Is Your Computer Safe From Adware?

By: Sandra Stammberger

Computers are 'wonder machines' because they make our life easier. They can organize our bulky files in the office, can be used as a medium in communicating with our relatives and friends on a long-distance basis, and can be a tool in learning different things without even attending a college degree class or a baking class.

However, this metal-and-semiconductor contraption, just like other technological products, also has some vulnerabilities. Through different unknown programs that roam around the World Wide Web, computers are prone to such malfunctioning or even permanent shutdown of its internal system.

One familiar program that is a threat to a computer system is adware. To understand what it is and what damages it can create to your computer, read on.

What is Adware?

There are different definitions of adware, its basic identification, is that it is considered as software. What will make you annoyed is that you have actually downloaded it without realizing that you have done the action. It usually enables pop-up ads (advertisements or anything that comes up when you have entered a certain webpage) as well as banner ads that will be displayed on your computer.

The major trouble that you will encounter with adware is that too much of it will make your computer run slowly and displaying the downloaded page incorrectly. Much worse, your system will not run correctly.

Adware also disguises as free downloads, where it will provide a dialogue box or other method of installation that will lure you to avail of whatever it is offering. Once downloaded, the dilemma in your system will start!

Is Adware Present in your Computer System?

Computers connected to the internet for a long period are likely to acquire adware. How can you check if your computer is infected? For instance, you have been browsing the internet and downloading some programs directly from a website, and then a “free screensaver download” advertisement popped up. Either you actually downloaded it or not, it will make a way to “install” itself to your system. In that way, it is already affected by adware.

Let us say at that time, you are also running two programs. Maybe you will notice that your computer runs slowly, retrieving every program at a slower rate. That is now the effect of adware.

Protect your Computer

As stressed, computers connected in the internet are always subjected to adware. Your computer is not safe from this, and you need to take some precautionary measures to protect your system. You can check the following items to help you protect your system:

• Purchase a comprehensive software program that will protect your computer, such as an adware blocker. This will provide your computer the necessary protection. For instance, you have unknowingly downloaded something that seems to be adware. The adware blocker will alert you that you have downloaded such and will ask whether you want to install the adware program or delete it..

• Always remember that there is no such thing as “free”. "Free" downloads in most cases contain adware. So as much as possible, avoid downloading free stuff.

• Make sure that the security settings of your internet browser is configured correctly. These can prevent adware and other harmful software from automatically downloading..

• Never click on pop-up ads. Make it as a rule. Control yourself to click even a single pop-up ad—or make your system go nuts.

Get rid of adware and always be careful when you are browsing the web!

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S. Stammberger is the editor of Instant Spyware Remover. Learn everything about spyware, adware, viruses and worms and find out how to protect your computer.

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