Discussion in 'Technology and Internet' started by Fadingman, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. When I checked the forum today, I discovered something shocking: Two people are spying on me (!!!!). I also had a notification about an urgent message (...must be from one of those spies)!

    Yes, it's those ads, present both here and on lots of other Christian sites. Even the Christian Facebook sites I visit tell me how popular I am: millions of singles can't wait to meet me!

    I understand the need to use ads to help keep the site operating, but it's bothered me about some of the kinds of ads. I assume you have no control over what ads do show. Is there any reason you choose this particular ad company?

    Some websites have Christian ads - for colleges, seminaries, etc. I don't know if those ads tend to focus on certain denominations, but it is nice not to have the silly deceptive ads. Have you investigated other ad sources?
  2. Hi, the ads are provided by Google Adsense. As webmaster I have no to ban a particular advertiser. Just send me a private message with link to the website and I will block it.

    I am sorry that I had put ads on CFS. Previously I was able to manage without ads because we had a smaller hosting bill. Just a few months back, we were subject to severe DDos like treatment resulting in severe downtimes and which our hosting company could not manage unless we upgraded our package. As a result, the expenses more than doubled. Now I am paying twice what I paid before to my hosting company, plus I am paying for external technical support to deal with spike issues, DNS issues and so on. I had no other option other than choosing Google Adsense. They pay the highest in my opinion. I tried others too in the past but there were not as good. I still pay some out of my pocket but that alright. I hope you understand.

    Like I said before, I can block the advertiser if you message to me the url. I have already blocked a few and also opted out of certain category of ads which are not suitable to our audience.
  3. #3 Fadingman, Dec 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 21, 2013
    The 'urgent message' ad goes to <url snipped> which asks you to download InboxAce, a browser toolbar. Searches for InboxAce show this is considered malware.

    The 'spying on you' ad hasn't popped up again. Ever since I clicked on the urgent message ad, that is the one that shows up most often.

    I did just notice that google allows the viewer to 'mute' some ads by clicking on an 'X' in the upper-right corner of the ad. That's a good idea, but I don't see it available on every ad.
  4. Thank you for the link. I have just blocked that website. Blocking may not be 100% effective but in most cases they work. I have caught a few ads using Facebook apps to advertise their content and when you click them, they immediately direct you to their own website via these apps. So I blocked ads shown via Facebook apps completely.
  5. #5 Fadingman, Dec 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 21, 2013
    Another ad says "(Critical) You need to update your security". It links to <url snipped> which asks to download SafePCRepair. This appears to be malware.

    The 'spy' ad came up for me. It links to <url snipped>, which asks to download Web Shield. It appears to be a legitimate program.

    (I put invalid links in the url's of this message.)
    Jeffin likes this.
  6. Thank you very much. They are now removed. :)
    I couldn't even visit the urls. My browser won't let me. I don't know if it's the browser or extension or anti-virus but looks like I'm protected well.
  7. If you clicked on the links in my message, I purposely made fail so nobody would go to those sites by accident.
  8. Oh well. That explains it. ;)
  9. #9 Fadingman, Dec 23, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 24, 2013
    Another ad: "Your PC performance is poor", links to <url snipped>. Googling "PC Performer" shows lots of info on how to remove the 'virus'.
    Jeffin likes this.
  10. #10 Fadingman, Dec 23, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 24, 2013
    Another ad: "View private message" leads to <url snipped> to download Private Message Viewer. A quick search didn't show much about it, but the download page shows it is by Conduit Ltd., which does write other malware.
    Jeffin likes this.
  11. Thank you very much. I have blocked those sites.
  12. I don't think blocking has been very effective. I'm still getting ads that are virtually identical to those blocked. There are probably many alternate URLs to the same or similar malwares - too many to block individually. :(
  13. I get zero ads.............. There is no reason to get ads and no reason to have to block them. In Order for a Ad to come up there has to be a tracking cookie of some type or code that following you around That is not part of the website you visited.

    For example this site has 10 tracking sites that latch onto you once you visit.

