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Computers on our network have this weird issue that some web pages (mostly Turkish news sites, but not all) show a specific type of ad that looks like adware/malware. When I click to close them, they open a new web page, which some of them are legit (e.g. youtube) and some of them are not.

Background:

  • appear on almost all web browsers (Edge, Chrome, Firefox)
  • appear on freshly installed computers from known good sources
  • appear on computers in one office location but not another (other office is on a separate ISP and computers have installs from the same install sources)
  • virus scans come up clean
  • some employees report the same ads on their iphone for the same web pages (does not show on Android phones)
  • Changing DNS settings to safe Google DNS IP numbers 8.8.8.8 for IPv4 and 2001:4860:4860::8888 for IPv6 has no effect

I am guessing that this has something to do with the web pages themselves and the ISP our company uses. Normally, these web pages have normal ads that appear on the first page. Probably, because of some security issues of the ISP, the news site ad engine, directs to unwanted ads.

  1. What is this situation called so I can do more research?
  2. How to get rid of these ads?

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  • @berkus Initially I thought this was DNSChanger, but this not seem like that. The thing about not occuring on Androids but on iPhones is intriguing, but maybe the router's DNS was change somehow. Could you check it? If you could, change to Google's DNS too. After that, wipe all browser's data again. – Mycroft Jan 29 at 8:10
  • I condensed your post to gather all the details in one place and more succinctly. Feel free to change what I may have missed. – schroeder Jan 29 at 9:27
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What you are describing does appear to be a problem outside your immediate network: at the router (assuming all traffic from this office goes through one router) or the ISP. If the ISP uses an ad network and that network has malicious ads, this problem can occur.

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