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Researcher Claimed Adware Firm Continue to Behave Badly

Ben Edelman, a renowned spyware researcher and an assistant professor in Harvard University, blamed the distributor of adware Zango.Inc with the US Federal Trade Commission with several charges of breaches of a settlement signed in 2006 that prohibits the company from downloading its banner-serving software and pop-up on a PC without any prior permission of the user.

Edelman said that the agreement of FTC has ordered Zango to pay $3 Million and to wind up its business. It has also accused the company for unfair and illegal practices in forcing users to install adware, as per the reports by Computerworld on July 31, 2007.

Zango has an application that gave them access to games, photos and movies. The company earns profit by maintaining pop-up ads, which depends on the users' past surfing habits. Nevertheless, the company also pays the 3rd party distributor, which also serves as an incentive for botnet herders and unscrupulous operators of website to cheat the users and install the software without any proper notification.

Shockingly, the company is going on and has ignored the settlement and continues to practice several methods to cheat and deceive the users and practices especially opposed to Zango's obligation.

The claims by Edelman on Zango includes the downloading of "ActiveX", the banner-based downloading by the widespread Zango without any prior disclosure of terms and conditions. Further, it also put up Zango installations, unlabeled Zango ads and ads which try to mislead the users, obviously, with any proper revelation of material terms.

Edelman added that this list of practices poses a big question to the integrity of Zango's business and also to the status of Zango's compliance with its obligation under its latest settlement with the FTC.

However, Zango's EVP, general counsel, and chief compliance officer, Ken McGraw denied all the charges and claims that Zango is totally in compliance with the FTC consent order. He also said that though they didn't get a chance to look at his (Edelman) charges, but they are absolutely untrue, invalid and misleading, as per the news by InformationWeek on July 31, 2007.

Related article: Researchers Urge Caution against phishing Scams

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