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Guest Matt Johnson

FLIGHTSIM HAS SPYWARE!!!!!

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*** WARNING FLIGHTSIM HAS SPYWARE ***Yesterday a friend just getting into the FlightSim community asked me where to download MSFS add-ons. I mentioned AVSIM and FlightSim. He just notified me that FLIGHTSIM HAS SPYWARE. To give FLIGHTSIM the benefit of doubt, I decided to investigate this claim. I ran LavaSoft

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This was a cookie from one of the banners up on the site more than likely... now what I personally would be worried about is an installer with actual spyware, not some cookie... erase it and be done with it, but don't make a mountain out of a moe-hill... (you WILL see cookies like that on a multitude of free and/or banner-paid sites)Have fun now that flightsim.com is tracking your every move... ;-)Brian

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what's the point? you can never login in the first place....

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Brian:That "cookie" you talked about is from a company named "ValueClick". I suggest you take a "look see" about what this company does before you just "brush off" cookies.

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Bill,You missunderstand me... I personaly erase ALL of my cookies on an hourly (okay, sometimes every two hours) basis... (and all those .gifs that are used for tracking as well) I'm not trying to marginalize the problem, I was (and am) simply put off by the fantastical layout of your post... it seems more geared towards just trying to make a busy thread (which, of course, I am contributing to right now) and slamming another site maliciously... (and do not take this as defense of a poorly designed and managed site... not at all...) just take it as polite critisism... using a more reasoned and less... er, I don't know... just LESS... in other words, using a style with more restraint and reasoning would have made me feel better about the information you provided... that is all...Brian

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If you use the internet you are going to get "spyware". There is no way around it. When we figure out how to beat it, they figure out how to get in again. It is a constant cat and mouse game. Go out, enjoy the sites, and do a cleaning with Ad-Aware once or twice a week. If it really, really bothers you that someone is looking in the "windows" of your life, then stop using the internet. It is there and always will be there. All you can do is be aware, and clean up the living room every now and then with a good vacuuming.http://members.shaw.ca/dan_cyxc/sigcard.jpg

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Yep, spyware is everywhere. Flightsim.com probably doesn't know about it, the spyware on their site I mean. I think sites just hire a company like ValueClick to pay them & put banner ads on their site. That's why you shouldn't click pop-ups or banner ads... ;)

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Ive recently come over from Flightsim.com where Ive spent the past 6-7 years surfing and in all that time have never had spyware on my system. Until the last 2 weeks.In trying to get onto AVSIM to initiate the RTW challenge, I had immense difficulties in getting DC forum to work, even though it works fine at FS.com. To overcome my problems I had to enable cookies. Just after seeing this thread I iust ran Adaware one more time and to my utter surprise found 6 spyware files sitting on my C drive.I wonder if there is a way around having to initiate cookies and still use this forum? If so, it may help solve many peoples spyware problems.

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Tornado (and others),Browse over to www.analogx.com and check out the (freeware) "Cookiewall" program from the network utility software download section.(While you're there, you might want to check out some of his other utils. I rather like the the Caller ID program and the NetStatLive program when I'm in doubt about my connectivity speeds.--Tony

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You can set your explorer to not allow cookies at all of sertain sites, that's what I have and every time I enter some new site it will ask me that the site want to save cookie, then I just have options:OKOK AlwaysNONO and NEVER (kind Off the questions are more like always apply0 :-) but you get the pointThe only cookies I have on my putter always are like Avsim, and some sites that won't be able to see without them saving cookies, but never more then 4-5 cookies ever, just doing this will save you time having to erase them every 1-2 hrs, like you say you do. Just you will tell the explorer that you never want to allow the cookie from this site "ONCE" and it will never allow it.Anyhow cookies are junk you can dump them anytime they worth nothing, and if the site needs to save a cookie like avsim for example then you will get a point that you have to allow it or you can't use the site.Andy

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>Ive recently come over from Flightsim.com where Ive spent >the past 6-7 years surfing and in all that time have never >had spyware on my system. Until the last 2 weeks. >>In trying to get onto AVSIM to initiate the RTW challenge, I >had immense difficulties in getting DC forum to work, even >though it works fine at FS.com. To overcome my problems I >had to enable cookies. Just after seeing this thread I iust >ran Adaware one more time and to my utter surprise found 6 >spyware files sitting on my C drive. >>I wonder if there is a way around having to initiate cookies >and still use this forum? If so, it may help solve many >peoples spyware problems. The only cookies set by the forum are those needed to remember a few of your forum display settings and to keep you logged in. You last statement sort of insinuates that if the forum wasn't using cookies, it would help solve spyware problems.

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I didn't see anything in your post that indicates actual spyware files on the computer. It appears you have cookies from well known third-party website trackers. And while I'll say they are a nuisance that I do remove from my computer, I'm not so sure about putting them at the level of spyware.Contrary to what some people believe, cookies are not inherently evil. They can be useful or they can be a nuisance, and as is the case in doubleclick, valueclick, and numerous others, a method of tracking sites you visit. It just depends on how the cookies are used as to whether you should be weary of them or not. Still, these are only cookies and not spyware FILES. I do believe there is a big difference.I have tested the use of just the forum pages and the only things that should be getting put on your computer are cookies from ftp.avsim.com and these cookies will have no personal info of yours embedded.I guess the bottom line is I feel people should do their best to educate themselves on just what cookies can and can't do before instantly assigning a spyware label on them and it would appear from the subject title of this thread, some are not doing that. By all means, use great programs like Ad-Aware to identify suspicious files on your computer and remove them, but I think a little responsibility should be taken before labeling any website as having spyware.

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All the "*click" stuff is spyware and thousands of websites globally load it onto your PC. I use AdAware Plus (with Adwatch + RefUpdate) and POW! (to kill pop-ups), along with Norton Firewall and Norton Antivirus. Very little gets by this barrier. I also use SecureShred and CleanBrowser to overwrite on the hard drive and delete everything and anything. Scumware and all relations are here to stay. We need to fight back as best we can at all times.JS

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Jonathan, I think you missed the point. In one broad brush sweep, AVSIM has been accused of planting "spyware". In fact, we do not do that, and anyone who knows anything about cookies, knows that too. We do "plant" a cookie, when you register and log in to the forums so that the system "remembers" who you are. But is that "spyware"? Not by a long stretch. And I really get tired of our inclusion in these broad brush generalities.

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