Astori is an adware program/PUP. This potentially unwanted program is malicious and intrusive and manages to sneak its way into your computer and cause a number of issues that affects performance and privacy. After infection you will notice a bunch of ads in your browser that would normally not have appeared. This includes taking controls of your search and home page providers as well as the results. In search results you will notice ads for sketchy merchants or software publishers and your search engine results will look very altered. You will also see coupon popup ads on most pages, specifically shopping websites. Also, when you visit your social networking sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook or other the malware tracks your behavior and attempts to steal private information all with the goal of serving you advertisments. Furthermore, since the advertisements are also highly unreliable, if you click on them, all you’ll have to show for it is more malware getting installed on your computer because the ads are distributed through shady ad networks that use malvertising techniques. But that’s not even the worst part of having Astori running in your computer. While it is running, its is sending detailed information about your web browsing habits to remote ad servers. This information includes your location, the IP addresses you visit, the domains you visit and what your interests are.
Are the advertisements injected a security risk
Astori is an ad-supported program, which is why it shows you with so many banners and pop-up offers. It’s required to generate web traffic and pay-per-click revenue for the third parties that support it. Each ad you are tricked into clicking on produces profits for these publishers and helps the program continue its operations. That’s why the application leaves nothing to chance and in order to increase its likelihood of success and trick you into clicking on more ads, it spends some time getting to know you and tries to stay hidden and undetectable by anti-virus software. Once it infects you it begins a quest to collect enough information about your online activities and behaviors so it can start targeting ads that it thinks you will click on. Upon understanding your profile it injects all types of ads in your browser. While in theory getting targeted ads in not necessary a bad thing, these ads are as most of offers for other adware type programs they think you will click on and install and not so much for legitimate software or products. If you are tricked into clicking on one, by choice or accident, you’ll inevitably end up unwillingly installing more unwanted adware and malware. Unfortunately, Astori doesn’t stop at monitoring you, Ii keeps a thorough record of your browsing activities and when it feels it has collected enough data from you, it will send this data to its advertising networks. These networks also sell your information to other third-parties without your knowledge or consent.
How was I infected by this malware?
Astori uses a variety of tactics to infect your PC. This includes installing via a drive-by download or through an exploit distributed via a malvertising campaign, or through a third-party download bundle. Even though the program may try to seek your permission before installing itself you might easy missed the opt-out opportunity. That’s because it’s highly resourceful and quite skilled in the arts of deceit. In fact, it not only dupes you into installing it, it also keeps you oblivious to the fact that you did and that it is running. More often than not, it hides behind spam email attachments, corrupted links or websites, or freeware. However, it can also pose as a fake system or program update for things like Java and Flash. For example, while you might be convinced that you’re updating your Java or Adobe Flash Player, in reality, you’re giving the okay to Astori.One thing to keep in mind is to always make sure to opt-out of sneaky download bundles that try to install additional adware without your direct consent. So, if you have this adware installed, please remove it ASAP.