Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Phorm Blocking

If you have any interest in computers and that, then you probably have heard about the current furore with the EU intending to sue the UK for allowing ISPs to provide access to user data to PHORM, a company which basically records your personal on-line history without asking (potentially including webmail and other extremely private areas) and then uses it to target you with un-requested ads.

If you are a customer of one of BT or Virgin Media (Carphone Warehouse’s Talk Talk is also involved but apparently provides an opt-out) then you should be particularly concerned as they are the companies that are involved with PHORM (formerly alleged spyware company 121Media) and selling your browsing history to a company that is, imo, only a small step up from spammers. (Trend and Kapersky seemingly intend to block PHORM's cookie as adware, which tells you all you need to know really).

This post here has some good tips on anti-Phorm proofing your PC. I recommend you take them. And to be safest of all, follow the advice of Ross Anderson, professor of security engineering at Cambridge University, who recently said: "if you care about your privacy, do not use BT, Virgin or Talk-Talk as your internet provider."

I use Virgin currently, but if I can't block Phorm then I won't be using them for much longer.

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