Virus is a problematic ad-displaying application that hijacks the browsers of Windows computers and uses them for site promotion. will cause your browser to redirect your searches to sites you don’t want to visit in order to provide them with greater exposure.

Apps like or Actarpluctess can be quite unpleasant to have in your browser because they tend to heavily obstruct one’s normal browsing experience by constantly sending the browser to different promoted sites that the user has no desire of visiting. In addition, apps like also have a tendency of taking over the settings of the search engine that the browser uses by default and causing it to show a big number of advertised items in its search results. Additionally, the homepage of your Firefox or Chrome (or another browser you may be using as your main one) could get replaced by the browser-hijacking app without your direct approval.

All these changes in the browser and promotional activities initiated by this hijacker can not only be highly obstructive to your regular online experience by could also put your system at risk of getting targeted by attackers and infected with more dangerous forms of malware, including Ransomware cryptoviruses, Trojan horses, Spyware, Rootkits, and others.

The Virus

One additional issue with software apps like is that they oftentimes tend to secretly collect data from your browser related to your recent searches and site visits. This enables those apps to show ads on your screen that are more closely related to your interests and preferences.

Showing you more relevant ads could, in turn, make it more likely for you to interact with the advertising materials, which is exactly what the creators of want since they earn money for each ad-click and site-visit made from users towards the ads and sites that these apps promote. These remuneration models are known as Pay-Per-Click and Pay-Per-View and they dictate the way most browser hijackers behave and operate.

A potential issue here is that, most of the time, users are not given any specific information about what and how much data is collected from their browser or exactly how said data is utilized. In many instances, a hijacker app like wouldn’t even notify you about this data tracking, leaving you totally clueless about what’s really happening in your browser. One of the worst things about this is that the collected information oftentimes gets sold and resold to other parties, some of which may try to use the acquired information in potentially harmful ways.

How to get rid of

Obviously, removing is the best option you have right now as that would help you better protect your computer from Ransomware, Spyware, Trojans, and other threats as well as keep your online privacy secure. However, since uninstalling a browser hijacker app could oftentimes be a bit tricky, we wish to help you remove by offering you an uninstallation guide that you can find right below. Just complete the steps that you will see next and the hijacker should be gone from your PC in a matter of minutes.

Type Browser Hijacker
Detection Tool

Remove Virus

To try and remove quickly you can try this:

  1. Go to your browser’s settings and select More Tools (or Add-ons, depending on your browser).
  2. Then click on the Extensions tab.
  3. Look for the extension (as well as any other unfamiliar ones).
  4. Remove by clicking on the Trash Bin icon next to its name.
  5. Confirm and get rid of and any other suspicious items.

If this does not work as described please follow our more detailed removal guide below.

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


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).



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. 


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

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    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. 


    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:

    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.

    • 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).


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

    Browser Hijacker Removal Instructions

    ie9-10_512x512  Remove  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  from Firefox:

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

    pic 6

    chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove  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.


    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


    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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