Window Washer Sucks!!!

About a month ago, Steve sent the following comment.

“please google the following CMU-ISRI-05-119. It is a real eye opener and I promise it will enlighten all in this discussion!”

I did Google it at the time, and meant to comment on it further. Seems this is an only modestly technical paper which could be read and copied by a bright high school kid for his science fair project. In the simplest terms, they evaluated about six different manufacturer’s privacy protection software. There conclusion was also fairly clearly stated.

“The results highlight some significant shortfalls in the implementation and approach of these tools leading to privacy concerns about the exposure of sensitive data. The findings also raise questions about the level of privacy protection that is realistic to expect from these tools….”

All of these tools were tested on windows XP and I’m not aware of a similar comparison of privacy products which allegedly protect you from Vista’s invasion of Privacy. All vendors were notified of the work in progress and only CyberScrub which was the best of a very poor lot responded with positive changes being made in the new version.

This excellent piece of practical knowledge was done by Matthew Geiger and Lorrie Faith Cranor at the Institute for Software Research at Carnegie Mellon University.

There report ran 64 pages and is easy enough to read. My original report on Privacy software ran a little more than two paragraphs and I stand by the Title

Window Washer Sucks.


One Response to “Window Washer Sucks!!!”

  1. SteveC Says:

    I have been in a running discussion with Webroot over the failure of Windows Washer to delete the index.dat file on each of the three PCs I own. They have promised that a new version is around the corner which will resolve the problem.

    Overall, for me, the product is a failure as it stands.

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