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Adware is one of the most common software types in the world today. It has been around ever since the first online businesses developed, because owners found that it is an incredibly lucrative opportunity for their income. As the name suggests, adware revolves around showing advertisements to various users with the idea of boosting the income of its author. There is more than one type available in the world today. The majority of adware is not considered malicious, but most people still regard all forms of this software to be annoying at best.
The Legitimate Side
In most cases, adware is considered as advertisement-supported software. There is a wide array of applications, which employ advertisements during one time or another of their service to the end user. For instance, even official providers like NVidia have advertisements running during their installation processes. This is the most common way to advertise things alongside software. It is also considered the least intrusive, because users choose whether they like to pay mind to the advertisements, and they are not forced upon them. However, there are other types of adware, which are considered less pleasant and sometimes even damaging.
Alternative Forms of Adware
There are other forms of adware, which are still considered legitimate, but they are significantly more intrusive. For instance, there is an abundance of software applications, which have a free and paid side. The paid side is for premium users, who use the software to its full potential, without being bothered by anything. On the other side however, the free versions are supported fully by advertisements. Frequently the operation of the software is paused so that an advertisement can be played. This is a way for software developers, who do not get enough sales, to raise some income for their operation. It is convenient for the developers, but it is deemed highly intrusive by the end users around the world.
There are also many cases in which illegal adware is spotted. In fact, the term adware is most commonly connected to some form of virus or illegal software these days. There is an abundance of applications, which are used to intrude upon the user and start monitoring their activities in the online world. After the information is gathered, the developers of the application can start playing various advertisements on the user’s computer, or within their browser, based on the type of adware. There are cases in which the adware is bundled with toolbars or hijackers, which completely take over the browser of the user.
Means of Entry and Protection
When it comes to entering users’ systems, adware has a diverse method of operation. Most applications will come alongside some sort of freeware, which promotes their services. This is a symbiotic relationship in which the freeware application gets part of the income that the adware provides through advertisements. Apart from that, there are also the so-called legitimate websites, which automatically download the software in the background of the user’s process operation. There are also a variety of Trojans, which are known to install adware on the systems of unsuspecting victims.
As a whole, many methods for protection were developed throughout the years. Basically most adware has the standing of spyware and this is why the bigger anti-spyware solutions out there hold database entries, which can treat the type of threat. Still, the majority of adware programs can also be removed manually through the Windows interface as well.
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