Thursday, 25 April 2013

How to remove, removal instructions

This page contains removal instructions for pop-up ads. Please use this guide to remove and any associated adware/tracking cookies from your computer. Cookies: we’ve all heard of them but what are they, where are they, what do they do and most importantly of all; are they good or bad or do they just sound kind of tasty!?

Read on as we’ll attempt to explain everything you need to know about these mysterious sounding tracking cookies and also about web trackers in general.

First of all; what is a cookie? A cookie is a little file which has been stored on your hard drive by a web server. If that sounds a little technical, put simply, web servers host websites and if you have just visited a site that has cookies, then the server will have stored one on your computer. But why? And what does a cookie do? Cookies collect and store information about your visit to that site – this might be data about when you last visited the site, it might be your name and address if you entered them into an online form – perhaps, say, when you were booking a hotel room – it may also store data about which pages you visited and which products you showed interest in by clicking on. popup displayed on the infected computer. I installed a potentially unwanted web browser extension and after a few minutes similar pop-ups began to show up on my computer.

Other information collected by the cookie may include what time you visited the website, which internet browser you use (i.e. Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome etc.) or your IP address – the unique number that identifies your computer when it is connected to the internet.

If this all sounds a little ominous, there is no cause for alarm as cookies are harmless. The technology used to create them means that they are a simple text file which cannot be read by anyone other than the owners of the website in question and they cannot be used as a means of accessing files on your hard drive or otherwise damaging your operating system.

From remembering items you’ve placed in your shopping cart when buying online, to allowing you to customize your home page so that you see the latest weather report in your chosen city, to remembering user ID’s and passwords when you log in to websites you use often, cookies are there to make your user experience a more convenient one. And of course, the more convenient and personalized a website is, the more likely you’ll be to go back and visit it.

Some people are quite rightly concerned about online privacy and these days it’s just as well to be cautious when entering personal information over the internet, although cookies are agreed by experts to be safe. There is, however, a slightly different type of cookie which is also something to be aware of and this is called a tracking cookie – also known as a third party cookie. This is a cookie that has been stored on your computer’s hard drive by a web server hosting a website that is merely affiliated with one that you have visited by choice. In the majority of cases, this will be a company that provides adverts for a large number of websites. In this particular case it's which is run by AppNexus.

Companies who use tracking cookies do so in order to create a picture of how you surf the web: which types of sites you visit and so forth. The good news is that they are not able to track each and every site that you visit – only the ones that have their adverts on a site. You may find that some users say they got infected with virus. The problem is that some of its clients try to increase revenue by displaying popup ads on users's machines, and of course what they will see is an ad loaded from ad server. Sometimes, AppNexus web tracking servers experience technical difficulties or can't properly serve ads, this is when waiting for information may appear at the bottom of your web browser. Some users think that maybe there's something suspicious going on and someone is trying to loads malware on their computers. Don't worry, it's not a virus. It simply tries to load ads from one of its web servers, for instance, and many others.

It could be argued that this is an invasion of your privacy however, just like regular cookies, they are still text files and are not created with technology that allows them to view or capture files from your hard drive - and they definitely are not able to install malicious software that steals personal data or infect your PC with a virus.

It is inevitable that you end up with tracking cookies on your computer if you spend any amount of time browsing the web but there is no real cause for concern as they can easily be deleted from your system. If you are not sure where to find cookies on your computer, please follow the removal instructions below.

You can also prevent both cookies and tracking cookies from being stored on your PC in the first place. Your browser will have options which allow you to change the cookie settings but because cookies are convenient and do enhance your user experience it’s not really recommended to turn them off completely so you might prefer to still allow normal cookies but turn off third party tracking cookies. Turning off the third-party cookies should not affect your ability to customize your home page or stop websites you use frequently from loading conveniently stored data such as your name, address and telephone number if you are shopping online or making a booking.

So to summarize, cookies are not dangerous, they do not steal files, they do not install malware and they can only be read by the website owners that they belong to. Tracking cookies are also harmless and both types can be deleted from your computer or turned off according to how you feel about them.

If you are having popups on your computer, please follow the removal instructions below. Very often, it's a sing that your computer is infected with adware or potentially unwanted application. If you have any other questions or maybe you would like to share the removal method that worked for you, please leave a comment below. Good luck and be safe online!

Written by Michael Kaur, removal instructions:

1. First of all, download recommended anti-malware software and run a full system scan. It will detect and remove this infection from your computer. You may then follow the manual removal instructions below to remove the leftover traces of this browser hijacker. Hopefully you won't have to do that.

2. Uninstall recently installed web browser toolbars and other web browser add-ons. You should also remove recently installed software, especially freeware and shareware because there's a good chance that the popups and redirects you are experiencing are caused by either these programs or web browser add-ons that came with them.

3. Opt out of interest-based advertising, see this:

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