How To Remove Google Chrome Redirect Virus

Google Redirect Virus

In its essence a Chrome redirect threat is a class of potentially unwanted software which would infiltrate your computer and change your search page usually without your knowledge. This sort of threat has existed for quite a while in the shape of many different variants. It would seem that cyber crooks find the search page redirect threat very profitable so it does not seem to be going away any time soon. The way that the Chrome Redirect Threat makes profit is via ads. The threat hijacks your browser and when you search for something, instead of showing the organic search results, you are being given an altered version where many of the first results presented are actually ads.

How Google Chrome Redirect Virus May Infiltrate Your System

One of the most common ways to get the Google Redirect Virus on your computer is to deal with freeware or shareware applications that are available online. Many authors of free applications are looking for ways to make money out of their software without actually charging their clients. This is why they may sometimes work with 3rd-party companies or individuals to promote particular products or websites.

If you have been a Windows user for a long time, then you have probably already noticed offers of this sort. Let's say that you are installing a free audio converter, and you start clicking 'Next' through the installation wizard. At some point you might see an offer to install a video converter, which you do not need, but the software still offers it since its author gets paid to promote the software in question. The same goes for the Google Redirect Virus or other browser hijackers – the software installer might try to tell you that you can get better search results and services by accepting to replace your browser's default new tab page or search aggregator with a 3rd-party website. These offers may sometimes be cleverly concealed or use trick questions to make it more likely that the user will accept the offer, even though they might not want to do this. These fraudulent practices are frowned upon, and this is why you should always stay vigilant for extra offers and options when installing free applications that are likely to come bundled with additional extras.

Google Redirect Virus example ad
Example of Google Redirect Virus advertisement loading

Another more contemporary method used to acquire privileges to replace a Web browser's new tab page or search aggregator are browser add-ons. Many of these add-ons might provide you with access to neat features, but they may also demand permission to modify certain parts of your Web browser's configuration such as, for example, your new tab page and search aggregator. While these changes are not harmful, they can turn out to be quite annoying, since most users would prefer sticking to using websites they are used to. Users who regularly try out different add-ons that offer cooking recipes, weather forecasts, document forms, traffic information, or other handy information may easily end up having their browser's configuration manipulated. Of course, since they use many add-ons, finding the one responsible for the issue might be a difficult task to accomplish manually.

How Google Chrome Redirect Virus Works

The Google Chrome Redirect Virus may function in a couple of ways depending on its configuration. However, the people behind fraudulent schemes like this one tend to depend on one of these two techniques:

  1. Their browser hijacking software might replace the web browser's default new tab page or search aggregator with a 3rd-party website under the control of the company or person behind the hijacker. This page might look it provides legitimate Google results, but it is entirely possible that they might be utilizing 'Google Custom Search' which would include ads in the search results and, therefore, generate revenue for the authors.
  2. The web browser's default new tab page or search aggregator might once be replaced with an alternative website. However, they might not necessarily use 'Google Custom Search.' Instead, they might attempt to look like a unique search engine but, in reality, they still rely on either Yahoo, Google, or Bing's search algorithms to display search results. Of course, the search results might once again prioritize paid advertisements, so that the traffic will generate revenue for the page's authors.

Google Redirect Virus example ad 2
Example of Google Redirect Virus advertisement image

These ads are usually among the cheapest advertising options and are likely much more on the lower-end price-wise compared to the original Google advertising system called Google AdSense. This being said, the ads that Google Redirect Virus would offer are also low-quality but that is to be expected – you get what you pay for. Therefore, more often than not, the products and services that are being advertised via these ads also tend to be on the low-end when it comes to quality.

How to Remove Google Chrome Redirect Virus

  1. First, you may want to check if Google Chrome Redirect Virus has changed your default search engine. To do this click on the three vertical dots that are at the top right corner, right beneath the 'X' closing symbol. Then enter the 'Settings' menu.
  2. Once you are in the 'Settings' menu, scroll down past the sections called 'People', 'Autofill', and 'Appearance' until you reach the 'Search Engine' part. Then choose your search engine or preference from the list that Google Chrome provides.
  3. Once this is done you should check if Chrome Redirect Virus has hooked you up with some unwanted browser extensions. To do this, once again you have to click the three vertical dots and then select 'More Tools', and after this click on 'Extensions'.
  4. Take a good look through the extensions presented and see if there is an extension you do not recognize or one that looks suspicious. In case you have an intruding extension present make sure to remove it. This is easily done by clicking on the 'Remove' button.

We would strongly advise you to remove Google Chrome Redirect Virus from your system. Cyber crooks become more cunning each day and we, as users, have to stay ever vigilant so we do not become a victim of their shenanigans.

February 28, 2021

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