ads (scam) ads Removal Guide

What is ads?

Clicking ads might lead you to malicious places online shows fake messages to convince users to click the "Allow" button

Users are typically are caught by surprise when they see a strange pop-up that shows up at the top or bottom-right corner of their screen. This can happen regardless of what they are doing – watching a video, playing a game, or visiting a website of their choice. It also matters little which browsers are used because Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, MS Edge exhibit the same behavior. Likewise, push notifications can affect not only Windows but also Macs, as well as mobile devices.

The mystery is not so difficult to bring to light, however, as the reason why users see these notifications is because they allowed for that to happen when visiting website. People don't usually access these types of websites intentionally but are rather redirected there.

Once they land on the suspicious page, they can only see two components that it consists of:

  • A push notification prompt that asks whether or not notifications should be enabled
  • A deceptive message that tells that pressing the “Allow button is necessary for one reason or another.

There are plenty of different versions of scam you might encounter while browsing the web. In fact, if you look at very similar websites, all of them operate identically and even use the same messages and pictures to convince users. We have previously described websites such as,,, and many others that use the same social engineering[1] techniques and copy one another. Here are a few message examples:

Press “Allow” to watch the video
If you are 18+, tap Allow
Just one more step! “Allow” to continue
Click the Allow button to subscribe to notifications and continue watching
Click “Allow” if you are not a robot

Of course, these messages are created to scam users and make them subscribe to notifications without realizing it. Since the intrusive activity does not start immediately, many fail to connect the dots and understand what has happened. After encountering a website of such origin, the best thing to do is to leave the page immediately by pressing the “X” button on the browser tab. Otherwise, redirects to other malicious websites might occur, even after pressing the “Block” button within the notification prompt.

The worst part is that those affected by the issue would be exposed to potentially dangerous content. While some of the messages might simply convey users to check some attractive offers, others might show misleading information about quick ways to earn money or fake virus alerts. Therefore, security experts recommend never clicking the ads and removing the push notifications from this site instead.

This can be easily done via the web browser's settings – we explain how to do that below. It is important to note that after experiencing some unexpected activity on the browser or device, it is advised to check the system for malware and adware infections. Likewise, cleaning web browsers can also improve one's privacy and result in a better experience.

Type Push notifications, pop-ups, ads
Distribution The intrusive pop-ups start showing up at some point after the “Allow” button is pressed within the notification prompt
Symptoms Push notifications that include misleading information links would show up on the desktop at random times
Risks Clicking on links that are embedded within the notification prompt, exploring the sites these links bring to or downloading files can be particularly dangerous – users can get infected with malware or suffer from financial losses
Removal To stop a website from delivering you push notifications, you have to enter web browser settings for that. Also, if adware infection is suspected, the easiest way to get rid of it is by scanning your device with security software
Further steps You should remove caches and other web data after the removal of adware to prevent data tracking with the FortectIntego repair and maintenance tool. You can also repair damaged system components with it

Push notification feature: is it the same as ads?

Everyone who used the internet for one reason or another encountered ads. Some of them can be barely noticeable and not in the way of site contents, while others can be horrendous ads that cover the whole page and later change its structure, making people click on links they otherwise wouldn't. Sadly, even the most prominent websites use these terrible practices, preferring extra cash over user experience.[2]

Of course, such sites can simply be ignored and never visited; ad-blockers can also be particularly useful when dealing with intrusive or even malicious ads, which can be a great addition to overall computer security. It is important to note though, that adblockers might sometimes break certain page elements and prevent content creators from monetizing.

However, everything changes when these ads start showing up on the system level. In this case, we are talking of push notifications – a built-in API[3] that is commonly used by website developers to promote their content and allow users to receive it in real-time. scamFake websites convince users to allow notifications and then show malicious ads directly on desktop

Thus, there is a fundamental difference between ads and push notifications – the latter is not triggered by the entry of a certain website or by some installed malicious application but rather comes from the browser itself. For this reason, performing a scan with anti-malware software would not remove ads.

Instead, you have to access the settings section of your browser and deny permission to show you notifications. For more details, check the next section of the article.

How to effectively remove pop-ups?

