Adware is a type of software that displays advertising when you use your computer. It can be difficult to remove, and most people don’t even know they have it. But did you know that adware isn’t just limited to displaying ads on your computer?
Many types of adware are capable of tracking what you do on the web and then reporting back to advertisers who want to target their ads specifically for your demographic.
What does AdWare do?
- It tracks everything someone does online in order show them more relevant advertisements than would be shown by standard algorithms; these “relevant” ads are often malicious in nature.
- It collects your browsing history, which can be stored on a server that is usually located outside of the country where you live and sold to interested third parties – this is sometimes called data leakage.
- Adware may collect information about users’ personal identity like their name, email address, phone number or home address without them knowing it. This type of adware can also just gather random bits of information from someone’s computer as they browse online; these pieces could then be used for marketing purposes such as building an advertising profile based off what kind of interests they have (e.g., “This person likes Starbucks”).
Steps to prevent adware
- Check to see if the website you’re browsing has an adware plugin from a third party. If it does, do not continue to browse that site because this is what prompted your browser to register as being on the same domain and allowed them access to all of your information without notification – this will also lead to data leakage.
- Look for settings like “Accept cookies” or “Allow sites personalization,” which are often set by default depending on the web browser’s configuration. If they’re enabled, disable these options in order avoid giving websites permission over your browsing habits.
- Use a reputable anti-virus program such as Avast or AVG AntiVirus and keep up with security updates so other threats don’t crop up.
- Do not use public Wifi without a VPN service like Hotspot Shield or TunnelBear in order to protect your browsing habits from possible hackers who can intercept data packets and steal personal information.