This week Microsoft announced new functionality in its Edge browser to prevent potential unwanted applications (PUA) from being downloaded.
PUAs may apply to apps that create additional ads, cryptocurrency mine or show deals for other software parts that have a poor reputation. This program can harm user experience, reduce efficiency and system performance and degrade Windows ‘ overall experience.
Microsoft Edge, beginning with version 80.0.338.0, will include a new feature to block downloads with PUAs that prevent such applications from entering the user’s computer.
The functionality will however be deactivated by default, although users can enable it in only three steps by clicking “…” in the top right corner, going to Settings, privacy and services in the Services section and enjoying the “Block potentially unwanted apps” option.
Blocking the PUA, says Microsoft, includes the activation of Windows Defender SmartScreen.
For apps incorrectly labeled as PUA, Edge offers the option to keep the app. For this purpose, users must tap “…” in the bottom bar, select Keep and then choose Keep anyway.
Users can also go to edge:/downloads/reportable apps. This will redirect you to the Microsoft feedback site, where you can explain why an app could wrongly be called PUA.
The idea behind the new feature, the tech giant says, is to help users get the apps they want, while still controlling their devices and experiences.
Microsoft has published safety documentation on how malware, unwanted software and PUA are identified. The company also published information on how administrators can enable their users to use the feature.
“We urge users to always try and download the application and the publisher’s reputations from a trustworthy location like the publisher’s website or a reputable app store,” said Juli Hooper and Michael Johnson of Microsoft Defender ATP team (ATP).