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Claria Leaves Adware Business 149

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the bowing-out dept.
Alex Stern writes "In an attempt to clean up its tarnished name, Claria has hired Deutsche Bank to help them sell off the software tools that were previously supported by their adware. Claria says they are unwilling to sell the software for the GAIN ad network, or the data they have collected from their users. Claria is also holding on to their eWallet software that manages passwords. On July 1, Claria will shutdown the GAIN network and inform their users they can either uninstall their software or pay for it. Claria's new business model is 'a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.'"
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Claria Leaves Adware Business

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  • Now that (officially) they wont log data, does this mean MS antispyware will be set to default remove?
  • Tarnished name. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Poromenos1 (830658) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:15PM (#14993961) Homepage
    I don't think you can clear a name that has been into spyware. I know I won't trust them for anything else they might do...
    • by the-amazing-blob (917722) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:35PM (#14994045) Journal
      Don't immediatly say that. They might have actualy decided to change their evil ways. They could create something extremely useful.
      • Did anyone else read the summary as this...?

        Claria has hired Douche Bag to help them sell off the software tools that were previously supported by their adware.

      • Only in your wildest dreams. That would be something similar to a zebra and a leopard tradeing skin patterns, it just tain't done. To the leopard, a zebra is lunch, not a sex partner.

        --
        Cheers, Gene
      • Indeed. They may produce a really useful peice of software... but the question
        still remains: would you trust them?
        Personally, the answer for me is No.
        Trust has to be earned.... unfortunately, once someone's trust has been breached, they're unlikely to give the trespasser a second chance.
        I for one hope the new Claria all the best in their new venture, but I for one, will not be one of their customers.

    • Re:Tarnished name. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Reziac (43301) * on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:23PM (#14994206) Homepage Journal
      I translated the move to mean "our adware product is now so ubiquitously blocked that it's become hard to make money with it, so we're selling it to some other sucker and finding a new area to sleeze in."

      • You've got it. Since Microsoft bought them, they need to avoid poisoning the well for more important Microsoft products like Internet Explorer and Windows by pushing adware that helps bog down Windows systems and show its lack of security and softwrae management.

        What I'd like to see out of Claria is a published list of the authors of the software and most especially of their manager, to use as an employment blacklist for more ethical companies.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      George W Bush lied about WMD during his first term in office, but people forgot/forgave him and voted him in for a second term.

      A lot of people hated the Vietnam war and the soldiers who fought there, but now most have come to terms that the soldiers did what the country asked them to do, and had to go through hell and back.

      George S Patton was sometimes a really mean guy, but most people remember him as an excellent general.

      Microsoft has a terrible track record when it comes to security, but people still ins
      • "George W Bush lied about WMD during his first term in office, but people forgot/forgave him and voted him in for a second term."

        That was less about forgiving him and more about people being terrified of terrorists and/or gay marriage.

        "A lot of people hated the Vietnam war and the soldiers who fought there, but now most have come to terms that the soldiers did what the country asked them to do, and had to go through hell and back."

        It only took 10-15 years.

        "Microsoft has a terrible track record when it comes
    • That's okay, they'll just change it again anyway.

    • Oh, come now, RealMedia "changed their ways" and now everybody loves them! I mean, look at the grassroots campaign they successfully waged against iTunes! Won't it be the same for Claria?
  • by Random Q. Hacker (137687) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:16PM (#14993963)
    Oh boy, a screen saver. Let me whip out my billion dollars in venture capital for that!
    • Wait at least until they change their name to "eClaira" (or maybe "iClaria"), that's when you know you have a winner.
      • Answer: an eClaria

        Question: What do you call an electronic copy of an elongated pastry filled with custard and iced with chocolate?

      • "eClaria" sounds like something one would catch off a toilet seat or by eating tainted egg rolls.

        "I got a bad case of eClaria so missed work and ruined a pair of underwear."
  • by Fhqwhgadss (905393) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:17PM (#14993967)
    is now knitting little sweaters for orphaned puppies.
  • by QuietLagoon (813062) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:17PM (#14993968)
    In other words, spying on what you do on the 'net....
  • Next story... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Luigi30 (656867)
    A new company starts up called Claritor, who restarts the GAIN network...
    • Re:Next story... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Valdrax (32670) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:26PM (#14994215)
      Actually a quote in the article does raise an interesting question about that:

      On July 1, Claria will shutdown the GAIN network and inform their users they can either uninstall their software or pay for it.

