Malwarebytes Acquires AdwCleaner

IAS Prelims 2023

Security startup Malwarebytes has acquired a startup called AdwCleaner, whose product specifically tackles and removes adware and has seen a total of 200 million downloads across Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10 in 32 and 64-bit platforms.

Malwarebytes will keep the AdwCleaner brand for now. Over time the plan is to gradually integrate its software into Malwarebyte’s wider product set, which currently addresses malware, ransomware and exploits that fall under the radar of many of the bigger antivirus solutions.

Indeed, like Malwarebytes, AdwCleaner was started by teenage computer enthusiasts looking to solve a problem for themselves (Kleczynski originally built Malwarebytes to remove malware from his parents’ computer).

In the case of AdwCleaner, it was founded by three 17 year-olds in Paris in 2011 and saw viral popularity early on. Two of those original founders, Jérôme Boursier and Corentin Chepeau, continued to develop new versions of AdwCleaner throughout university, and appear to be the only employees of the completely bootstrapped company.