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Is someone spying on your every move?
By Diane Dennis © 2004

There are several computer application/programs out there, maybe even one or more on your very own computer, that are silently collecting personal and private information about you, right off of your own hard drive.

Some of these programs, when hiding on your computer, will pop up windows:

  • When you visit websites, any website including our website
  • When you search through search engines and through search functions on people's sites (like our search function)
  • When you click from one website to another
  • And so on

Please know that we have absolutely no control over this and we are unable to stop it from happening.

These pop-up windows contain advertisements for other websites, often times for very well known websites (and almost always retail sites) and even for pornographic websites.

These windows are being popped up on just about every website. Should you click on one of those popup windows, not only are you taken away from the site you are visiting, but your personal information is being collected from your computer.

Many, many major retailers are participating with companies that create and utilize this type of software, and more often than not it's due simply to the fact that they (the retailers) do not realize that this is what is happening.

Website owners literally across the world have banded together in an effort to stop the creators and distributors of this type of software.

To visualize it better...

Picture yourself walking into OfficeDepot and cruising down the aisles picking up the items you need. As you round the corner of the aisle, what pops up but a well-dressed nice-looking person.

This person tells you that there is a special deal at Staples around the corner, a deal special enough to make you abandon your cart in OfficeDepot and head down the street with this well-dressed nice-looking person.

Pretty cool, he literally walks you to the front door of Staples.

What you don't realize though is that as you are walking together, from OfficeDepot to Staples, your kind guide has his hand in your pocketbook (or briefcase or purse) and is grabbing all of your personal info, everything you've got in there.

While you merrily shop at Staples, enjoying the savings that this kind person has bestowed upon you, he is making copies of all of your personal info that he snuck from you.

He then places your personal info back into your pocketbook before you ever even realize that someone had his hand in there.

Guess what he's gonna do with the info he has just taken from you? Sell it. Again, and again, and again.... This info can include detailed information on exactly what you buy (right down to the color; size; flavor; quantity; etc.) and where you buy it; passwords that you use to access various sites; and even your credit card numbers, drivers license number, social security number; etc.

This is just one of the dirty practices of these Spyware programs. Another one of their practices involves a "yellow highlighter"...

The program actually places yellow highlighted links right within the text of web pages you are visiting. These links look deceptively part of the webite, but they are not.

These links take you away from the website you're at and deposit you at another website!

When you plan on downloading an application/program that you're not familiar with, think about running a quick search online about the application/program to see if there's any info out there on it. You might find out ahead of time that one or more secret files download without your knowing it.

We will continue to address this over time. It will be an ongoing battle, unfortunately as long as personal information is worth something, the less honest of our World will find a way to obtain it and sell it.

If you have any questions about the information in this article, please do feel free to contact us!

Diane Dennis is the webmistress of, a website designed to help contractors through the myriad of pitfalls that they can fall into. She's a graduate of "The School Of Hard Knocks" and she's always willing to share her experiences, even when no one wants to listen... ;) Please note that this article is not to be taken as legal advice. For questions of a legal nature please contact an attorney. This article can be reprinted provided it is done so in its entirety including this bio. If you do use this article, please let Diane know by sending an email to her at