While this is mentioned at Slashdot, it apparently hit the site as "older stuff", below the fold, and isn't readily visible on the main page. I'm relaying it here as I believe it deserves coverage.
Netscape is using SmartDownload to eavesdrop," says the complaint. "It is using SmartDownload to intercept and to send to defendants information about a communication to which defendants are not a party." AOL has yet to comment on the lawsuit.
Allegations are just that -- unproven statements. I've tended to avoid Smart Download myself mostly because tools like wget work better (it doesn't crash ;-), but I've also wondered just how "smart" the tool was. Perhaps too much for its own -- or my -- good?
From its webpage, Abbey, Gardy, & Squitieri are a law firm specializing in class action cases, generally accepting them on contingency. A recent cases list includes claims against Baker-Hughes, Inc., JDN Realty Corporation, Legato Systems, Inc., Microstrategy Inc., and Peapod, Inc, all of which involve alleged securities violations (most appear to be shareholder/stockholder class action suits).
Does anyone have confirming evidence, say nmap, ntop, or other network scanning tool output, to verify that there is indeed backstream traffic to AOL or another site unrelated to a specific download? Is this a germain legal complaint against AOL?
What sorts of data collection should or should not be allowed, and with what degree of user notification? Are lawsuites the right way to go about securing protections?