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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador Rick McGrath's Avatar
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    Beloit WI
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    So what's the deal with Huntbar?

    I'd seen NorthernStudio mention them in a thread about a different utility and I'd seen Dynamoo post this URL about them elsewhere still.
    http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite/HuntBar.html

    Looks very suspicious to me. I want them out if they're simply diverting affiliate or my own traffic. I've submited this info to the CJ compliance team for their opinion.
    Rick

    quote:
    Originally posted by NorthernStudio:
    Huntbar was recently featured as one of Amazon's Associates "Movers and Shakers."

    Wayne


    Rick McGrath
    Partner Development
    JC Whitney & Co.
    affiliatehelp@JCWhitney.com
    800-863-4227 ext. 5681
    AIM: RickJCWhitney

  2. #2
    Newbie
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    January 18th, 2005
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    15
    Since when was a search hijacker up to any good? Plus the way they use page titles and keywords in a copyright violation.

    PS. If this gets held up in a mod queue for hours like all the other meassages, I'll resend it private. But you ought to know - a lot of posts to you aren't getting through, Rick.

    'Tis a beautiful thing to eat everything, then pig out afterwards.'

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
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    1,663
    Rick,

    It's described as a "search-hijacker." I never installed this toolbar but I think I was infected with a variant of what is described in the link in your post. Every few google searches would open a new window with related search results from totally different search engine. Spybot Search & Destroy removed it.

    Doxsoft describes several versions of it. The doxsoft site http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite/ offers a wealth of information about various parasites and their removal as well as a script that I run on my websites to detect infected browsers.

    I'm glad you're looking at this toolbar. Amazon still makes mention of it as an associate site. I think it's funny that Amazon's page for Huntbar also displays sponsored links for Huntbar Removal and other spyware removers.

    Wayne

  4. #4
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    January 18th, 2005
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    St Clair Shores MI.
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    17,328
    OK here goes post # 7000. Hope I don't self destruct. We all know JCW's and Chris's stand on keeping their programs 100% parasite free. Their CJ network reps know this and offer ZERO assistance on pin-pointing BHO potential parasites to them. The other networks are just as guilty as they either refuse to identify the BHO theftware affiliates, or offer them merchnat status to perform drive-by installs.

    HuntBar affiliate program: Add a FREE Search Engine to your Web site in less than 10 minutes and get paid on every click. Our search facility queries every major pay-per-click engine available earning you up to 50% of the click-through revenue. Plus you'll earn 15% on your second tier.

    The crime is the networks allowed this one, and hundreds of other BHO theftware affiliates, to openly steal commissions during the 2002 Christmas season. They also refuse to not take their cut of the BHO thievery as they allow these common thieves to grow their base of infected systems. Putting out a list of BHO affiliates/pseudo merchants is nothing more for the networks than checking their Super/Duper affiliate rollodex list. If Afftrac's Wayne wanted too he could have provide most on his BHO client list at the Nov 7th CoC kickoff meeting. Wayne's standard speel on BHO's is just "don't partner with those merchants who monitize them". Under his breath he hides his theftware clients and seeks afftrac sales into all their new clones.

    Wake up networks and immediately help your merchant AM's and millions of affiliates identify those running any questionable BHO programs. Blindly striking at hissing snakes in a dark network cave is not in the job profile of an affiliate manager.

    For JC Whitney and other ABW merchant posters here's the scoop on Huntbar and their clones and how they are welcomed weasels in the network ranks.

    _______________________
    Description
    HuntBar is a search-hijacker from Traffic Syndicate (controlling server dst.trafficsyndicate.com), with various additional features depending on version.

    Variants
    HuntBar/TS is the original version, also providing an IE toolbar with search features.

    HuntBar/Side is an addition to HuntBar/TS which also pops open a search sidebar pointed at its own results when it detects you using search engines.

    HuntBar/MSLink is a development of HuntBar/Side dropping the toolbar from HuntBar/TS and adding the ability to redirect you instantly when browing targeting web pages. This is typically used to hijack affiliate fees from merchant sites.

    HuntBar/BTLink is an updated version of MSLink.

    HuntBar/MSIn and HuntBar/BTIn are installer controls for both the MSLink and BTLink variants.

    HuntBar/SToolbar also tries to hijack your homepage to WebSearch.com, and copies searches you make in known search engines to the search field in the toolbar as you type.

    HuntBar/QDow is a small downloader ActiveX control used to load HuntBar/BTIn.

    Distribution
    Through ActiveX drive-by-download at affiliate sites, including pop-up advertising served by trafficsyndicate.com.

    TrafficSyndicate, the makers of HuntBar, offer 'co-branded' versions of HuntBar which may be installed by other sites under a different name. Known partner sites include bullseyesgames.com and side-search.com.

    What it does
    Advertising
    No.

