“Virus” is a browser hijacker which has the ability to “invade” your main browser (it doesn’t matter if you are using Chrome, Firefox, Explorer or some other browsing app) and impose some potentially unwanted changes on its settings. does that with the purpose of spamming you with third-party ads, pop-ups, banners and on-screen page-redirect messages.

Our team has recently received a lot of questions about an application called “Virus” and that’s why, in the next lines, we will tell you all that you need to know about it, especially if you have had a close encounter with this piece of software in the recent days. In to make its advertising activities more effective and efficient, the browser hijacker typically replaces the main homepage with some sponsored URL and installs a new search engine which automatically redirects the users to some predefined web locations and generates modified search, favoring the websites of the partnering third-parties. As a result of that, every time you open your browser and start a new browsing session, you may start to experience invasive page-redirects to specific sites and an unstoppable stream of colorful messages that constantly promote different sales offers and links.  

Generally, such an activity is not malicious and is not intended to cause harm to your computer and its data. Yet, the entire ad-generating campaign can sometimes be very aggressive and, therefore, can easily be mistaken for a potential virus infection or a contamination with some form of nasty malware such as Trojans or Ransomware. People who have never dealt with browser hijackers before may indeed get panicked the moment they detect “Virus” in their browser because such software typically does not have an uninstallation mechanism like most other browser components and the modifications it imposes can sometimes be ridiculously difficult to remove. That’s why, in many cases, even if you seemingly uninstall the affected browser, this may not be enough to fully remove the browser hijacker and its activities from your PC. The effective elimination of the unwanted software may require you to follow certain manual steps or use some professional removal tool in order to get rid of everything related to the pesky pieces of software.

How can “Virus” get inside your PC without your knowledge?

It is typical for most browser hijackers to get installed in the system without the users’ direct approval. Yet, they don’t use the stealthy infection methods that threats like Ransomware, Trojans and the many types of computers viruses rely on. Instead, applications like usually become part of the system when the users download and perform a careless installation of some software bundle or of some free automatic update which may contain the ad-generating and page-redirecting software component inside the installation package. That’s why, in order to avoid landing some potentially unwanted applications like this hijacker when you download software from the web, we advise you to be selective about your sources and always pay attention to the setup menu. Oftentimes, browser hijackers, adware and other similar applications may be found under the Advanced/Custom settings which the users usually overlook. However, this is exactly where you need to go if you want to have more control over the entire setup process of a given software package as then you would be able to manually deselect any additional components that may have been bundled with the installer and, by doing so, leave them out of the setup process.


Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms This program may replace your main homepage or install a new search engine inside your browser.
Distribution Method Software bundling is a common method for distribution along with torrents, ads, spam and free downloads.
Detection Tool

Remove “Virus”

If you have a Windows virus, continue with the guide below.

If you have a Mac virus, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you have an Android virus, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.

If you have an iPhone virus, please use our iPhone Virus Removal guide “Virus”

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). “Virus”


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. “Virus”

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

Scan Results

Virus Scanner Result “Virus”ClamAV “Virus”AVG AV “Virus”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. “Virus”

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

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: “Virus”

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

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: “Virus”

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. “Virus” “Virus”

  • 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). “Virus”

Properties —–> Shortcut. In Target, remove everything after .exe. “Virus” “Virus”  Remove from Internet Explorer:

Open IE, click “Virus” —–> Manage Add-ons. “Virus”

Find the threat —> Disable. Go to “Virus” —–> Internet Options —> change the URL to whatever you use (if hijacked) —> Apply. “Virus” Remove from Firefox:

Open Firefoxclick “Virus”  ——-> Add-ons —-> Extensions. “Virus”

Find the adware/malware —> Remove. “Virus”Remove from Chrome:

Close Chrome. Navigate to:

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

Rename it to Backup Default. Restart Chrome. “Virus”

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!


About the author


Lidia Howler

Lidia is a web content creator with years of experience in the cyber-security sector. She helps readers with articles on malware removal and online security. Her strive for simplicity and well-researched information provides users with easy-to-follow It-related tips and step-by-step tutorials.

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