      So, does that mean that if you installed ad-supported freeware that uses Claria's spyware to help pay for it, that that's what they're talking about when the say "pay off or shut off?" Does that mean that they're going to trip off whatever mechanism prevents you from using such software after Claria's uninstalled without uninstalling the client software? What about software that uses multiple spyware vendors?

      Okay, well honestly, I don't really care that much about people careless enough to use programs that install spyware, but it does beg an interesting question of liability if they attempt to technologically enforce their suggestion that one should either pay or uninstall.
      • More importantly, are they going to provide all the information required to actually uninstall this thing?
      • Does that mean that they're going to trip off whatever mechanism prevents you from using such software after Claria's uninstalled without uninstalling the client software?

        I'm waiting for the date just so we can see how many infected machines break down once the network becomes unavailable. I hope a reporter is on this angle, because I don't think it's beyond the pale that poorly-written spyware has well-written error handling, especially for core functionality.
        • Hadn't thought about that, but I can see the report on the "newest worm outbreak cripples computers across the globe" actually being GAIM shutting down their network. :)
      • The story was summarising.

        What they will actually say to existing users is "pay up or we'll erase your hard drive."

    • by jim_v2000 (818799) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @04:55PM (#14994772)
      March 27, 2006, GAIN becomes self aware......
    • Ask your doctor about Claritor. Be sure to tell him if you run Windows or might ever run Windows. Side effects, while rare, may include adware, spyware and putting a foot through your monitor.

      rj
  • by gluecode (950306) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:18PM (#14993971)
    >> Claria's new business model is 'a new platform designed to >> provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.'" To create a personalized Internet experience, don't they have to collect more intimate user information?
  • by LiftOp (637065) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:19PM (#14993975) Homepage
    A condition of any sale of Claria's consumer software applications will be the requirement that any purchaser agrees to adhere to emerging industry standards outlined by TRUSTe and other industry coalitions.

    So what's the going rate for buying a product line and promising not to use it?

    • Truste? Those douches? They gave Gratis Internet a clean bill of health on privacy while GI sold every email address it could dredge up, not to mention playing nice with any number of mainstream email baggers. A certification from them is just about good enough to wipe your butt with. Nice to see Gator still has the same lofty *ahem* standards it always did.

      I'm guessing the VCs realized the IPO would be as popular as shares in Mengele Health Farms, and told manglement to find something else so they coul
  • So what (Score:3, Funny)

    by davmoo (63521) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:20PM (#14993977)
    Pond scum by any other name is still pond scum. And no matter how they change their product line-up, pond scum is still pond scum.
  • AmEx? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hazy Memory (853133) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:20PM (#14993979)
    The real question is: can I pay with American Express or will they only take visa and mastercard. Don't take my GATOR away!!!
  • Claria's new business model is 'a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.'

    Sounds like a recipe for failure to me. I doubt the value that they add is going to be enough to make people want to pay for their software. I doubt that very much.

    Why would anybody pay for software to pre-populate fields w/ credit cards, addresses, etc. when Internet Explorer and Firefox can already do that for free? (If you're into that sort of thing.)

    Hello toilet, goodbye

    • 'Claria's new business model is 'a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.'

      Ooh, like the personalized internet assistant, Bonzi Buddy [pchell.com]? Or maybe it will be as widely loved as Clippy [theserverside.net].

      • I love it when they bring their machines in the shop with Bonzi Buddy,They always say the same thing(before I can even say "can I help you?")

        "PLEASE tell me you folks can KILL THAT DAMNED LITTLE COMPUTER MONKEY!"I'm just waiting for someone to pull an Elvis and bring one in with bullet holes where he had to kill the monkey.

        You think that a spyware bunch would try to make their "little helper" at least a LITTLE less irritating than a five year old on a sugar high.

  • Yeah, uh huh. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Valar (167606) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:24PM (#14993994)
    "Claria's new business model is 'a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.'"

    No doubt by spying on you, showing you ads, AND making you pay for the software that does it.

    Thanks, but no thanks.
  • Translation... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by AnonymousPrick (956548) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:25PM (#14994005)
    FTFA: At that time, people currently using any GAIN-related software products will be offered the chance to uninstall them, or continue using them through the new purchaser.

    So, some other company is going to continue business as usual? I don't care what sort of agreement the new owners have to abide by, there's always a way around such things. For all we know, the new purchaser could be just another entity that's owned by Claria via several layers of legal entities.

  • So.. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Turn-X Alphonse (789240) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:26PM (#14994007) Journal
    a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience

    So they'll be releasing a tool bar, which will do all of this again and claim other wise?
  • Heh (Score:3, Interesting)

    by yamla (136560) <chris@@@hypocrite...org> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:26PM (#14994008)
    So, they are going forward to start a legitimate business based on the profits and contacts they've made in the ad-ware (some may say spy-ware) business? If they really wanted to turn over a new leaf, they'd dissolve the corporation and return all the money to the shareholders.
  • Why... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:27PM (#14994012)
    "Claria says they are unwilling to sell the software for the GAIN ad network, or the data they have collected from their users."

    Uh, why? Did they wake up some morning and magically get some ethics? Or are they afraid of what people will discover?

    They should get (another) name change at the same time. Most people know the relationship Claria == Gator == spyware/adware == scum.

  • by SisyphusShrugged (728028) <me@igerard. c o m> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:32PM (#14994032) Homepage
    I have always had trouble understanding how spyware can be legal anyway...

    I mean basically the company is spying on you, its similar to if Walmart hired someone to constantly stalk you and take notes on what kind of shampoo you buy...it just does not seem logical.

    But then who said laws have to be logical, I mean the RIAA/MPAA DMCA CRAP states that for each movie/song one downloads the loss to the companies is the hundreds of thousands of dollars, doesnt really make sense does it...

    • The internet spans nations and have no laws, you can't stop things because they will skip places in the real world to avoid your laws.
      • Try telling that to China, which has its Great Firewall and a patted-down version of Google.
        • China is still a massive source of spam and spyware. It's also a stunningly huge site for pirated software, especially Windows, Office, games, and DVD movies. The Chinese government takes no action again anything that brings in any revenue or avoids expenses for its populace, but anything that threatens the existing power structure (such as free speech or encrypted email) are slapped down hard.

          Spyware may be illegal there, but they're doing even less about it than the US government.
    • by It'sYerMam (762418) <thefishface@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:48PM (#14994097) Homepage
      I mean basically the company is spying on you, its similar to if Walmart hired someone to constantly stalk you and take notes on what kind of shampoo you buy...it just does not seem logical.
      I'm assuming you don't own any supermarket loyalty cards.
      • Or pay with credit/debit cards at said supermarket...
      • At least WalMart isn't slipping loyalty cards into your wallet without your knowledge that automatically "phone home" and collect data about all sorts of activities not related to shopping.
      • by techno-vampire (666512) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @03:16PM (#14994392) Homepage
        'm assuming you don't own any supermarket loyalty cards.

        There are three differences here. First, you have to specifically request the card and fill out an application. (Most spyware installs itself without telling you.) Second,you are explicitly agreeing to let the market track your purcheses when you get the card. (Spyware doesn't even ask.) Last, you are paid for that by the discounts you get. (Spyware gives back nothing.)

        • One more. At least in my area, they hand you the card and say please fill out this form and send it in. You mean some people actually do that?

          rj
          • Where I live, they're at the checkstands. You take one, fill it out and they hand you the card. Yes, lots and lots of people do it. The automatic discounts can save you hundreds of dollars a year, often on the brand you would have bought anyway. For those of us on limited incomes, it can mean the difference between just barely enough to eat, and having nice meals. If you shop at the same supermarket regularly and don't have their card, you're only hurting yourself.
            • Of course, a lot of those cards have the "I don't want to fill out my personal information" box you can check instead (I know albertson's does.)

              Barring that, you could always just say you're A. Lincoln from Illinois.
            • Depends on your perspective. The way I see it they are charging a fee to customers who want to keep their privacy. If no one used those cards, then the stores that had lower prices regardless of whether or not you had a card would have a competetive advantage. Then none of the stores would bother with "loyalty to big brother" cards.

              Its a classic tragedy of the commons situation. By giving up your privacy you are screwing over the people who don't give up their privacy.

              • If no one used those cards, then the stores that had lower prices regardless of whether or not you had a card would have a competetive advantage.

