EECA2 writes, Gator eWallet will not be accepted on my computer. Why? Aol Firewall and Spyware eats it up. Windows XP does the same thing. IS THERE a simple alternative? We have tried robo form, and it is too intrusive.
There’s a long history of Gator eWallet delivering a ton of advertising to your computer by keeping track of your personal computer usage habits, although Claria, the makers of Gator, state that they do not attach any usage habits to a particular individual. AOL’s software and many other anti-spyware solutions consider this behavior to be dangerous to you, the user, even though the company that makes the software suggests otherwise. In general, I tend to agree with the anti-spyware companies stance because I don’t like the idea of software that logs everywhere I go on the Internet for the sole purpose of showing me advertising. I prefer using one of several other alternatives when logging onto Web sites or providing my personal information to a Web site.
Why Gator eWallet Collects Web Surfing Habits
To expand a little further on what Gator eWallet does with information collected, Claria also has the GAIN Publishing network, which is the actually data mining service and advertising display technology behind Gator eWallet.
As of Version 7.0 of Gator eWallet, the company says it collects the following:
GAIN collects and stores on its servers anonymous information about your web surfing and computer use. This includes information on how you use the web (including the URL addresses of the web pages you view and how long you view them), non-personally identifiable information you provide on web pages and forms (including the Internet searches you conduct), your response to online ads, what software is on the computer (but no information about the usage or data files associated with the software), system settings, and information about how you use GAIN-Supported Software.
To Deliver GAIN Ads Based on Your Demonstrated Interests. We associate the information GAIN collects to a randomly generated, anonymous ID to create a profile of the categories of products or services that appear to interest you. We may also use information we collect to infer certain demographic information, such as gender, age-range and marital status, and geographic information, such as Zip code/postal code, country and city.
What they don’t explicitly say is whether or not they also track my behavior when doing things like visiting my bank Web site or credit card sites to pay my bills. Anonymous or not, those aren’t the kinds of things I want to share with a company with the sole purpose of marketing products to me because I can’t be certain they aren’t finding out more than I’d really like them to know.
Alternatives to Gator eWallet
I haven’t used Gator eWallet in quite some time because my own trust in the company vanished some time ago. At the time, eWallet was admittedly one of the easiest ways to store passwords and personal info for writing to Web forms. It’s unfortunate no other company has come along and made things equally simple. There are a few solutions which come close.
AccountLogon is the app I use for almost all my Web sign-on activities. It doesn’t automatically fill out things like my address and credit card information when I make a purchase, but I personally don’t feel comfortable trusting that to any software application. With AccountLogon installed, I can automatically store login details for virtually every site I visit online, which means I don’t need to remember passwords or get lazy and use the same password everywhere. Once I add a site to AccountLogon, I simply click on the program icon, select the site from my list of passwords and the app logs me in. I can transfer the data easily to a different PC in an encrypted format, which means my password info is portable without risking having someone else crack the passwords.
Firefox has built in password management for most Websites. Using Firefox instead of the AOL Web browser will result in a much better experience and you get the advantage of storing login info in the browser in a reasonably secure way. This is not an option you want to use on a computer you travel with or on a shared computer, but for a desktop solution, it offers fairly quick results.
If you prefer the experience of Internet Explorer, installing Maxthon gets you a password manager and a number of additional features. The password manager is more useful than the one built into Firefox and also offers a better method for keeping passwords secured.
AI RoboForm is definitely the most well known password management alternative, but I’m like you and don’t particularly like the way it works.