A boring post about my computer
As a respite from having a rather weighty mental load I've been downloading various freeware games in fits and starts over the last few weeks in addition to playthings of a browser-based nature.
Late last night I performed a perfunctory scan of my machine using Norton Antivirus and the little beggar came up with Adware Groove.x32 (Adware.Ezula) - a file that was beyond it's capabilities to destroy.
Now my thoughts on Symantec - the fathers of Norton - are well known (within my mind). I don't neccesarily trust them. They are the Bush administration of security companies, relying on fear, misinformation and deceipt.
However, apparently "Ezula alters Web pages viewed in Internet Explorer and can add extra links to certain keywords that advertisers target" and it "runs under the name TopText". Which is nice. Not seen any of that as yet, but then I don't even use Internet Explorer as long as I can help it.
AdAware didn't find anything, and I'm yet to download Spybot. However, "Groove.x32" looks to be involved with the Groove Alliance of 3dgroove fame, a company whose shockwave games I vaguely remember playing years and years ago. Whilst this article was in draft form I had vaguely recalled that they were reputedly purveyors of spyware-encrused web-games, but after clearing my head with a few San Miguels I've realised that's the "evil" Wild Tangent. Whichever, I've not been near either with my ten foot pole in a long long time.
And despite my masses of recent downloading, I'm the only person in the world to religiously take notice of the End User Licenses on such software, so I'd hope I'd know if something bad had weedled its way in the back of some other piggy. It's a piggin' mystery.
Whatever, it doesn't appear to be affecting my machine (unless this is actually the reason why it's so damn unstable at the moment). Which is all well and good, but its that feeling of violation that hurts. Hurts my feelings.
And as for Ezula's "Client-Side-Applications Standards and Guidelines" page on it's website, what an impressive piece of text that is - it admits in copious detail just how naughty spyware is, but informs that it's doing its "users" a favour with it, but that they always have the option to opt-in on the Terms and Conditions. THAT is something I have never done. Unless I was drunk at the time... its like clicking on that cute little Gator...
I love the way that the worst spyware offenders make the most noise about their "anti-spyware commitments". Again, its that bullish Bush-like response - make enough noise implying the opposite of what your up to, and the people will never think you could possible be so flagrant!
Of course, if I'd bothered to read the scan reports etc instead of rambling uncoherently about it, I'd know that the "threat" lay at C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\MACROMED\Shockwave 8\xtras\download\TheGrooveAlliance\3DGrooveXtrav18\Groove.x32 after all.
OK, its not exactly very interesting, but I'm nothing if not completist. Yawn.
I'm happy that so many people post info about adware on their blogs; I am the owner of an adware look2me remove website; I'd glad if you pay me a visit. You'll probably find useful info for your next adware related posts.