Did You Know…How To Deal With Internet Pop-up Windows

by | Mar 9, 2012 | Uncategorized

Task: Safely deal with potentially dangerous internet pop-up windows to avoid downloading a virus or unwanted application.  Some pop-ups try to get us to click on them to trigger another pop-up or download a virus.  A pop-up may include a button that says ‘Close’ or ‘Cancel’, but there is no guarantee that the link behind the button will close the pop-up.

Solution: It is safer to close the pop-up window without clicking anywhere on it to avoid accidentally triggering a download or a hidden virus.  It is recommended to close suspicious pop-ups in Task Manager (see instructions below).  You can also turn on pop-up blocker to reduce pop-ups.   However, not all pop-ups are bad.  If a download is not launching, a file is not opening, or you only get a blank page you will need to allow access from the pop-up blocker.

How: When you are online and suddenly receive an unwanted and suspicious pop-up window, like the one below, you should immediately close the pop-up.    Some pop-ups can contain a virus that was hidden from your antivirus program.  If you click anywhere in the suspicious pop-up window, this could potentially infect your machine or trigger another pop-up.  Follow the steps below for the best way to close the window without clicking on it.

Suspicious pop-ups include information about fake anti-virus programs like the one below:


Closing a pop-up window with Task Manager:

Right click blank space on the “Startbar” along the bottom of your computer, and choose “Start Task Manager”.


Click on the pop-up window in the “Task” screen, then choose “End Task” at the bottom.

This will close the pop-up window; then exit out of task manager.


Pop-up blocker:

Turning on/off the pop-up blocker in your internet browser

Internet Explorer 8:

Click on Tools  >  Pop-up Blocker  >  Turn On/Off Pop-up Blocker  –  and click YES if you are prompted 


Most browsers have similar options.  Follow this link for more details on turning on and turning off pop-up blocker in various browsers.

In Internet Explorer you can override a pop-up blocker and allow the pop-up window by holding down the ‘ctrl’ key, keep it pressed, and then launch the pop-up window. 

When a Pop-up Blocker is turned on most browsers will display a notification that a pop-up was blocked.  In internet Explorer a blue information bar (if turned on) under the tabs bar displays a message saying “Pop-up blocked.  To see this pop-up or additional options click here.”   You can right click the notification and select an action.

To allow pop-ups from safe sites in Internet Explorer follow the steps below.  The steps are similar for popular browsers:

  1. Open Internet Explorer
  2. Click the Tools button, click Pop-up Blocker, and then click Pop-up Blocker Settings.
  3. In the Address of website to allow box, type the address (or URL) of the website you want to see pop-ups from, and then click Add.
  4. Repeat step 3 for every website you want to allow pop-ups from. When you are finished adding websites, click Close.


If you feel your machine might have been infected, immediately run your antivirus software to scan and clean your machine. 





John Ahlberg
CEO, Waident

CIO in the corporate world and now for Waident clients. John injects order and technology into business process to keep employees productive, enterprises running, and data safe.


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