FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Spyware Changing Net Users' Habits

The prevalence of spyware is changing the way nine out of 10 netizens use the Internet, according to the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

The Pew survey found that nearly half of those questioned no longer visit certain websites they suspect of deploying spyware. The majority also said they no longer open questionable e-mail attachments. A quarter of the respondents also said they have quit using file-sharing services to swap movies and music (good news for the entertainment industry there). Eighteen percent have switched browser types in an attempt to avoid spyware.

Like teaching a child not to talk to strangers, this wariness shows the adoption of good and necessary habits, but comes tempered with a loss of innocence. It's encouraging that Internet users are taking the spyware threat seriously and are taking action against it. Yet it's a shame that we have to worry about it at all.

Source: CNN.com