ADS – Block Web Ads – Use Adblock Plus

By Don Trauger – Kennett

I haven’t been a proponent of browser ad-ons such as toolbars because they are a conduit for unwanted advertising and possible malware. However, I’ve come across a free ad-on called Adblock Plus. It becomes active when you use Internet Explorer, Firefox or Chrome browsers. It’s purpose is to block incoming ads from web sites.

When you go to the Adblock Plus web site ( it recognizes the browser you are using and will offer an install button for that browser. After installation it places a small “ABP” red icon at the top right corner for both Firefox and Chrome, and the lower right for Internet Explorer. When in use you may see a number superimposed on the icon. That’s the number of ads that Adblock Plus has blocked for that web page.

Over time these ads and other debris such as cookies, temporary Internet files and the like will tend to slow down the computer with possible freeze-ups and instability without your routine cleaning. Adblock Plus does not block all ads. In fact some web sites may look the same after installing Adblock Plus. However, you will be minimizing the number of ads that are downloaded in the background and stored on your hard drive.

Obviously the smaller number of ads is better but, more important, is the fact that some of these downloaded ads are waiting to be activated. Once activated they may carry malware. They often come from 3rd party sources that have nothing to do with the web site you are viewing and may be totally out of the control of that web site. Sometimes you can get malware just by going to a web site without clicking anything at that site. It’s called a “drive-by download”.

Adblock Plus can help in this area by reducing the potential for unwanted ads. It can be an assistant to Malwarebytes and Bitdefender in protecting you and your computer.

In my personal experience I haven’t seen anything negative when using Adblock Plus in all 3 browsers except possibly an extra second or so for Firefox to load a web page. That is too small a concern to worry about. I recommend you consider adding Adblock Plus to each of your browsers.

Get more information about Adblock Plus at our PC Club meetings. They are held on the second Tuesday of each month at 7 PM upstairs in the Ardmore room of the Community Center.