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Wednesday, 27 July 2016 21:20

How To Spot And Avoid Installing Potentially Unwanted Programs Featured

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How to avoid PUPs and other unwanted programs slowing down your PC

PUPs: I'm afraid to say we're not talking about the cuddly, love able little dogs, but rather the kind that will not so adorably clog up your laptop or PC and slow it right down. PUPs, short for potentially unwanted programs, and advertising software (more commonly known as adware) are removed on a day-to-day basis from suspect laptops and home PCs.

Although these days we’re seeing more and more internet-savvy people install antivirus software to help protect their machines, PUPs and adware can slyly avoid detection – so you won’t even realise your PC has been targeted. But never fear: we have a few simple steps to help arm your home system against rogue programs and stop it slowing down.


PUP - 1 to give a real life example, I remember very clearly a conversation I had with my wife over the dinner table about this problem. She wanted to install a specific program but didn't go to an appropriate website to download – and wondered afterwards why a Yahoo toolbar appeared in his web browser. After an intense Q&A session, I explained that by going to an unapproved vendor, the software could have been wrapped up with all these add-ons and in-built adware. In other words, although the original program will be there, it’ll come with added unwanted extras. To avoid this, only download software from legitimate, official websites and avoid clicking on any suspicious-looking links.


PUP - 2 Clicking ‘OK’ is often a bit like reading Ts&Cs: although we know we should pay them proper attention, it’s often easier just to accept them without much thought when we’re busy or in a rush. Some original programs can come with add-ons built into them already, but the difference is that you can choose whether to install them or not. With everything from toolbars to changing your search browser, you should take the time to read every page carefully to make sure you’re not agreeing to anything you don't want or need. Those extra five minutes could help you avoid a few hours of inconvenient meddling!


After slowing down and carefully reading what’s on the pages you’re clicking through, you may come across some small boxes with ticks in already. If they’re asking permission to install add-ons or other adware, you’ll want to uncheck these. By unchecking them you are reducing the risk of slowing your computer down and improving your PC security for the future.


So there you have it: a simple guide on how to avoid any unwanted intruders on your laptop or PC. If your computer is running a bit slow and you think it's due to PUPs or adware, then you could benefit from one of our Laptop & PC Health Check services. Just give us a call and let one of us work their magic.

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