What Exactly Is Adware?

Adware is probably one of the most annoying aspects connected with surfing the internet.

Adware is written in a way which allows it to note which websites a user visits in order to then present them with advertising related to their surfing habits.

If you are being bombarded with adverts whilst browsing the internet, especially pop-ups, then you have most likely been infected with adware.

A plethora of ads is not the only sign that you have adware on your PC though – other symptoms include slower than normal system performance and changes to your internet settings, such as alteration of your ‘home page’.

What-Exactly-Is-Adware

Pros And Cons Of Adware?

Adware is typically bundled with other software and may either be expressly mentioned before downloading of that software commences or, alternatively, covertly included.

Software developers may be see adware as being advantageous to them as it provides a means of income which can go towards their development costs, or allow them to provide future updates to their software at reduced prices or even for nothing.

In some cases the developer may release their product as ‘shareware’ and include an option for the user to upgrade to a paid version of the program which disables the advertising function.

On the other hand, users may be somewhat less impressed by the inclusion of adware in their downloads.

That is because the adware can be extremely annoying at times, leading to disruption of the surfing experience, especially when the program causes multiple pop-ups and pop-unders to be displayed on their machines.

How To Deal With Adware?

As you may expect, programs have been developed to detect, quarantine, and remove a large range of threats and annoyances that can be found online and adware is no exception.

Programs such as Lavasoft’s Ad-Aware have been specifically designed for that singular purpose alone and will not, for example, detect viruses.

Whilst most anti-virus programs will detect spyware the ability to detect and remove adware has been historically less common due to the fear of lawsuits.

For example, Kaspersky were unsuccessfully sued by Zango for blocking access to their material.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

Comments

  1. Do you know where the adware originates from, what program is causing it?

  2. I get adware on my computer and remove it but it keeps on coming back. Any suggestions on how to get rid of it permanently?

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