How do we classify lies?

As well as being categorized as successful or unsuccessful by reference to outcome, lies can be classified in terms of the intentions of the liar. From this standpoint, lies are often referred to as white, social or altruistic if the intentions of the liar intends to do harm. Protective lies may be constructed to shield the interests of some other person, who may or may not be the dupe, but they are often designed to protect the liar, without necessarily harming anyone.

--J. A. Barnes.