While browsing your favorite website, you are suddenly redirected to some random irrelevant webpages out of nowhere. If such a thing is frequently happening with you without any initiation from your side, then there is a possibility that an Adware has got its hands on your system.
This guide would discuss what an Adware is and how to remove it from your Windows 10 device altogether. Further, we would walk through some tips to avoid Adware.
What is Adware?
Windows 10 is one of the most advanced and secure operating systems, equipped with a built-in security program. However, since cybercriminals are also getting advanced, there is no end to the threats. One such threat is the Adware. An Adware, which is short for Advertising-supported Software, is a malicious application or extension that automatically displays the unwanted, irrelevant ads while you are browsing the internet or running a program. Usually, the ads are in the form of pop-ups, which are highly irritating as they take up the screen space and are generally inappropriate. Adware also automatically redirects users to random websites.
The worst part is, even after continuously closing the pop-ups and webpages, they keep coming back and continue troubling the user. It is because the malicious program, i.e., the Adware, is still in the system.
The most common ways Adware get into the system is through malicious web extensions, infected programs, bundled software, freeware programs, and more such means. It can also present in a legit application that is downloaded from the unofficial sources.
It is essential to get rid of the system’s Adware programs through pop-ups and redirections; they can introduce more destructive malware programs into the system such as Trojans, Ransomware, Spyware, and others.
How to remove Adware from Windows 10?
Now let us list the top ways to get rid of Adware programs and secure our Windows 10 system.
Use Antimalware Programs
If you suspect an Adware has entered your device, the first thing you should do is thoroughly scan your system with the adware removal antimalware program. You can perform the scan with the Windows 10 in-built security program – Microsoft Defender, or get an extensive antimalware application like Malwarefox.
Restart System in Safe Mode
To find out the culprit application or the extension, which is causing the pop-ups and ad redirections, Windows 10 Safe Mode is the perfect environment. When you reboot your system in the Safe Mode, except system applications and some essential apps, all others would be disabled, making it easy to catch the accused program.
Here is how you can enter the Safe Mode in Windows 10:
- Click on the Windows icon to open the Start Menu, then choose the Power icon.
- While holding the Shift key on the keyboard, click on the Restart Keep holding the Shift key until the blue screen menu comes up.
- Select Troubleshoot, then navigate to Advanced options -> Startup settings.
- Reboot the system in the Safe Mode by pressing either of F4, F5, or F6 keys.
Uninstall the Suspicious Applications
The ad bombarding might have started after you have recently installed an application. It can also occur because of previously installed applications. So, you have first to identify the suspect applications and then remove them.
- Right-click on the Windows taskbar, and from the list, select Task Manager.
- Now check out the applications from the list and look for the one who is consuming the high computation power, even though you never installed it.
- If you find any application suspicious, right-click on it, and open its file location.
- Delete the file and its containing folder.
- Next, open Control Panel, and navigate to Uninstall a program.
- One by one, uninstall all the recently installed and other suspicious applications.
Remove the malicious Web Extensions.
Infected web extensions are one of the primary sources for the adware infection. It is a possibility that you might have installed an infected web app or extension. If you have many web extensions installed on your browser, it is the right time to review them and remove the suspicious ones.
Here are the steps to remove the web extension from the Chrome browser. You can look for similar steps for the other browsers.
- Open the Chrome Browser and click on the three dots at the top-right corner.
- Hover the mouse over More Tools and then choose Extensions.
- The page will now display all the web extensions that you have installed on your system.
- Check for the suspicious one and Delete or Disable it.
Delete the Temporary Files
Temporary files are the system residue that unnecessarily occupies the hard disk space. The folder that contains the temporary files can also hide the malware program such as Adware in it. Since they are of no use, temporary files must be cleaned regularly from the system.
- Press the Windows + R keys together to open the Run Command Box.
- Type %temp% in the blank space and press the enter key. It would navigate you to the Temp folder.
- Press Ctrl + A to select all the files and folders of the Temp folder and delete them all.
- Next, empty the Recycle Bin.
Reset Web Browser Settings
If still, the Ads are attacking your browser, the last option is to reset its settings. To reset the Chrome Browser settings, follow these steps.
- Open the Chrome Browser.
- Click on the three dots at the top-right corner and navigate to Settings.
- Scroll down and click on Advanced to open advanced settings.
- Under the heading Reset and cleanup, select “Restore settings to their original defaults.”
- Click on Reset Settings when prompted.
How to Avoid Adware Programs?
With the increase in online activities, it becomes more than essential to protect your system from the adware programs. Here are the few tips for that.
- Always be mindful of the sources from where you are downloading the applications. It is better to get the apps only from trusted sites.
- Use browser Adblockers.
- Most freeware programs are malware carriers. Always be attentive while downloading them.
- If you require software but doubt its legitimacy, just Google search the query, and you would get the reviews.
- Avoid opening emails and attachments from unknown sources.
- If you try to do illegal things such as downloading any file from torrent sites or purchasing from the online black market, there are greater chances of malware infection.