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Unwanted Ads and Malware on Your Website

This week’s tip is about removing unwanted ads from your website. In the past few weeks, I’ve had questions from clients about advertisements popping up on their websites. Their concern was whether I had put ads on their websites or whether their websites had been hacked. This is a good question and I thought I’d write up a post about it because it happens fairly often. The short answer is that, unless we’ve discussed putting advertisements on your website, you should not have pop-up ads appearing on your site. Most times, the issue is not that there are ads specifically on your website. Instead, your local computer has probably been infected by a virus or malware and you’re seeing pop-ups on many sites — not just on your business website. Here are a couple of examples of what these ads may look like:

Spam adSpam ad

While most times these ads are being generated by malware on your computer, there is a chance your website may have been hacked, so it’s always important to check with your webmaster to verify your site is secure. If the pop-up ads are from malware or a virus, I recommend using Malwarebytes to scan and remove any unwanted programs from your computer. They offer a free and premium version and I’ve always had success with the free version. Depending on the type of infection you have, you may need to take further action to remove the malware/virus.

Image by Bes Z (CC BY 2.0) via flickr

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