there that kill spyware. i run them everytime i start getting pop ups showing up. they are usually gone immediately after that. But then i dont get spy ware problems that much.
     
  8. Merlin1047
    Offline

    Merlin1047 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,500
    Thanks Received:
    449
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    AL
    Ratings:
    +450
    Michael Moore wearing a . . . . .

    :teeth:
     
  9. eric
    Online

    eric Guest

    Ratings:
    +0
    Merlin,
    Cookies are not mean to help a website load faster, but instead store information. They are used for many different purposes, some good, some bad. When you customize a wesite, for example, your settings are stored in a cookie which is placed on your machine so when you return the website can then read back the settings and set the page up the way you liked it. On the darker side, they can be used to track your surfing habits. As long as websites work with marketing companies and allow them to place a web bug (a single pixel is enough) on their site, a cookie from the marketing company will be allowed. As this is done on many, many commercial sites, tracking is made possible.

    Trust me I have been in the industry as a software engineer for 21 years, and have consulted for ISP's, web app providers, marketing companies, as well as many fortune 500's. I was also the CEO of an IT firm and have dealt with many of these legal issues. It really is not so cut and dry, even though it seems that way to people outside the industry.

    Another example on the legal side; have you ever read the entire "terms of use" for software that carries spyware ? Most of the time you are AGREEING to allow this information to be collected and used. Look I too dislike shady marketing and spyware, I just think this bill would be ineffective, a start maybe, but much more would need to be done !

    :)
     

Share This Page