SpywareInfo now is online again in spite of a massive, ongoing distributed denial of service attack. We have brought online a number of proxy servers at Globalservers.com that are shielding the site. Globalservers has the infrastructure to fight off the attacks. There may be some sporadic outages but we expect to remain online no matter what the attackers throw at us.
Thank you very much to everybody who helped out, either by donating money, putting up mirrors for HijackThis and CWShredder or running around a million message boards to help people unable to access the forums. Many thanks to my AWESOME web host for working with me throughout these attacks and helping me to set up our new system of proxy servers.
If you need current copies of HijackThis or CWShredder, those are being mirrored here:
CWShredder: http://www.spywareinfoforum.info/downloads/tools/CWShredder.exe (version 1.51)
You may have heard of an arrangement with anonymizer.com to help protect the site. They were going to provide SpywareInfo with as many redundant proxies as we'd need to keep the site running. Their CTO even worked on the weekend with his wife glaring over his shoulder to set it up. Unfortunately, the attacks proved too much for their network, so they have withdrawn their support. I still appreciate what they tried to do.
The attackers still are hitting us with everything they have but the equipment at Globalservers seems to be holding up to the attacks. They are generating 60mbits per second of traffic and the site is loading just fine in spite of it. I probably will bring some more servers online there just to be on the safe side.
Once SpywareInfo is settled and I have more servers online, I hope to bring merijn.org and tomcoyote.org back into operation. For now, you can access Merijn's site at http://188.8.131.52/~merijn/.
SpywareInfo needs money to remain online. The operating costs necessary to keep the site online in the face of these attacks are very high. If you would like to help out with these costs, please visit our donation page. Thank you very much.
http://www.dixiesys.com/ :· Dixie Internet Systems
http://www.spywareinfoforum.info/support.php :· Donation Page
http://channels.lockergnome.com/windows/backissues/20040223.phtml :· Lockergnome: Spywareinfo Hacked By Meanies!
There is the sort of spyware that comes from installing programs like Kazaa and Imesh. This kind of spyware will track your web usage to produce more relevant pop-up ads. This is an annoying and unfair invasion of privacy. However, other than the aggravation of dealing with pop-up ads and spam, this kind of spyware usually is not dangerous. These can be cleaned up relatively easily with Ad-aware and Spybot.
More dangerous are the surveillance and monitoring programs. These programs are used to steal passwords to bank and credit card accounts. A business rival can bribe an employee to install spyware on the company network. Or the company itself might install spyware to watch you while you work. These programs cost money to buy for testing and not all antispyware companies can afford to keep up with each new version.
SpyCop is the leading solution for finding computer monitoring spy programs, keyloggers and commercially available software designed specifically to record your screen, email and passwords. SpyCop will detect the spy, tell you when it was installed and disable it. SpyCop claims to have the largest database of surveillance spyware, 401 targets in all.
SpyCop also makes Evidence Terminator, a program that cleans out the traces of computer usage that Windows leaves lying around. This includes browser cache, temp files and recently opened documents among other things. You should shred paper documents at home and in the office if you don't want people reading them. The same goes for your PC.
Due to the attacks disrupting the site after the last newsletter, the discounts for these products have been extended. Spycop and Evidence Terminator are discounted 20% for SpywareInfo readers for the rest of this month. Evidence Terminator and Spycop together are discounted by nearly $45.00.
More information about Spycop http://www.spywareinfoforum.info/downloads/spycop/
More information about Evidence Terminator http://www.spywareinfoforum.info/downloads/spycop/eterminate.php
Don't forget, even if you catch all the spyware on your computer, someone still can sneak up behind you and peek over your shoulder. Spycop won't help with that, so you might think about having this little gadget. ;-)
SpywareInfo needs help! The word has spread that SpywareInfo is the place to go to exterminate a browser hijacker. Unfortunately, there is a colossal number of people infected with browser hijackers and other parasites. Our message board is being overwhelmed with people who need help.
We really could use some more volunteers to help people out at the message board. Those of you who work tech support for ISPs and PC makers who refer these people to SpywareInfo (you know who you are), this is your chance to return the favor. Anyone who knows computers and wants to help people is welcome.
If you have the time to spare, there is an informal "boot camp" at our message board, where the antispyware experts show people how to go about interpreting HijackThis log files. We have made spotting and removing parasites from log files into an art form. We need as many volunteers as possible who are willing to learn that skill and help people.
If you would like to help us out, please read this posting: http://www.spywareinfoforum.info/forums/index.php?showtopic=32637.
People are googling for Spybot and finding links to commercial software unassociated with Spybot. Google claimed they were going to stop selling that keyword, but it still is happening. Some of the software to which those ads lead are as bad as anything the real Spybot would detect and remove.
If you have time, please take a moment to search for Spybot at Google, then write to Google to complain about any advertisement that leads to a non-Spybot web site. People are being scammed by unethical companies who are banking on Spybot's reputation as the best adware removal product. All of the advertisements at Google clearly are labeled as "Sponsored Links" and located at the top and right side.
http://www.google.com/search?q=spybot :· Search for Spybot
https://adwords.google.com/select/main?cmd=ContactUs · Contact Google
This is a story I *meant* to scoop everyone with after the last newsletter. Unfortunately, I was unable to do that because of the attacks. The company named in the complaint makes SpyWiper, a disreputable piece of garbage that tries to extort people into buying it (according to the CDT complaint).
Complaint and Request for Investigation, Injunction, and Other Relief
1. The Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) files this Complaint and Request for Relief with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) seeking immediate action to prevent harm to Internet users as a result of deceptive advertising and 'browser hijacking' by MailWiper Inc. and/or its subsidiaries and/or its affiliates. This issue is within the Commission's jurisdiction over unfair and deceptive trade practices.
2. Since November 2003, numerous Internet users have had the 'homepage' settings on their web browsers changed without their consent to a web site that displays deceptive ads for the Spy Wiper 'spyware' removal software made by MailWiper, Inc. CDT became aware of this problem through the complaints submitted by Internet users to our spyware 'action' website (http://www.cdt.org/action/spyware). Upon receiving these complaints, CDT conducted research into the reported problem.
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