ViewSmart by ViewFour.com is Web-based software that visually displays search results found in Google, MSN, eBay, and other search/e-commerce engines in a multi window environment (2-50). By visually displaying results you get to see your searches rather than having to click back and forth through them. This slick new method of searching the Web also removes the potential dangers of surfing the NET. The software scans each Web page prior to displaying it and stops all hidden and or malicious files from being automatically downloaded without your knowledge. If a page fails the scan, a large red border and stop sign will appear around the window. This means you are protected from contracting viruses, adware, spyware, and other forms of malware while surfing the Web.
By 'shilling', I mean they created multiple accounts, one that posted about it, then others that followed up a while later, saying how great it was. A few quick searches confirmed that they have been doing this all over the place, including on their own Blog and Download.com product page (using some of the same user names). The co-founder of the site, SSHGuru, a self described ex-lawyer, also runs a site which sells people access to his stock tips for a monthly fee... all-in-all something doesn't smell right.
The search engine itself is buggy, having crashed Firefox 1.06 on my first search attempt, immediately after a failed attempt to open a pop-up window...
I know nothing about the ViewSmart software, as I wont dare download/install it. I have searched various security forums/lists and find no mention of this software anywhere, either as a spyware blocker or as spyware itself. Which obviously seems odd, if it really does what it claims it does.
Does anyone know whether this program is useful/safe (albeit associated with a buggy search engine and questionable marketing practices)? If not, anyone have a safe sandbox they can download this into an see what it is/does?
Edited by akp, 28 July 2005 - 04:12 AM.