Use Adblock To Block Online Ads and Malware
<firstimage=”//static.makeuseof.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/malwarelist.png”>Adblock can do more than just block advertisements. It can block content from any website or any list of websites. Malware, being hosted on a finite number of sites around the web, is therefore blockable. Combine AdBlock with the list of known malware hosting sites at MalwareDomains for a first line of defence against malware that updates itself.
If you’ve never used AdBlock before don’t worry: it’s easy to use and currently available for Firefox, Chrome and even Safari.
If you use Internet Explorer, stop. Download Chrome or Firefox and you’ll be much happier. If you use Opera, odds are you don’t need to block malware. Your browser, being sentient and all-powerful, protects you in accordance with its divine will.
First things first: you need to install Adblock. Here’s where to find it:
Installing extensions works the same here as with any browser extension, so you know what to do. Note that you may need to restart your browser for the installation to complete, particularly if you use Firefox.
By default, AdBlock blocks ads (makes sense). If you want to turn this extension into a security tool, then you’ll need to add the Malware Domains subscription. Head over to AdBlock’s official subscriptions page and scroll to the bottom. You’ll find the malware list at the bottom, under Miscellaneous:
Click that and you’ll be subscribed to the new list. Confirm everything is working by heading to your Adblock configuration page, which you’ll find in your browser’s extensions menu. The “Filter List” tab is the one you’re looking for, and if the list was installed properly it should see it checked and ready:
If you want to see the list in its entirety, just. Just don’t visit any of the listed sites! It’s impressive just how many sites around the web are serving up malware, and it certainly feels good knowing they’re all blocked.
Bonus Block: Rickroll Blocking
Here’s a fun hack: use AdBlock to protect yourself from RickRolls. All you need to do is subscribe to the RickRoll Database and you’ll never have to hear that stupid song ever again. Sure, this meme may be old but that doesn’t mean it’s not annoying. Check this out if you’ve been fooled too many times.
Why bother with such a list if you already have antivirus protection? Good question. The main thing to remember is that this can give you an additional layer of protection, and a preventive one at that. No security suite is perfect, so adding this shield to your defences can only help.
Naturally, this isn’t a replacement for anti-virus software. I highly recommend checking out our ten best free antivirus programs to make sure you’re completely protected. Or, of course, you can keep on using whatever protection you have and love. Tell us about it below!
I love finding alternative uses for software like this. Do you know of any other unique uses for AdBlock? Or do you know of another cool way to protect yourself from malware? Share that in the comments below too.