Safari's Pop-Up Settings: How to Allow or Disable Them

There are pros and cons to using pop-ups. A useful pop-up might prompt you to join a mailing list, provide coupons for your current purchase, or launch a protected download window. Pop-ups, whether malicious or simply annoying, are increasingly common and can lead to a clogged device full of bloatware, adware, and other malware.

Furthermore, some ad-supported sites restrict access until you agree to view their advertisements. Learn the ins and outs of Safari's pop-up settings for a more streamlined browsing experience.

To enable pop-ups on your Mac, simply disable the pop-up blocker. However, it's important to remember that turning off the Mac's pop-up blocker will also enable all web browser advertisements. If you decide you'd like to block pop-ups again, you can do so by following the same procedures.

On a Mac, you can disable the pop-up blocker as follows:

  1. Launch Safari and head to Safari > Preferences in the menu bar.

    Opening Preferences under the Safari tab
  2. Uncheck the box labeled Block pop-up windows in the Security section of the main menu.

    Unchecking the 'Block pop-up windows' option under the Security tab in Safari Preferences

That's how you totally disable Safari's pop-up blocker. In order to re-enable Safari's pop-up blocker, simply repeat the above steps while keeping the Block pop-up windows box checked.

Mac users: prevent unwanted advertisements from appearing in Safari by following these steps

Safari's content settings allow you to disable all pop-ups. The pop-up blocker in Safari can shield your Mac from malicious software and prevent unwanted advertisements.  

How to disable pop-up windows on a Mac:

  1. Release Safari.

  2. Select Safari on the menu bar's far left Select Preferences from the menu that appears. Safari's settings menu can also be accessed via the command-comma (,) shortcut.

    Opening Preferences under the Safari tab in Safari
  3. Access the Websites section via the main menu's tabs. Click Pop-up Windows on the menu's left side. Under Currently Open Websites on the right, you'll find the addresses of the pages you're currently viewing. To activate Block and Notify, click the blue arrows. When that's done, select Block.

    Blocking pop-up windows for currently open websites under the Websites tab in Safari Preferences

That's all there is to it to avoid unwanted pop-ups in Safari. Streamline your Mac even more by learning how to maintain it in tip-top shape. Alternatively, check out our speeding up a Mac guide.

Safari on Mac: How to Enable Pop-Up Windows

Safari's pop-up blocker should be activated for some websites. The trusted websites you frequent may use pop-ups to send you information requests, download consent forms, or time-sensitive offers. Before you can view their content, a website may also request that you disable ad blocking software. Safari's pop-up settings are identical for enabling and disabling the feature.

Learn how to enable pop-ups on a Mac:

  1. To launch Safari, click here.

  2. To access Safari, select the menu item located in the top left corner of your screen. Select Options > Preferences from the menu. To add a comma after a command, press the keyboard shortcut for it (,).

    Opening Preferences under the Safari tab in Safari
  3. Select the Websites button from the main menu. Pop-up Windows can be accessed from the menu on the left. If you look to the right, you'll see a section labeled Currently Open Websites, which will display the URLs of the pages you have open. Make use of the blue navigational arrows to the right of Block and Notify. Select Permit

    Allowing pop-up windows for currently open websites in Safari

Simply enabling pop-ups in Safari requires this. Change your browser. For help with managing pop-ups in other browsers, please see our guides:

You can completely disable the pop-up blocker on your Mac if you don't want to risk missing any content.

Pop-up blocker for iOS devices using Safari

The mobile Safari pop-up blocker is useful for dealing with annoying pop-ups on your iPhone or iPad. See our best ad blocker apps for iPhone guide or our best ad blocker apps for Android guide for more advanced ad-blocking options.  

Here's how to avoid intrusive ads on your iOS device:

  1. To enable Safari, go to Preferences.

    highlighting Safari in Apple mobile Settings
  2. Toggle the switch next to Block Pop-ups on.

    Highlighting the 'Block Pop-ups' toggle in the on position under Safari in Apple mobile settings

Pop-ups can be prevented in a few simple steps on the iPhone and iPad using Safari. Even if you disable pop-ups in Safari, you may still see advertisements when using another web browser. For more advanced ad blocking, check out our guides for Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge.

Methods for enabling pop-ups in Safari on iOS devices

To use certain features, you may need to tell Safari to display pop-ups. Like we've already discussed, pop-ups on websites can perform useful functions like allowing you to sign up for a newsletter. Safari's pop-up blocking features both allow for and disable their reversal.

Learn how to activate pop-ups on your iOS device:

  1. Release the app's settings Tap Safari

    Highlighting Safari in Apple mobile settings
  2. To disable Block Pop-ups, click the button next to it.

    Highlighting the 'Block Pop-ups' toggle in the off position in Apple mobile settings

Now you should receive as many pop-ups as you like. However, Safari's pop-ups can cause some delays in page loads. Dissatisfied with Safari's speed? Make the switch to one of the world's most efficient web browsers right now.

Is it safe to click on Safari pop-ups?

However, while viruses are currently not spread via Safari pop-ups, other forms of malware such as adware and bloatware are. By superimposing a hidden pop-up window over a seemingly harmless one, like a browser game, hackers can trick Safari users into touching or clicking on malicious items.

When installed on a computer, adware can cause ads to start following you around the web. In addition, if you don't get rid of bloatware, your web browser may be weighed down with useless add-ons. Malware may not even be the cause of a sluggish browser.

If you want more storage space or processing power, you should empty your Mac's cache. Use one of the many private browsing options available to avoid leaving a digital footprint while you browse.

You are not safe from hackers just because you use an Apple product. Safari pop-ups are not only a nuisance, but also a security risk. Safe browsing is possible with the help of a browser that automatically blocks annoying pop-up ads.

How do I identify unwanted advertisements?

If you're going to be giving out personal information online, only do so on sites you know and trust. If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of a site, you can do a quick search on Google or you can look for these warning signs of dangerous websites.  

The annoying pop-up ads serving a commercial purpose can appear on even trusted sites. Your browser may be slowing down because of pop-ups; if this happens frequently, you may want to disable them for the specific site in question. To have more than one or two pop-ups per site is also unusual.

And be wary of Safari add-ons; some of them may try to sneak spyware onto your computer. If you see any unusual activity, you should uninstall the Safari add-on immediately. If you want to learn more about protecting your Mac, check out our security guide.

A simple knowledge of Safari's incognito mode could save you hours of frustration with annoying pop-up ads. Pop-up windows from many sites require you to either allow advertisements or provide personal information before you can access the site's content. Sometimes you can get around adblockers by changing your user ID.

The problem with using anonymous browsing mode is that websites you visit won't remember your login or form details. Read our tutorial on how to unblock websites using a virtual private network (VPN) to access content that may be blocked in your country.

You can avoid ads altogether by using Avast's secure browser.

It's a pain to fiddle with browser preferences. Fortunately, you can avoid all that trouble by using a private browsing application. Avast Secure Browser protects you from annoying pop-ups while you browse, allowing you to concentrate on more important matters.  

Benefit from automatic ad blocking, in-built privacy settings, and defense against malware. And because it deletes your browser history as you go, Avast Secure Browser makes it so that no one can follow your online movements. Get the free Avast Secure Browser now for uninterrupted, quick browsing.

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