This page aims to help you remove “Microsoft Critical Alert” Pop-up Scam. These “Microsoft Critical Alert” Pop-up removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.
In today’s article we will be discussing “Microsoft Critical Alert” – a type of a browser hijacker. Let’s be clear about something first – if you see a warning pop-up message on your screen about a “Microsoft Critical Alert”, do not believe it. It’s more than likely a scam and you are dealing with a browser hijacker instead. What characterizes these programs is that they are capable of infecting all kinds of browsers – Firefox, Chrome, Explorer, and enforcing certain changes to their settings. As a result, your browser may start to authorize unnecessary redirects; your default search engine and homepage could be changed to other ones; and many pop-up ads might begin to show up on your screen. More details about the nature and the effects of that program are available below.
Can browser hijackers be dangerous? What about “Microsoft Critical Alert” in particular?
The aforementioned characteristics are typical for any hijacker. This is pretty much what such a program is able to do to your browser in brief. In fact, you have nothing to worry about. Of course, you might be annoyed by the possible alterations that generally come from the activities of any browser hijacker, but nothing really malicious could result from that. To illustrate the difference between “Microsoft Critical Alert” (or any other hijacker) and any dangerous computer virus, let’s have a look at the comparison below:
Hijackers are only able to cause all the aforementioned changes to your browsers, no matter what type you use. Also, the generated ads might be based on your interests, as “Microsoft Critical Alert” could access your browsing history and base the ad suggestions on your most recent search requests. The entire activity of this program might result in a system slowdown, as the hijacker typically calls on a lot of your PC’s resources to generate such large quantities of ads. Actual viruses are able to harm your files or encrypt them (as Trojans and Ransomware viruses do). The malware infection could result in identity theft, file encryption, system crashes, destruction of data and extensive spying on you.
Browser hijackers as a whole and “Microsoft Critical Alert” in particular are also widely considered to be potentially unwanted programs, because of their ability to distribute many ads and to pry into your browsing patterns. However, this does not identify them as malicious or dangerous in any way.
How could you end up infected with such an irritating program as “Microsoft Critical Alert”?
It might be a relief to know that you are not facing a malicious program. Nonetheless, this doesn’t mean that you need such programs on your PC. We have compiled a detailed list of the most common hijacker sources so that you can avoid them as often as possible. Browser hijackers love lurking inside program bundles: these software mixtures are typically offered for free. They may consist of games, new apps, various programs and often ad-producing software like Adware and browser hijackers. Torrents/ shady web pages and shareware platforms are also likely sources of browser hijackers. You may get infected if you load them, visit them or use them. As for the legality of program bundles as a method of distributing hijackers, they are fully legal. Software developers, who create them, typically do not include anything malicious inside them. It’s true that this is a rather tricky way to make you install such a bundle and as a result – get contaminated with “Microsoft Critical Alert”. The secret is not to install the entire content of the bundle, but only the part you are interested in and to avoid the ad-broadcasting program inside it. For that purpose, when you venture into installing any downloaded bundle, once you see the installation wizard on your monitor, look for the options that provide a detailed installation process. Such a feature is either named Advanced or Custom. Make sure that you go with these only. All the others that you will be presented with will not give you the opportunity to choose what to get installed on your PC.
What else you should bear in mind to avoid any potential infections with hijackers
You should always keep your anti-malware tool updated and ready to scan your PC and defeat any upcoming threats. Also, just be picky when it comes to the places you go to while surfing, as some of them might be contagious. Another useful advice is not to download anything from illegal or suspicious sources. Turning on your pop-up blocker might also help, but remember that such a tool only prevents the web-page hosted ads from popping up.
In case you need something to remove the hijacker infection
We suggest that you go with the instructions in our removal guide that is available below. We have striven to come up with useful and easy steps, so that you will not be alone in the fight against “Microsoft Critical Alert”.
|Name||“Microsoft Critical Alert”|
|Danger Level||Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)|
|Symptoms||Simply modifies your browsers in terms of default homepages; redirection and ads generation. Sometimes all that leads to a system slowdown.|
|Distribution Method||Various ones – torrents, shareware, program bundles.|
|Detection Tool||parasite may be difficult to track down. Use Combo Cleaner - a professional parasite scanner - to make sure you find all files related to the infection.|
“Microsoft Critical Alert” Pop-up Scam Removal
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).
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 Combo Cleaner - a professional Parasite removal tool.
- Do not skip this – “Microsoft Critical Alert” may have hidden some of its files.
Hold together the Start Key and R. Type appwiz.cpl –> OK.
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:
Startup —> Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer or otherwise look suspicious.
Hold the Start Key and R – copy + paste the following and click OK:
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:
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.
- Right-click on the Network Adapter you are using —> Properties —> Internet Protocol Version 4 (ICP/IP), click Properties.
- The DNS line should be set to Obtain DNS server automatically. If it is not, set it yourself.
- Click on Advanced —> the DNS tab. Remove everything here (if there is something) —> OK.
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).
Properties —–> Shortcut. In Target, remove everything after .exe.
Remove “Microsoft Critical Alert” from Internet Explorer:
Open IE, click —–> Manage Add-ons.
Find the threat —> Disable. Go to —–> Internet Options —> change the URL to whatever you use (if hijacked) —> Apply.
Remove “Microsoft Critical Alert” from Firefox:
Open Firefox, click ——-> Add-ons —-> Extensions.
Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
Remove “Microsoft Critical Alert” from Chrome:
Close Chrome. Navigate to:
C:/Users/!!!!USER NAME!!!!/AppData/Local/Google/Chrome/User Data. There is a Folder called “Default” inside:
Rename it to Backup Default. Restart Chrome.
- At this point the threat is gone from Chrome, but complete the entire guide or it may reappear on a system reboot.
Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC simultaneously. Go to the Processes Tab. Try to determine which ones are dangerous. Google them or ask us in the comments.
WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!
This is the most important and difficult part. If you delete the wrong file, it may damage your system irreversibly. If you can not do this,
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Right click on each of the problematic processes separately and select Open File Location. End the process after you open the folder, then delete the directories you were sent to.
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 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—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random
Remember to leave us a comment if you run into any trouble!