After years of pleas from IT firms and customers Microsoft has finally decided to do something about these “PC Optimizer” programs.
You may or may not have heard of these types of programs. Here is how they work, you download a legitimate installer for a program, let us use McAfee as an example. You go through the installer and go into “auto-pilot” and just next through the agreements. Well sometimes you get more than you bargained for and a “PC Optimizer” piece of software gets installed as well. These programs are not exactly malicious in intent but have been deemed “Scareware”.
They earned this name because they actually scan your system and “find” what’s wrong with it. They then attempt to bully you into purchasing the premium version of the software to allow it to remove and fix the problems. While some of these programs are legitimately trying to assist you, most that you will come across are in this scareware category. The ones that Microsoft Defender are cracking down on are the Optimizers that do not explicitly state what they are doing, or use coercive messages and phrases to scare you into buying or renewing your subscription.
What will this mean to you? Well fewer pop-ups for starters, since you will no longer have aggressive advertisements asking you to buy their product. Less likely to install these Optimizers to begin with due to Defender actively removing these items. Less IT Support calls due to slow down caused by these items as well. If you are still concerned about your security, just remember you can run Defender along side another antivirus program such a BitDefender and Vipre.
Hopefully we will see a trend of Microsoft listening more to user feedback and implementing solutions.
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