cycling.tv harmful on-line ads



Maybe this is old news. I don't frequent this forum although it
seemed the most appropriate place to post. I also don't watch
cycling.tv except for the Giro and Vuelta. But insidious hackers can
infect computers even if you don't click on an ad.

Below is the text of my Email to cycling.tv. It mostly says it all.

>>>>>> Beginning of Email

Hello,

I have very strong evidence that one of the on-line ads appearing on
cycling.tv infects my computer. The details are below.

I have paid for and watched the Giro and Vuelta every year since you
started carrying them. The infection only began recently.

I usually watch with a desktop running Win XP home SP2. Recently I
picked up a used laptop that came with a Win XP Pro SP1 installation
disk. I installed it just to watch the Vuelta.

I'm running with firewall on (all exceptions disabled), IE6, Google
pop-up blocker on, Windows Media Player 10. No other applications are
installed (it is a fresh format of the hard drive). Windows Media
Player is configured not to access the internet.

I then watch one day of the Vuelta. Before the race is over IE
windows are popping up with advertisements, applications are
downloaded and installed, the Windows registry is altered, and other
harmful things are happening. If I close IE completely after 2 or 3
minutes it opens again with advertisements.

I will then wipe out the hard drive by reformating it, install the
applications listed above, and watch the next stage of the Vuelta.
Before it is over the computer is infected again.

This is surely coming from your site. Since this began I have not
visited any other websites with this computer. Furthermore, after
reinstalling Windows I will leave the computer connected to the
internet (with IE closed) for 24 hours without it becoming infected.

Paying $30 to have my computer infected is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE.
If you expect me to continue paying you for cycling videos then PLEASE
CLEAN THIS UP.

I will continue reformatting the hard drive on a daily basis, since
you already have my money. But if this doesn't stop you can be sure
you won't get any more.

>>>>>>>>>>>>> End of Email


Something I didn't mention is that I watched one stage with the Win XP
Home SP2 computer and it did not get infected. And, of course, I
haven't clicked on any ads. I'm still trying to find ways to stop
this.
 
On 09/06/2007 03:18 PM, in article
[email protected],
"[email protected]" <[email protected]> wrote:

> Maybe this is old news. I don't frequent this forum although it
> seemed the most appropriate place to post. I also don't watch
> cycling.tv except for the Giro and Vuelta. But insidious hackers can
> infect computers even if you don't click on an ad.
>
> Below is the text of my Email to cycling.tv. It mostly says it all.
>
>>>>>>> Beginning of Email

> Hello,
>
> I have very strong evidence that one of the on-line ads appearing on
> cycling.tv infects my computer. The details are below.
>
> I have paid for and watched the Giro and Vuelta every year since you
> started carrying them. The infection only began recently.
>
> I usually watch with a desktop running Win XP home SP2. Recently I
> picked up a used laptop that came with a Win XP Pro SP1 installation
> disk. I installed it just to watch the Vuelta.
>
> I'm running with firewall on (all exceptions disabled), IE6, Google
> pop-up blocker on, Windows Media Player 10. No other applications are
> installed (it is a fresh format of the hard drive). Windows Media
> Player is configured not to access the internet.
>
> I then watch one day of the Vuelta. Before the race is over IE
> windows are popping up with advertisements, applications are
> downloaded and installed, the Windows registry is altered, and other
> harmful things are happening. If I close IE completely after 2 or 3
> minutes it opens again with advertisements.
>
> I will then wipe out the hard drive by reformating it, install the
> applications listed above, and watch the next stage of the Vuelta.
> Before it is over the computer is infected again.
>
> This is surely coming from your site. Since this began I have not
> visited any other websites with this computer. Furthermore, after
> reinstalling Windows I will leave the computer connected to the
> internet (with IE closed) for 24 hours without it becoming infected.
>
> Paying $30 to have my computer infected is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE.
> If you expect me to continue paying you for cycling videos then PLEASE
> CLEAN THIS UP.
>
> I will continue reformatting the hard drive on a daily basis, since
> you already have my money. But if this doesn't stop you can be sure
> you won't get any more.
>
>>>>>>>>>>>> End of Email

>
> Something I didn't mention is that I watched one stage with the Win XP
> Home SP2 computer and it did not get infected. And, of course, I
> haven't clicked on any ads. I'm still trying to find ways to stop
> this.




Have you tried downloading and installing SP2 and all other security updates
on the laptop?



--
Steven L. Sheffield
stevens at veloworks dot com
bellum pax est libertas servitus est ignoratio vis est
ess ay ell tea ell ay kay ee sea eye tee why you ti ay aitch
aitch tee tea pea colon [for word] slash [four ward] slash double-you
double-yew double-ewe dot flahute dot com [foreword] slash
 
[email protected] wrote:
>
> Something I didn't mention is that I watched one stage with the Win XP
> Home SP2 computer and it did not get infected. And, of course, I
> haven't clicked on any ads. I'm still trying to find ways to stop
> this.
>


You just answered your own question--install SP2. It has a ton of
security updates. Also, dump IE as your browser, you're begging for
trouble if you use it, and install a third party firewall. Surfing the
net these days with SP1 and IE is like walking into a prison block with
your pants down.

