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Technology thoughts leaking from the brain of "Bill Pytlovany"

Thursday, September 22, 2011

WinPatrol.com Removes Links to Facebook

 

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We are no longer encouraging anyone to use Facebook and have removed all links to "Fans of WinPatrol" group from WinPatrol.com.

 

 

 

 

 


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This is not a protest to UI changes. We have found that Facebook changes are frequently made without proper testing often exposing Friend only posts to the public.

For instance, new interface changes has created the new “Old Posts” feature. Some people have reported many of their Old Posts are now available to the public even when their wall was set to Friends Only.

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To change the settings for the new "Old Posts" feature, go to your privacy settings at http://www.facebook.com/settings/?tab=privacy and change the new feature "Limit the Audience for Past Posts". Click on Manage Past Post Visibility.  The menu for privacy settings is also available as a down arrow in the upper right corner of your Facebook page.

We're not closing the group yet but will stop providing links that may encourage folks to join Facebook to get WinPatrol information updates. There’s also unofficial WinPatrol discussions and help available at http://www.landzdown.com/winpatrol-help-information/

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WinPatrol 2014 - Free Download

Microsoft Windows 8.1 - Full Version

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64bit


Monday, September 05, 2011

Dangerous Downloads on Legitimate Websites & Search Engines

There are a large number of websites that provide useful reviews and what seems like easy ways to download free software. Unfortunately, these websites also sell ads and allow advertisers to use well known software as keywords in their ads. The result is users often end up with software they can’t remove from their computer instead of what they were looking for.

Here’s an example of the page you’ll get if you search the popular download site, cnet’s Download.com for WinPatrol. 
Click image to enlarge.

 

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Click any image to enlarge

You can see WinPatrol at the bottom of the page but if you’re not paying attention you might easily click on “Start Download”.  The resulting download is not something you want on your system.  My laptop is currently using the add-on Web of Trust which immediately warned me something was wrong.

blog2Btw… if you’re interested, don’t search Google for “Web of Trust”.  Instead of WOT, you’ll find a dangerous download using its keyword which I’ll talk more about below. Go to http://www.mywot.com/ if you’d like check out WOT.

Not all but some of the other downloads advertising on the Download.com page are also dangerous. For instance, the link that says “Spybot – Free Download” will not take you to the real Spybot - Search & Destroy program.


Beware of Search Engine Results

Even search engines like Google and Bing are selling search ads to bogus programs using the keywords of popular legitimate programs.  If you search Google for “WinPatrol” you may be tricked into clicking on a dangerous deceptive link.

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While it’s marked as an “Ad” the resulting page is not what you’ll want. It has no connection to WinPatrol. The criminals behind this site “bid” Googles Adwords for the keyword “WinPatrol” when purchasing this ad.  It’s also impossible for small companies like BillP Studios to purchase advertisements. When advertising space is based on bidding, it’s impossible for me to compete with companies who behave in a deceptive manner.

Again, Web of Trust warns me not to continue.

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The resulting page appears to be a review of WinPatrol.  Don’t be fooled!


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Click image to enlarge


When you scroll down you'll find a bogus software report that claims to compare various anti-virus program.  The problem is all of these programs come from the same company and most programs can not be removed until you pay an extortion fee.  Even then you’ll need a real Anti-Malware program to remove them.   The following is one of many programs that follow the WinPatrol review.

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I didn’t dare click Free Scan but I did check Tucows and they never heard of this program.  The chances that this company has a positive rating with the Better Business Bureau is, well…  that’s a topic for another blog post.

So, always read the screen and know what you’re doing anytime you see a download or scan link. If you want to download a program make sure you’re on the actual company website.  That way you’ll also be sure to download the most current release.

Use your voice and let search engines and download sites know you’re not happy. Forward this post to your friends or share it on Facebook.  They’re making a lot of money so they can certainly afford to screen who advertises on their sites and watch for deceptive links.

Bing actually removed an ad after I contacted them about but they still need to clean up their act for other ads. I’ve written to a friend I trust at Google so perhaps I’ll see a change soon but the misuse of our WinPatrol keyword is one of many.

If you’re not sure about a filename you can always use WinPatrol to look it up.  Your lifetime $29.95 purchase of WinPatrol PLUS means we don’t have to sell advertisements on the pages used to search file names.  Droid users can also download our new DroidPatrol program to search for legitimate filenames.

Update 9/7/2011
I’m pleased to report that Google no longer allows WinPatrol to be used to allow deceptive advertisers steal users. Thank you Google.

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WinPatrol 2014 - Free Download

Microsoft Windows 8.1 - Full Version

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64bit