Browser Hijacker is software that alters web browser settings and redirects default search engine, browser new tab, and user’s homepage to some different web address commonly used for advertising and promotion. Malicious hijackers are used for spreading malware.
Browser hijackers are primarily used for advertising and promotion. Some of browser hijackers are extended with toolbars that offer some functions to facilitate the installation. Offered features are attractive, but they often do not worth of problems caused by unwelcome replacement of a homepage and search engine with unequal replicas. Moreover, it is difficult to restore previous conditions, and some of browser hijackers are designed to protect themselves against removal.
Browser hijackers used for advertising and promotion help to make income out of users’ clicks. All of these programs are more difficult to remove than other applications because they consist of different components and removal requires many different procedures that users are not comfortable with. Some of browser hijacker designs use tricks and special programs that make removal process very difficult for an average computer user
Browser Hijacker Components
Typical commercial browser hijacker consists of an application and extensions installed into Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, and sometimes in other web browsers. It manages activities that redirect your web search, spy on your web browsing, and help to display ads and deliver you search results mixed with promoted links.
Simple hijackers do not have any components. They just change your default web search and homepage web address to promoted ones. Advanced hijackers not only keep your search redirected but block your attempts to change web browser settings.
Some of browser hijackers use tricky redirect set in system menu links and desktop shortcuts related to your web browser. Such programs and tricks helps to keep the redirect if an advanced computer user will try to restore preferred web browser settings.
Finally, there are malicious browser hijackers that use rootkits for protection. It is very hard to remove such hijackers because rootkit can control operating system, block anti-virus software and any user’s attempt to restore preferred settings. Removing rootkit requires special tools and procedures.
Browser hijackers are often bundled and deceptively installed with other free programs or downloaded from websites that promote such products. Users who are not aware of problems caused by commercial browser hijackers are not reluctant to “give it a try” or “take a look” at an offered program. Even people that have some unpleasant experience with deceptively installed adware often fail to reject bundled programs.
Download clients often resemble standard setup wizards and list additional programs along with marked check boxes at the place where options for installing desktop and menu links are usually placed. Since it is easy to change links later, no one is accustomed to really care about this matter. As a result, computer users install unwanted and sometimes very unsafe programs that are hard to remove later.
Marked check box implies user’s agreement. There is no way to claim that someone cheat on you if you fail to read labels before installing a program. Though, it is a trap that many users get in because of previously set habit.
Protection against deceptively installed browser hijackers
This website reflects user’s side and uses term “deceptive” installation. Though, you have to know that it is not considered to deceptive by the law as long as the information about installed program is present. You should be aware of the fact that there is no special warning about bundling and automated installation of the additional programs besides the information placed in a way commonly used by normal software. It can be placed in EULA that many users do not read. It also can be hidden behind “custom” or “advanced” installation options that many users would pass by and use “typical” and “recommended” options instead. It is tricky, but not necessarily illegal. So you just need to be careful and attentive while installing different unknown software.
Other way of protection is offered by anti-malware programs that offer reliable real-time protection against malicious and commonly unwanted programs. SpyHunter is one of the best anti-malware tools. This security software is timely updated and has a very reliable malware detection rate that makes protection also reliable. It helps to detect and remove malicious and legitimate programs including commercial browser hijackers that anti-virus software will not block and warn you on.