|Do You Have ThiefWare?
|thief not theif
a common misspelling
Here's what you will learn at
It is commonly thought that spyware and thiefware are both one and the same. Well, not
exactly. It is true that spyware is a subset of ThiefWare, but Thiefware is more than just
spyware, malware, and the variety of other terms named for those pesky software packages
that get onto people's computers through sneaky means. In summary:
All spyware fits one of the ThiefWare characteristics
- NOT all ThiefWare will be Spyware
- NOT all adware is ThiefWare
- NOT all Viruses are ThiefWare
- For more complete examination see this page.
For computer owners...
Methods of how ThiefWare gets installed onto your computer and how you
can help prevent that from happening.
Learn how Microsoft Internet Explorer and it's various rebranded
browsers let ThiefWare (which includes spyware) get onto your computer. Learn which
browsers are safer to use and why.
Learn why ThiefWare can be a privacy issue as well as be an
Identity theft problem.
- Get the details on the largest brands of ThiefWare and how they operate.
For Web site owners...
- Learn what types of ads may be displaying in connection to
your Web sites from ThiefWare adware.
- Get scripts, CSS and HTML code to help keep certain types of ThiefWare
ads from being embedded into your Web pages.
- Be informed of the various big brand ThiefWare companies and how their
ads are generated.
- Learn why ThiefWare is a major problem for site owners and how it
threatens YOUR site's revenue generating ability.
- Affiliate site owners, YOU should be aware that ThiefWare can intercept your credits for
referrals. The ThiefWare company gets your commissions instead of you.
ThiefWare.com, hundreds of thousands of computer owners, tens of
thousands of Web site owners, Web marketers, etc., believe the methods used by these
unscrupulous companies are unethical and should be illegal. Apparently the legal system is
taking a long time to resolve this injustice of stealthyly installing their software onto
users' computers and using Web sites to deliver advertising without compensation.
ThiefWare \theef-wair\ n
: software residing on a computer that
may spy (a.k.a. spyware) on the computer owner without their
knowledge, may install itself by stealthy methods without the
computer owner's knowledge, may contextually use Web sites to
generate various ad types without the Web site owner's permission,
agreement, and/or compensation.
[Click Here] for a more
Find out here!
See information about WhenU.com
Microsoft Internet Explorer ActiveX Settings
Protect yourself from ThiefWare that downloads to your computer without your
knowledge. This is a security problem if left unplugged.
View Point Articles:
that in the real world
The Moopers of the World
... and more
New Disablers AvailableNon Refreshing They
don't refresh. Safe for people running banners for ad networks.
Replace Gator with RoboForm.
Need a Gator program replacement? RoboForm to the rescue. Users give this program
high praise. RoboForm vows to never become ThiefWare.
ConsumerInfo.com, (www.consumerinfo.com) is a very persistent eZula
TopText advertiser despite complaints from other victim Web sites. They advertise their
free credit report, but apparently the company is not treating their customers properly
(and of course they are not competing ethically with their competitors either). They have a very bad rating with the BBB. See
their BBB rating (Better Business Bureau ratingnot good at all).
ConsumerInfo.com has an F rating which is defined by the BBB in the following
We strongly question the companys
reliability for reasons such as that they have failed to respond to complaints, their
advertising is grossly misleading, they are not in compliance with the laws
licensing or registration requirements, their complaints contain especially serious
allegations, or the companys industry is known for its fraudulent business
Get their contact info on our ThiefWare Ad List and send them
an e-mail about how you feel about them putting their contextual ads on your site. They
have persisted in advertising with eZula since July 2001. Send them a strong message about
their unethical relationship with eZula. If you run a competing site or a site that
contains words that ConsumerInfo.com has bought ads for, your site is giving them free
advertising links back to their site from your own site. You get NO compensation for lost
sales nor do you get ad revenue for their links on your site. We don't think that's fair
and you probably don't think so either unless you don't mind losing sales and visitors to
Forum Discussion Topics
What is ThiefWare?
ThiefWare is software being used in an unethical or disagreeable manner. The term does not
necessarily mean that the software is involved in illegal thievery as determined by law.
The word is being used to denote unethical, unacceptable, or otherwise
negative use of software and Internet technology.
The software mentioned leads your site visitors (for all Web site owners)
away to your competitor's Web sites. Many site owners would say the software and
respective company is stealing visitors which makes ThiefWare an appropriate name for such
services and software. Click here for a more complete definition.
ThiefWare also includes spyware as spyware exhibits characteristics of ThiefWare. True
hardcore spyware is often more dangerous to a specific user than the ordinary variety of
thiefware. However thiefware often affects a much larger user base than hardcore spyware
because, unlike spyware which is basically illegal, thiefware is currently legal though
barely. Since thiefware and spyware tend to share very similar methods of operation,
people like to interchange the terms.
The ThiefWare Plan
You (as a computer user) are enticed to download a program (frequently it's a file
sharing program like KaZaa bundled with other unwanted software, a browser toolbar like
HotBar, or some so called browser helper such as Gator *). When you install the desired
program, it also prompts you to install the ThiefWare program or the desired program is
itself the thiefware application. It installs very seamlessly in the case of the bundled
software. There is usually some mention of agreement on your part to install this
ThiefWare as you click the OK button to continue. Because it is presented in such a fluid
manner, many do not take the time to notice what was installed until it's too late. You
may not even know that thiefware is on your system and when you do figure it out, you may
find that it is next to impossible to remove. Again, we are talking mainly about thiefware
due to it's wide spread proliferation though spyware exhibits similar characteristics.
Hardcore spyware affects much less of the computer user population than does the more
benign thiefware with it's adware ads.
When a person surfs the net, they begin to notice abnormal links on many of
the Web pages or additional popup ads that are strangely competitive over the site they
popup over (depending on which thiefware program you have installed). Many people don't
know at first how the ads get there unless they remember or realize that the software they
installed put the links there. When the problem persists, it becomes evident it's not
normal Web behavior as usual. These links or popup ads are not placed there by the Web
site designer but have been super-imposed over certain words (eZula TopText) or popped up
by a program like WhenU. Gator, back in 2001, super-imposed graphic ads that matched the
same dimensions as the original ads on the page. Because the super-imposed graphics were
the same size, they appeared to belong on the page. The super-imposed ads by Gator were
discontinued, but Claria (Gator) continued to popup ads at computer users up until fall of
* Claria (former purveyor of Gator) has since
discontinued supporting their thiefware products and has shut down the GAIN
systemvery good news for all of us. Read more about