Oxford and Harvard boffins launch StopBadware.org

By Derek Sooman on January 25, 2006, 2:07 PM
Boffins from the universities of Oxford and Harvard have joined forces to name and shame the companies that develop and use adware, spyware and other malicious code.

The two universities have formed StopBadware.org under an advisory board that includes internet pioneers Vint Cerf and Esther Dyson.
As well as publishing lists of software programs deemed to be malicious, the organisation will also advise software houses on the best ways to block "badware", and collect user experiences of infection. StopBadware.org will operate in the same manner as Spamhaus, an organisation that collects data on spammers and publishes a list of the world's top offenders.

User Comments: 7

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shounen said:
hopefully this site gets big... and becomes really usefull to the common people....
asphix said:
More good news and first steps to cleaning up the internet! Even though this in itself wont be ground breaking to the average user it sets up a platform from which people can identify these abusive companies and users and from which to launch a defense. It will also help promote awareness which in itself is invaluable.
AeonXX said:
Iím skeptical about this really taking off, because most people arenít very concerned with protecting their computers by any means that takes effort. It would be a useful step if instead they drafted the knowledge of the dozens of web sites dedicated to this topic into one central location. If this does go somewhere, I will be surprised.
nathanskywalker said:
And the press takes the battle to the frontlines...gogogog!!! yeah! Well, this is great! Organization to actually do something, something other than messing with digital media rights and such. How effective their attempts will be is yet to be seen, but hey, you're crackin down on all those stupid tracking cookies, and adware proges, i'm on youre side.
exscind said:
First of all, it takes some guts to create a site like this. And second of all, I will call it out right now: This is a site with an impending lawsuit, a ticking time bomb just waiting to happen. For example, an adware/spyware company may claim it is legit, and whether or not the company is right is besides the point. The point is that the website will get so many lawsuits basically saying take the company's name off of the list or the website will be sued. Amazingly, this happens to many antivirus/anti-spyware softwares. The Microsoft Anti-spyware program is an example; it excludes many rather well-known spywares because the companies essentially either paid Microsoft off or they threatened to sue Microsoft. So Microsoft's program won't detect these sneaky spywares monitoring in the background of a person's computer. I like what StopBadware.org is doing, but I can't help but to think just how long the website will last before it is run over by law suits. But then again, they are from Oxford and Harvard. Maybe the site is created to give their law students some real-life experiences :).
canadian said:
Its people like them, that make the internet a better, happy place. :)
mentaljedi said:
THis would be good for a reasearch site. So like if they find anything out, they can post it and bigger sites like this one can pick that news up.
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