The state of Texas sued Sony BMG, alleging that the company "surreptitiously" installed spyware on personal computers through music CDs with a copy protection program. "Sony has engaged in a technological version of cloak and dagger deceit against consumers by hiding secret files on their computers," said Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott in a statement after suing under the state's anti-spyware law. "Consumers who purchased a Sony CD thought they were buying music. Instead, they received spyware that can damage a computer, subject it to viruses and expose the consumer to possible identity crime." Sony BMG, one of the world's biggest music companies, said last week it was ending the use of the software provided by a third-party vendor and allowing consumers who purchased CDs to exchange them for similar items without the software. The joint venture of Japan's Sony and German-based BMG recalled the CDs after a firestorm of protests and the threat of legal action over its use of the so-called XCP copy protection software. Experts say that when one of the CDs is inserted into a PC, the copy-protection software can modify computer settings and expose computers to a variety of malicious software programs.