You're not alone - we get lots of questions about Chrome pop-up ads and notification windows cleverly disguised as viruses. These pop-ups occur specifically in Chrome and are generally benign - most of the time you can simply close or exit the window - but these windows are designed to scare users into calling phone numbers and giving up their personal information to malicious actors online.
Other times, these pop-up notifications from various news or other websites become a nuisance to users who have accidentally allowed them.
PLEASE NOTE: It's always better to be safe than sorry! If you have ANY questions or doubts whatsoever, please contact the Help Desk. The issue can range from benign to severe and we'll definitely want to take extra measures to ensure the security of your account and your organization's data if there may have been a data breach.
How to remove or prevent website ads and pop-ups
- Open Chrome
- Navigate to the hamburger menu (yup, that's what it's called) and click Settings
- In the window that opens, start typing in pop and then click Site Settings
- The three pages you'll want to check are Notifications, Pop-ups and redirects, and Ads:
- Each of these pages are set up the same way: The page will list websites that are Allowed or Blocked. To the right of any listed websites, you'll see another hamburger menu. When you click that men, you'll see options to Add, Block, or Remove. Your preferences save as soon as you select the options you desire.
Another place to check in addition to Site Settings is Chrome Extensions, which can also be notorious for creating phishing scam pop-ups:
- Navigate to the hamburger menu > More tools > Extensions
- In the window that opens, you'll see any Chrome extensions that have been installed (though some may be active or inactive). To remove unwanted extensions, simply click the Remove button for that extension.