What is a PUP?

By | December 28, 2013
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We  wanted to share this interesting article by our friends at Emsisoft – we think it will help you better understand PUPs and why you don’t want to have any. Most antivirus programs don’t prevent, detect or remove PUPs — yet PUPs can be as disruptive as viruses and Trojans — and you’re far more likely to encounter PUPs than you are viruses or Trojans.

Emsisoft Anti-Malware is also an anti-virus — it not only protects you from viruses, Trojans, rogues and other badware — it  protects you from PUPs too (PUPs detection enabled).  You can learn more about Emsisoft here.

Keep reading to learn more about PUPs —

What is a PUP?

When it comes to anti-malware terminology, there’s quite a bit of jargon floating around the web. This is true of most things computerized. You’ve got bits and bytes, .exes and .mp3s. Trojans, rootkits, social media, and RSS feeds. Platforms, consoles, operating systems, applications. Articles on websites that are posted on blogs.

It can all get very confusing, especially when terms overlap. In the world of anti-malware, one term that is particularly troublesome is that of the PUP.

First thing’s first, a PUP is not a Pet

Though named like one, a PUP is a program, not a four legged pet. PUP stands for Potentially Unwanted Program, and programs that fall under this moniker are slightly different than malware.

From a technical standpoint, a PUP is not malware. PUPs are not created with the intent to destroy your computer or steal your personal information. Rather, PUPs are usually just marketing tools that find their way onto people’s computers through a bit of social engineering.

In the past, PUPs were referred to as spyware and ad-ware, but many of the companies that create these programs didn’t like these terms. They found them counterproductive, as they associated their programs with malware and scared people away. As such, there now exists a fine legal line between what constitutes a PUP and what constitutes malware, and anyone in the business of labeling programs must be cautious about which term they use.

How can I get one?

Read the rest of this fascinating look at PUPs by clicking here.

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