Monday, February 27, 2006

Melancholy Monday: The Cyberspies Who "Love" Us

I don't have a lot of time to be blogging this evening. In general, I am having a fantastic day; it is virtually impossible for me to think of something melancholy to say. It started off with a wonderful goodbye kiss from Za, after he had already made coffee (Hello!? Keeper!) It has ended with one of my best friends in the world getting offered a tenure track job at my college. (Woo Hoo!)

Anyway, my friend, Emma, currently recovering from knee surgery on my couch just sent me this FRIGHTENING article from the NYTimes. What bugs me is not so much the fact that thieves have gotten smarter about stealing our money online. What bugs me is that the software with which they do this thieving is sold commercially to women who want to spy on their children or husbands.

Technology for grabbing text and screen images is not new — or particularly sophisticated. Keyloggers are even sold commercially, as tools for keeping an eye on what children are doing online, or what a spouse might be doing in online chat rooms.

Ok. So, maybe it is just me, but Sweet Jesus. If you need to buy software to monitor the activities of your husband, wife, or children, it seems to me that you have problems that exceed the benefits of software. If you cannot trust the people who are closest to you, even your children, then spying on them is certainly not going to improve the relationship.

In the case of a marriage or romantic relationship, if you are spying on your man or woman, you either have to go or get some damn therapy, and quick. If you are spying on your children, then you can kiss any sort of healthy, mature relationship with them "goodbye." If you are spying on them because they are drug abusers or felons, well, then you already know it. But, if you are being one of those insane controlling parents, who monitors every second of your child's life, then expect to be facing a lot of therapy bills for them in the future.

UPDATE: Here is how to start regaining your privacy from cyberspies.