    Privacy violation
    HuntBar/TS sends the domain name of the site being viewed, the domain name of any site previously being viewed and the title and any keywords in the current page to its controlling servers whenever a new site is viewed. It does this even if the toolbar is not turned on.

    HuntBar/Side, MSLink, BTLink and SToolbar send URLs and search terms used to its controlling servers with a unique ID allowing your search engine usage to be tracked.

    Security issues
    Yes. HuntBar/TS, MSIn and BTIn can silently download and execute arbitrary code, as an update feature.

    Stability problems
    HuntBar/BTLink and SToolbar seems to cause IE to crash often on some setups with an 'Exception E Access Violation'.

    Removal
    TrafficSyndicate offer two uninstaller files for HuntBar/TS, which have been reported not to work properly.

    HuntBar/Side may put an entry called 'MSIETS' in the Control Panel's Add/Remove Programs option, which should remove this variant.

    HuntBar/MSLink and HuntBar/BTLink have two entries in the Control Panel's Add/Remove Programs option, called 'Internet 404' and 'Tools for Internet Explorer'. Both entries (which also demand an internet connection to work) must be removed to get rid of these variants, but it will leave the files intact and still won't remove the MSIn or BTIn installer, which can reinstall the software automatically in the future.

    HuntBar/SToolbar puts an entry called 'Search Toolbar' in Add/Remove Programs, which should work (though it requires an internet connection).

    Ad-Aware reffile and Spybot S&D can remove HuntBar variants other than BTLink, BTIn and SToolbar.

    Manual removal
    Open a DOS command prompt window (from Start->Programs->Accessories), and enter the following commands (for HuntBar/TS):

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u "\Program Files\Common Files\MSIETS\msiets.dll"
    For HuntBar/Side and HuntBar/MSLink, enter:

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u "\Program Files\Common Files\MSIETS\msielink.dll"
    For HuntBar/BTLink, enter:

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u "\Program Files\Common Files\BTLINK\btlink.dll"
    For HuntBar/MSIn, enter:

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u msiein.dll
    For HuntBar/BTIn, enter:

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u btiein.dll
    For HuntBar/SToolbar, enter:

    cd "%WinDir%\System"
    regsvr32 /u "\Program Files\Search Toolbar\SToolbar.dll"
    (Users of non-English verions of Windows will need to change 'Program Files' and 'Common Files' in the above commands to the name of the these folders in the language Windows was installed in.)

    Having done this you can restart the machine and delete the folder 'Common Files\MSIETS' (TS, Side, MSLink variants), 'Common Files\BTLINK' (BTLink variant) or 'Search Toolber' (SToolbar variant) from the Program Files folder.

    Inside the System folder (which is inside the Windows folder, called 'System' under Windows 95/98/Me or 'System32' under Windows NT/2000/XP), you can delete the file 'msiein.dll' (MSIn variant) or 'btiein.dll' (BTIn variant).

    To clean up, you can also open 'Downloaded Program Files' in the Windows folder and delete the entry '{8A05273A-2EA5-42DE-AA75-59EA7D9D50D7}', '{59450DB0-341D-4436-B380-B8377D8B6796}', '{D6E66235-7AA6-44ED-A06C-6F2033B1D993}' or '{26E8361F-BCE7-4F75-A347-98C88B418322}'.

    You can also open the registry (Start->Run->regedit), find the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER and delete the subkey 'MSIETS' (TS, Side variants), 'MSIEIN' (MSIn variant), 'BTIEIN' (BTIn variant), 'BTLINK' (BTLink variant) or 'Search Toolbar' (SToolbar variant).

    After removing the software you may want to delete the shortcuts the HuntBar/Side and TS variants add to the desktop, start menu and favourites menu, and reset your search and home pages back to normal (Tools->Internet Options->Programs->Reset Web Settings).

    Links
    HuntBar portal
    TrafficSyndicate (First Cash Reserve, LLC), makers of HuntBar

    http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite/HuntBar.html

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Rick McGrath's Avatar
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    ???
    Tom, are you saying that you and/or others have been trying to reach me and have been unable to?
    Rick

    quote:
    Originally posted by Tom's Webcam:
    But you ought to know - a lot of posts to you aren't getting through, Rick.



    Rick McGrath
    Partner Development
    JC Whitney & Co.
    affiliatehelp@JCWhitney.com
    800-863-4227 ext. 5681
    AIM: RickJCWhitney

    [This message was edited by Rick - JC Whitney on September 02, 2003 at 07:21 PM.]

  6. #6
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    January 18th, 2005
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    New York
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    Rick,

    Toms Webcam is a new username for a member that has been banned from ABW, as well as two other boards. I have the person on moderation as I was willing to allow them to contribute, but only if the posts were productive. After seeing some more of this person's posts, I've decided to implement an IP Bann.

    Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli


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