Back in the day – preventing Spyware

I devised a method to prevent Spyware (and Webshots) from loading, using the Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit Shim Application Database (sdbinst.db)

It worked well:
Not authorised for installation on this computer. 
     most people didn’t ring IT Security.

Why block Webshots?  There were two reasons:

  1. it would cause Windows to crash and/or  Blue Screen
  2. bandwidth.  it gobbled bandwidth.

1. is obvious, but for 2., here were the figures I wrote up in 2004:
The average Webshots image is 120k. Times this by x known users (lets say 500). Equals 60000k (58 megabytes).
Every day.  On a weekly basis, 300MB.
Back then, 300MB for a particular customer, was a BIG ISSUE.

Some of the other applications we blocked:
Bittorrent, Bonzi Buddy, Cashback, CloneDVD, Conscorr, Ethereal, Gator, GoZilla, Hot Tarts Dialler, Kazaa, MyWebSearch, nMap, Trillian, VirtuaGirl & Webshots.

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