Potentially Unwanted Application (PUA)





Application.generic.[variant], Potentially Unwanted Application (PUA), Potentially unwanted Software (PUS), Unwanted software, grayware, PotentialRisk.PUA/[family].Gen


A program that has behaviors or aspects that can have an undesirable or unwanted impact on your privacy, security or productivity, but does not meet the stricter definition of malware.


Automatic action

The F-Secure security product will block the file from running.

Allow a blocked file to run or exclude a file from scanning

If you are aware of the risks involved in using the file and consent to its use, you may change the settings of your F-Secure security product to allow the file to run. You may also change the settings to exclude it from scanning.

Note You need administrative rights to change the settings.

Find out more

Knowledge Base

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User Guide

See the user guide for your product on the Help Center.

Contact Support

Chat with or call an expert for help.

Submit a sample

Submit a file or URL for further analysis.

Technical Details

An application is detected as a Potentially Unwanted Application (PUA) if it exhibits any of the following:

Unwanted impact on productivity:
  • Disrupting the desired user experience
  • Waste of time
  • Program performs unexpected, unwelcome and unauthorized actions, which lead to unwanted distractions, lost opportunities or lowered productivity
  • Time or monetary cost of cleaning, maintaining or reformatting the affected device
Unwanted stress on the device's resources:
  • Excessive use of computing resources - disk space, SSD writes, Memory, CPU time, etc
  • Excessive bandwidth or data plan consumption
Compromises security:
  • Exposure to unexpected, questionable or unverified content, location or applications
Compromises privacy:
  • Personal information is unnecessarily exposed to unknown or unauthorized parties

For more about how F-Secure determines if a program is a PUA, see: Classifying Potentially Unwanted Applications.

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