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House panel approves spyware bill

Cookies are not covered by the bill--something some online advertisers were worried about.

A House of Representatives panel on Wednesday approved a bill to regulate spyware, a move that begins a second attempt to target the problematic class of software after a similar measure died in the Senate in 2004. Last year, the House voted for the so-called Spy Act by a 399 to 1 margin.

This year's version is slightly different. Author Mary Bono, R-Calif., said that it was revised before Wednesday's vote to clarify that cookies, text files saved by Web browsers, are not covered by the bill--something that some online advertisers had worried about.