Hao123.com “Virus” Removal (july 2017 Update)

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.


This page aims to help you remove Hao123.com “Virus”. Our removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.

It is very likely that you have recently been bothered by one particular software piece – Hao123.com. This article has been especially prepared to answer all your questions about this browser hijacker. We are going to discuss why it might infect your browser apps only (Firefox, Explorer, Chrome); as well as all the special functions characterizing Hao123.com.

It is important to note that Hao123.com is not a malicious website in the least. However there have been many reports about redirects connected to this web address that might be indicative of a possible adware/browser hijacking situation. Normally, as such we consider its ability to generate many irritating pop-up ads, redirect you to web locations you hadn’t had any desire to go to; or to set some entirely unfamiliar homepages and search engines to the browsers installed on your PC. What’s more, we have discussed our collection of prevention measures to help you stay away from this kind of software when you have already managed to handle the current infection. Hao123.com belongs to the browser hijacker family, meaning that this program might be perfectly capable of causing some modifications to your browser apps. As you might have already concluded from its ‘alias’, this type of software could alter the majority of your browsers’ settings. The following changes may lead to the the generation of lots of ads; as well as to some irritating redirects, and last but not least – to the display of some unknown search engines and homepages. These are the possible effects Hao123.com “Virus” might have on your device.

Several slightly suspicious effects:

Still, there might be some more or less likely activities Hao123.com “Virus” might perform – such are the actual research on your browsing preferences done according to your most regular browsing requests. Thus, the advertising campaign overwhelming your browser apps may solely display ads that really fit into the profile of the most recent requests. All that has motivated some experts to identify browser hijackers as a potentially unwanted kind of software.

 

Hao123.com Removal

If you are a Windows user, continue with the guide below.

If you are a Mac user, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you are an Android user, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.


Step1

Some of the steps will likely require you to exit the page. Bookmark it for later reference.

Reboot in Safe Mode (use this guide if you don’t know how to do it).

Step2

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

A lot of people ignore what is written and then ask us, so we are putting this information here. To remove parasite without it coming back, you WILL 100% have to:

  Delete files belonging to suspicious processes in your Task Manager.

 

  Meddle with system files and folders, including ones belonging to Windows.

Both of these can damage your system. If you want a fast safe solution, we always recommend SpyHunter, because it has an option, allowing its owners to send a customized fix made for your PC. We guarantee it will work. You can access it at "Spyware HelpDesk" ----> Select Problem Type ---> Unremoved Parasite. 

>> Click to Download Spyhunter. If you don't want this software, continue with the guide below.

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.

Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC at the same time and go to the Processes Tab (the “Details” Tab on Win 8 and 10). Try to determine which processes are dangerous. 

malware-start-taskbar

Right click on each of them and select Open File Location. Then scan the files with our free online virus scanner:

Drag and Drop Files Here to Scan
Maximum file size: 128MB.

This scanner is free and will always remain free for our website's users. You can find its full-page version at: https://howtoremove.guide/online-virus-scanner/




Scan Results


Virus Scanner Result
ClamAV
AVG AV
Maldet

After you open their folder, end the processes that are infected, then delete their folders. 

Note: If you are sure something is part of the infection – delete it, even if the scanner doesn’t flag it. No anti-virus program can detect all infections. 

Step3

Hold together the Start Key and R. Type appwiz.cpl –> OK.

appwiz

You are now in the Control Panel. Look for suspicious entries. Uninstall it/them.

Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter. A window will pop-up:

msconfig_opt

Startup —> Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer or otherwise look suspicious.

Step4

Hold the Start Key and R –  copy + paste the following and click OK:

notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts

A new file will open. If you are hacked, there will be a bunch of other IPs connected to you at the bottom. Look at the image below:

hosts_opt (1)

If there are suspicious IPs below “Localhost” – write to us in the comments.

Open the start menu and search for Network Connections (On Windows 10 you just write it after clicking the Windows button), press enter.

  1. Right-click on the Network Adapter you are using —> Properties —> Internet Protocol Version 4 (ICP/IP), click  Properties.
  2. The DNS line should be set to Obtain DNS server automatically. If it is not, set it yourself.
  3. Click on Advanced —> the DNS tab. Remove everything here (if there is something) —> OK.

