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Spyware From Pcpitstop?


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Guest klptsfb

I actually got here from Rob Cheng's Feb 2003 newsletter. I've used the virus checker several times, once finding a virus. Thanks!

 

I would not be asking this if it hadn't happened twice. After some surfing, I ran Lavasoft's Ad-aware 6.0, finding and removing only one object, bfast. I get lots of spyware on several machines. I then ran PCPitstop's full tests, and received the ususal "Check IE Restricted Sites zone" which is so complicated I do not want to deal with it at this time, unless it is the culprit.

 

I then noticed that W2kSP3 had not yet been installed on this computer. I went ahead and installed it, rebooting. I then Ad-aware again -- don't ask me why -- and I found Alexa, a Data Miner at HKLM:Software/MS/IE/Extensions/c95fe080-8f5d-11d2-a206-00aa00 and removed it.

 

Not believing what I just saw, I went to a similar machine (having already found and removed nine instances of spyware, Including the cookies, atdmt[1].txt and www.qksrv[1].txt.

 

So after opening IE, going to my home page, Google, and then to PCPitstop, I ran the full tests on that machine, with the same recommendation. Next Ad-aware again, the two cookies noted above were found!

 

I hope I'm wrong, Rob, but I must suspect PCPitstop. Anyone have any ideas or recommendations? Later today, I'll try it on a third computer.

 

Joe

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Joe,

 

I'm not sure where you got Alexa but it wasn't from us. Alexa is still spyware but it isn't the worst of them. You can check out there site www.alexa.com. They are spying on you to create a pretty interesting database of popular sites.

 

Anyways, I can guarantee that you did not get Alexa nor any other spyware from PC Pitstop.

 

Rob

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Alexa is "Microsofts" little goodie. :mrwinky: Any time you update IE at Windows update it will be installed, Updating to a newer service pack updates IE, and in the process gives you Alexa. :mrgreen:

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Alexa is "Microsofts" little goodie. :mrwinky: Any time you update IE at Windows update it will be installed, Updating to a newer service pack updates IE, and in the process gives you Alexa. :mrgreen:

Yep, I've found this to be true on both of my computers....98se and XP.

I get it with the updates :(

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hm ... clicked on the link, checked out the site, ran AdAware , No Alexa !

 

Why is that ? You don't get it from the site or are the SpywareGuide.com Block List registery changes working ? *S*

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I'm curious... How did you come to the conclusion that the Pitstop is responsible this based on having a registry key, of which the path HKLM:Software/MS/IE/Extensions/c95fe080-8f5d-11d2-a206-00aa00, tells you how it got there, and atdmt[1].txt and www.qksrv[1].txt, which are cookies from ad agencies? If I saw that reg key, I would assume it was installed with IE, or an IE update. The cookies are pretty common, too. You can pick those up at thousands of websites, and you don't even need ad-aware to get rid of them. Just open your cookie folder and delete them.

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Yep, the cookies come from here, our privacy and cookie pages explain them. I don't consider cookies to be spyware in most cases, but they're an easy target for spyware checkers to find so that they can make you feel like they are protecting you. Cookies don't run any code on your system. You can easily block most ad cookies with the "block third party cookies" options in most browsers including IE6.

 

If you block ad cookies totally you may find you're inundated with popunder ads since the cookie tells them you already got one and they only give you one per day. There are several more comprehensive solutions like HOSTS files or Proxomitron if you don't want to see the ads.

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Guest klptsfb

Thanks to all! I feel a little more secure now. On a third machine running XP I did find all three of the above. I suppose it does no harm to routinely remove those objects that Ad-aware finds.

 

Joe

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Guest klptsfb

By the way Rob, I am curious about why your tests do not run when in Phoenix from mozilla.org. I have found this browser to be quite fast, and automatically blocks PopUps. I don't mind IE, except for the PopUps but, as someone noted, "With a world without fences, who needs Gates?"

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Well, short of taking Bruce's advice I know he would be glad to offer, and dumping Windows entirely... ( :P ) You could block those popups on the Pit very easily. And if Dave is correct, the Pit would still be able to pay the bills...

 

Here's some information on the Hosts File, and the specific entries for that file that you would need would be:

 

127.0.0.1 a.tribalfusion.com

127.0.0.1 m.tribalfusion.com

127.0.0.1 tribalfusion.com

127.0.0.1 tribalfusion.speedera.net

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