Pushwhy.com “Virus” is a browser hijacker application, which can take over the settings of some of the most popular browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Explorer and others. The security experts do not regard this app as malicious, however, they classify it as potentially unwanted. Unlike threats like Ransomware or Trojans, Pushwhy.com spreads online mostly with the help of free software bundles, automatic updates and free download links and may become part of your system if you perform a careless software installation without customizing its settings.
The moment it gets installed, this browser hijacker immediately changes the settings of the default browser on the computer by placing some new homepage URL, a new search engine or a new toolbar and starts to page-redirect your searches to some predefined sites. In addition, this software launches an aggressive online advertising campaign on your screen and starts to generate various sponsored ads, pop-ups, banners and other promotional materials on literally every web page that you visit. In other words, Pushwhy.com is an application that forces the web users to deal with some third-party ads, tools, redirects and modified search results which may not be approved or desired. That’s why it is not surprising that many people seek methods to remove this strange application and uninstall its changes from their main browser. Unfortunately, in most of the cases, this is not an easy task because, as most ad-generating and page-redirecting applications, Pushwhy.com “Virus” usually does not have a quick uninstallation setting and normally cannot be found under the Control Panel uninstallation menu where entries for most other programs can be found. Therefore, its effective removal oftentimes requires some additional steps or the assistance of a professional removal tool. In the next lines, we have prepared a detailed set of manual instructions, neatly organized in a removal guide, as well as a trusted Pushwhy.com removal tool, which can help even non-experienced users deal with this application and to save themselves from the unwanted disturbance.
The redirects of Pushwhy.com “Virus”
The creators of Pushwhy.com typically promote this browser hijacker as a helpful tool which can enhance the web browsing experience of the user for free. However, the main goal of the owners of the application is to earn profits from ad-clicks and page-redirects on the back of the web users and their hijacked browsers. For this reason, they oftentimes set the browser hijacker to promote various kinds of pay-per-click ads, banners, pop-ups and sponsored links and to manipulate the search results in favor of some third-party content. In addition, they typically launch traffic data collection services in the background of the system in order to advertise more effectively and to learn more about the users’ preferences. An application like Pushwhy.com may be set to collect some non-personal information such as IP addresses, location, language, frequently visited pages, social media likes and shares, and to expose the web users to personalized sponsored third-party content based on their latest searches and browsing behavior. From a legal point of view, there is nothing harmful in such an activity as its purpose is entirely marketing-oriented. However, the random exposure to various unfamiliar websites and commercials may hide some security risks such as an accidental encounter with viruses and malware (including Ransomware, Spyware, and Trojans). Therefore, we recommend you remove Pushwhy.com and its browser components as soon as you detect them.
Remove Pushwhy.com “Virus”
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.