Lavasoft Ad-aware not dependable?



Many anti-spyware vendors are leaving users stranded.
Recently, Ad-aware and Pest Patrol succumbed to pressure and removed the detection of the malware WhenU from their detection engines under threats of legal action. They silently removed detection without notifying their users.

That’s twice now that Lavasoft has backed down leaving users unprotected.
This makes you wonder how much trust can you place in your anti-spyware software.

This seems to be more of a trend with many anti-spyware companies as adware marketing companies are getting aggressive and are threatening legal action.

Spyware flap looks headed for court

How safe are we with Ad-aware and the likes of them?


Interesting read putting pressure on ad-aware etc might work but now that miro$oft has entered the fray with there own anti-spyware software i dont think they will be bullied …


I agree it’s usually M$ that DOES the bullying. :smiley:

I think this sucks AdWare companies being able to sue anti-spyware developers, what protection does this give us users who don’t want to be spied upon?

What about our civil rights? :frowning:




Legal rights/justice when,where and how?


What do you expect from scum who seek to invite themselves onto users computers.

Forget the disctinction of spyware or whatever, lets just define then as “uninvited applications”, and unless they clearly disclose their intention before installing, and provide a genuine, usable uninstall, preferably by normal Windows options, then they should be stopped.

And even if they are not “harmful”, we should choose what WE allow on to OUR PCs.

I always put the Gator domain in my firewall block list - even if they are now as clean as the driven snow, they are NOT WELCOME on my machine!

If they are going to be allowed to quibble on their status as “spyware”, then a new category is required - for forced/passenger installed junk of any kind - many programs will, after all, query the presence of certain toolbars.

Paradoxically, the Yahoo toolbar (with antispyware) could also be said to BE spyware, since normal operation causes it to contact the host for every new window!
Equally, a messenger client in the background should be advised of.


Actually, some of these do have absurd EULAs which screams “I’m Spyware”, which the users always click through.

For example, EULA for iSearch:

  1. Functionality - Software delivers advertising and various information and promotional messages to your computer screen while you view Internet web pages. iSearch is able to provide you with Software free of charge as a result of your agreement to download and use Software, and accept the advertising and promotional messages it delivers.

By installing the Software, you understand and agree that the Software may, without any further prior notice to you, automatically perform the following: display advertisements of advertisers who pay a fee to iSearch and/or it’s partners, in the form of pop-up ads, pop-under ads, interstitials ads and various other ad formats, display links to and advertisements of related websites based on the information you view and the websites you visit; store non-personally identifiable statistics of the websites you have visited; redirect certain URLs including your browser default 404-error page to or through the Software; provide advertisements, links or information in response to search terms you use at third-party websites; provide search functionality or capabilities; automatically update the Software and install added features or functionality or additional software, including search clients and toolbars, conveniently without your input or interaction; install desktop icons and installation files; install software from iSearch affiliates; and install Third Party Software.

In addition, you further understand and agree, by installing the Software, that iSearch and/or the Software may, without any further prior notice to you, remove, disable or render inoperative other adware programs resident on your computer, which, in turn, may disable or render inoperative, other software resident on your computer, including software bundled with such adware, or have other adverse impacts on your computer.

Additionally, disclaimers make them exempt from severe liabilitites:

If any part of these warranty disclaimers or limitations of liability is found to be invalid or unenforceable for any reason or if iSearch is liable to you for any other reason, then iSearch’s aggregate liability for all claims under such circumstances shall not exceed the greater of ten dollars ($10.00) or the amount paid by you for your use of the Software.

Sites that specializes in assisting others with the removal of malware from their system have also been targeted. SUZI over at was sent a Cease and Desist letter threatening legal action if the site continue to clasify’s software as malware. Similar letters were also dispatched to the Spyware Warrior folks.

Lavasoft Ad-aware has responded twice by removing the detection of WhenU from their database. No public announcement accompanied their updated definition. Inquiries in the Lavasoft Ad-aware forums resulted in closed threads. Instead of adding WhenU back into their database they removed hundreds of identifications. Including such families as PurityScan, MyWay and NewtonKnows.

Threats Against Spyware Detectors, Removers, and Critics


Another good reason for Firefox. Since I put it in my spywear occurances have dropped by 500%.


