I must admit it's an article a bit off topic, but this is a very important issue concerning particularly the online gambling industry.
Introduction : The new kind of viruses are here. The thiefware, called also spyware, scumware or parasiteware, infect your computer in the same way than a virus. This is an unethical use of the internet technology, and the problem spread very fast on the internet network. It's time to do something, and the end-user like you is the key to resolve the problem. This article is written to educate our visitors on their internet usage.
1) What is thiefware ?
Thiefware is a software that a user unknowingly download when he wants to download intentionally an another software. The most known programs are Gator, Bonzi, Kazaa, Morpheus. The thiefware program is inserted on your computer as a virus. Even after removing the program, the thiefware comes back to your computer, using some technical tricks that allow this programs. You have on your computer an unsuspected program that is practically impossible to delete, invading your privacy.
2) What it does for me ? What are the risks ?
The thiefware monitors all your internet usage. Where you go, what you buy, what are your interests... These programs are installed by companies that want to use this information for advertising purposes, to sell you products. All your internet usage is transmitted to this companies. If the program is able to get your personal information and your email address, it will be also transmitted to the unscrupulous company. They don't care of your privacy. They have installed a "spy" on your computer, and are determined to use all the means they have to make dollars. As a result, your computer & browser are unstable, and you receive tons of unsolicited ads when you surf, and more...
3) But there is more important : how it affects webmasters and STEAL their money...
There is an another problem. The thiefware STEAL the work and money of the webmasters, like me. How ? It's simple. Webmasters, like me, build the internet by operating websites that provide free information to the visitors. Our business and our revenue come directly from advertising sales, allowing you this free site and all others free sites you can browse.
But a thiefware uses our sites to steal our business. If the spy has found that you have an interest in online gambling (because you have visited some sites), they will launch ads on all other sites you surf related to online gambling subject, stealing our business. There is a lot of different ways the thiefware operates to steal. They can modify our links on this site to send you to an another casino. Just remind that : if you have a thiefware installed on your computer, all the money I will earn from my advertising sales will be rewarded to an another company. It's called stealing.
A real example. Imagine you go to a car store, and want to purchase a car from this first brand. Imagine that an employee of a competitor brand enters this store, and wants to sell you the car of the competitor brand IN THE STORE WHERE YOU ARE... Imagine the reaction of the staff of this car store... But on internet, we, webmasters, can't do nothing to eject this thief. A legal action against these companies would require a lot of money (and they are often sued by another companies, so they are prepared...). The key of the solution, it's you !
4) How can I help ?
If you want to protect yourself and keep a safe internet for all of us, here are the solutions :
1) Removing scripts with specifical websites & programs
- Please go to this site : http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite/. It has a script that will detect if you have any thiefware installed on your computer. The result of the scan will appear in the red window. Then they give you all the needed instructions to delete them (if any found). If it's too much technical for you, use the second solution, just below. It's also a very good source of information on the subject.
- Download the new kind of anti-virus that can delete the various thiefware, and keep them up to date like your anti-virus :
> AdAware ;
2) Replace the programs you use carrying scumware by safe programs
- Roboform - Replaces Gator; free, fills in forms for you, does auto-logins for you and keeps a list, and does NOT carry any scumware with it. A wonderful program.
- Diet Kazaa - Replaces Kazaa (regular), Morpeus, and any music-sharing programs, and has no apparent scumware downloaded with it like the others do.
3) Support the GPWA (Gambling Portal Webmasters Association) and other major gambling portals in their efforts to stop scumware usage in our industry.
We have a public forum dedicated to The Scumware Battle where you can find links to other sites, articles, and useful information. We've been in active negotiations over the last few months with many online casinos to drop their scumware usage; most have, in an effort to conduct business ethically and fairly - but a few haven't.
4) Keep informed about this issue
Please keep you informed with the development of the thiefware, with these three excellent sites :
- http://www.spywareguide.com ;
- http://www.thiefware.com ;
Remember - if this plague carries on, a lot of quality websites will be obliged to close... Act now ! Thank you for any of your action to fight this !
Well, that's all folks ! Thank you for reading this article. If you need any help or complementary information, we are at your service at webmaster
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