Feeds

Help! my Belkin router is spamming me

Nagware promotes censorware

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The marketing geniuses at Belkin, the consumer networking vendor, have dreamed up a new form of spam - ads served to your desktop, by way of its wireless router.

Uh Clem. a former Belkin wireless router user, was perplexed to find machines on his network redirected to an ad for Belkin's new parental control system, following a software update.

Clem initially thought that the browser setting on the machine he downloaded the updated software had been changed. But when other machines displayed the same behaviour he realised his router was to blame.

The router would grab a random HTTP connection every eight hours and redirect it to Belkin’s (push) advertised web page.

"It seems the router now supports a parental control and the market droids at Belkin got the bright idea of equipping the router with intrusive nagware," writes Uh Clem. "Of course, I have this strange notion that routers should pass data unmolested by marketeers!"

There is an opt-out link on the advertised page but this failed to appease Clem who, not unreasonably, objects to having to "opt-out from commercials from my router". Because of the ads, he's decided not to buy Belkin products again.

In response criticism, a Belkin product manager came forward this week to confirm the behaviour was designed into the products as a way to make it easier for consumers to sign up to a free trial of its parental control software. Belkin's Eric Deming is keen to allay concerns about the technique which have produced sharp criticism of the company on the news.admin.net-abuse.email newsgroup.

"We don't have the ability to spam you at a later time if you select "No Thanks" or turn off the reminder manually," Deming writes. "I know this feature might be misunderstood and might PO some people. I know the manual could do a better job explaining it. These are all things that we at Belkin are working to remedy." ®

Related Stories

FTC gets injunction against 'pop-up spam scam'
Microsoft shoots the Windows Messenger
The conspiracy against our in-boxes
Soaraway censorware
Censor-buster Peek-A-Booty goes public

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp
Mountain View distances itself from lame 'network thingy'
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
Drag queens: Oh, don't be so bitchy, Facebook! Let us use our stage names
Handbags at dawn over free content ad network's ID policy
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.