As previously mentioned, users rarely recognize the fact that they have been scammed by crooks to subscribe to notifications. Most people never accept the notifications, even from legitimate websites, hence they might also lack experience in how to get rid of them. If you are one of such people, please follow these instructions:

Google Chrome (desktop):

  1. Open Google Chrome browser and go to Menu > Settings.
  2. Scroll down and click on Advanced.
  3. Locate the Privacy and security section and pick Site Settings > Notifications.
  4. Look at the Allow section and look for a suspicious URL.
  5. Click the three vertical dots next to it and choose Block. This should remove unwanted notifications from Google Chrome.Stop notifications on Chrome PC 2

Google Chrome (Android):

  • Open Google Chrome and tap on Settings (three vertical dots).
  • Select Notifications.
  • Scroll down to the Sites section.
  • Locate the unwanted URL and toggle the button to the left (Off setting).Stop notifications on Chrome Android

Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox and go to Menu > Options.
  2. Click on Privacy & Security section.
  3. Under Permissions, you should be able to see Notifications. Click the Settings button.
  4. In the SettingsNotification Permissions window, click on the drop-down menu by the URL in question.
  5. Select Block and then click on Save Changes. This should remove unwanted notifications from Mozilla Firefox.Stop notifications on Mozilla Firefox 2

MS Edge (Chromium):

  1. Open Microsoft Edge, and go to Settings.
  2. Select Site permissions.
  3. Go to Notifications on the right.
  4. Under Allow, you will find the unwanted entry.
  5. Click on More actions and select Block.Stop notifications on Edge Chromium


  1. Click on Safari > Preferences…
  2. Go to the Websites tab and, under General, select Notifications.
  3. Select the web address in question, click the drop-down menu and select Deny.Stop notifications on Safari

Make an adware check

If you have recently installed an app that started showing you ads and redirects to suspicious websites, you should uninstall it immediately. Potentially unwanted programs such as adware can be installed on the system or browser level, which limits or expands its capabilities, so keep that in mind if you are trying to get rid of it manually.

We strongly recommend scanning the system with SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner, Malwarebytes, or another security software to check it for adware. It is the main reason why one might be redirected to predetermined, malicious websites and increase the number of ads shown while browsing the web (some malware can also cause similar issues, although it can't be uninstalled manually).

After removing all the unwanted or malicious software from your system, you should also clean your browsers with FortectIntego or employ the instructions we b provide below. The manual method could take much longer, although it's up to you which one you prefer. If you fail to clean your browsers, some adware components might remain, and data tracking, as well as ads, might still continue in the background.

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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Compatible with macOS
What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Fortect Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Fortect Intego has a free limited scanner. Fortect Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Fortect, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of ads. Follow these steps

Uninstall from Windows

Instructions for Windows 10/8  machines:

  1. Enter Control Panel into Windows search box and hit Enter or click on the search result.
  2. Under Programs, select Uninstall a program. Uninstall from Windows 1
  3. From the list, find the entry of the suspicious program.
  4. Right-click on the application and select Uninstall.
  5. If User Account Control shows up, click Yes.
  6. Wait till uninstallation process is complete and click OK. Uninstall from Windows 2

If you are Windows 7/XP user, proceed with the following instructions:

  1. Click on Windows Start > Control Panel located on the right pane (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
  2. In Control Panel, select Programs > Uninstall a program. Uninstall from Windows 7/XP
  3. Pick the unwanted application by clicking on it once.
  4. At the top, click Uninstall/Change.
  5. In the confirmation prompt, pick Yes.
  6. Click OK once the removal process is finished.

Delete from macOS

Remove items from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for all related entries.
  3. Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash) Uninstall from Mac 1

To fully remove an unwanted app, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:

  1. Select Go > Go to Folder.
  2. Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
  3. In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the related .plist files. Uninstall from Mac 2

Remove from Google Chrome

Delete malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

  1. Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
  2. In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to the unwanted program by clicking Remove. Remove extensions from Chrome

Clear cache and web data from Chrome:

  1. Click on Menu and pick Settings.
  2. Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
  3. Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
  4. Click Clear data. Clear cache and web data from Chrome

Change your homepage:

  1. Click menu and choose Settings.
  2. Look for a suspicious site in the On startup section.
  3. Click on Open a specific or set of pages and click on three dots to find the Remove option.