There is no single anit-spyware solution. I run three different programs each week to check for viruses and spyware. they all catch different things.


They’ve made deals with those vendors, I presume.


And for that reason I always use Spybot S&D because it doesn’t chicken out like Lavasoft. To think that Spybot is even developed for free and Ad-aware is a commercial product…grr :a


A new baseline needs to be set - “Spyware” is an emotive term, and open to counterclaim.

My own baseline, any contact made to ANY servers without my express request and permission, is considered hostile unless proven otherwise, I still run IE, but I take a VERY hard line on activeX - breaks functionality on some sites, but I have to convinced before I’ll let anything else through.

PS. A friend got hit with “Home search Assistant” - evil crap similar to CoolWebsearch.

Now maybe some of the ones seeking to be excused detection are not quite as evil as that, but their actions are enough for me to put any and all their URL’s on my permanent scum list.

If Microsoft Antispyware becomes the main one - and as it now seems they will be giving the “final” away free as well, it may be, then I fear they may make quite a few “strategic alliances” with the scum.


I’ve noticed the one built into the Yahoo toolbar is pretty decent at picking up what Adaware and Spybot leave behind.



I also run Ad-Aware, Spy Bot and M$-

Works for me-



Ad-Aware sold out, Spybot S&D works and M$… :confused:

Let’s all make our own internet and not invite Microsoft. It’ll be great. With hookers. And gambling.
In fact… screw the gambling. /.


If you run spybot first, I guarantee you that there will be times that Ad-Aware will find things that spybot missed. No all in one solution. Need to run multiple cleaners…


Adaware is caving in to the point of uselessness! They can’t be trusted to find everything any more, they’ve also caved in on several tracking cookies that they used to remove. I’m about ready to uninstall it from my puter. At one point in time I considered paying for it because I liked it so much. Forget that now, they sold out, and that would have really pissed me off I paid for it. Adaware SUX, time to find something better.

Microsoft’s antispyware doesn’t really address cookies at all, they’ve been paid to leave them alone. However their actual spyware detection is very good, and I really like it for most things.

Spybot has always been good, they do excellent work for a lot of things. I don’t think they’ll sell out, but they just don’t have the resources to combat all the scum out there.

Your best bet is to delete cookies yourself. What I do is I keep the cookies I want on my puter backed up in a folder. Those are the ones with the logon info saved for certain sites, and any of the other good cookies I want to keep. Then I just delete all of the cookies, and copy my backups back into the directory. Screw relying on some stupid software to do that. I’ve also got a hella blocklist of cookies in IE that I won’t let on my puter. I’ve got my forewall set up to block a lot of stuff too. Active X, VB, and Java are blocked by the firewall, until I enable them. I can just hit the ctrl key to allow it. It’s getting to the point that you have to break all the eye candy, and cool stuff on most sites to stay safe!!! It’s BS, it shouldn’t be that to view half the websites you have to change some settings, because you’re too afraid that an unknown website will hose you! It’s like every other site I visit, I have to tinker with something to get it to work. Then if I forget to turn back on my defences, I get hosed with popups and other junk like mad at the next site!!! It takes too much effort to keep a computer guarded on the internet, there’s no way the common dumbass could have a hope in hell. There needs to be a law against writing any information to a computer without the express permission of the user, and any form of spyware or tracking cookies needs to be stopped. Until that happens, they’ll continue to bombard us with crap!!! :Z :Z :Z :a


AMEN! Deer_Slayer :wink: how you doin’ bud?

i like the Firefox option to only allow the originating site to allow cookies. that way you prevent all the ad servers (double-click, mediaplex, bluestreak,, etc. etc.) from setting theirs.


Hey drpinio, doin good! I dunno, just can’t get used to firefox. I don’t go a whole lot of places where I get bombarded with junk anyways. I’ve got things setup the way I like them on my puter. :bigsmile:

Anyways, some other things to help combat the garbage are Trend Micro’s House Call virus scanner. It picks up adware, and other crap. It’s fee to use, just make up an e-mail address and do it to it. Panda’s active scan is pretty good too, it picks up adware too. It won’t remove it though, but they provide enough info on how it works to kill it yourself. :iagree:


good to hear you’re well bud :). i agree the best course of action is to avoid dodgy sites alltogether.