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July 07, 2005
New York adware firm rakes in $35 million
Who's responsible for all that adware and spyware clogging up the pipes of your PC? Maybe it's greedy venture capitalists. New York-based advertising software company WhenU has just raised another $15 million in VC financing so that it can continue to install adware on as many computers as possible. That's on top of the $20 million that the company raised in April.
Of course, WhenU claims that it only delivers "contextually targeted ads on the desktop" and that it doesn't engage in user profiling or any other type of activity that would raise the hackles of privacy advocates. Tech Dirt isn't so sure:
"WhenU clearly isn't above being sneaky on its own. Part of WhenU's reform effort was to convince anti-spyware vendors to remove WhenU from their listing, even though the product remained identically problematic -- and most people still had no idea what they were installing. The whole business concept behind adware relies on having those products installed as widely as possible -- which means these companies are always going to be sneaky about what you're really getting. When called on this, they pretend that the real problem isn't about sneaky installs, but that people are afraid they're being spied upon."
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