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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 3 declined, 0 accepted (3 total, 0.00% accepted)

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Submission + - Legal liability of "virus" reports on websites?

crossmr writes: I do some very part time web design for a couple places. One of the sites I built 3 years ago was part of a business that was recently sold, the new owner reported that some people couldn't access the site claiming it had a virus. I couldn't replicate the problem and began digging around. I finally ran one of those website virus scans and was surprised to see 3 out of 61 sites had reported the site had a virus. Some aggressive security settings on Chrome browsers were apparently preventing people from evening visiting the site.

2 of the 3 sites simply said that the website in question contained a "trojan" with a scary name seemingly made to frighten people away from the site. Googling the name provided basically zero details as to what the problem was. Through googling I found my way to Sucuri who do a free website scan. They then claimed the site was infested with "SEO SPAM". I did more googling and found out that a while back there was a scandal involving some module creators and SEO spam. They had been inserting invisible links into pages containing their modules to increase their SEO. This was the "trojan".

There was no real virus. There was no danger to users computers or even the webhost, or anything except google's ranking. For that reason these scanning sites recommended and were used in such a way that people were prevented or strongly encouraged not to visit the site. All because of a hidden back link.

Legally this seems pretty shaky. They use vague names to label the problem, and never explain to the end user the issue that is on the site. Most people see "trojan" and say "I want no part of this!" Immediately after removing the javascript code that hid the links (and the links itself) two of the three scanners report the site clean and we're waiting on a rescan request from the last (scumware). It's clear there was never a real trojan or virus anywhere on the site. Anyone ever experienced this before? Have any of these scanning sites ever been sued because of the labelling they've done? Any lawyers want to way in on that? If people say they didn't visit the site because of this label, it seems like it'd be pretty obvious to prove there was damage from what they did.
Microsoft

Submission + - Bing Localizations break links

crossmr writes: Since I moved halfway across the world, I have found that a lot of websites and software likes to make assumptions about you based on your IP. While it isn't obvious if you move to a country that has the same native language as you it becomes rather apparent when you move to a country with a different native language. Besides Windows Live Messenger sending me updates in Korean, even though I've selected English as my language and my account was created in an English speaking country years ago, Microsoft has taken this a step further with Bing and absolutely destroying links people send. A Bing video was linked on facebook today. Those of you in North America and maybe the UK will have no issue viewing the video. However here in South Korea Microsoft has decided that instead of serving the linked content, they're going to break the link and redirect to a local provider doing a search for itself. While I can appreciate that a site like google redirects to a Korean version when you go to google.com from Korea, they don't invalidate links to deeper content just because you're out of the country. I cannot find any obvious way to disable this "service". I had no inclination to use Bing before, but even less now.

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