Many small businesses like to download free software for their office computers. Free software is one of the main sources where adware come from. When adware is installed, it usually has a shortcut on the desktop that allows you to access a shopping mall. It may look like a harmless software but it can serve hundreds of ads that will eventually cause your computer to slow down and crash.
Many adware will install on your computer without your knowledge. They come from a variety of sources especially wallpaper/screensaver download sites and other sites that display a lot of pop ups. You try to close the pop up but the adware is faster than you and already install itself on your computer. Too much adware in your computer can slow down the computer performance. The following are a few ways on how to protect your computer from shady adware.
Only Download Software from Trustworthy Sites
Don’t download any program from a site that you don’t trust. When you run the setup, you will see some checkboxes that are checked by defaults. You should read what these checkboxes are for and decide whether to check or uncheck them. Usually, the checkbox will ask for your permission to install an adware on your computer. Before installing a software, you should read the end user license agreement to find out what you are agreeing to by using their software. Many people prefer convenience and will just keep clicking yes without having any idea on what they are agreeing to about the adware.
Upgrade the Service or Purchase the Software
It is common for free software to come with adware as they need a way to monetize it. If you want to stop seeing ad on the free software, you will have to upgrade and purchase the software.
Avoid Downloading Anything from Torrents
You should avoid downloading anything from sites that are not secure, for example, torrents or sites that offer download of illegal software.
Don’t Visit Sites that are filled with Popups
If you come across a site that keep opening popups, the best thing to do is to quit the site and never visit it again. The longer you stay on the site with pop ups, the more harm it can do to your computer.
Don’t Open the Email Attachments of Your Junk Emails
Every now and then, you will receive junk mails in your inbox. Many junk emails have email attachments. It is important that you don’t download the email attachment because it will trigger the installation of an adware on your computer.
Be Cautious When Interacting with Popups
Some people have the habit of closing all pop ups without reading them. There are also others that would interact with the popup if it sounds good to them. If you are the second type of person, you must practice caution. Before interacting with a pop up ad, first ask yourself if the offer sounds too good to be true. If it looks like a scam, you should not click on the link in the ad.
Turn on Firewall
You can turn on firewall when you are surfing the web. The firewall can detect any process that is trying to collect your sensitive information. It can also detect any download that contain malware or virus. When it detect a threat, it will block it from accessing the system so that the download cannot take place.
Install Antivirus Software
You can install virus scan software to run a scan on the adware. Free virus scan software are usually not effective. The commercial version offers a more comprehensive antivirus protection. The virus scan software can inform you about malware threat so that you can leave the advertising program safely. It can also uninstall dangerous programs that are installed on your computer without your permission.
Install an Adblocker
A better option is to install a reputable adblocker software like Adguard which can automatically block all ads. It can automatically identify ad codes on the webpage and strip them off so that the webpage will be clean with the content that you want to view. Popup blockers can remove almost 90% of the ads you come across when surfing the web. The third party popup blocker is more powerful than the built in pop up blocker in the browser. Adguard can strip off ads on online games and movie streaming sites. It has a whitelist feature that allows you to enter URL of websites you want to see the popups. Get more details at https://adguard.com/en/article/block-pop-ups.html.
Format the Computer
You have the option to format your computer if it is infected with too much adware. Sometimes, the adware files are hidden in different places on the computer and you don’t know how to find it. You may also face issue with uninstalling an adware, for example, the computer freeze when you try to uninstall it. In this case, it will be best to just delete the OS and reinstall it. Before formatting the computer, make sure you backup all important files. In fact, you should backup your files at all time as there is always a chance that you get infected with malware at any time.
Subscribe to a Premium Service
You can subscribe to premium version of a popular service to remove the ads. For example, if you regularly watch movies on YouTube, you can pay for the premium YouTube subscription to have all ads automatically removed.
Don’t Buy Cheap Android Device
Many people complain about seeing a bunch of adware on their cheap Android device. So, next time if you think about saving money on buying a low cost Android, think again because you will have to spend money buying another Android device afterwards. Too much adware on the Android can lead to system being infected with virus. These adware can also steal your sensitive information, for example, activities you do on the device, and any important information you key in. Ideally, you should buy a branded Android device that is manufactured by a reputable company. The Android device you buy should also be equipped with a built-in security feature.