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Pop-up ads and spyware

Have you ever had an advertisement “pop-up” on your computer when you are browsing the Internet? Or, when you close your browser other browser windows are open that you did not open?

When viewing a website, a pop-up ad may display and it looks like the site being viewing initiated the advertisement. However, this is not necessarily the case. These pop-ups can be created by another website or initiated by software that you have installed on your computer. Most people are unaware that the pop-up ad has no connection with the website they are viewing.

Freeware, shareware, and multimedia players that you can install from the Internet may contain code that tracks your surfing habits and displays content, such as pop-up ads. Examples of this type of “spyware” software are Gator and Kazza.

How do you stop pop-up ads and protect your privacy?

The best recommendation we can provide is to become informed. Do an Internet search using the keywords “spyware”' or “pop-up ads” to find out more information so you can protect yourself.

Other steps you can take:

  • Delete your browser cookies on a regular basis
  • Review the terms of agreement when installing new software.
  • Install pop-up blocker and/or anti-spyware tools on your computer.

These steps may not completely eliminate unwanted advertising and exchange of your private information but it should help reduce the problem.

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