                Not all, or even most of the markets using the cards are the expensive ones. Even the very inexpensive ones have them. Remember, you don't get a discount on everything, just selected items. If the average prices are high enough, even the discounts don't drop your bill enough to make it worth while to go there. About the only time it really changes shopping ha

            • Well, all the supermarkets in my area just hand you the card and a form. Doesn't matter if you send it in or not...the card still works. I've had cards from all the area markets for years, and they haven't the foggiest idea who I am.

              rj

        • There is no difference. In most modern spyware you are either explicitely or implicitely agreeing to have you movements tracked, either by clicking or using a product that is funded by the spyware.

          The disclosures for a supermarket card are no less broad or troublesome than spyware. In both cases the product is forced on you, and if you don't agree, the product is further forced on you though annoying popups or cashiers.

          Finaly, not all spyware comes with no return. Spyware may come as part of a softwa

          • Likewise, I live a city big enough where I have retailers that will give me a good price without the use of tacking card.

            So do I. The funny thing is, however, that the markets with the best combination of price and quality all have the cards. There are two markets without them that I regulary patronize. One is a specialty shop where I can get good things I can't find elsewhere, the other is an ethnic market that I go to mostly for the ethnic goods that you can't get in a more mainstream location. You

    • Its very simple. At least in the united states, when YOU do it, its a crime. When a company does it, "its just good business."
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Why would a store not have a right to spy on you? They already do this anyway. Heard of security cameras? Someone sits in a dark room in the back looking.

      If you have a credit/debit card or a store membership card, they do this too.

      Your analogy doesn't really fit.. Spyware is something you generally are tricked into installing, deceived into installing, or it is installed without your permission, period, onto YOUR computer. When you are in someone else's store, you don't get to dictate who can and can't peep
    • By clicking the "I agree" button, you agree to ____


      Feel free to put anything in the blank.
  • EDIII (Score:2, Funny)

    by chigun (770799) *
    It's a trick, get an axe.
  • by Vadim Makarov (529622) <makarov@vad1.com> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:52PM (#14994110) Homepage
    If I were Deutsche Bank, I'd run from these guys like hell.
  • by rscoggin (845029)
    'a new platform designed to provide consumers with a personalized Internet experience.' Sounds like they're going to release a browser with inbuilt spyware, like some preconfigured Firefox or something...
  • by ZoOnI (947423) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:08PM (#14994167)
    I guess this means they won't be liable for any legal actions. I'd like to see a sopena of their records so we can see whom they sold their illegally gotten data. I wonder how many reputable businesses use this kind of info. They have the tools and infrastructure to start another venture on the lawless wild wild web, so we can expect to see them again when the heat is off, if this is more than postering.
  • I guess they've got enough info to make enough of us uncomfortable.
  • by Puls4r (724907) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:24PM (#14994210)
    Sorry, but businesses don't get out of a market to "clean up their name". Something financial was driving this, though I don't know what. Are they scared of litigation, or did their revenue from ads drop? Was google stealing their market?
    • I still have questions about the ability of a dog to change it's spots. I don't trust them since they have lied and sued about this before. I will continue to tell my customers that they are evil.
  • by republican gourd (879711) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:32PM (#14994235)
    At first glance, this move on Claria's part seems nonsensical. They are gutting their business model and walking away from a very lucrative source of revenue, all in the name of (more or less) doing the right thing.

    Well, here's the rub.

    Vista is coming in 2007. Vista is going to have antispyware built directly into the operating system. By 2009, when XP is going to be a minority OS as people's crummy hardware dies (helped along by spyware infestations), there isn't going to be a market for Claria's BS.

    They quite simply have no other choice but to cash out what they can and change their profit model. (Of course, this is assuming that the anti-spyware elements of Vista will work at all... but like it or not, MS *does* have a lot of very bright people, and preventing modifications to critical system files *should* be a bit of a no brainer.)

    Here's hoping that the party is over.
    • Vista is coming in 2007. Vista is going to have antispyware built directly into the operating system. By 2009, when XP is going to be a minority OS as people's crummy hardware dies

      Your comment seems highly specualtive. Vista hasn't even been released yet. We have no idea whether the antispyware components built into the OS will actually work in real world usage. Plus, 2009 is three years down the road. Even if Vista was a spyware killer, that gives Claria at least three years to make money with their cu

      • Even if Vista was a spyware killer, that gives Claria at least three years to make money with their current business model.

