Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs)

A Potentially Unwanted Program or PUP is an application that’s noted for characteristics that may make it undesirable even if it’s not overtly malicious or harmful to your PC. PUPs often overlap with adware, which may install themselves via dishonest methods, resist normal uninstall methods or lack useful features (since displaying advertisements is not, for most PC users, considered a positive feature). Some PUPs may engage in activities that may cause security issues for your PC indirectly, such as monitoring certain types of information or displaying potentially-dangerous pop-ups, and SpywareRemove.com malware researchers usually recommend that you delete a PUP if you’re not certain that you want its features. However, Potentially Unwanted Programs are not technically-classified as trojans or any other type of malware, even though they can frequently be removed by anti-malware programs that detect similar PC threats heuristically.

Favored Installation Methods for PUPs

Potentially Unwanted Programs may be promoted on home websites, but, in most cases, PUPs are installed via being bundled with unrelated programs. Movie players, peer-to-peer downloading clients and other media-related applications that are often freely-distributed are compromised frequently by adding PUPs and adware to their installation processes and then setting up the link for these packages on separate websites. For these reasons, minimizing your potential exposure to PUPs can be done most efficiently if you avoid downloading applications from websites other than their official and trustworthy sources. Most such applications will include PUP-free alternatives, although these versions may not always be the ‘official’ version of the program.

In some cases, installation routines that include PUPs also include means to avoid these extras, although they must be selected manually. Some examples of Potentially Unwanted Programs that are distributed by this method and similar ones include Boxore, the Babylon Toolbar, wxDownload Fast (wxDFast) and PigSearch, while PUPs that prefer to distribute themselves independently include Actual Spy and Keylogger Pro.

What a PUP Means for Your Computer

Prominent subcategories of Potentially Unwanted Programs include browser add-ons, web search enhancers, emoticon (smiley face) packages, adware and voluntary forms of spyware (for monitoring the computer habits of your children and other dependents). Specific symptoms and issues that often arise from having a Potentially Unwanted Program include:

Is Your PC Infected with Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs)?

To safely & quickly detect Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs), we highly recommend you click below to run SpyHunter's up-to-date malware scanner.

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Note: SpyHunter's free version is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware tool to remove the malware threats. Learn more on SpyHunter. If you would like to uninstall SpyHunter for any reason, please follow these uninstall instructions. To learn more about our policies and practices, visit our EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.

There are currently 1,593 potentially unwanted programs (pups) program(s) in our database.

Name Date
Miul Downloads October 14, 2015
RayDownload October 5, 2015
SerfSearch June 22, 2015
The Results Hub June 8, 2015
'.lockymap File Extension' Ransomware September 4, 2018
'0800 FIXMYPC' Pop-Ups June 11, 2015
'800-903-9692' Scam Message February 5, 2015
'888-702-3606' Scam Message February 5, 2015
'Bitcoins to live' Extension August 22, 2017
'Codeforces Sample Case Tester' by Case-te.com August 3, 2017
'Firewall Detected Suspicious Network Connections' Pop-Ups April 24, 2017
'Ipasta' Chrome Extension by Whosopher.com September 28, 2017
'New tab on right click' Extension February 8, 2018
'ShellExperienceHost.exe' CPU Miner October 31, 2017
'Star Shaped Pies' Chrome Extension January 19, 2018
'xsocksx.exe' CPU Miner November 27, 2017
'Your computer is locked !' Screenlocker November 28, 2016
'Your Mac is heavily damaged! (33.2%)' Pop-Ups March 21, 2019
'Your Windows Hasbeen Banned' Screenlocker November 28, 2016
‘Fisher-king.info’ Pop-Ups August 3, 2015
‘Free4allup.soft4upgrading.net’ Pop-up June 10, 2015
‘InstantSupport’ Pop-Ups October 19, 2015
‘One Question Site Survey’ Message January 22, 2015
‘Sharetechsupport.net’ Pop-Ups May 20, 2015
‘System infected: Fake Plugin Activity 2′ Notification April 24, 2015
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Home Malware Programs Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs)