Browser hijacking is one of the most annoying problems that an Internet user can face. When you open your Internet browser to read the news – porn shows up. You try to check your email – porn shows up. You try to access Facebook – porn shows up. Browser hijacking software is very aggressive advertising software; it is downloaded to the user’s computer system when a website that contains malicious software is accessed.
This kind of software can alter the browser’s homepage address, so that when the user clicks on the homepage icon, he is redirected to another website. It prevents navigation to anti-spyware and other security sites, and slows down system operations as well.
If you are bombarded with endless popup windows and suspect that your browser has been hijacked, hit Ctrl+Alt+Delete and click on Task Manager, then select the Processes tab. If you’re using Internet Explorer, click on iexplore.exe and then hit the End Process button.
To prevent further popups, click on the Tools and select Internet Options. After that, go to the Privacy tab and tick on the box underneath “Pop-up Blocker”.
If there is still a problem, then you need to scan your computer in safe mode. Restart your computer, and press the F8 key repeatedly when the system starts up with a display screen. The Windows boot menu will come up. Select Safe Mode and hit Enter.
Once Windows has started in safe mode, open Microsoft Security Essentials (you should have this installed already), and run a full scan. It is useful for detecting and removing most malicious software on your computer.
You can also use multiple antivirus/spyware remover programs – one at a time – to identify and delete any remaining malicious software. Some useful ones include Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and Ad-Aware Free Internet Security. Make sure to restart your computer in normal mode when you’re done, and scan it again to ensure that there is no malware left.
Should all those methods above fail, open the Start menu and type in ‘regedit’. In the registry editor, press Ctrl+F and type in the URL of the website that you are redirected to by the browser hijacker. If you find any entry, delete it and press F3 to continue searching. After deleting all similar entries, empty the recycle bin and restart the computer.
Don’t forget to update your antivirus regularly after this and never open or visit links online that you don’t trust.