Pop-Up Ads: what are they?
The pop-up ads are small windows that open automatically on the PC user’s screen, displaying advertisements in a new browser. The pop-ups can come in various sizes and shapes with only three commands possible – Minimize, Maximize and Close. The advertising they spread can come from legitimate business or could present software that is not safe to use. The nature of the pop-ups could be dangerous, annoying or useful. They might vary a lot in the different browser commands that show.
The pop-up ads could be part of a phishing campaign that is created to trick the users into presenting personal and even financial information while they are surfing the net. In case the pop-ups start opening when the user is not browsing the net, this means that the computer might be infected with spyware. However, no all pop-ups are dangerous, as some of them are designed to fulfil certain tasks, so the users should be careful when they see a pop-up window.
Some of the pop-ups are used to explain something to the user which is important, but do not wish the user to go out of the main window. There are also pop-ups that come when the user wants to install or to download something.
Pop-up Ads Protection
The Security Essentials of Microsoft is a free program that is designed for the protection of the user’s PC against the pop-ups of dangerous character including viruses, spyware and other types of unwanted software.
The IT experts recommend the usage of a pop-up blocker. This blocker needs to be turned on when the user is browsing and turned off in the very rare cases when a pop-up is needed for the completion of a certain task. These features are usually organized through the Tools button.
How to stop the pop-ups?
The pop-ups are used by the advertisers to trick the users into clicking on the ad. However, the users are quickly annoyed and thus the web browsers have created the so called pop-up blockers.
The most awful pop-ups try to sell anti-virus programs which are fake. These are malware programs and the users should check the Security page of Microsoft to see is the virus alert is true or false.
The pop-ups that are not trustworthy try to make users click on them and this is dangerous. Some of the pop-ups come with a ‘Close’ button but no guarantee is given that the pop-up will be dismissed. Sometimes, this might activate another pop-up or might download a virus. The users should know that it is safer for them to close the pop-up using the Ctrl-W or Alt-F4 keyboard shortcuts or to end the task through the Task Manager.
The PC users should be aware that some of the pop-ups come from malware and not from websites. This malware has been secretly installed on the computer of the user and if so, this computer should be completely cleaned using reputable security software. In case the computer has been used for online shopping or banking, then it is advisable for the passwords to be changed.
Even if annoying, the pop-up ads work for the advertisements and that is why they are still used as a marketing method. The companies, however, should know that people do not like to feel that they have been tricked and thus they should be careful with the pop-up ads.