Popular antivirus company AVG Technologies offers a Google Chrome extension, AVG Web TuneUp, which claims to enable the users to browse web safely and confidently. This tiny browser extension is available for all platforms supported by Google Chrome browser including Google’s innovative ChromeOS which powers Chromebooks. This extension has over five million active users and average rating of 2.5 on Google’s Chrome Web Store. Sounds good?
Well, unfortunately, the AVG Web Tune is one of the most useless browser extensions. In fact, it is a hardcore spyware. Apparently, it tracks users’ browsing activities and sends data to AVG’s servers for logging. We have already seen recent reports that AVG now sells users’ browsing history to third-party companies.
Moreover, the extension asks for tons of permissions from the users as shown in the following screenshot:
Also, AVG doesn’t offer similar extension for Firefox and Opera, may be because their add-on galleries are moderated and such crap wouldn’t be accepted there. Chrome Web Store team recently started reviewing submitted items, but it seems that moderation is not for all items and developers.
If you are one of those five million users of AVG Web TuneUp Chrome extension, you must uninstall it instantly. I believe that this huge user base is because most users think that this free AVG product would save them from online threats and viruses similar to other antivirus products of AVG.