Reset Google Chrome:

If the previous methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the unwanted components:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. In the Settings, scroll down and click Advanced.
  3. Scroll down and locate Reset and clean up section.
  4. Now click Restore settings to their original defaults.
  5. Confirm with Reset settings. Reset Chrome 2

Remove from Microsoft Edge

Delete unwanted extensions from MS Edge:

  1. Select Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and pick Extensions.
  2. From the list, pick the extension and click on the Gear icon.
  3. Click on Uninstall at the bottom. Remove extensions from Edge

Clear cookies and other browser data:

  1. Click on the Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and select Privacy & security.
  2. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  3. Select everything (apart from passwords, although you might want to include Media licenses as well, if applicable) and click on Clear. Clear Edge browsing data

Restore new tab and homepage settings:

  1. Click the menu icon and choose Settings.
  2. Then find On startup section.
  3. Click Disable if you found any suspicious domain.

Reset MS Edge if the above steps did not work:

  1. Press on Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details arrow at the bottom of the window.
  3. Select Details tab.
  4. Now scroll down and locate every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right-click on each of them and select End Task to stop MS Edge from running. Reset MS Edge

If this solution failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method. Note that you need to backup your data before proceeding.

  1. Find the following folder on your computer: C:\\Users\\%username%\\AppData\\Local\\Packages\\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  2. Press Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all folders.
  3. Right-click on them and pick Delete Advanced MS Edge reset 1
  4. Now right-click on the Start button and pick Windows PowerShell (Admin).
  5. When the new window opens, copy and paste the following command, and then press Enter:

    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\\AppXManifest.xml” -Verbose Advanced MS Edge reset 2

Instructions for Chromium-based Edge

Delete extensions from MS Edge (Chromium):

  1. Open Edge and click select Settings > Extensions.
  2. Delete unwanted extensions by clicking Remove. Remove extensions from Chromium Edge

Clear cache and site data:

  1. Click on Menu and go to Settings.
  2. Select Privacy, search and services.
  3. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  4. Under Time range, pick All time.
  5. Select Clear now. Clear browser data from Chroum Edge

Reset Chromium-based MS Edge:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. On the left side, pick Reset settings.
  3. Select Restore settings to their default values.
  4. Confirm with Reset. Reset Chromium Edge

Remove from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Remove dangerous extensions:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
  2. Select Add-ons.
  3. In here, select unwanted plugin and click Remove. Remove extensions from Firefox

Reset the homepage:

  1. Click three horizontal lines at the top right corner to open the menu.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. Under Home options, enter your preferred site that will open every time you newly open the Mozilla Firefox.

Clear cookies and site data:

  1. Click Menu and pick Settings.
  2. Go to Privacy & Security section.
  3. Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
  4. Click on Clear Data…
  5. Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear. Clear cookies and site data from Firefox

Reset Mozilla Firefox

If clearing the browser as explained above did not help, reset Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click the Menu.
  2. Go to Help and then choose Troubleshooting Information. Reset Firefox 1
  3. Under Give Firefox a tune up section, click on Refresh Firefox…
  4. Once the pop-up shows up, confirm the action by pressing on Refresh Firefox. Reset Firefox 2

Delete from Safari

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall. Remove extensions from Safari

Clear cookies and other website data from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Clear History…
  2. From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
  3. Confirm with Clear History. Clear cookies and website data from Safari

Reset Safari if the above-mentioned steps did not help you:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. Go to Advanced tab.
  3. Tick the Show Develop menu in menu bar.
  4. From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches. Reset Safari

How to prevent from getting adware

Stream videos without limitations, no matter where you are

There are multiple parties that could find out almost anything about you by checking your online activity. While this is highly unlikely, advertisers and tech companies are constantly tracking you online. The first step to privacy should be a secure browser that focuses on tracker reduction to a minimum.

Even if you employ a secure browser, you will not be able to access websites that are restricted due to local government laws or other reasons. In other words, you may not be able to stream Disney+ or US-based Netflix in some countries. To bypass these restrictions, you can employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN, which provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, not slowing you down in the process.

Data backups are important – recover your lost files

Ransomware is one of the biggest threats to personal data. Once it is executed on a machine, it launches a sophisticated encryption algorithm that locks all your files, although it does not destroy them. The most common misconception is that anti-malware software can return files to their previous states. This is not true, however, and data remains locked after the malicious payload is deleted.

While regular data backups are the only secure method to recover your files after a ransomware attack, tools such as Data Recovery Pro can also be effective and restore at least some of your lost data.

About the author
Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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