Users viewing AdSense ads in Internet Explorer 6 or 7 over the last few days were prompted to install third-party software, according to forum posts on WebmasterWorld. The applications included QuickTime, Acrobat, Flash and Windows Media Player.
The problem was first brought to Google's attention on August 11 and was addressed August 15. According to a forum post by AdSenseAdvisor, the problem has now been fixed.
"We experienced some technical issues that caused some visitors using IE to see download prompts for third-party add-ons or plug-ins," said a Google representative in response to questions. "Our engineers resolved the issue right away so ad serving is now back to normal."
The representative did not explain the four day lag in response, and Google Watch is still seeking comment.
Some forum posters, however, said they believe that Google was intentionally trying to install software without users' knowledge. And some users report that the issue has not been entirely rectified.
"The problem is not whether or not *I* know what's going on with the issue, it's my users," posted forum user Netmeg. "How many people got that message and just clicked away without even looking at my site, let alone clicking on an ad? THAT is what I'm worried about."