There are two basic forms of adware.
This article is going to describe the safe and secure kind and then the Adware that is malicious.
Both developed and evolved over time, generally following the same basic patter of evolution and quite often they came from the same places. The following article takes a look at the way the more legitimate adware came to be.
It Originated From Freeware Applications
Adware came into existence a long while ago with the popularization of what is known as freeware. Freeware is that software that is offered to anybody with no strings attached.
There is no charge for it and there is no expiry date guarding the length of time the features will be active.
Some software developers started attaching that one little string of code, though. That string is, of course, the advertisements (Adware).
The ads were placed there because developers saw it as a chance to make money and support themselves without having to charge the users to buy their product. It also prevented the need to fear piracy, as in the long run the mass copying of their software would work out in their favour due to the broadening of the user base that saw the ads.
Used As Advertising From Third Party Companies
For the most part, developers had the ads managed by third party companies. These companies developed the adware that was eventually built into the free software.
For the most part, the smaller software developers had nothing to do with the ads and merely picked up a portion of the revenues that resulted from people clicking through the ads in their programs.
Used To Start Spying On Those Using The Applications
What was soon discovered though, was that the companies that managed the ad delivery systems were essentially spying on the people that ended up using the software. This wasn’t always the case, of course, but it was the case a great deal of the time.
Privacy advocate groups and individual users alike were up in arms about this and practices began to change.
When it comes to invading privacy though, it’s important to realize just what kind of invasion it was. Right or wrong, the privacy invasion of adware generally consisted of tracking what ads were clicked and often what websites were visited so as to better determine what ads to display.
At the end of the day, there was no actual identifying information to go along with this for people to see.
These days Adware like that does still exist but it comes with much more visible warnings. At least, those warnings appear in cases where the software developer is being completely honest. To avoid all hassles though, many developers are starting to choose to deliver ads in a more static fashion.
In that, they don’t have ever changing ads that are fed off an internet connection. Instead the ads remain the same for as long as the software is used, and therefore no information about the user’s habits is needed let alone useful.
Adware today appears in countless types of software applications and have moved beyond the standard PC. In an age where hand held computers are gaining popularity, many software apps for Blackberries and iPhone’s, as well as other devices, survive off of Adware as well.
Adware can easily be removed from your compute by downloading a free trial of PC Tools Spyware Doctor.