Adware is a rapidly-growing menace on the Mac. Adware programs are multiplying like the proverbial rabbits. Worse, most of them aren’t detected in any way by any anti-virus software, including Apple’s built-in anti-malware protection. Even when one is detected by anti-virus software, allowing that software to remove the detected files often won’t fully remove the adware.
The best way to avoid adware is to pay close attention to what you’re downloading. Adware typically comes attached to (or in place of) junk software offered by bad sites, or sometimes a bad site will wrap legitimate software in an adware installer. Obviously, you need to avoid such untrustworthy downloads.
However, there is one thing that adware almost always does that will help you identify it: present a license agreement! License agreements are often displayed by installers, requiring the user to click an “Agree” button or something similar, and people typically just click whatever button they need to to make this go away and get on with the installation. Don’t do that! Get in the habit of at least skimming those license agreements, and if you’re being asked for permission to install something other than the software you intended to download, quit the installer and trash it.
If you think you might be infected with some kind of adware bring your computer in and we’ll thoroughly check it out.