Follow Us

War on Error

Adware company loses court case. Or did it?

And so we turn to the strange case of the troubled adware company, Zango, that has pulled off the small feat of dry-cleaning a reputation so dusty you’d have thought it near impossible to even get it to a decent shade of gray.

A couple of weeks back, Zango lost a round in the courts in a fight it picked with small Australian security software outfit, PC Tools. The complaint was simply that PC Tools’ security software classified three of Zango’s programs as potentially unwanted programs (PUP).

This classification was hardly surprising: Zango has a load of trouble behind it, including a record $3 million fine from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for the dodgy behaviour of its software. It has been accused of deceptive installation practices on numerous occasions.

Zango lost the legal battle against PC Tools, but did it win a small but crucial point? It turns out that PC Tools has now reclassified Zango’s software to a lower level of nuisance. Zango says it lost the court case but won the principle because PC Tools no longer marks it out for special attention, while PC Tools claims that it had re-classified the program by the time of the court case anyway, and the legal action had no bearing on this.

"We can only assume they chose to go ahead with the lawsuit so they could attempt to spin the decision and infer the re-rating was somehow influenced by legal pressure. We can categorically say their legal action had no impact on their re-rating. We will continue to be vigilant on ratings related to Zango products and others to ensure our customers are protected. We will not hesitate to re-rate them if necessary," said PC Tools CEO Simon Clausen in an email to Techworld.

Zango still hasn’t explained why it sued PC Tools in the first place (it is not the only company to have classified Zango in a negative way), though some have suggested that it picked a fight with the smallest opponent it could find in the hope of garnering publicity. It’s funny how these cases never involve the Symantecs and McAfees of the world.

It is plausible that the company has tidied up its act in the wake of the FTC ruling of last year, and decided to go legit, or at least as legit as adware can ever be. Say what you like about business models, but who wants ads served on their PC if they can help it?

Zango is back in the fold of the living for now, but there are plenty of people watching it with suspicion for a slip-up.
Zango’s view of the case can be read about in its ad-blog.

Tags: email, google

RSSSubscribe to this blog

More from Techworld

More relevant IT news

Contact Us

For editorial queries:
Mike Simons

For website issues:

For commercial queries
Russell Kearney

For more contact details click here.

Email this to a friend

* indicates mandatory field

Techworld White Papers

Optimising data protection for virtual environments

VM environments require the same level of data protection as does the physical server environment. Companies may use data protection tools built for the physical environment in the virtual world, but this has serious disadvantages.

Download Whitepaper

PCI Compliance: Are UK businesses ready?

Exploring the results of a recent survey, including: ? Levels of understanding of the standard ? Current perceptions of actual compliance status ? Attitudes toward addressing compliance

Download Whitepaper

Mobility Management for Dummies

Your complete guide to managing and securing mobile devices such as laptops and smartphones.

Download Whitepaper

Magic Quadrant for midrange and high-end NAS solutions

It is difficult to find one midrange or high-end NAS product that can cater to all needs. File systems embedded in NAS are often designed to solve one major pain point, with additional features being added later to broaden use cases and benefits.

Download Whitepaper

Techworld UK - Technology - Business

Oracle Video

Enabling agile and intelligent businesses

 Changing markets, competitive pressures and evolving customer needs are placing increasing pressure on IT to deliver greater flexibility and speed. Explore truly flexible SOA foundations with this Oracle video.

COLT White Paper

IT Misuse Survey

Complete this survey and you could win a Nexus One

Techworld are running a short survey to discover how UK businesses are managing Internet and email misuse in the Enterprise.

Complete Survey

Complete our survey and you could win a Sony E-book Reader.
Techworld have teamed up with HP to compile a survey relating to server virtualisation. Complete the short survey and you could be the lucky winner of a Sony E-book reader.

Complete the survey here

Site Map