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Let adware be treated as malware, Canuck boffins declare after breaking open Wajam ad injector

Let adware be treated as malware, Canuck boffins declare after breaking open Wajam ad injector (Malware and Vulnerabilities)

The technology industry has numerous terms for sneaky software, including malware, adware, spyware, ransomware, and the ever-adorable PUPs – potentially unwanted programs. In a research paper distributed this month through pre-print server ArXiv, a pair of researchers from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada – Xavier de Carné de Carnavalet and Mohammad Mannan – show that in the case of software known as Wajam, these categorical distinctions obscure how adware relies on the same untrustworthy techniques as malicious code. "The line between adware and malware is a gray area," said de Carné de Carnavalet, a doctoral candidate in information and systems engineering at Concordia University in an email to The Register on Friday. "On the other hand, we generally view malware as malicious software that can be harmful to computer users and their devices," the OPC spokesperson added. The OPC spokesperson said several of Wajam's privacy practices contravene PIPEDA, such as the company's failure to obtain meaningful content to the installation of the software, which resulted in the collection and use of personal information.

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