Everyone’s favorite love-to-hate spyware company Zango has acquired browser based comparison shopping engine Smart Shopper for what we’ve been told by two people related to the company (but unconfirmed directly) for $9 million.
Smart Shopper offers what on the surface appears to be a fairly non-threatening shopping assistant add on for Internet Explorer, however according to a number of sites is really adware that does nothing more than deliver advertisements and is difficult to remove.
Zango has a long history in the spyware business, having faced numerous court challenges over its business tactics whilst attempting to get in on the social networking and social shopping craze. Zango offers free games to MySpace users that according to our July 2006 report, results in users installing a spyware toolbar as well.
Smart Shopper Networks was previously owned by New York based HotBar Inc, another company that comes up as a spyware producer according to a search of Google.