180solutions + Hotbar = Zango

On Wednesday, two infamous adware companies 180solutions and Hotbar announced that they have merged into a new business called Zango. According to security and marketing experts, Zango is now the largest adware company on the Internet.

Well, mergers aren’t something unusual in the business world. So, why the latest merger has earned so much attention from reputable spyware experts? The answer is simple – both 180solutions and Hotbar have been targeted by numerous official complaints for a long time. The companies have been involved in legal fights with well-known security software makers and spyware experts.

Plaintiffs like CDT (Center of Democracy & Technology) sued 180solutions for illegal and deceptive practices of installing unsolicited adware programs to user computers. Observers and spyware researchers have logged numerous incidents related to illegal distribution of 180solutions software.

Hotbar also is not very clean. This company is known for distributing the same-named Internet Explorer search toolbar, which serves commercial pop-ups and advertisements, tracks user Internet activity, downloads and runs arbitrary applications. Although the program was discontinued, thousands of computer users around the world still remember it as annoying adware.

According to the official announcement, “the new Zango will continue to offer consumers an ever-increasing collection of free, sought-after online videos, games, music, tools and utilities through the Hotbar (www.hotbar.com) and Zango (www.zango.com) products.” This means that Zango will continue developing and distributing adware products. Some of them might be installed illegally similarly to some180solutions software. So what is the difference? Zango is still the same 180solutions. Only this time the company is bigger and much more powerful.

It seems that we will see more spyware and adware incidents in the near feature, unless the new Zango will revise its adware distributing practices. We hardly believe?€¦

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