Google: blocked nearly two billion malicious ads in 2016 alone

Malware and scams hidden in AdSense ads steadily increasing, Google warns about health products and gambling

Internet surfers without an ad-blocker struggle to juggle constant ads and banners. As AdSense is a bottomless pit for revenue, it is also used, of course, by cyber criminals. And that's why Google has recently taken a drastic measure to avoid ads containing malware.

Google's initiative against malicious ads. Google has also opened a blog to explain everything it has done in 2016 alone to avoid the proliferation of ads containing malware or scams. One of the most relevant statistics, featured right in the blog, are almost two billion  malicious ads disabled in one year. This gives a good idea of the work done by the company, but it stretches even further the shadow on the dangers of surfing the Web, without the right protections. And comparing the 2015 numbers, which are almost twice as minor, it is clear that this phenomenon is constantly increasing and represents a serious problem for every user while browsing.

Typologies of malicious ads

Adverts containing malware or scams mainly correspond to a few categories. The most used for this purpose are ads about health products (about 68 million in 2016, it was "only" 12 million in 2015). On the other hand, there are 17 million ads containing malware related to gambling content. Among the most dangerous are also those inherent to slimming products, so much so that Google has banned this type of ads. As well as those for small loans. But there are still over 7 million ads of this type, according to Google's estimates. Now they are hiding behind news and gossip banners. So it may happen that the user clicks on a news ad but ends up on a page to buy products for weight loss. There are over 50 thousand then the sites that generated these scams and that Google blocked in 2016.