Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Damned Adware, Scumware and Spybots

It took 3 hours, but I finally got my office PC cleared of the vicious little brutes that have been hijacking my processor time as they merrily mine data at my employer's expense.

OK, let's assume I want to take on the role of Spy-ware or Ad-ware. I would wait until you tune into your favorite TV show, or call the pizza guy for a delivery, then I'd piggyback in on the signal and/or pizza box and set up shop in your living room. I'd set up a videocamera in your living room, and watch what your TV viewing habits are, and whether or not you pick your nose during commercials. I would tape your all phone calls so I can keep dibs on what you order over the phone. I kind of blend in with the wallpaper, so you don't really notice me, but you wonder who's leaving the refrigerator door open and eating all the Poptarts. Eventually, your sharp-eyed kid spots me, but I've chained myself to the stair rails, and refuse to leave.

Now, if this happens in real life, you would (in Texas, anyway) be perfectly justified in taking a baseball bat to the intruder's kneecaps and then tossing him bodily out the door. If it was an evil pernicious type of Trojan that had intruded and was trying to set fire to your living room carpet, you could ventilate the bastard with your favorite shootin' iron, and then bury him somewhere out in the south 40.

These malware and spybot authors keep getting away with their evil programming, and that pisses me off to no end. These data miners and tracking cookies are done for commercial reasons. Someone is compiling the data, and selling it to other companies. This means there's a financial transaction, and I highly doubt that these are done via manila envelopes full of cash and a midnight rendesvous at a shady saloon. Nope, these are B2B xfer of funds, which means tax records, which means a physical address, which means accountability. Why are these assholes not being pulled from their houses and tarred and feathered for all the grief they're causing?

If I visit your website, I'm not gonna gripe if you put up a banner ad as a way to make revenue. I'm not even gonna quibble if you make a note of what browser and OS I'm using, or record my IP address. When your foul little bots self-install on my machine, though, and cause some POS search engine page to be installed as my default home page on every launch of IE, that's going too far. Sending little pop-up ads I can live with, but redirecting me to porn sites when the link looks like a legitimate safe-for-work link is again crossing the line.

Hmmmm... I wonder if any of the old Japanese internment camps are still available. If not, I'll be OK with a huge hole in the ground. I'd like to see a nationwide sweep done, and all spammers, adware authors and the related shitbags consigned to a deep dark pit for a few decades, while firefighting planes with tanks full of pig shit make low-level drops every hour or so.

Assholes. I finally found someone I despise more than telemarketers and ambulance-chasing attorneys.