        If Vista's anti-spyware works anywhere near as well as NanoLimp claims, Claria will have nothing to sell when it comes out. Selling now, while their software's still effective is just good business sense. They'll still have the algorithms, and the know-how, so it it turns out to be a false alarm, they can start coding new programs to do the same thing.

        • Claria will have nothing to sell when it comes out.

          I wonder how long it will take for Vista to be adopted by the majority of the Windows-using population. According to this article [arstechnica.com], as of last year at this time, only 40% of corporate users were using Windows XP. It could be several years before Vista reaches the point where even half of the Windows market. According to this graph [pcpitstop.com], about 15% of Windows users still aren't on XP. Of course, the data could be skewed. Still, it makes me think that spyware wi

          • Those figures actually help Vista more than not. Most of these users are going to have to upgrade soon anyway, 2000 is just not viable anymroe in a corporate environment, and if Microsoft times it right a lot of them are going to go straight to Vista.

            Corporate users still on 2000 basically fall into three categories. The cheap, the paranoid, and those locked into supporting legacy products.

            The cheap are usually small businesses who, like home users, will upgrade when they get new PC's. They're not really m

            • Those figures actually help Vista more than not.

              Your analysis of the three types of business makes sense to me. In the end, it's not a matter of if, but when people will update. They will already miss the holiday buying season this year, so that may slow first year adoption by consumers.

              I guess time will tell. I think that if Vista's security features make a noticeable difference, and the new OS is as easier or easier to use than Vista, adoption will be pretty good across the board. If either of those

              • The delays to Vista are hurting that model. Windows XP has matured and become reasonably stable. Windows 2000 is falling off the support wagon, but with the various anti-virus and anti-spyware tools currently available, the upgrade to Vista cannot be justified by its limited built-ni anti-spyware capabilities.

                Remember, Microsoft is a big believer in letting users activate and install stupid things by just clicking on them. It's a big part of their sales demos, so people are likely to continue to click on "c
    • What happens if Claria decides to pay Microsoft that its a safe product?
    • The important words in your note are "cash out". The same scumbags who brought us Gator are now part of Microsoft, and as such constitute a legal risk to Microsoft's very deep pockets. So it makes complete sense for all the VP's and stock-bearing staff to cash out immediately and abandon the company to whatever use Microsoft might have for their office space and their customer database management tools.

      There are some other tools and approaches Microsoft might find technically useful from Gator, such as the
  • Fear (Score:2, Funny)

    by Hikaru79 (832891)
    It's not in their press release, but really their CEO is just afraid he's going to have to box with that crazy Russian guy. ;)
  • They are getting out of the ADWARE business. So read it and understand what that means. It means they are staying in the SPYWARE business.

    Guess just showing ads in a program doesn't work anymore. /me looks at the top right corner of his opera browser.

  • Adware == adware (Score:3, Insightful)

    by dpbsmith (263124) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @03:13PM (#14994383) Homepage
    "The new system will serve up personalized content and advertising to opt-in users."

    In other words, adware... ...which is always (claimed to be) opt-in? Usually in a confusing, most people would feel deceptive way, but at some point in the process you have clicked "yes" on a button, with or without having paid any attention to a complicated notice in obfuscated legalese...

  • How about putting a "may not be safe for work" warning on that link? It's borderline, but I'm at work and I don't need the boss seeing me looking at a bunch of busty women, even if they are technically clothed.

    "I swear, I was reading the article!"
  • They said they would like to order one million space heaters. Or one million Intel PCs, whichever is cheaper.
  • and claria aka gator can just freakin' die.
  • I think this is the 3rd of 4th time I'll have said it, and still no law suit:

    Claria is spyware!

    -bZj
  • We didn't fall for the bullshit namechange (that's right, you cocks, we still remember you as "Gator"), what makes them think anyone's going to buy this?

  • Don't use your real name..period. How much longer before single fathers have their supermarket data brought into court by upset mothers seeking retribution. "Obviously your honor he is a bad parent. Look at all the junk food he buys the kids".

    I just signed up for a loyalty card this morning under the name Bucky Fuller. Other cards have names like Igor Stravinsky, Carl Yastremsky and of course John Cocktosen.

