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Imageshack Promotes Malware


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#1 Rimmer

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 06:46 PM

I don't know if this is new but I was disappointed to see one of these fake "warning messages" come up when I followed a link to Imageshack - a site I and others here have recommended members use for photo storage.
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The warning is an advertising link to a site which sells SpywareCleaner - a product listed as rogue anti-spyware at Spyware Warrior.

For those that may not know:
Don't click the Ad! Nothing has been detected on your system. It's a con job.

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#2 Scarlett

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 07:00 PM

What?? No way. Say it aint so. OMG I cant believe it.

That is crazy, I wonder if they (ImageShack) is aware of what is behind the ad. Or if so, do they care? *Shrug
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#3 Rimmer

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 07:58 PM

I've emailed ImageShack and await a reply.

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#4 Scarlett

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 08:01 PM

Cool, please keep us all posted.
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#5 ddeerrff

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 08:30 PM

I've seen that same one on DrudgeReport too. While we feel (know) that the software advertised is of dubious quality or even malicious, the products are legal and have a right to legitimate advertising. It would be nice if these sites would be more discriminating about what ads they run, but I can't really fault imageshack or Drudge for accepting these adds.

All we can do is make sure as many people as possible know that these are not the best products for the job.
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#6 Rimmer

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Posted 08 January 2006 - 11:42 PM

I think there's more that can be done than that. As individuals we can register complaints to Imageshack and as a forum we can withdraw our recommendation of ImageShack to our members. If we informed them officially - a decision that lies in the hands of the site owner and staff of course - that this was happening I would have thought it would apply pressure to Imageshack to reconsider their advertising criteria.

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#7 cybormoron

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 07:32 AM

thanks rimmer...i hotlink alot of images at imageshack also but they'll never see another from me. i'm glad i caught this thread. in fact i came here to post a screenshot but i won't now. we shall all just have to find another good image host. i hope you don't mind if i share this notice at some of my other board hangouts?
I can no longer sit back and allow Microsoft infiltration, Microsoft indoctrination, Microsoft subversion, and the international Microsoft conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious open source GNU/Linux operating systems. General Jack D. Ripper.

#8 ddeerrff

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 10:55 AM

I think there's more that can be done than that. As individuals we can register complaints to Imageshack and as a forum we can withdraw our recommendation of ImageShack to our members. If we informed them officially - a decision that lies in the hands of the site owner and staff of course - that this was happening I would have thought it would apply pressure to Imageshack to reconsider their advertising criteria.


Don't get me wrong, I get annoyed seeing these too. If someone has a form letter (or boilerplate) to send to these sites I would be happy to do my part.
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#9 Rimmer

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 01:41 AM

Sorry for the slow response.
cybermoron - please feel free to alert others and solicit their help. However I would not use the title of my post (re malware) as that seems, on reflection, to be going too far.

Reading more of the links at Spyware warrior it seems SpywareCleaner appeared in November 2005 as one of a group of about six or seven anti-spyware products which closely resemble Ad-Aware 6.0. See http://www.spywarewarrior.com/family_resemblances.htm#5
They were all written by one guy in Serbia, in 2004, contracted by a company that also peddles pornography. The author makes assurances the product(s) were clean when he wrote them but their evolution is controlled by the owning company. He was contracted to update the application a few months (after their release?) later. Testers of the "Free Scan" report multiple false positives. Links lead only to the purchase form and the form (which asks for banking and credit card details) is insecure.

So given the above it would seem the product itself is not itself malware or wasn't when written, but it may leave users open to attack through poor updating practices and poor resourcing. It also seems the company that owns the product provides no protection for their customers privacy and is engaged in deceptive advertising and is allegedly linked to illegal activities. Still want to buy it for $69.95?

ddeerrff -I don't have a form letter and I don't know what a "boilerplate" is but here's what I wrote to ImageShack - feel free to cut and paste or maybe someone could turn it into a form letter?

Your current advertisements which begin "Warning Spyware Notice" promote a product called SpywareCleaner which is listed as rogue anti-spyware at the Spyware Warrior site http://www.spywarewarrior.com/rogue_anti-spyware.htm

As a member of a computer help forum which specialises in removing malware from computer systems, I am alarmed that you should allow the promotion of such dubious software. The advertisement is deceptive as it pretends to be a message from the user's system, and the product it advertises is of dubious benefit for reasons detailed at the Spyware Warrior site. Use of this product in place of peer-approved products may make the computer systems of your members (and ours) more vulnerable to spam, spyware and other malware.

I hope you will review your criteria for advertising content and prevent such material from appearing in future.

Regards,
Rimmer



Here is the link to email ImageShack - http://reg.imageshack.us/content.php?page=email&q=customer
Customer Feedback is probably the best choice though I sent mine to Marketing as I was following links about advertising.

Note: No reply received other than the automated thanks. The SpywareCleaner Ad is not coming up today.

Edited by Rimmer, 10 January 2006 - 01:49 AM.


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#10 phawgg

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 02:15 AM

Originally, I recommended photobucket.com. My problem (the only one) with that site is that I maxed out the capacity to store images. Freely. 95% of 'em were for here, but as time has left them deep in the back pages, or deleted, my original concern for site integrity regarding threads that might indeed still be viewed has lessened somewhat.
patiently patrolling, plenty of persisant pests n' problems ...

#11 ddeerrff

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 01:05 PM

Thanks Rimmer.
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#12 Scarlett

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 04:25 PM

Note: No reply received other than the automated thanks. The SpywareCleaner Ad is not coming up today.


Well it seems to me that even though all you received from the folks at Imageshack was an automated thanks, that you must of gotten through to them. Since the ad no longer shows.

Well Done! :thumbsup:

Maybe they were not at all aware of what was behind the ad. *Shrug
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#13 Rimmer

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 08:32 PM

Scarlett - I doubt the ad is gone, I think they just appear on rotation.

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#14 Scarlett

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 08:37 PM

Well dangit, then there needs to be more done then.

As soon as I can I will send an e-mail off to.
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#15 Neverwill

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 11:01 PM

www.imagedump.net lots better..and very fast..doesnt look like a very good site..but try it out some time


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