Skip to main content

Another Suspect Set Of Toolbars

Toolbars are a bit of a blight, as far as I am concerned - you know, those little "strips" that mysteriously appear at the top of your browser after you have installed something or other (Java updates, for example). Only a few of them, in my opinion, actually give any true functionality; most are at least useless and at worst contain malware. Well, here is another wrinkle - how about a toolbar that ("legally") installs a bitcoin-mining engine on your computer? Not only does it slow down your PC, but you don't even get any of the "benefit" of the bitcoin mining process. Nice.
...the Myfreeproxy toolbar add-on is designed to let users easily toggle a proxy server, allowing them to anonymise web browsing or watch foreign internet streaming broadcasts such as Hulu or Netflix US.
However, buried in plain sight in the end user licence agreement (EULA) is a clause giving the program permission to install a Bitcoin miner on the user's machine. Given the immense amount of computing power required to mine Bitcoins, the infected machines have to join a botnet to produce the cyber currency in any appreciable amount.

Well, there's your problem...


Popular posts from this blog

VPN Use Is Up, Up, Up

Since the repeal of the Broadband Consumer Privacy Rules, VPN use and traffic is rather predictably spiking, according to many VPN providers. VPNs are not the b-all and end-all of privacy though, and indeed the usual cretins have stepped in to provide shady VPN services that may actually sell on user data.

Also remember:
ISPs still track your location data and DNS records, even if you're using a VPN. Similarly, a VPN doesn't stop a company from using on-device snoopware to track you (remember Carrier IQ?). Neither will it stop ISPs from charging you a premium for privacy (something both AT&T and Comcast have already experimented with). Nor will a VPN stop a company from using your credit score to provide worse customer service (something CableONE has crowed about). DSL Reports

Microsoft's Mild Mea Culpa Over Windows 10 Obscure Upgrade "Choice"

In a cleansing act before the turn of the year, a Microsoft bigwig has admitted that they may have gotten a little carried away in their zeal to upgrade as many users as possible to Windows 10.
Specifically, Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela referred to the upgrade notification that appeared to be deliberately deceptive in the way it handled a users response. If a user clicked the red "X" at the top right of the notice, that closed the dialog box but went ahead and installed the upgrade anyway.
To actually not accept the upgrade, you had to click a link in the notification window itself. Not a few users would come back later and find their system upgraded to Windows 10, or in the process of doing so, when they thought they had expressed their wish not to do so. "Within a couple of hours of that hitting the world, with the listening systems we have, we knew that we had gone too far and then, of course, it takes some time to roll out the update that changes that …

pCloud Cloud Storage On Linux

As a cheapskate user of the Dropbox free plan, I was looking to see if there was another provider that offered a little more free storage than the 2GB from Dropbox (I actually have 2.5GB, due to a couple of bonus offers).
After a bit of research, I came up with Swiss-based pCloud: it has a client for Linux, as well as Windows, Mac, iOS and Android. The free tier offers 10GB of Cloud storage with no file size limits, which is fantastic for my (pretty basic) needs. You can set up your account first from the pCloud website, or during the client install process.