    4 Google
    2 Facebook
    2 Twitter
    1 Quantcast Advertising (Which I have blocked of course)
    1 Google Adsense (Blocked, but not dangers)

    Quantcast delivers adds based on perceived interest. There would be no reason for this tracker to be here unless the Host site has added them or the Webmaster made a mistake.

    Google adsense also should not be here. Not dangerous, but can be annoying at times.

    1 Google used for website listing in search set up most likely by the Webmaster from Google webmaster tools.
    3 Googles are widgets that are like plugins added to the Forum software running the site.

    Twitter and Facebook were also added by Webmaster to connect both social networks.

    Anything but these means you have something not browser related on your computer (Malware) If that is the case then you have an open door to allow more in with different URL's.

    I would suggest using Firefox and installing Ghostery.

    Ghostery will show every site that is tracking your computer as you visit different Websites. You can block them from Ghostery with a simple slide button. This will allow you to see what exactly is going on and if there is something tracking that should not be tracking or part of the site your visiting.

    Maleware will follow you site to site, most sites have different trackers and different advertising set up and are harmless but not the ones that follow you around.

    If you find trackers that should not be there, then your computer is infected.
    Fixes could be uninstalling something your not aware you clicked on and agreed to, or hunting it down with software and deleting it.
    Also making sure it's deleted from IE, Chrome, Firefox, Opera plugins. (Whatever Browser your using)

    Malewarebytes is by far the best tool to get ride of Maleware. It's free and will hunt and destroy all of it except plugins that sneaked into your browser, you have to delete those yourself.
  14. Why it double posted is beyond me..........
  15. I'm pretty sure I don't have any malware. I run Malwarebytes often, along with SuperAntiSpyware and Spybot S&D to catch the stuff it misses. I also use Process Explorer to manually check what's running and I check my Program Files directory for unknown programs approximately once a month. (I also use Comodo for my antivirus.)

    I usually use Chrome to get on forums, and occasionally IE or Firefox. I've had problems with Firefox not printing certain webpages correctly, so I don't normally use it, but I'll check out that Ghostery addon.
  16. I set up Ghostery on Firefox. At first I blocked Adsense and got no ads at all, good or bad. But I was just trying to block the malware ads.

    So I reenabled Adsense and blocked the following, and it seems the malware ads went away:

    Crazy Egg
  17. Seems like you took all the precautions you needed. Crazy Egg will tag with Google addsense, but RadiumOne and DataXu should not be following you. In Fact DataXu is BAD with a capital BAD. Ghostery should not pick that up at all. I tested with them all on and only picked up beacons......... for this site.

    DataXu has a horrible WOT rating (Web of Trust)

    Well, not sure what else to tell you to test, DataXu is tracking you for some reason............. You like Chrome so I would get Ghostery for Chrome and shut them out so they can't track and add stuff you don't want.

    Crazy Egg is OK
    RadiumOne is .......... ehhhh....
    DataXu is not OK and I can't pick these 3 up on this site with everything allowed in after testing.

    So A............. they switch around and were not there when I tested.
    B................. There is something somewhere on your Machine or even Chrome that got in that would cause issues.

    If you can block them with Ghostery on Chrome then it should at least stop it.

  18. I was still getting some malware ads with only valid trackers. But then I told Google to not give me any interest-based ads and that seems to have helped. It seems my investigating malware made it appear I was interested in it.

    I did get one suspicious looking ad since ("Your PC Performance Is Poor - Fix Now"), but it was for Winzip Malware Protector.

    Thanks for the Ghostery suggestion. It works great!
  19. Amen, short of a wipe or revelation of what is getting in, I hope Ghostery keeps you safe from being tracked and targeted. Your PC performance Is Poor- Fix it now)

    If that pop up has red underlined links or something then you have something that installed as an extension in your Browser or possibly something on your system. My guess is that Chrome picked up a unwanted guest and can be fixed by looking at what extensions are installed. If not then something is still lurking on your system that was not found by normal checks.

  20. I get no popups, only banner ads that are part of the forum (I'm not a paying member - can't afford it). There's nothing underlined because they're flash or bitmaps. I have no extensions in my browser other than Ghostery.

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