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Buying a new phone or PC? Beware of bloatware
July 23, 2019 | 4:44 PM
by Times News Service
Another type of bloatware comes from the web.
 
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Muscat: When buying a new mobile or PC, we expect it to come in a pristine state and work perfectly.

But that is not always the case. New devices can come with pre-installed bloatware that reduces performance and violates your privacy.

“Bloatware is software you don’t want that burdens and slows down your device,” Daniel Markuson, a digital privacy expert at NordVPN, explains.

“These are programs that are preinstalled on new devices, come bundled with other downloads, or are injected into your system through malicious sites.”



According to Markuson, the main way for bloatware (or Potentially Unwanted Programs – PUP) reaches us is: it usually comes pre-installed by vendors, manufacturers or carriers.

Another type of bloatware comes from the web. It can come from malicious websites or be downloaded together with programs you want from third-party webpages. It can also hide in software bundles. This bloatware is more dangerous as it often contains adware or malware.



“I would like to stress on the fact that not all bloatware is bad,” he said, “Some pre-installed media suites or control centres can be useful, and some are very easily removable.”

“Some bloatware can significantly slow down your computer. If you have lots of these programs loading in your device start-up or performing operations in the background, they can eat up your RAM,” Markuson said.

“Malware or adware presents more severe issues,” he added.

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