Captcha Verifier Virus


Captcha Verifier

Captcha Verifier is an application that can be installed inside any browser, and make changes in it. For example, Captcha Verifier may set a new homepage, or replace the toolbar buttons of the browser.

captcha verifier

The Captchaverifier.top virus will display pop up ads and notifications

Additionally, this app may try to replace the search engine that your browser uses by default, and it may trigger sudden and unexpected page-redirects to sites that the user didn’t want to visit. Usually, the redirects would be to sites that have lots of ads on them, and that try to sell something, and to promote some products, and services. Such sites are Humisnee, Video Downloader by Skyload, Captcha Checkout and many more. On the surface, none of this may seem like a huge deal, but once your Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or another browser starts to get flooded by sudden pop-up windows, and unpleasant redirects, and once some of its elements get replaced without your permission, you are likely to get quite frustrated over this. The activities of a hijacker could greatly reduce the quality of your browsing experience, and, what’s worse, they may also make your system less safe.

The Captcha Verifier virus

Captcha Verifier is not an application that can be regarded as an actual computer virus. Despite that, Captcha Verifier is still a piece of software that can do things in your system and browser that it hasn’t been specifically authorized to.

The changes in the browser we mentioned, and the sudden page redirects are two of the most prominent examples. In addition to that, some users may get lots of pesky browser ads, and banner messages even on sites that don’t normally have intrusive advertising materials. As we already mentioned, in addition to being quite irritating, all of this could lead to some safety issues in your computer. This, however, is not to say that you are dealing with a real virus, or some other highly-dangerous malware program the likes of Ransomware, or Trojans. Captcha Verifier is, for the most part, not a harmful software, and it’s purpose doesn’t have anything to do with damaging your system, corrupting your files, or messing with your private life. Typically, the goal of most hijackers such as this one is to make money through various forms of web advertising, and online promotion. The Pay-Per-Click scheme plays a huge role here, as it is what allows the creators of hijackers like Captcha Verifier to make money from the clicks that users make on the ads displayed by the hijacker.

CaptchaVerifier

Even though, CaptchaVerifier isn’t intended to directly cause harm to your machine, a hijacker may still indirectly lead to certain security problems, mainly related to the unknown origins of its ads, and redirects. This means it’s possible that CaptchaVerifier may sent you to some sketchy phishing page, or a site used to spread Ransomware, Spyware, Trojans, and other threats if you accidentally interact with the wrong ad or banner.

This is why the need to uninstall the hijacker is ever-present, and you shouldn’t ignore it. The good news is that the instructions we’ve prepared for you on this page will help you remove this pesky software piece, and forget that it has ever been in your computer.

SUMMARY:

Name Captcha Verifier
Type Browser Hijacker
Detection Tool

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Captcha Verifier Virus Removal

To remove Captcha Verifier, users must first check the extension settings of their browsers and delete from there anything unwanted.

  1. Open your main browser and select its menu.
  2. Go to Extensions/Add-ons and find potentially unwanted items there – anything that looks like it may be related to Captcha Verifier.
  3. Disable and then uninstall the suspicious extensions that you may find in order to remove Captcha Verifier.
  4. Repeat the previous steps with any other browsers that you may have in the system.

Often, the steps we’ve shown above will be enough to solve the hijacker problem but since it is possible that there are other components that Captcha Verifier has installed on your computer that need to be removed if you are still experiencing the hijacker symptoms after cleaning your browser from unwanted extensions, then you will have to complete the rest of this guide in order to fully eliminate everything linked to the undesirable software.


Step 1: Save this page

Since some of the next instructions will require you to quit your browser and restart your computer, it could help if you bookmark this page so that you can find it easier the next time you go into your browser. Alternatively, you can have it open on another device and read the instructions from there while performing them on your PC.

Step 2: Uninstall rogue programs/apps

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

Go to the Starting Menu, type Programs and Features in it, and select the first result. Look through the list of programs and apps installed on the computer and try to find anything that’s been recently installed (around the time of the appearance of the hijacker in your browser) and that seems like it could be responsible for landing you Captcha Verifier.

If you think you know which program or app may be behind this, select its entry from the list and then click on the Uninstall button from the top. Follow whatever uninstallation steps may appear on your screen and make sure that you opt to delete everything related to the unwanted program, including any personalized settings or temporary data related to it. After you are done, restart the PC.

