People in Washington who bought the software program QuikShield Security may be getting some money. The attorney general's office has settled allegations that a New York man sold the software through pop-up advertising that appeared to look like alerts from Internet Explorer -- a method that is illegal in the state.
After a three-month investigation by a high-tech unit within the AG's consumer protection office, the man -- James Lane -- has agreed to fully reimburse Washington consumers who bought the program. Lane hasn't admitted to any fault in the agreement, though.
Here's what the smarmy pop-up ad said: "Security alert -- your computer is vulnerable to receiving excessive popup ads. Would you like to install a popup blocker to prevent popup ads from appearing on your screen?"
As if that wasn't bad enough, any attempt to close the ad launched a Web site offering to install QuikShield free. Anyone agreeing to that opened their computers to numerous additional pop-ups that resembled critical system warnings.
If you purchased QuikShield, you can request a refund in the next 45 days by filing a complaint with the AG's office. (You can file that online). You can also call 1-800-551-4636.