Researchers and Tech Firms Collaborate on Adware Watchdog Site


Researchers at Harvard and Oxford Universities, along with Google, Sun Microsystems, and Lenovo Group Ltd. are collaborating on a website that will identify and list carriers of spyware and malicious software. The site,, will go online tomorrow (Wednesday).

Even with the advent of spam filters, ad blockers, and virus scanners, malicious software remains a major problem and a major paranoia. Traditional adware companies like 180Solutions, now under fire from the Center for Democracy and Technology, are trying to distance themselves from the sneaky reputation of opt-in adware. There are numerous anti-spyware and computer security resources out there already from the editorial blog of anti-spyware advocate Ben Edelman to the FTC’s information security web site to the uber-technical commentary and tools of Mark Russinovich of Sysinternals.

Malware researchers will post information about applications, games, and other platforms that distribute viruses and malicious software, as well as information about their developers, distributors, and affiliates some time in late February. The site will be updated monthly. Each corporation involved in the project is providing an undisclosed amount of funding, but it’s expected to be in the multimillion dollar range.


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