29 September 2010

How to restore a hijacked browser

Hi friends, Some of you are thinking what is browser hijacking , but most of the people who use internet can easily understand what it means. Browser hijacking is a type of  fraud to earn profit from advertisements and spamming . Scammers use malicious software to take control of your computer's Internet browsers, sometimes you can see when you open your browser homepage is changed or it opens new windows or pop ups with advertisement links.These malicious softwares can be used to steal your cookies and passwords. Or to hack your computer.
How do I know if my browser has been hijacked?
Symptoms of a infected web browser-

  1. Malicious software can slow down your computer.
  2. Home page or other settings change on your computer.
  3. You can't open web pages, such as antispyware, online scanning of malwares and other security software sites.
  4. New toolbars or Favorites are installed that give you icons and links to web pages that you don't want.
  5. Your browser opens links of website that you usually avoid to navigate.
  6. Endless flow of pop up windows.
  7. Your bookmarks has changed or you see anything suspicious.
What things can keep hijackers away from my computer or browser-
  • First precaution is choosing a secure web browser. If you are fed up with browser hijacking scam you can try chrome, I found chrome's security best in all browsers. It is one step ahead  in comparision of other web browsers in security and speed. Most of the toolbars and browser hijacking tools are incompatible with chrome.Mozilla and safari are also good but you need to configure setting for secure browsing.
  • Never allow any toolbar or software in your browser which looks suspicious. If any software or site ask you to install a toolbar or status bar while installing offline or online always ignore these offers.
  • Keep your operating system, antivirus, antispyware, antimalware up to date with latest security patches and database update.
  • Choose a good internet security suite for secure web browsing.
Now the question comes in our mind how to restore a hijacked browser.-
What microsoft says-
Disable add-ons- Many browser hijackings come from add-ons, also known as ActiveX controls, browser extensions, browser helper objects, or toolbars. These items can improve your experience on a website by providing multimedia or interactive content, such as animations. However, some add-ons can cause your computer to stop responding or display content that you don't want, such as pop-up ads.
 Reset Internet Explorer settings- If you're using Internet Explorer and your home page has been changed, you can often reset it yourself.
Stop cascading pop-up windows- If endless pop-up windows appear on your screen, you'll probably want to stop them first. To do this in Microsoft Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, or Windows 2000 while using Internet Explorer:
  • Press CTRL+ALT+DEL, click Task Manager, and then click the Processes tab.
  • Click IEXPLORE.EXE, and then click the End Process button.
This closes all instances of Internet Explorer. Then you can re-open the program to continue browsing as usual. To help prevent future attacks, you should also have a pop-up blocker turned on.
To turn on the pop-up blocker in Internet Explorer 8 click the Tools button (the gear icon), point to Pop-up Blocker, and then click Turn On Pop-Up Blocker.
To turn on the pop-up blocker in Internet Explorer 7:
  • Click Tools menu, click Internet Options, and then click the Privacy tab.
  • In the Pop-up Blocker box, select the Block pop-ups check box. Click OK.
What we say-
  1. Uninstall all add-ons and applications which are not trustworthy or looking suspicious  if using mozilla or internet explorer.
  2. Use a malware scanner tools to remove them, most of the antivirus can also catch these malwares or hijackers.
  3. If uninstalling of web browser is possible then uninstall, after scanning your computer you can install it again. Or if new version of that browser is available use the latest.
Hope these tips will help you in getting a secure surfing environment. Waiting for your mails and comments.

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