What is a pop-up blocker? How to enable your web browser’s pop-up blocker or disable it to access necessary pop-ups

by insider@insider.com (Dave Johnson) | Business Insider

You may need to periodically enable pop-ups for certain sites.

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  • Pop-up blockers are built into common web browsers to prevent unwanted pop-up windows from interfering with and cluttering your browsing experience. 
  • Most pop-ups are ads, malware, and other unwanted windows. But sometimes you’ll encounter web pages that require pop-ups, so you might need to disable your pop-up blocker occasionally. 
  • You can find the pop-up blocker in your browser’s settings or options, in the privacy or site permissions section. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

Unwanted pop-ups were once one of the most annoying aspects of browsing the web, with ads and other pop-ups frequently littering the screen. 

These days, most browsers have built-in pop-up blocking features that have made this a problem of the past. In fact, now it’s more likely you’ll need to disable your pop-up blocker for various reasons.

Advantages of pop-up blockers

Pop-up blockers automatically prevent small pop-up windows from interfering with your web browsing. 

In general, most pop-ups are a nuisance – they are usually advertisements and can even be malware, and most people would prefer not to see them.

As a general rule, you should leave your browser’s pop-up blocker turned on to avoid getting these pop-ups. 

Disadvantages of pop-up blockers

Some websites use pop-ups as an essential part of site navigation. A pop-up might be part of the login process, help you sign up for a newsletter, or enable a custom feature on the site. 

Some sites simply might not work properly without being able to open a pop-up. In this situation, you need to allow pop-ups for that site or disable pop-ups for it to work.  

How to turn pop-ups on or off in Google Chrome

1. In Chrome, click the three-dot menu at the top right of the screen and click “Settings.”

2. On the left side of the page, click “Privacy and security.”

3. In the “Privacy and Security” section of the page, click “Site settings.”

4. Scroll down to the “Content” section and click “Pop-ups and redirects.” Here you can turn pop-ups on and off and add exceptions to the list of sites that are allowed or not allowed to use pop-ups. 

You can find the pop-up blocker controls in Chrome’s “Privacy and security” page.

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How to turn pop-ups on or off in Firefox

1. In Firefox, click the three lines at the top right of the screen and then click “Options.”

2. On the left side of the page, click “Privacy and Security.”

3. Scroll down to the “Permissions” section. You should see the option to “Block pop-up windows.” You can enable or disable it with a checkmark, and use the “Exceptions” button to control which sites are allowed to show pop-ups. 

Firefox lets you turn the pop-up blocker on or off in its “Privacy & Security” options.

Dave Johnson/Business Insider

How to turn pop-ups on or off in Microsoft Edge

1. In Edge, click the three-dot menu and then click “Settings.”

2. On the left side of the page, click “Site permissions.”

3. In the main part of the page, click “Pop-ups and redirects.” Here you can enable or disable pop-ups and specify exceptions to allow pop-ups on certain pages. 

Microsoft Edge lets you control pop-ups in the “Site permissions” settings.

Dave Johnson/Business Insider

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