One of the effortless ways to make your PC into one messed with various malware and unwanted programs is to grab the free software and apps from the misleading sites. The problem lies in the fact that search engines like Google and Bing can exactly lead you to the sites where you should not go. When you search for software like Adobe Flash Player, Java etc., you will often find the links of the sponsored search results and ads related to your search. These links try their best to secretly and silently install software on your PC which you may not want.
Here we are providing some of the ways you can manage to avoid installing the unwanted software.
- Avoid clicking on the sponsored links
Be very attentive when you click on the link for your desired software. Avoid clicking on the links which are there in the slight yellowish colour boxes, or otherwise implied as ads. Don’t forget that someone is paying for them to be placed there. Moreover, they are doing no good for your benefit.
Note: These sponsored links are restricted only when you are downloading software. They may not suggest the same thing for other types of searches.
- Get your downloads from the best possible source
Try to download the software from the official sites whenever possible. When you are searching for a particular software, try focussing on the URL before you are clicking and make sure that you are getting your software directly from the developer. For example, download Acrobat from adobe.com or iTunes from Apple. If you are not familiar with the developer, you can check the website’s name in the search engine itself. Suppose you want to check the developer of VLC video player, you can search for VLC’s maker’s name or official website in the search bar. It is worth spending some extra time in doing a few research rather than wasting hours to deal with those unwanted programs.
- Make yourself familiar with some trusted websites
Downloading software directly from the developers is always a great option. But there are many dependable sites like Cnet Download.com, FileHippo.com, SourceForge.net and Tucows which have been some of the biggest repositories of the trial or free software and doing the rounds since quite a few years. If you cannot find your search in any of the suggested downloading platforms, then it is questionable that what you are downloading.
- You may still be bogged down by unwanted software
Even if you download things from their official site or from other trusted sites, the unwanted programs or toolbars will still try to make every effort to tag along. They may push something extra with the free install file like adding toolbars and try changing your search or default browser. This is frustrating, but we can at least afford that.
Actually, if you pay a bit of attention, you can avoid having something extra. Don’t click on any user agreements, uncheck the options to skip toolbars and always click the Decline button. Don’t worry, you will still be able to get that program. Apart from this, avoid using the Express Install option as it may push you towards something you don’t need. It has been very often found that clicking the Custom Install option allows the user to find hidden options letting you discard the junk before it makes entry to your device.
- Scroll and go through the list of installed apps
Check your app list whenever possible, at least once in a month. This will allow you to find which app you need and what you don’t. Delete the old apps which you no longer use. Also, uninstall those which you don’t remember or you can’t recognise. You can download it later if you feel it is important.