How did THAT get on my computer? (Part 1)

We hear variations of this all day:

“I don’t even know what that program is.” “I’ve never seen that before.” “No, I don’t get daily deals.” “Is that megawickedspywarecleaner any good?”

And finally, “I only go to work-related sites. I run antivirus. How does this crap get on my computer?”

Answer #1. You “asked” for it.

The Java updater will install a toolbar unless you opt-out.

Not to be left out, Adobe Flash Player installer will also stuff the completely-unrelated “McAfee Security Scan Plus” into your computer unless you opt-out.

And CNET’s download.com, which used to be one of my favorite sites for finding free and trial software, changed….the site doesn’t allow you to download files directly any more, you must use their “secure” installer that, naturally, offers up crap with your software.

Cnet's Download.com malware wrapper

And Skype (now part of Microsoft) installed something called EasyBits.

Most of these products, while annoying, can be removed through Add/Remove Programs.

What about the other stuff? I’ll explain that next time.

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