I wrote this article to help you remove Webstart.me. This Webstart.me removal guide works for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer.
Webstart.me looks like a handy platform. It provides a lot of good services. The main function of the website is searching. Webstart.me is an alternative search engine. If you have a lot of bookmarks, the platform will make visiting some of your favorite websites easier. There are quick access buttons to a selection of places, including social networks, news portals, media hosts, email clients, online shops, software archives and others. Webstart.me has them sorted into categories for better accessibility. You can select a category from the tabs located at the top of the page. In the same place, you will find the login panel for registered users. If you have interest in using the services of Webstart.me, let us stop you right there. The domain is not safe. It is connected to a hijacker. We will explain more about the dangers in the course of this article.
The hijacker targets the web browser. It tampers with the internal settings and manipulates the search results. The clandestine program will reset your homepage and default search engine to Webstart.me. This makes it possible for the hijacker to change the search results. It will add supported pages amid the legitimate results to your queries. This is not only an inconvenience, but also a potential security threat. The sponsored platforms are not guaranteed to be reliable. Some of them could be downright dangerous. You should not use Webstart.me to conduct your searches. However, the hijacker will not give you a choice. It will not allow you to change your settings. Every time you try to select another homepage and default search provider, the hijacker will switch your settings back.
The better part of the advertising campaigns consists of pop-up windows. The Webstart.me hijacker displays different kinds of windows, containing various shopping offers. This encompasses banners, freebies, in-text links, coupon boxes, floating, interstitial, contextual, transitional, inline, comparison and video ads. The product palette comprises clothing, accessories, technological devices, gardening equipment, furniture, decorative elements, sports gear, games, toys, and others. The furtive tool will show you deals for diverse items, but it will accent on some of them. This depends on your browsing habits. If you have recently purchased or looked up a certain commodity, you can expect suggestions for similar items.
The developers of the Webstart.me hijacker make proceeds by supporting third party content. Every click on a sponsored link accumulates a certain amount. This monetizing technique has been dubbed the pay-per-click system. Promoting third party platforms is a legal practice. As such, it is subject to certain security requirements. The creators of the Webstart.me hijacker have not met them. Thus, the burden of the security risk is assumed entirely by the end user. Any given ad could lead to a website which harvests malware. The other threat is data theft. The sinister program collects various types of data without asking for permission. It can obtain your personal and financial details and sell them on the darkweb.
There are a couple of ways to get infected with the Webstart.me hijacker. The preferred distribution technique is bundling. The furtive program is packaged with another piece of software in a merged executable. The possible download clients include freeware, shareware and pirated applications. The host will have the hijacker listed in its terms and conditions as a bonus. The default option will be to have it installed. If you do not change the settings, it will be given access to your system. We advice you to always read the end user license agreement (EULA) in the course of the install. Furthermore, you should select the custom or advanced installation mode to have all options shown.
The other propagation vector is spam emails. There is a parallel as it pertains to hosting the secluded program. When transferred via email, the Webstart.me hijacker is hidden behind an attachment. The document in question will be presented as an official notification on an urgent matter. In most cases, spammers write on behalf of legitimate entities, like the police department, the national post, courier firms, banks, institutions, government branches, social networks and others. This gives legitimacy to the message. To confirm that a given email genuinely comes from the stated entity, proof the contact information.
Before starting the real removal process, you must reboot in Safe Mode. If you are familiar with this task, skip the instructions below and proceed to Step 2. If you do not know how to do it, here is how to reboot in Safe mode:
For Windows 98, XP, Millenium and 7:
Reboot your computer. When the first screen of information appears, start repeatedly pressing F8 key. Then choose Safe Mode With Networking from the options.
For Windows 8/8.1
Click the Start button, next click Control Panel —> System and Security —> Administrative Tools —> System Configuration.
Check the Safe Boot option and click OK. Click Restart when asked.
For Windows 10
Open the Start menu and click or tap on the Power button.
While keeping the Shift key pressed, click or tap on Restart.
Here are the steps you must follow to permanently remove from the browser:
Remove From Mozilla Firefox:
Open Firefox, click on top-right corner , click Add-ons, hit Extensions next.
Look for suspicious or unknown extensions, remove them all.
Remove From Chrome:
Open Chrome, click chrome menu icon at the top-right corner —>More Tools —> Extensions. There, identify the malware and select chrome-trash-icon(Remove).
Remove From Internet Explorer:
Open IE, then click IE gear icon on the top-right corner —> Manage Add-ons.
Find the malicious add-on. Remove it by pressing Disable.
Right click on the browser’s shortcut, then click Properties. Remove everything after the .exe” in the Target box.
Open Control Panel by holding the Win Key and R together. Write appwiz.cpl in the field, then click OK.
Here, find any program you had no intention to install and uninstall it.
Run the Task Manager by right clicking on the Taskbar and choosing Start Task Manager.
Look carefully at the file names and descriptions of the running processes. If you find any suspicious one, search on Google for its name, or contact me directly to identify it. If you find a malware process, right-click on it and choose End task.
Open MS Config by holding the Win Key and R together. Type msconfig and hit Enter.
Go in the Startup tab and Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer.
Still can not remove Webstart.me from your browser? Please, leave a comment below, describing what steps you performed. I will answer promptly.