AOL 9.0 - Includes Spyware?

  bertiecharlie 21:16 06 Apr 04

If you have the new version of AOL (AOL 9.0) you'll find a new programme file on your hard disk called Viewpoint Experience Technology. I have just been looking at the AOL notice boards and apparently this is spyware. They say, if you remove it, it downloads automatically next time you open AOL 9.0.

Rather sneaky to say the least plus it uses up nearly 8mb of space on my precious hard disk.

Hmmm, this could be intresting, does not show up in Ad Aware with latest update. Though did find the file on my C drive.

Any thoughts people?

  Djohn 22:06 06 Apr 04

click here for full details. j.

  bertiecharlie 22:25 06 Apr 04

Just been back to the AOL notice board. One chap found the file viewpoint.exe and renamed it viewpoint.ere to stop it downloading. (I am not recommending this as I don't know enough about it)!

Another bloke uninstalled it and on opening AOL 9.0 it tried to download. His programme "Pest Patrol" identified it as a baddy and deleted it.

I've got Pest Patrol on my computer but haven't tried either of the above as it strikes me that certain "media experiences" might not be available if it was uninstalled.

  bertiecharlie 22:40 06 Apr 04

Just cleared my spyware log in Pest Patrol then went into "AOL Entertainment" and played thirty seconds of a movie trailer. Found five spyware actions in the log immediately after that Pest Patrol had deleted.

I suppose wherever you go on the internet you have to put up with these things but it seems a bit rich when part of the new AOL 9.0 is Spyware Protection!

  GANDALF <|:-)> 23:13 06 Apr 04

All internet emails and logs have to be kept, by law, for 6 years by your ISP...I would therefore not worry about a bit of spyware, it is not as though there are legions of spooks watching each one of you.


  bertiecharlie 23:23 06 Apr 04

No, I agree. It is all quite interesting though for a novice like me.

Thank you for your responses.

  Sir Radfordin 23:33 06 Apr 04

Whilst a valid point Mr G we do at least know that all emails are being kept. Any attempts to collect 'data' of any kind should be made clear and users should have the choice to carry on using the software with that element or to not use it at all. We should always be allowed to make an informed choice about such things.

  Forum Editor 23:34 06 Apr 04

it's a plug in that's widely used by many sites for displaying 3D content, and as far as I'm aware it's perfectly harmless.

Many big-name companies are using VET on their sites, and I expect to see many more doing so in the future. It could be argued that if there's nothing to worry about there's nothing to hide, and perhaps AOl should be more upfront about VET.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 23:37 06 Apr 04

'we do at least know that all emails are being kept'....but you have no idea who is beaking at them ;-))


  Sir Radfordin 08:47 07 Apr 04

No idea who is peaking at them either ;)

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