Danger level:  
  (12/100)

Remove Softonic (Virus Removal Instructions) - Aug 2019 updated

removal by Alice Woods - - | Type: Browser Hijackers

Softonic is potentially unwanted software which can change the web browser's default search provider and display misleading search query data

Softonic browser hijacker
Softonic is a browser hijacker which alters browser settings and sets the main search provider to its own

Softonic is considered to be a rogue application that makes changes to web browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc. A big number of users know Softonic as a worldwide software downloading website, however, this page is capable of carrying a big variety of functions and developers have even created a browser hijacker by the same name. Once Softonic Web Search infiltrates a browser app, it changes the search provider to hxxp://search.softonic.com and also modifies other sections such as the homepage, new tab URL, injects suspicious add-ons and plug-ins. The purpose of such potentially unwanted program is to produce beneficial advertisements, cause redirects to other developer-sponsored pages, and gain big user variety for better income.

Name Softonic
Type Browser hijacker
Sub-type Potentially unwanted program
Browsers targeted Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, and others
Main changes Modified search engine, redirecting and advertising moves
New search engine hxxp://search.softonic.com
Distribution ways Bundled freeware, original website, infected links
Virus detection tools Reimage, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner 

Softonic is definitely not an application you should trust or leave on your web browser once spotted. It might not be potentially dangerous itself, but it can surely place harm on your computer while redirecting you to questionable websites. Here you take risks of getting infected by malware and damaging your computer system.

Softonic virus might also be called like that due to the changes it performs without asking the user's permission. The browser-hijacking application might seem useful from the first view, however, it is not as it looks. Fast access to online games and popular networks is only a trick used to attract more users. 

Another income source for Softonic Web Search developers is information gathering about the users' browsing and online activities. These people have the ability to collect details about all pages that are visited by the infected users, IP addresses, spy on the geolocation, search for bookmarks, and other similar objects.

Once this type of data is gathered, developers share it with other parties to receive money. We recommend performing the Softonic removal with computer tools or cleaning the system on your own. However, carry out a full system scan with Reimage or SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner software to detect all malicious or intrusive content that might be hidden in different locations of the machine.

Remove Softonic virus and reverse all changes that were carried out by the browser hijacker. If you do not get rid of the suspicious program, you will be forced to perform browsing sessions via the new web browser which might relate in receiving odd results. Also, the app might force browsers to crash if all of the activities get too intense.

Softonic potentially unwanted program
Softonic - a browser hijacker which might collect information about the infected user's browsing habits

Browser hijackers can be promoted on their official websites

According to research, browser-hijacking applications can even have their original downloading pages and hyperlinks. Some developers create websites for their app promotion. We recommend staying aware of this type of content. Do not install any suspicious-looking object or browser extension that you might be offered.

Some other ways to successfully spread a browser hijacker are by:

  • Bundling. This means that the browser hijacker is injected into a package of regular software and installs secretly together with the original programs.
  • Third-party sites. These websites are very easy to misuse for hackers and other people. As they lack recommended protection, spreaders are capable of injecting suspicious content into links or adverts.

Be careful with the entire Internet sphere. You need to pay attention while completing each action not minding how difficult the process is. For automatical system protection, we offer to download and install a reliable antivirus tool and launch it on your system. Additionally, make sure that the software receives all crucial updates for its proper functionality.

Softonic browser-hijacking app

Softonic Web Search elimination guidelines for computer users

You can remove Softonic virus with the effort of your own actions. However, this type of process is more suitable for people who have experience in the virus removal field. If you take responsibility for performing the manual removal guide, you will need to carefully clean your operating system from various suspicious objects and reverse all changes in web browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, and Safari.

Softonic removal can also be carried out by using automatical tools. This way the process will speed up at least at half combining with manual elimination. The anti-malware software will ensure that all unnecessary objects are removed from both the affected computer system and browser hijacker-touched web browser applications.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner, Malwarebytes. We recommend these applications because they detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. Reimage scans the entire computer system and checks whether it is infected with spyware/malware or not. If you want to remove computer threats and secure your computer system, you should consider buying the licensed version of Reimage.
Alternative Security Tools
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Security Tools
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove Softonic, follow these steps:

Uninstall Softonic in Windows systems

  1. Stop all Softonic processes via Windows Task Manager. To launch this panel, press Control + Alt + Delete at the same time.
  2. Now, go to Processes tab and select the option that appears to be related to the unwanted Softonic software. Click End Task. Repeat the same action with every other process related to Softonic.
  3. Uninstall unwanted programs using the guidelines that are displayed below.

  1. Go to Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, open Add/Remove Programs). Go to 'Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features' (if you are 'Windows XP' user, open 'Add/Remove Programs').
  2. If you are Windows 10 / Windows 8 user, click on Windows icon in the lower left corner of the screen to open Quick Access Menu. Then click Control Panel and select Uninstall a Program. If you are 'Windows 10 / Windows 8' user, click on Windows icon in the lower left corner of the screen to open 'Quick Access Menu'. Then click 'Control Panel' and select 'Uninstall a Program'.
  3. Remove Softonic and programs related to it
    Now, take a look at the list of programs and find Softonic or other programs that you do not remember installing.
  4. Right-click on these programs and select "Uninstall." Then click OK to save changes. Right-click every suspicious program and select 'Uninstall'
  5. Delete Softonic from Windows shortcuts
    Right-click on the shortcut of Mozilla Firefox and click Properties. Right-click on web browsers' icon and click 'Properties'
  6. Now, go to Shortcut tab and find Target field. Then delete the URL that is associated with your virus. Open 'Shortcut' tab and erase 'http://isearch.babylon.com...' or other shady URL

Follow the same steps as explained above with all other shortcuts of Internet browsers, including Google Chrome and Internet Explorer. Please check Start Menu, Desktop, and taskbar to find all shortcuts.

