Spotify Free (ads) causes browser to launch on malware / virus websites

There's something pretty alarming going on right now with Spotify Free. This started a several hours ago. If you have Spotify Free open, it will launch - and keep on launching - the default internet browser on the computer to different kinds of malware / virus sites. Some of them do not even require user action to be able to cause harm.

I have 3 different systems (computers) which are all clean and they are all doing this, all via Spotify - I am thinking it's the Ads in Spotify Free. I hope this has been noticed and Spotify staff are fixing it - fast. But it's still puzzling something like this can actually happen.


From what I have read so far I have understood this issue has been happening with Spotify Free before. Nevertheless, it's really dangerous for users and amazing how it has not been fixed. These malware launches probably happen during showing certain ads but malware / virus sites have nothing to do with the advertisers. Tells how big of a problem it seems to be (hacked server, spotify admin accounts etc)...



We've identified an issue where a small number of users were experiencing a problem with questionable website pop-ups in their default browsers as a result of an isolated issue with an ad on our Free tier. We have now identified the source of the problem and have shut it down. We will continue to monitor the situation. If you see this issue again, please let us know the exact date and time in this thread.


Thanks as always for bringing your reports to the Community! 

Related Issues


Thanks for that info. 


@illoria, we had a little trouble opening the link. No worries though, can you let us know what Spotify/OS version you're rocking? 


@eetuholopainen and @OssiKultalahti, are you still having issues? Also, does the app get unresponsive after the ad? 


@luhlibeatzz, that's great to hear. Did you do anything odd for it to work? It'd be super helpful if you could give us some info regarding that 🙂 


Yeah still having problems. Spotify doesnt get unresponsive after the ad


(Edited to provide more information)
Also having this issue. I'm from Canada.

  1. What Spotify/OS version are you rocking? | Free version; Windows 7.
  2. Is this happening with a specific ad? | I close them all relatively quickly, but there seem to be a variety of pop-under ads. One I can recall was from something like... abckj123, or something. Update: It seems to be caused by certain banner ads, can confirm that I had the "You're a winner!" banner ad while this was going on.
  3. Any videos or screenshots would be super helpful. | I have Spotify closed until the issue is solved, unfortunately.
  4. Have you tried reinstalling/logging out? Does that help? | Not yet, see above.
  5. Did it start happening after a specific event? | It started happening a few hours ago, for me. Been using Spotify most of the day.

Not the most helpful input, sorry, just wanted to throw some extra attention on the issue.


Same on Ubuntu 16.04 with Spotify free 1:

At first I thought some browser-extension went crazy, but it also opens when the browser isn't open and spotify is running. 


Here is a screenshot, but I can't say for sure if it has anything to do with this banner, or if this is already the next. And as nygren said, most links are even much more shady then this bet-at-home ad. The original URL that gets opened:


/edit: got another one while a banner with "Ads by REVERBNATION" was shown, just like before


Having the same problem, every 5 to 10 minutes a popunder ad is opened, started today.

Coming from different ad servers. Managed to copy one of the links, maybe it helps in backtracking to the source.


Same thing here.

  1. Spotify, Windows 7 x64 Enterprice
  2. It happens all the time. Can be repeated with restarting Spotify and selecting any song, ad popup opens almost immediately.
  3. Process explorer Example links
  4. I reinstalled Spotify and problem persists.
  5. Can't recall anything special.

Same problem here. Running the spotify client on ubuntu 16.04 ( Opening tabs in my default browser every 10 minutes or so. Please fix this Spotify, this is ruining my experience...


Both on my dad's and my own laptop we've gotten the "" ads mentioned by some. Have closed spotify now for a couple minutes and the ads haven't popped up.. Spotify u ok?


Same problem here, started happening an hour or two ago.

Every 5 to 10 minutes a new tab with ads (not always the most polite ones) opens automatically in my browser (Google Chrome).


Here is my Spotify version:


Same problem on my Mac Book Pro running El Capitan 10.11.6.

  2. Random adds in 5-10 minutes intervals.
  3. As seen in other screenshots and videos.
  4. Sorry, I haven't tried yet. But I think it started without my intervention so I would assume it can be fixed without ;).
  5. It started a few days ago. Didn't realize that it is related to spotify at first. Today, the app was running in the background without playing music since a few hours. I think the pop up thing started when I started actually using the app. No freezing or anything - Spotify and Chrome work as expected, just the adds pop up.