Few solutions pop up at FTC adware workshop

Spyware, adware and other code that lurks on hard drives has become so pervasive it's bedeviling home users, driving corporate technology managers to distraction and has become the top complaint in customer service calls to computer makers.

Software companies warned of poorly written laws targeting spyware that could inadvertently affect legitimate products like smut-filtering software or security update mechanisms. Microsoft suggested that technology in a forthcoming Windows XP Service Pack might do the trick, while other participants touted third-party rating systems and voluntary codes of conduct.

Politicians and their aides defended laws targeting spyware, citing the example of last year's federal law regulating spam. But some advertising companies claim their business model is perfectly legitimate, and law enforcement representatives acknowledged they already had sufficient legal authority under computer crime laws to put the most noxious spyware makers in prison.

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News source: C|Net News

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