What is adware?

Adware stands for “advertising software”, a program that displays banner ads and/or pop-ups on devices without permission.

Adware distinguishes itself from your typical in-product ads, in-app banners, and service-supported ads in the following ways:

  • The software, which displays the ads, was installed without your explicit consent (often unnoticed during the installation process).
  • The adware hijacks your web browser and redirects you to third party websites.
  • Sensitive information related to your web browsing and purchasing habits is collected without your knowledge and consent.

How adware spreads

Adware is usually installed by users or bundled with other software (in exchange for using free software or as a default install option).

What is it after?

Adware generates money for those who control them either directly via purchases of advertised products, or indirectly via the sale of collected information and resold to ad networks. In certain cases, adware can redirect to malicious websites, in which case, it is referred to as malvertising.

The harmful by-products of adware include slowing down your computer, hogging your bandwidth, invading your privacy, and potentially redirecting you to malicious websites.

How to remove adware

Avira Free Antivirus protects you from adware.