Google and Dell Border on Spyware

As mentioned in my previous post, I just bought a new Dell desktop. One of the things I immediately noticed was the behavior outlined in this blog post about Google and Dell “hijacking” browser address bar type-ins to go to advertising-heavy pages.

Don’t get me wrong, I am an advocate of advertising on the web, but what I didn’t like was that I in the few minutes I spent trying to investigate this on my own machine I didn’t figure out how to turn it off. I primarily use Firefox anyway so I figured I wouldn’t have to deal with it anyway. However, I’ve noticed that even though Firefox thinks it’s my default browser (as I selected it should be) various other applications on my computer keep launching IE7 when they launch web pages.

While I think it’s okay for Google and Dell to work together on providing search results with some advertising, what they’re doing here is pretty offensive with the page above the fold being entirely ads and the difficulty of removing the behavior from your system.

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