    By the way should your cable company or other non-governmental entity need a SSN, use this
  • by i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @04:37PM (#14994693) Homepage Journal
    Your inbox is awash in spam, your boss is chuckling over your credit report, and you've got a sneaking suspicion that Uncle Sam counts how many Löwenbräu you chug. Yes, your privacy's shot to hell, and you're tempted to shrug and settle for an open source life. But privacy isn't like virginity, forever lost after the first trespass. With some work, "reprivatization" is possible. Use this three-tiered guide to pick a level of solitude. But be warned: Going all the way off the grid is more Ted Kaczynski than Howard Hughes.

    Going

    Diss credit: Want to be hard to find? Start by dashing off stern opt-out letters to the big database companies and credit bureaus - Experian, Acxiom, Equifax. These folks may make a mint peddling personal info, but they can be cajoled into stopping. First, though, they'll make you jump through hoops - like filling out a 1040-sized form or idling in toll-free hell. Junkbusters (www.junkbusters.com) has a good list of opt-out addresses.

    Anonymize: Ditch your ISP and sign up with a service that lets you surf by proxy, keeping your IP address concealed. Send email via an anonymous remailer like Mixmaster, a digital middleman that scrambles timestamps and message sizes. And if you're going to be advocating the violent overthrow of the government or bragging about your cool new bong, make sure your remailer routes messages through multiple machines.

    Grok the fine print: Boring as it sounds, read the privacy statements that clutter your mailbox around tax time and sever ties with companies that admit, "Our privacy policy may change over time" - industry lingo for "We reserve the right to screw you."

    Going Further

    Ditch the digits:Want to drop out?Start by rustling up a new Social Security number.

    The Social Security Administration doesn't accept paranoia as a criterion for granting a new card, but it recognizes cultural objections and religious pleas. One stratagem: Contend that your credit has been irrevocably damaged by a number-related snafu, or that you live in fear of a stalker who knows your digits. Once you switch your SSN, never use it. Instead, dole out 078-05-1120, an Eisenhower-era card that works 99 percent of the time.

    Call cell-free: Use the humble pay phone. Mobile phones are being outfitted with global positioning satellite chips to comply with an FCC mandate. By 2006, all wireless networks must feature 911-friendly tracking technology. Marketers are cooking up ways to capitalize, like zapping burger coupons to your Nokia as you stroll by a fast-food joint.

    Pay full price: You may relish saving 10 percent on Prell, but deep-six your buyers' club cards. Supermarkets and pharmacies haven't yet perfected the art of data mining, but it won't be long. "If you're having a child custody fight, they could subpoena your frequent-shopper cards and say, 'Look, he's buying too many potato chips, he's hurting the kids,'" says Robert Gellman, a Washington-based privacy consultant.

    Gone

    Move: Want to go completely off the grid? Start by moving - address changes bedevil databasers. But don't buy a home. All those loan apps will blow your cover. Residential hotels smell like cheap cigars and urine, but at least you can register under a pseudonym. Give a fake address: 3500 S. Wacker, Chicago, IL, 60616 - the front door for Comiskey Park.

    Toss your cards:Pay cash for everything, and don't plan on a life of luxury. Any (legal) cash transaction more than $10,000 triggers government reporting regulations, which means you can forget about that Cadillac Escalade you've had your eye on. Settle for the subway or bus, using coins rather than prepaid fare cards, which keep a record of trips.

    Go incognito: Facial-recognition gear will soon be ubiquitous in public spaces. To fool the systems, invest in a pair of bulky aviator sunglasses and a hat. If you fear being tailed, alter your gait every time you hit the street - a pigeon-toed shuffle one day, a bowlegged amble the next. There are also Central American plastic surgery mills, beloved of drug lords, that can alter the loops and whorls on your fingertips. It'll set you back 10 Gs, but then, Costa Rican doctors have been known to accept gold Rolexes in lieu of cash.
  • I find that Firefox and my own set of bookmarks provides exactly that!
  • (from the article:)
    Up for sale are the software tools whose free download was supported by the GAIN ad network

    Claria will not be selling the technology or engine that drives the GAIN system, nor the user data affiliated with the GAIN product. The company will also hold onto its digital wallet product, Gator eWallet.

    In April, Claria will unveil major partnerships around this new technology and launch the beta version of PersonalWeb, the first consumer application using this platform.

    The new system will serv
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