Online ads have become rife with malware that even intelligence agencies in the US have opted for ad-blocking technology to stay safe online.
In a letter sent to the US Congress, the country’s National Security Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Central Intelligence Agency have rolled out ad blockers in their computer systems to avoid malvertising. The letter also seeks funding to protect federal networks from espionage and cybercriminal by enemy states.
Basically, malicious ads attract and direct users to risky websites that scan their computers for vulnerabilities, which can be exploited to compromise the system and spread malware. Ads may also lead unsuspecting users to apps and downloads that come with hidden costs.
A recent security analysis found that one in one hundred ads may be misleading, while an ad out of 156 is downright harmful. Those numbers don’t seem alarming, but the chances of encountering malicious ads get higher the more web pages you visit.
If the intelligence community is doing it, individuals should also use security-enhancing software, such as VPNs and antiviruses, to combat malicious ads. Just make sure they aren’t infected themselves