Are Ad blockers safe? What are the pros and cons of Ad blockers?

When it comes to having a quality and safe browsing experience, there is no disputing that ads get in the way. The problem with ads is that they are not just a nuisance, but they are littered with other elements making them a threat to your privacy as well. The problem many folks have is when they load a site – and it could be a normal, trusted site – that the ads popping up are loaded with cookies and trackers.

This is problematic because it is not too difficult for hackers to attach something to these ads or worse yet replicate the ads and use them on another site to make it seem like you are in a trusted place. Fortunately, to solve the problem we have ad blockers. There are many great things about ad blockers, but the most important thing is the ad blockers are designed to block these malicious ads. Downloading one of these programs as an extension to your browser is a great way to navigate the web and get some of these annoying and dangerous ads out of your life.

Naturally, when it comes to ad blockers, there are a lot of opinions, so exploring the pros and cons is a great way to examine how ad blockers work and if they are actually safe.

Pros

There are many things that folks like about ad blockers. Chief among these likes is the ability to get rid of annoying ads plaguing the internet experience. Nothing makes a great internet experience go south like having to click off ads each time they pop up. Here are some things that ad blockers do very well.

Privacy

As stated earlier, cookies are a major problem with ads because they track your activity and can even do so when you are offline. This type of tracking is something no one has signed up. It is one thing if you are accepting cookies from a trusted site, but cookies and other trackers are easy to attach to ads. For the sake of privacy alone, ad blockers serve a great purpose. If you’re looking for evidence that people like ad blockers, just look at the download numbers. In 2016, 70 million people added ad blockers or extensions that block ads on browsers because of how much they value privacy.

Performance

There is no doubt that ads are annoying, but you know what else they are? Drains on your system. That’s right – every time you open up an ad what you are doing is putting yourself in a position where your computer or mobile device has to use a battery to process the ad, just so you can click it off. Besides using the battery, the ads are also a drain on your system. Sites take longer to load because your device has to process the graphics and all the different files that are needed to make the ad pop up on your screen.

Bandwidth

The biggest issue that many folks have ads is how they impact bandwidth. The less bandwidth you have, the longer it takes for internet applications to load up correctly. For people who rely on the internet for their business, ads can take valuable time away from their jobs as they await the ad to load and deal with the accumulation of ads taking up precious bandwidth. Ad blockers free up much of this for folks.

Cons

While there are many pros of ad blockers, there are also several reasons why ad blockers are not the answer that many folks think they are. The good news is when you understand the negatives of ad blockers what will end up happening is that you will determine what is a good adblocker versus a bad one. Many times, the ad blocker idea itself isn’t the problem, just how it is executed by others.

Inadvertent Blocking

There are many times when ad blockers do more than just block ads. One thing that adblockers are notorious for doing is blocking messages on instant messaging programs. This is especially problematic if you are in a larger office and the messages are an efficient way for you to communicate with each other. When ad-blockers are running amok and blocking everything, then there is a better than good chance that important messages will get lost in the shuffle. This is something businesses can’t afford so it’s important to select an ad blocker that has the tactical nous to block only ads.

Native Content Problems

There is a difference between random ads and native content. The difference is for a site that has native content, the ads on the site are directly related to revenue. So, if you have a favorite site that is trying to run ads, the best thing to do for that site is to put it on a list of exceptions. The exception list will allow you to let the sites that you trust and enjoy push out their native ad content. This helps them increase their revenue just by showing the ads while at the same time doesn’t negatively impact you because generally the sites you’re browsing with this type of content are trusted. They are also vigilant about security and not letting malicious actors attach cookies and trackers to ads that should not be there at all.

Conclusion

There are many reasons to trust ad blockers and the reality is they are safe. The key for any program and extension that you get is to learn about what it does. In the case of ad blockers, no two ad blockers are created the same, so it is important that you familiarize yourself with the different features of each program and make a decision that will help you protect your privacy, your device’s performance, and your bandwidth while not sacrificing from the native content. It’s also important that your ad blocker isn’t just haphazardly blocking the things you need as well. Finding the right ad blocker makes your experience much more enjoyable on the web.