|How ThiefWare Affects You
For Web Site Owners
The Web sites featuring these bronze colored links (yellow links), green
colored links, or popup ads have not given permission to the ThiefWare service to use
their Web content in such a way. The ThiefWare services say they are not changing the
actual Web page HTML on the server. However, the viewer of the page sees various ad types
placed on or around the site when it is within view and this can misrepresent the content.
Many times the ad link or popup ad leads the viewer to a competitor.
Imagine the response of a popular store in your area if they found billboards directly out
in front of their stores advertising a competitor and the competitor claiming that they
are not doing anything wrong. That's what many of these ThiefWare services are claiming.
How ludicrous is that statement?
Other sites depend on the ad revenue from sponsors. However ThiefWare
services do not pay anything to the site owners when their ads are shown. Whenever the
site visitor clicks on those forms of ads instead of the original ads being displayed, the
site loses revenue. If this happens enough, you might find your favorite resource site
being taken down because of this serious loss of revenue.
Affiliate Site OwnersYou
Steps to Fight Back Against ThiefWare
If you are an affiliate Web site owner, you may and probably are losing some of your
referral commissions to ThiefWare. You do the work of sending the referrals and the
ThiefWare companies step in and take the credit and your commissions.
- Beware of the affiliate merchant who has accepted a ThiefWare company
as one of their affiliates. If you do not know whether or not your affiliate merchants are
using ThiefWare, ask them if they are utilizing companies like Claria (a.k.a. Gator or
GAIN), WhenU, 180solutions and similar companies.
- If you find that the merchant you represent is using ThiefWare, tell
them how ThiefWare is hurting all of their affiliates and ask them to drop the ThiefWare
- If they do not listen, we strongly recommend that you drop affiliate
merchants who use ThiefWare and replace them with merchants who do not use ThiefWare. Send
the guilty merchant a message of your disapproval if they refuse to remove the ThiefWare
from their affiliate program.
- Where possible, make this your method of dealing with merchants utilizing ThiefWare.
Otherwise, you are helping yourself to lost commissions and helping ThiefWare to flourish
doing yourself a disservice.
See a real world
example of how one such ThiefWare
company cheated other affiliates.
|Problems Web Surfing With Your Computer
Perhaps as a surfer, you are not concerned over this issue. You should be.
A good number of these ThiefWare programs track your movement across the Web and gather
data on your surfing habits so that they can push ad links or popup ads at you. Do you
really want some junk software monitoring your surfing habits just so they can make a
quick buck? Do you really want more obnoxious popup ads pushed at you anyway?
Another thing to consider is the drain on your computer's hardware
resources. Though not always a problem, ThiefWare can slow down the loading of Web pages
and can add instability to your computer. If the offending software is in the process of
talking to the ad server while you are downloading pages, you get to have your pages load
up slower. Who want's a slower Internet?
My eZula TopText ExperienceJan. 2002:
TopText has not crashed my computer lately but I did notice slower browser operations when
it is allowed to run. A few times I had to shut down Internet Explorer and reboot my
computer in order to get the browser to work at optimum performance. After the reboot, I
made sure that TopText did not continue to run at reboot time.
To quickly shut down TopText right after the computer boots up, use the Close
Program utility that comes with all Windows Operating Systems. You can get to it by
pressing simultaneously these 3 keys: Ctrl + Alt + Delete and then locate the ezulamain program to shut down. Select it and click End Task. Be careful not to press that sequence of keys twice or your
computer will reboot causing you to lose anything currently in memory that may need to be
saved. Be mindful that TopText was deliberately installed to see what it did to Web pages
and to see who the advertisers were. There was no other reason to install this software
Also consider that much of the ThiefWare gets onto your computer using
sneaky methods of installation. The ThiefWare companies know that most people would not
knowingly install ThiefWare onto their own computers by choice because much of it is just
plain junk or there are much better alternatives for the utilities they say they provide.
To get around this obstacle they sneak their software onto your system because they do not
really want to give you a clear option of not installing it. Do you trust companies who
employ sneaky methods like this?
They also prey on teens and kids who want to install file sharing programs
for finding music. Several of these file sharing programs are also loaded up with
ThiefWare that installs nearly seamlessly. Beware of what your child or teen is installing
at all times. They may inadvertently load up some unwanted presents on your computer. It
should also be noted that file sharing programs are prime targets for the spread of
malicious viruses and zombie programs.
Besides, do you really want to support software that hurts
site owners and the sites that you value for helpful information?
Hard to Remove:
Thirdly, it seems to be difficult to completely uninstall some add-on ThiefWare. Reports
from various online forum threads suggest that even when you use the default Windows OS
application uninstaller, it doesn't remove all the components. Many members of various
forums across the net report when they surf the web again, the component that is left
behind on the computer connects to the server, downloads the software and reinstalls it on
the victim's computer making it ready for reactivation. This inevitably nullifies the
attempt at removing ThiefWare.
|Value Added Surfing Experience?
ThiefWare companies claim that they enhance the user experience. We find it
hard to believe that these services actually make our surfing experience better.
These are some of the so-called enhancements that come with these software
programs. The only real motivation behind these programs is to make money by hijacking Web
site content and displaying potentially competitive ads at the time the Web site is within
view. What's worse, Web site owners can't even opt-out of such services if you want to
call them services.
Visit other sections of this site to get the details on these programs, how
to determine what ThiefWare program you might have installed by accident, and what you can
do to guard against such ThiefWare.