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Guest Mike Serieys

Spyware Only Contractable Via Ie?

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Guest Mike Serieys

I'm offering a mere supposition here, so don't shoot me down in flames. But since I swapped from IE6 to various other browsers (from Opera, to Netscape 7, and now on to Phoenix 0.5) I think I've had one piece of spyware on my system. Now I keep a relatively tight ship on my computer, consider myself pretty tech-savvy, have a very full HOSTS file etc, yet having only one piece of spyware in just over six months is in my opinion remarkable, and surely beyond coincidence?

 

From my limited knowledge of browser technologies, the lack of ActiveX in Mozilla/Opera is definitely a plus, but does it stop spyware getting on to your system? Whatever it is, whether it's just coincidence, or a plain fact, I know I'm happier without IE, the internet works faster, I don't get spyware, and it isn't even creating junk files on my system listing every website I visit. And if it is, this open-source community's got a lot to answer for. ;)

 

So, can anyone confirm - am I just mad or am I on to something? Or was this posted ages ago and have I just arrived six months too late?

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A few pieces of spyware use IE's ActiveX installation process; Comet Cursor and Gator are two I can think of at the moment. A few others you download and install, but they add toolbars to IE so they're IE only. Most of the others are download-and-install types where the browser you are using doesn't matter.

 

It's possible to create spyware with Mozilla/Netscape/Opera plugins, but since they have such a small market share the spyware guys haven't bothered. If you want to spy on both IE and non-IE users, it's a more effective "attack" to write a background program that doesn't depend on the browser.

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