Of course, the best solution would be to reformat your computer and
install a linux flavour instead. Ubuntu is ready for daily desktop use.
Nobody can upload and install anything without your express approval,
and malware simply doesn't work.
 
Kyle Legate wrote:
> Of course, the best solution would be to reformat your computer and
> install a linux flavour instead. Ubuntu is ready for daily desktop use.
> Nobody can upload and install anything without your express approval,
> and malware simply doesn't work.


You don't even have to reformat (or re-partition):
http://wubi-installer.org/
 
Donald Munro wrote:
> Kyle Legate wrote:
>> Of course, the best solution would be to reformat your computer and
>> install a linux flavour instead.

>
> You don't even have to reformat (or re-partition):
> http://wubi-installer.org/


Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?


--
E. Dronkert
 
Ewoud Dronkert <[email protected]> wrote:
> Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?


Well, I haven't got it to work on my GNU/Linux machines, their support
service wasn't much help and I've seen many similar reports elsewhere.
I wish they'd put up a simple stream playable in vlc, mplayer, portable
devices and so on, even if it means using traditional tv-style adverts
in addition to any web-scripted ones.

Regards,
--
MJ Ray - see/vidu http://mjr.towers.org.uk/email.html
Experienced webmaster-developers for hire http://www.ttllp.co.uk/
Also: statistician, sysadmin, online shop builder, workers co-op.
Writing on koha, debian, sat TV, Kewstoke http://mjr.towers.org.uk/
 
I believe the problem has now been solved. You should be able to enjoy
this weekend's racing in relative safety.
 
Ewoud Dronkert wrote:
> Donald Munro wrote:
>> Kyle Legate wrote:
>>> Of course, the best solution would be to reformat your computer and
>>> install a linux flavour instead.

>> You don't even have to reformat (or re-partition):
>> http://wubi-installer.org/

>
> Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?
>
>


It doesn't work from a more-or-less vanilla Ubuntu 7.03 system, but it
took just a few minutes to get it to work on my MacBook (OS X 10.4.10).
And I just got this thing yesterday, so I'm no OS X whiz. If there is
such a thing.
 
On Sep 7, 6:08 am, Halverde <[email protected]> wrote:
> I believe the problem has now been solved. You should be able to enjoy
> this weekend's racing in relative safety.


Interesting. Would you please elaborate. What have you read or heard
that makes you say that?

Tom
 
Fred Fredburger schreef:
> took just a few minutes to get it to work on my MacBook (OS X 10.4.10).


You mean installed Flip4Mac? I have that, took a look on the website,
nothing works with Safari, very crappy with Firefox. Anyway, I'm not a
potential viewer so no need to look further into it.


--
E. Dronkert
 
Halverde wrote:
> I believe the problem has now been solved.
> You should be able to enjoy this weekend's
> racing in relative safety.


Relativity is a dangerous think. Just look at
all those black holes all over the universe.
 
Ewoud Dronkert wrote:
> Fred Fredburger schreef:
>> took just a few minutes to get it to work on my MacBook (OS X 10.4.10).

>
> You mean installed Flip4Mac? I have that, took a look on the website,
> nothing works with Safari, very crappy with Firefox. Anyway, I'm not a
> potential viewer so no need to look further into it.
>
>


I didn't even try it with Safari. It worked better than I wanted it to
with Firefox. By which I mean that it would have been nice if the audio
was broken. How do they pick that music?
 
MJ Ray wrote:
> Ewoud Dronkert <[email protected]> wrote:
>> Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?

>
> Well, I haven't got it to work on my GNU/Linux machines, their support
> service wasn't much help and I've seen many similar reports elsewhere.
> I wish they'd put up a simple stream playable in vlc, mplayer, portable
> devices and so on, even if it means using traditional tv-style adverts
> in addition to any web-scripted ones.
>

I'm watching it in totem right now. I just clicked through on all the
warnings and it loaded just fine. Ubuntu 6.10.
 
Kyle Legate wrote:
> MJ Ray wrote:
>> Ewoud Dronkert <[email protected]> wrote:
>>> Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?

>>
>> Well, I haven't got it to work on my GNU/Linux machines, their support
>> service wasn't much help and I've seen many similar reports elsewhere.
>> I wish they'd put up a simple stream playable in vlc, mplayer, portable
>> devices and so on, even if it means using traditional tv-style adverts
>> in addition to any web-scripted ones.
>>

> I'm watching it in totem right now. I just clicked through on all the
> warnings and it loaded just fine. Ubuntu 6.10.


I also am able to run it, on ubuntu 7.04. Try playing with "preferences->video" to select different drivers (for example, "X11") if it doesn't play.

