AVG putting millions of Chrome users at risk

January 1, 2016 – 7:33 AM

Security company AVG, well known for its free and commercial security products that offer a wide range of security related safeguards and services, has put millions of Chrome users at risk recently by breaking Chrome security in a fundamental way in one of its extensions for the web browser.

AVG, like many other security companies offering free products, is using different monetization strategies to earn revenue from its free offerings.

One part of the equation are getting customers to upgrade to paid versions of AVG and for a while , that was the only way things worked for companies like AVG.

The free version works fine on its own but is being used to advertise the paid version that is offering advanced features such as anti-spam or an enhanced firewall on top of that.

Security companies started to add other revenue streams to their free offerings, and one of the most prominent one in recent time involved the creation of browser extensions and the manipulation of the browser’s default search engine, home page and new tab page that go along with it.

Customers who install AVG software on their PC get a prompt in the end to safeguard their browsers. A click on ok in the interface installs AVG Web TuneUp in compatible browsers with minimal user interaction.

The extension has more than 8 million users according to the Chrome Web Store (according to Google’s own statistics nearly nine million).


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