Sophos in porn dialler row with UK developer
By John Leyden
Published Thursday 30th September 2004 14:53 GMT
Anti-virus firm Sophos yesterday suspended detection of a “porn dialler application”, following complaints from its UK-based developer.
A Sophos spokeswoman confirmed that it had removed detection of the Coulomb dialler yesterday afternoon on legal advice, following representations from Coulomb Ltd. Sophos is investigating if its AV software is wrongly detecting a legitimate dialler application developed by Coulomb Ltd as a Trojan.
In the meantime, Sophos has suspended detection of the Coulomb dialler, which remains designated as malware by several AV firms. Resellers and end users who notified The Register of the issue question Sophos’ actions. One end user described Sophos as “wimps” for “backing down in the face of cartoony [shallow legal] threats.”
Porn diallers are often written to change a user’s dial up settings to ring premium rate or overseas phone numbers without the informed content of consumers. It’s only when a user is landed with a huge bill that they realise something is amiss.
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