Malware Spotlight: What is adware?


Face it — we’ve all been there. You’re blissfully surfing away on the internet and then suddenly your web browser starts popping up windows for advertisements out of seemingly nowhere. Your PC suddenly starts performing much more slowly and whenever you’re online, you keep seeing those same advertisements. 

Welcome to the world of adware. It’s annoying at first, but it can also be what ultimately allows attackers to run your once-trusty system into the proverbial ground. 

This article will detail what adware is, a little about how it works and some common types of adware. We’ll also provide some tips for how to protect against and remove adware from your system.

What is adware?

Adware refers to advertising-supported malware. This is malware that displays advertisements on computers and can change browser search results in order to generate money for the adware creators with user clicks. It can also collect marketing data about the user that it victimizes. 

These software applications can be automatically downloaded from just clicking around an infected website. Adware can even piggyback onto other applications and software you install. 

While not quite is dangerous and destructive as worms, Trojans, ransomware and other viruses, adware is a serious concern that all computer users need to address at some point. Otherwise, their system will soon be a money-generating slave system for the adware creators.

Adware detections have been decreasing in recent years, according to a recent report from Malwarebytes, but this does not lessen the threat. This is based on the very driving force of the internet — the financial forces of advertising. Attackers know this value well and are still ready, willing and able to dedicate a substantial amount of their cybercrimes to distributing adware.

What’s so scary about this big bad wolf?

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*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from Infosec Resources authored by Greg Belding. Read the original post at: