In the past year, the Federal Trade Commission reached settlements with spammers, adware distributors and Sony BMG Music \tEntertainment over its distribution of rootkit software. FTC Chairwoman Deborah Platt Majoras recently talked to Robert \tMcMillan to discuss online advertisers\u2019 role in the adware and spyware. CSO: Money is making its way to U.S.-based spyware vendors, hosting providers and advertisers. What can the FTC do? \tDeborah Platt Majoras: I spoke [recently] to a corporate council. I told them that corporate America ought to do a better \tjob of figuring out where their ad dollars are going. Because what we think is that some of the ad dollars are making their \tway to adware providers who may be providing the software without the consumer\u2019s knowledge and consent. And these \tcompanies may not even know about it. \tIf I were a company, I wouldn\u2019t think that having a consumer bombarded with pop-up ads advertising my product would \tbe a great way to sell. \tWe want companies to have a better understanding of where these advertising dollars are going, so in a couple of our \thigh-profile spyware cases, like the one against Zango [a $3 million settlement], we tried to be very public. You settled with Sony over its use of rootkit technology. Do you expect more conflicts between intellectual property and end users\u2019 rights? \tIt\u2019s not that [Sony] endeavored to protect their intellectual property, which they\u2019re entitled to do, \tit\u2019s that they didn\u2019t tell consumers what they were doing. We felt that how a consumer could use the CDs, \twhere the music could be played ultimately, and whether or not their habits were being monitored, those were things \tthat consumers would want to know about before they made their purchase. As we look at principles that we\u2019re \tapplying in spyware and the like, the first principle is that the computer belongs to the user, not to the software \tdistributor.