UPDATE : Ever had doubts that XP was spying on you?

Rephrased at the request of many users Here's a heads up on what "Related Links" does on XP SP1 and prior versions of IE (as linked below, Alexa team up with MS in ie5) It may not be new to everyone but its valid insight into the many core features of "Out-of-the-box Windows" which is plain different to chosen applications like KaZaA (for example) that can track your browsing behavior.

We wont back down from our story on privacy concerns and Microsofts decision to continue to add this into Windows but we will admit its not new. - The above was by Neobond

Windows XP sp1ers have found a registry key setup by the program "alexa", a subsiduary of amazon (see link below). On the top link, we can see that alexa has been found to send detailed information about users to its servers, which im sure not only breaks microsofts privacy statement, but also breaks laws. My source says that the popular anti-spyware program Adaware detects elements of the installation as adware, and this registry key confirms it:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINEsoftwaremicrosoftinternet explorerextensions{c95fe080-8f5d-11d2-a20b-00aa003}

The issue is the 'related links' feature of IE which appears as the 'Tools'/'Show Related Links' menu item, and a corresponding toolbar button if you added it (from the 'Customize...' link on the toolbar).Use that feature and IE will contact the Alexa servers to obtain information about other web pages which might be, er, related. Go check the Alexa web site to see if you think that is a good idea (and, just to be clear, I think it's a truly sucky idea). Or just to double-check that you haven't deliberately or unintentionally installed some of their software, or you've forgotten that you've done so. But if you don't use that menu or button, Alexa will not hear from you. No spying will take place. You may sleep soundly.

Was that tooo complicated? well heres the jist : if you have ever used the MSN/IE search option and then used the 'Show Related Links' you are sending info to their servers; other than that it's just there....

the wonders will never cease to amaze!

View: Read more about alexa

View: Alexa's Homepage

View: Alexa team up with MS in ie5

View: Detailed information on adware

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