Step 3: Find the hijacker process/processes

Open the Task Manager either by searching for it in the Start Menu or by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc from the keyboard. Select Processes in the Task Manager and look for any suspiciously named items that are using up significant amounts of your system’s RAM and/or CPU.

If you find anything that has an odd name or a name close to Captcha Verifier as well as anything that doesn’t seem to be related to any of your programs or to your OS and yet is using up large portions of your system’s resources, look up the name of that process and if you find any information that it may be linked to Captcha Verifier or to another unwanted software, right-click on the process, Open the File Location where its data is stored, and scan each of the files from that folder with the free scanner we’ve provided below:

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    malware-start-taskbar

    If even a single file is flagged as a threat by the scanner, right-click on the process again, End the Process Tree, then return to the Location Folder, and delete said folder. If you get an error message telling you that some of the files in the folder or the folder itself can’t be deleted, delete what you can that’s stored inside it and go to the next step. After the whole guide is complete, try to delete the Location Folder again.

    Note: Even if scanning the files in the File Location Folder doesn’t indicate the presence of malware if your online research gave you enough reason to believe the suspected process is linked to Captcha Verifier, you should still quit it and then delete its File Location Folder.

    Step 4 Safe Mode

    When your PC is in Safe Mode Windows will not allow any non-essential processes to be launched automatically which can help keep Captcha Verifier from running its processes in case you were not able to find and stop them in the previous step. Therefore, we strongly recommend booting your PC into Safe Mode and the link will take you to a guide on how to do that in case you need help with it.

    Step 5: Clean the Hosts file

    Type (or copy-paste) the following in the Start Menu search box and hit Enter: notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts.

    Check if there are any suspicious IPs in the bottom part of the text in the notepad file that opens. Anything written below “Localhost” counts as suspicious so if there’s anything written there, copy it and send it to us in the comments. After we have a look at it, we will be able to determine if it is from the hijacker, and we will tell you if you must delete it from the Hosts file. If that is the case, and you must delete the suspicious lines of text, remember to Save the changes to the Hosts file afterward.

    hosts_opt (1)

    Step 6: Restore DNS settings

    Type network connections in the Start Menu, open the first icon from the results and right-click on whichever network you are currently connected to. Open its Properties, select the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) item from the list, go to Properties, and enable the Obtain DNS server address automatically option (if it is disabled at the moment). Then proceed to Advanced > DNS tab and delete any entries that you may see below DNS server addresses. Finally, click on the OK button on all windows to save any changes you’ve just made.

    DNS

    Step 7: Delete unwanted startup items

    Press the Windows Key (key with Windows logo) and and type msconfig in the search field. Select OK to open System Configurations and then go to Startup Look for questionable items with unknown developers in the list and if you think anything there may be linked to Captcha Verifier, uncheck it by removing the tick from its checkbox. Click on OK to apply and save the changes.

    msconfig_opt

    Step 8: Clean the Registry Editor

    A word of warning: there are many sensitive and important program and OS settings in the Registry, so you must be very careful when deleting items from it during the current step. We strongly recommend asking us in the comments about anything you are uncertain about before you act so that you don’t end up deleting something that you aren’t supposed to and thus causing additional issues to your system.

    Press Winkey + R again, this time type regedit in the search bar, and click on OK. You will be required to give your permission to the Registry Editor to make system changes so click on Yes. Go to the Edit menu in the Registry Editor, click on Find, type the hijacker name in the search box, and select Find Next to search for related items. If an item does get found, select it and delete it and then repeat the search. Keep deleting the files that get found until there are no more results from the search and then visit the following three directories by expanding the folders from the left:

    • HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Random Directory. 
    • HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Microsoft/Windows/CurrentVersion/Run
    • HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Microsoft/Internet Explorer/Main

    In those directories, look for sketchy-looking folders with long names that consist of random characters or simply look out of place. If you think an item there looks related to Captcha Verifier, delete it. Again, remember to consult us via the comments section in case you are unsure about a given item (or items).

    Step 9: Clean the browsers

    At the start of this guide, we gave you generalized steps on how to clean your browsers, and here we will elaborate upon that by giving you specific examples with Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. Also, even if you cleaned your browsers at the start, it’s advisable to check them again for good measure.

