Security Issues: AdWare

For this week’s One-Minute Wednesday, Sebastian Igreti will be talking about AdWare. Watch the episode to learn more about what AdWare is, why you don’t want it on your computer, and (most importantly) how to avoid it!

Avoiding AdWare

We’re all used to seeing online ads, and most of the time they’re fairly innocuous. However, many people aren’t as familiar with AdWare, a form of malicious software that automatically renders ads on your computer. At best, this kind of software will slow down your computer, and at worst, it can open up vulnerabilities for nastier viruses and other forms of malware.

Here are some tips for keeping AdWare off your machine:

  • Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited and outlandish e-mails, especially if it’s not coming from a trusted sender. Clicking on an unknown link can take you to a download page, where malicious hackers can install malware on your computer.
  • Avoid clicking on pop-up ads. Pop-ups can function in the same way as unsolicited e-mails, installing malware as soon as you click on them.
  • Watch out for anti-spyware scams. These tools offer free virus scans that usually identify hundreds of fake viruses on your computer. They’ll then ask you to purchase their bogus product in order to remove the fake malware from your computer.
  • Only download files from known and reputable sites. Large companies like Amazon are unlikely to install unwanted AdWare, but smaller, unknown companies may be less trustworthy.

Above all, be careful and think before you click! Most emails and websites are completely legitimate, but it only takes one click on a malicious link to get you into trouble.

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