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Google is to present warnings to users when visiting sites suspected of distributing malware.

The project, resulting from collaboration with StopBadware.org, will pop-up a warning whenever a user clicks a link through Google to a site which has been found to carry spyware or other malicious items.

While current warnings are general in scope, StopBadware.org hopes to host more detailed information in the next couple of months. Google will redirect users to StopBadware.org’s database of suspicious websites.

"Hopefully this next step will bring us that much closer to fulfilling our mission of providing people with reliable, objective information about downloadable applications in order to help them make better choices," an employee wrote on the StopBadware blog.

StopBadware.org is a self-styled "neighbourhood watch" campaign to reduce the spread of malware, by providing users more information on spyware and the sites which distribute it.

Established by the Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center and Oxford Unversity’s Oxford Internet Institute, the project has won support from major technology firms such as Google, Sun and IBM PC trademark holder Lenovo.