How to Block Ads

Four Parts:Installing Adblock PlusInstalling AdBlockInstalling the Ghostery Tracking BlockerInstalling Malwarebytes

Advertisements fund nearly everything on the internet. With the advent of targeted ads, your browsing habits are seen as a gold mine by those who stand to profit from observing and analyzing them. Here’s how you can avoid advertisements and block tracking systems with a few simple browser extensions.

Part 1
Installing Adblock Plus

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    Go to the AdBlock Plus website.[1] This browser extension is available for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Internet Explorer.
    • AdBlock Plus is among the most widely used and highly trusted ad blocking extensions available. It is a free download.
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    Click the download /install link for your browser. The website will automatically direct you to the download page for the browser you are currently using.
    • If you use multiple browsers, be sure to install this extension on each of them.
    • In choosing to install AdBlock Plus, you allow the software to access your browsing activity, tabs, and personal data. See the AdBlock Plus Privacy Policy[2] for more details about how this information will be used.
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    Customize the extension. The default settings will get you pretty far in this case, but advanced users may want to tweak things a little.
    • Access the “settings” menu in your browser. There should be an option that lets you see a list of your extensions in there somewhere. The details of this will vary depending on which browser you are using.
    • Select AdBlock Plus from your list of extensions. This will bring up a menu that shows all the configuration options within AdBlock Plus.
    • Adjust general options, filters, and white lists according to your personal preference. The whitelist is for sites whose ads you don’t mind looking at.
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    Add items to your block list as needed. There may be a time when you find an ad that is not automatically blocked.
    • Right click on the ad in your browser window and you will see an option to add it to your block list.

Part 2
Installing AdBlock

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    Go to the AdBlock website. This extension is available for Chrome, Safari, and Opera.
    • AdBlock is also very widely used and highly trusted among browser extensions. The main difference between this and AdBlock Plus is that it can be used with the Safari browser. It is a free download.
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    Click “get AdBlock now. This will prompt you to install the extension on whatever browser you are using.
    • You may also want to install this on other supported browsers you happen to use regularly. It can be used in conjunction with AdBlock plus.
    • AdBlock must access your website data, tabs and browsing activity in order to function. However, it does not require personal information.
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    Customize the options. This may only be necessary if you are an advanced user.
    • Access the settings menu inside your browser. Find the list of your extensions and select AdBlock “options.”
    • Set general options, filter lists and customizations to fit your personal preferences. There are various links to helpful tutorials included which will help you understand some of the more advanced options.
    • Be sure to check the box next to “add items to right click. This allows you to right click on ads which are not automatically blocked and add them to your block list.

Part 3
Installing the Ghostery Tracking Blocker

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    Understand the threats of spyware. This includes how it ends up on your computer in the first place, and how it affects your browsing experience.
    • Spyware takes many forms, but it usually ends up on your system through deceptive means. Sometimes it comes attached to other software you download. Sometimes it sneaks through security vulnerabilities in your browser when you click on certain links.
    • You are most likely to pick up spyware from torrents, shady music and video downloads, adult websites, freeware, and spam emails from unknown sources.
    • Once installed, spyware runs in the background while you browse and sends information back to research companies who analyze the data for profit.
    • Spyware can really slow down your browser and your processor. It can also increase the frequency of spam, pop-ups, and targeted ads through its violation of your privacy.
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    Access the Ghostery home page.[3] This browser extension prevents spyware from tracking your browsing habits.
    • The Ghostery extension is a free download. It can be used with Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Safari, and Internet Explorer.
    • Ghostery is widely used and highly trusted. They have compiled the most comprehensive database of trackers you will find anywhere on the web.
    • The home page includes many useful resources to help you understand how spyware tracking works. The software itself lets you see who exactly is tracking you and why.
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    Click “download Ghostery now. This will activate installation of the correct version on your browser.
    • Ghostery requires access to your website data, your tabs, and your browsing activity. See the Ghostery Privacy Statement for more info on how this data will be used.[4]
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    Complete the Ghostery introduction walkthrough. It will automatically open in a new browser tab upon installation of the extension.
    • This helpful tool explains what you need to know as it walks you through every step of customizing the extension’s various options and settings. Decide which configuration is best for you based on the information you find there.

Part 4
Installing Malwarebytes

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    Access the Malwarebytes home page.[5] This is not a browser extension, but it is very useful to have on your computer in the event that something should happen to sneak past your other safeguards.
    • Malwarebytes will scan your computer to detect and remove malicious programs such as trackers, Trojans, spyware, and viruses. It is a free download, but only available for Windows operating systems.
    • Malwarebytes is highly effective at detecting and removing threats that are generally overlooked by other anti-virus software.
    • Even if you do not currently think you have a virus problem, it is good to install Malwarebytes before problems occur. Some viruses will block you from downloading or installing such software once they have activated.
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    Click the “free version download” button on the home page. Your download will automatically start when you do this.
    • You have the option of purchasing the professional version, but this is not often necessary for personal use.
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    Run the mbam-setup.exe file in your download directory. This will install the software.
    • Follow the prompts to accept the licensing agreement and designate the program’s location on your computer.
    • Check the box on the last screen of the installation to update virus definitions immediately.
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    Run a Malwarebytes scan at least once per month. You should do this whether you think you need to or not. You might be surprised at what you find!
    • Malwarebytes will ask if you would like to update definitions every time you initiate a scan. Since new malware is released every day, you should always make sure the definitions are up to date before scanning.
    • Only a quick scan will be necessary in most cases. The quick scan takes about five to ten minutes, and targets only the directories in which malware programs are most likely to take root.
    • If the quick scan turns up a lot of results, you might want to follow it with a full system scan. This can take hours depending on the size of your hard drive.
    • It is best to exit your browser and not use your computer for anything else while a scan is in progress.


  • Always download software from the developer’s official website. Sites like and CNET offer the same software and are highly ranked in search engines. However, your downloads from these sites are likely to include precisely the kind of spyware you are trying to avoid.

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Categories: Internet