DNS

Step5

  • After you complete this step, the threat will be gone from your browsers. Finish the next step as well or it may reappear on a system reboot.

Right click on the browser’s shortcut —> Properties.

NOTE: We are showing Google Chrome, but you can do this for Firefox and IE (or Edge).

browser-hijacker-taskbar-properties

Properties —–> Shortcut. In Target, remove everything after .exe.

ie9-10_512x512  Remove Hao123.com from Internet Explorer:

Open IE, click  IE GEAR —–> Manage Add-ons.

pic 3

Find the threat —> Disable. Go to IE GEAR —–> Internet Options —> change the URL to whatever you use (if hijacked) —> Apply.

firefox-512 Remove Hao123.com from Firefox:

Open Firefoxclick  mozilla menu  ——-> Add-ons —-> Extensions.

pic 6

Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove Hao123.com from Chrome:

Close Chrome. Navigate to:

 C:/Users/!!!!USER NAME!!!!/AppData/Local/Google/Chrome/User Data. There is a Folder called “Default” inside:

Rename the Folder to Backup Default

Rename it to Backup Default. Restart Chrome.

Step6

WARNING!
To remove parasite, you may have to meddle with system files and registries. Making a mistake and deleting the wrong thing may damage your system.
Avoid this by using SpyHunter - a professional Parasite removal tool.

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.

Type Regedit in the windows search field and press Enter.

Inside, press CTRL and F together and type the threat’s Name. Right click and delete any entries you find with a similar name. If they don’t show up this way, go manually to these directories and delete/uninstall them:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random Directory. It could be any one of them – ask us if you can’t discern which ones are malicious.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—-Windows—CurrentVersion—Run– Random
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random

If the guide doesn’t help, download the anti-virus program we recommended or try our free online virus scanner. Also, you can always ask us in the comments for help!

Is there any relation between browser hijackers and real forms of malware?

Browser hijackers might top the list of the most disturbing programs you could ever happen to experience while browsing the web. Nonetheless, they aren’t really related in any way to any malicious program, which comes from the the fact that normally hijackers do not have any harmful effects. The characteristic features of the most common virus categories such as Ransomware and Trojans may include looking into your data and locking up most of it. Furthermore, real viruses, like the ones from the Ransomware and Trojan categories as perfect examples, are really capable of damaging your entire system; or deleting some of your precious data; and of formatting all your hard drives. One more likely feature of the most widely spread malware type, the Trojans, is to spy on you and track all your activities right after the virus has been installed on your PC. What’s more horrid is that all these activities could be so subtle and unnoticeable that you might not be able to see them before they have caused some real problems like bank account draining. 

How does the contamination process with Hao123.com “Virus” occur?

The probable ways of distributing Hao123.com are more or less directly connected to the basic reasons why such programs have been created in the first place. Programmers tend to spread hijackers and other ad-broadcasting programs by putting them in bundles with many other programs, games and apps. In general, such software sets might be accessed for free as their creators are paid for the generated ads. However, the infection with Hao123.com is very UNLIKELY just because you have downloaded a program bundle for free. An infection like this can only take place if you install the downloaded bundle in a rushed or ignorant way, which will not give you the chance to choose exactly what to get installed on your device and what from the downloaded bundle to exclude from the ongoing installation process.

In case you do want to keep your PC hijacker-free and have the real chance of installing only the components of a bundle you really want, it is absolutely obligatory that you select the more elaborate installation options – like the Custom, Customized or the Advanced ones. That is actually the way to take control over the installation process of any software, and to personally and manually decide which features and programs you want to incorporate into your PC.

The Removal Guide below:

If an infection has already taken place and you have to remove Hao123.com from your system, please proceed to the instructions in the guide below this article.

SUMMARY:

Name Hao123.com
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms More or less likely are redirects to various web pages, some ad production and homepage/ search engine substitution.
Distribution Method Via program bundles mainly, also possibly inside torrents and spam.
Detection Tool We generally recommend SpyHunter or a similar anti-malware program that is updated daily.

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware detection tool is free. To remove the infection, you’ll need to purchase the full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.