    First, right-click on the icon of your browser, go to Properties > the Shortcut tab, delete anything written after “.exe”” in the Target field, and click on OK. This step applies to all browsers so complete it for all of them.

    Chrome instructions

    When you start Chrome, open the browser menu indicated by three dots in the top-right, and then click on More Tools. From the More Tools sub-menu, click on Extensions and then find, disable, and remove any extensions that look like they shouldn’t be in the browser.

    Next, select the menu again, go to Settings > Privacy and security, and click on Clear browsing data. Check everything except Passwords and click on Clear Data – this could take a few minutes so be patient and don’t turn off the browser until it is finished.

    Firefox instructions

    To go to the Firefox Extension settings, select the three parallel lines icon from the top-right and click on Add-ons. On that page, uninstall everything that looks unwanted or that you haven’t installed yourself in the browser.

    Next, go to Options from the menu, select Privacy & Security, scroll down to find a button labeled Clear Data, and click on it. Put ticks in both boxes and click on Clear.

    Edge Instructions

    The steps here are basically identical to Chrome: select the icon with three dots, go to Extensions, and find and delete the unwanted items that you may find on the Extensions page of the browser.

    Go to the menu again, select Settings and More > Settings and click on Privacy, search, and services. Next, select the Choose what to clear in the bottom right and check all boxes leaving only the Passwords one unchecked. Then click on Clear now to launch the command and don’t turn off the browser until it is finished.

    What is Captcha Verifier?

    Captcha Verifier is a special type of software that gets attached to the main browser on the computer in order to inject it with ads, pop-ups, and page redirects. The goal of Captcha Verifier is to popularize certain sites by boosting their traffic through its advertising activities. Due to their aggressive behavior tendency to uncontrollably spam the users’ browsers with intrusive advertising materials, apps like Captcha Verifier are normally referred to as browser hijackers, and though they are not as problematic as Trojans, Spyware, Ransomware, and other such advanced threats, they are still seen as unwanted and experts advise to have them removed at the earliest opportunity. Usually, an app bundle that carries the hijacker as a “bonus” component is what allows software like Captcha Verifier to get installed inside one’s computer. Though it’s usually possible to refuse to install the added bonus component and only install the main program/app, most users don’t pay attention to such options and simply install everything contained in the installation package.

    How dangerous is Captcha Verifier?

    Captcha Verifier is less dangerous than most other forms of malware, as it is not supposed or able to directly harm your computer. However, there are several factors that may make Captcha Verifier dangerous, such as the fact that its ads may promote unsafe content. It’s for this reason that users are strongly discouraged from interacting with any ads, pop-ups, or pages they may get automatically redirected to if there’s a hijacker in the browser. It’s a common practice for such apps to advertise sites with low reputations and questionable content. Furthermore, it is even possible that hijacker-displayed ads could be linked to sites that spread malware and/or contain phishing elements. It should be said that the potential exposure of your computer to such dangers is not intentional. It is simply a by-product of the attempts of the hijacker’s creators to make more money through their app by letting it advertise any type of content, regardless of how safe or reputable it is.

    How to remove Captcha Verifier?

    To remove Captcha Verifier, first, find and delete the program with which it was bundled and which brought it to you. Then eliminate any leftover data and settings from the system and finally clean each browser that’s on the computer (including ones that seem unaffected). The exact steps that must be completed are shown below: 1. Access the Control Panel, open Uninstall a Program, seek out the rogue program that infected you with Captcha Verifier, and eliminate it. 2. Go to the Task Manager program and use its Processes tab to find any processes related to Captcha Verifier that may still be running. If such processes are found, stop them and delete their location folders. 3. Reverse any changes that Captcha Verifier may have made to the following system settings: The DNS settings of your preferred network The Hosts file of your PC The list of Startup items The System Registry 4. Finally, visit every browser on the computer, delete any rogue extensions that may be in it, and then delete the browsing data and history.

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    About the author

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    Brandon Skies

    Brandon is a researcher and content creator in the fields of cyber-security and virtual privacy. Years of experience enable him to provide readers with important information and adequate solutions for the latest software and malware problems.

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