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NEW YORK EarthLink said that its scan of subscriber computers in the fourth quarter found a substantial increase of installed spyware and adware programs.
The Atlanta Internet service provider said it found an average of 24 pieces of spyware on the 1.4 million computers it scanned in the fourth quarter using Webroot Software’s anti-spyware product. The programs EarthLink tabbed as spyware ranged from keystroke-logging programs to advertising-supported software.
In its scan of computers from October until the end of 2004, EarthLink found over 272,000 instances of system-monitoring software, which can be used to steal personal information, up from 155,000 in the third quarter.