Dan
 
Dan Connelly wrote:
> Kyle Legate wrote:
>> MJ Ray wrote:
>>> Ewoud Dronkert <[email protected]> wrote:
>>>> Isn't Cycling.tv notorious for being inaccessible for non-Windows?
>>>
>>> Well, I haven't got it to work on my GNU/Linux machines, their support
>>> service wasn't much help and I've seen many similar reports elsewhere.
>>> I wish they'd put up a simple stream playable in vlc, mplayer, portable
>>> devices and so on, even if it means using traditional tv-style adverts
>>> in addition to any web-scripted ones.
>>>

>> I'm watching it in totem right now. I just clicked through on all the
>> warnings and it loaded just fine. Ubuntu 6.10.

>
> I also am able to run it, on ubuntu 7.04. Try playing with
> "preferences->video" to select different drivers (for example, "X11") if
> it doesn't play.
>


I should also mention that I'm using the MediaPlayerConnectivity plugin
for Firefox to launch media in an external video player. I sometimes
have problems playing embedded media so this is the solution I'm using.
 
Just as a head up on cycling.tv.
They charged my credit card for a 2nd year without my authorization. I
contacted them several times but they never acknowledged the problem.
Each time,I got a automated response that stated they'd be in contact.
It never happened. I cut off access to that credit card (no refund)and
I got an email that said my subscription had been canceled effective
immediately. There was still seven months left on my fully paid
subscription. They responded by saying that cycling.tv isn't involved
with payments and that I'd need to handle the matter through a third
party. I let them steal the money. It wasn't worth the time and
expense to chase $25. and they knew it.
I hate missing my race coverage but I'll never subscribe with these
thieves again.

David
 
"David B." <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> Just as a head up on cycling.tv.
> They charged my credit card for a 2nd year without my authorization. I
> contacted them several times but they never acknowledged the problem. Each
> time,I got a automated response that stated they'd be in contact. It never
> happened. I cut off access to that credit card (no refund)and I got an
> email that said my subscription had been canceled effective immediately.
> There was still seven months left on my fully paid subscription. They
> responded by saying that cycling.tv isn't involved with payments and that
> I'd need to handle the matter through a third party. I let them steal the
> money. It wasn't worth the time and expense to chase $25. and they knew
> it.
> I hate missing my race coverage but I'll never subscribe with these
> thieves again.
>
> David


Like many, when they first went live with the site I was really excited. It
quickly became apparent that their technology was not ready for release and
probably not even ready for a late beta. On the positive side their
customer support people seemed eager to work through problems so I tried to
stay with them.

Over time their customer support became nonexistent, had billing
irregularities, and questionable marketing promotions. I had the same
problem as you with them trying to bill my credit card but didn't go through
the hassle of cancelling the card. Because of the TJ Max customer
information theft my bank issued me a new card so I no longer have to worry
about them trying again.

I don't know their funding situation but it seems like they might have been
under funded for the scale of the operation that they were building to.
Hopefully they have enough assets to make them attractive to another company
with designs on the space.
 
Circa Sat, 08 Sep 2007 10:07:53 -0400, "David B."
<[email protected]> typed:

>Just as a head up on cycling.tv.
>They charged my credit card for a 2nd year without my authorization. I
>contacted them several times but they never acknowledged the problem.
>Each time,I got a automated response that stated they'd be in contact.
>It never happened. I cut off access to that credit card (no refund)and
>I got an email that said my subscription had been canceled effective
>immediately. There was still seven months left on my fully paid
>subscription. They responded by saying that cycling.tv isn't involved
>with payments and that I'd need to handle the matter through a third
>party. I let them steal the money. It wasn't worth the time and
>expense to chase $25. and they knew it.
>I hate missing my race coverage but I'll never subscribe with these
>thieves again.
>
>David



Same thing happened to me, then I found out you have to go to PayPal
and end the "subscription" there. Yes, they fooled us (okay, maybe it
was our fault for not reading all the fine print) into setting up an
automatically renewing subscription.

-Brian
 
Kyle Legate <[email protected]> wrote:
> I'm watching it in totem right now. I just clicked through on all the
> warnings and it loaded just fine. Ubuntu 6.10.


Whoopee for Gnome users. xine or Gstreamer backend? What's the stream
address for non-totem users to try? Gobolinux 012.

Thanks,
--
MJ Ray - see/vidu http://mjr.towers.org.uk/email.html
Experienced webmaster-developers for hire http://www.ttllp.co.uk/
Also: statistician, sysadmin, online shop builder, workers co-op.
Writing on koha, debian, sat TV, Kewstoke http://mjr.towers.org.uk/
 
"Frank Drackman" <[email protected]> wrote:
> Hopefully they have enough assets to make them attractive to another company
> with designs on the space.


They were bought by JumpTV recently:
http://www.dtg.org.uk/news/news.php?id=2623

That dashed my hopes that they might fold and release the rights to a
free-to-air broadcaster.

Bah!
--
MJ Ray - see/vidu http://mjr.towers.org.uk/email.html
Free Sat FAQ: http://mjr.towers.org.uk/blog/2006/astefaq
Webmaster/web developer, statistician, sysadmin, online shop maker,
Workers co-op @ Weston-super-Mare, Somerset http://www.ttllp.co.uk/
 

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