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Microsoft vs. Malvertisers

September 27, 2009 Leave a comment

According to Johnston’s article, “Microsoft Takes ‘Malvertisers’ to Court”, the software giant has sued five so-called “malvertisers” in Seattle civil court as part of an effort to stop the practice of hiding malicious code in seemingly safe online ads that instead seek to prey on users.

Tim Cranton, Microsoft’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) associate general counsel, said in a post on the company’s On the Issues Blog..

“[Malvertiser] ads may redirect users to a website that advertises rogue security software, also known as scareware, that falsely claims to detect or prevent threats on the computer.”

In Friday’s filing, Microsoft sued five companies: “Soft Solutions,” “Direct Ad,” “qiweroqw.com,” “ITmeter INC.” and “ote2008.info.” The suits name “John Does” as the heads of the companies under investigation.

“This work is vitally important because online advertising helps keep the Internet up and running … It pays for free online services like Windows Live, Facebook, Yahoo and MSN,” Cranton said in his post.

In the past year or so, Microsoft has taken an increasingly aggressive stance against spammers, click fraudsters, purveyors of Scareware and, now, malvertisers, in a concerted effort to make the Web a safer place to surf.

Personally, Microsoft has again proven itself to be considered as the “giant” of the software industry for not only raising the bar for its technologies, but also in ensuring that technology that users access are safe and secure. By  taking its role seriously in its Corporate Social Responsibility,  it has paved the way in guaranteeing that the community is not exposed to fraud and unethical web antics. With this, they are really in the right direction with the vision they uphold- “Empower people through great software anytime, anyplace, and on any device.”

In another note, we users can also take responsibility for this by observing proper security practices. By ensuring that we are equipped with updated and first-rate anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-malware software, and a built-in firewall configuration on our PC, we already have a very strong layer of security measures in our machines. Moreover, we should be aware of web threats and be cautious in handing out personal information to random sites. With this practical measures, we are on our way to building a safer and more secure online community.