In the event of a browser hijackers infection, you have likely already experienced how annoying and frustrating it can get. Today’s article is dedicated to a particular browser hijacker called Chrome Search Club “Virus”. Just like other representatives of this software category, Chrome Search Club will change the default search engine of your browser and possibly also replace its standard homepage with a new one. In addition, software of this type also tends to make your browser redirect you to various obscure web locations without even asking for your approval. Furthermore, browser hijackers don’t discriminate and can affect pretty much any of the popular browsing programs, including Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera, etc. And what makes matters worse is the fact that no matter how often you try, you just can’t seem to restore your browser settings to their previous state and make them stay that way. What’s more, you’ve probably already tried your best to delete Chrome Search Club as well, and that too led to no results. If this sounds all too familiar, then you will want to stick around to find out more. In our removal guide below, we will show you how to remove this browser hijacker from your system once and for all.
Why does Chrome Search Club “Virus” behave this way? Is there any reason for worry?
People who have never before experienced the effects of a browser hijacker before tend to panic and jump to various conclusions that aren’t based on facts. For example, most commonly affected users suspect they’ve been infected by a virus of some sort and that they’re system must be in grave danger. Thankfully, Chrome Search Club “Virus” won’t damage your computer, steal sensitive information from you or try to extort money from you, like some notorious malware types such as Trojans and ransomware would. As a matter of fact, browser hijackers have never been regarded as viruses and are more often categorized as potentially unwanted programs. So, that puts them somewhere in between malicious software and software that is actually useful and beneficial to people.
There are several reasons as to why they don’t qualify as the latter, though. One of them is the fact that they genuinely do no provide users with any useful functionality. They only serve strictly marketing purposes and in doing so help generate profits for their developers. Another reason is that browser hijackers like Chrome Search Club “Virus” tend to alter certain system registry files to ensure that they can conduct their advertising campaigns more effectively. This enables the aforementioned page redirects and the generation and display of the many popups and banners on your screen. But besides that, this process also results in weakened defense mechanisms of your system. And that in turn makes it more prone to contracting a real virus infection. After all, you are constantly redirected to various domains, some of which may easily be insecure and/or infected with malware. The same may also ensue as a result of clicking on any of the online ads you see, especially with malvertisements having become one of the leading malware distribution methods.
In addition, there is also the fact to consider that browser hijackers can potentially lead to a compromised overall system performance. Due to their background processes requiring your PC’s system resources, such as RAM and CPU, this can substantially decrease the processing speed of your computer. Depending on your machine, this can even lead to browser crashes, your system freezing up and lags. So, with this in mind, it would actually in fact be better for you and your computer to remove Chrome Search Club “Virus”.
Another thing that’s kind of misleading and rather intrusive about software of this type is how it typically gets installed on your computer. Now, unlike viruses and malware, a program like Chrome Search Club would actually need you to authorize its installation. But since pretty much nobody would be interested in willingly installing a browser hijacker on their computers, the developers need to get creative. So they add them to the installers of other programs that are usually distributed for free on various file-sharing platforms. And once you run the Automatic or Recommended setup, which is what the majority of users prefer, what you don’t realize is that you’re giving permission for the added components (in this case, the browser hijacker) to be installed as well. A lot of the time you can actually circumvent the hijackers in cases like these, leaving them out of the setup, by opting for the Custom or Advanced settings and actually paying attention to each step.
Source: Howtoremove.guide’s instructions How to Remove Chrome Search Club “Virus”.
Chrome Search Club “Virus” Removal
Before you begin completing the steps from the following guide, we advise you to place a bookmark on this page or have it opened on a separate device since some of the following steps will require you to close your browser.
Enter Safe Mode. If you don’t know how to do it, use this guide.
Open the Task Manger by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc. Go to the processes/details Tab and take a look at the resulting list. If you see a process with the name of the unwanted program or looks shady, right-click on it and select Open File Location. If you believe it is part of the infection, delete the files.
Use the Winkey+R key combination to open the Run window and in the search field type appwiz.cpl. Hit Enter and in the resulting list, look for recently installed programs that look potentially unwanted. If you find anything – uninstall it.
Re-open Run and this tie type msconfig. Hit Enter again and in the resulting window, go to the Startup tab. See if there are any shady programs there and if anything looks suspicious uncheck it and then select OK.
In the Start Menu search field, copy-paste the following line: notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts . Open the first result and look at the bottom of the file where it says “Localhost”. If there are any IP addresses below that, tell us what they are in the comments since they might be coming from the unwanted software.
Type Network Connections in the Windows search field and click on the first result. Right-click on the adapter that you are using at the moment and go to Properties > Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IP) > Properties.
If the DNS line is not set to Obtain DNS server automatically, make sure to check that option.
Now go to Advanced > DNS tab and remove everything in DNS server addresses, in order of use.
Right-click on your browser’s icon and select Properties. Delete everything in Target that is after .exe”.
For Chrome users
Close Chrome and go to this folder: C:/Users/*Your username*/AppData/Local/Google/Chrome/User Data. Change the name of the Default folder to Backup Default. Re-open Chrome.
For Firefox users
Open Firefox and click on the Main Menu > Add-ons > Extensions. If you see anything suspicious there, remove it.
For IE users
When you open the browser, go to Tools > Manage Ad-ons and remove the unwanted software if you see it there. Next, go to Tools > Internet options and change the homepage URL to whatever you are normally using.
Open Run (Winkey+R), type Regedit and click on OK. Next, press Ctrl+F and type the malware name. Hit Enter and delete everything that gets found.
If there are no results from the search, manually visit those folders in the Registry Editor.
- HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Microsoft/Internet Explorer/Main
If you find there any suspicious keys that have names with a lot of random letters and numbers, delete them or if you are not sure, tell us in the comments what you saw.