Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Is SurveyUSA an Android Virus?

When I click links on Instapundit.com I sometimes get dropped into something that looks like a virus.  It is a survey that has no obvious way to close it and will not allow you to go back to the previous page.     The organization seems to be a legitimate survey organization,  but I never see it on my PC, and the behavior is odd,  to say the least

2 comments:

Sigivald said...

I'd say it's just an html hijack ad that your PC browser blocks but the Android one you're using doesn't.

I'd be shocked if it was a literal "malware on your phone" virus.

Rick C said...

I see that too. I assume it's basically a scam.

It uses hijacking techniques so that you can't use the back button in your browser, as you've noticed: you have to enter the URL again. Very annoying.

If you're on Android and don't mind using Firefox, you can get an adblocker called uBlock Origin that seems to be very popular. I just started using it a couple days ago but I haven't seen one of those hijacks on Instapundit since (although they're intermittent so it may be too early to tell.)

Of course, that means that Instapundit won't get ad revenue from you any longer, but the site's full of autoplay video ads anyway, and since they obviously can't police either thing I refuse to feel bad about ad blocking.