Uninstall Softonic in Mac OS X system

  1. Users who use OS X should click on Go button, which can be found at the top left corner of the screen and select Applications. Click on 'Go' to open a drop-down menu and select 'Applications'.
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for Softonic or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash. Click on each malicious application and select 'Move to Trash'

Delete Softonic from Internet Explorer (IE)

  1. Delete suspicious browser add-ons
    Launch Internet Explorer, and then open IE by clicking on the Gear icon, which is located at the top right corner of the Internet browser. Then, click Manage Add-ons. Open browser menu and go to 'Manage add-ons'
  2. Manage Add-ons window will appear on your screen. Now, search for Softonic and other questionable browser add-ons. Right-click them on each of them and select Disable. To eliminate malicious applications, right-click on each of them and click 'Disable'
  3. If virus altered your homepage, change it:
    Click the Gear icon at the top right corner of the Internet browser and then click Internet Options. Stay in General section.
  4. Now, delete malicious URL and enter Delete suspicious URL, type in your preferable site name and click 'Apply' to save
  5. Reset all Internet Explorer settings
    Click on Gear icon and then opt for Internet options. Then go to Advanced section.
  6. Click Reset.
  7. A new window appears, and then you have to tick Delete personal settings and click Reset to finalise Softonic removal. In 'Advanced' tab, click 'Reset'. Then tick 'Delete personal settings' and click 'Reset'.

Delete Softonic from Microsoft Edge

Reset settings in Microsoft Edge (Technique No.1):

  1. Open Microsoft Edge browser, then click on More button, which is situated at the top right edge of the screen
  2. Select Settings from the drop down menu.
  3. When the Settings panel appears, find Clear browsing data section and hit Choose what to clear button. Open Settings and click on 'Choose what to clear' button
  4. Then mark all components that you wish to delete and after that hit Clear. Click 'Clear'
  5. Right-click the Start button (that has Windows logo on it) and choose Task Manager. Right-click the Start button again and choose 'Task Manager'
  6. Go to Processes tab and look for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and select Go to details. If there is no Go to details option, select More details and carry out previous instructions. Right-click on 'Microsoft Edge' and choose 'Go to details' option If 'Go to details' option does not show up, choose 'More details' instead
  8. Once Details tab appears, look for entries that contain Microsoft Edge name. Right-click on such individual entries and choose End Task option to terminate them. Locate all entries that relate to Microsoft Edge and click 'End Task'

Reset Microsoft Edge (Technique No.2):

In case the Technique No.1 did not help you to fix the problem, use advanced Edge reset option.

  1. Important: you must backup your files before you use these tips
  2. Locate this folder on your PC: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select all items in this folder and right-click with your mouse. Select Delete. Open Microsoft Edge folder on your PC, click every entry with the right mouse button and select 'Delete'
  4. Click on the Start button (that has Windows Logo on it) and in Search my stuff field, type in window power.
  5. With the right button of your mouse, click on every entry and select Run as administrator. Locate where Windows PowerShell is, right-click on it and click on 'Run as administrator' option
  6. Once you get Admin's rights, Windows PowerShell window should show up shortly. Paste this line:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and hit Enter. Copy and then paste the necessary command and hit 'Enter'

After completing these steps, Microsoft Edge should be Softonic-free.

Delete Softonic from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

If you have been bothered by the browser-hijacking application while using Mozilla Firefox, get rid of it with these steps:/GI]

[GI=google-chrome]Clean Google Chrome by leaning on these guidelines if Softonic Web Search has hijacked the Chrome web browser and performed odd changes to it:

  1. Delete suspicious browser extensions
    Launch Mozilla Firefox, and then open menu (click a button at the top right corner). Then, go to Add-ons Extensions. Open browser menu and go to 'Add-ons'
  2. Now, locate Softonic and other suspicious extensions. Click Remove to eliminate them. Go to 'Extensions' and locate malicious browser add-ons. Hit 'Remove' button to delete each entry
  3. If virus altered your homepage, change it:
    Open Firefox menu (click the button at the top right corner), and go to Options General.
  4. Delete malicious URL and then enter the address of the website that you want to set as your homepage.
  5. Click OK to save the changes. Open 'General' tab and delete the URL from 'Home Page' field or just simply click 'Restore to Default'. Then click on 'OK' button to apply changes.
  6. Reset all Mozilla Firefox settings
    Click on the Firefox at the top left corner and then click the question mark. Then, select Troubleshooting Information. Open menu by clicking on the indicated icon and on '?'. Then select 'Troubleshooting Information'.
  7. Reset Firefox to its default state message should appear then. You will see Reset Firefox button. Click this button a few times and finalise Softonic removal. Hit 'Reset Firefox' button a few times

Delete Softonic from Safari

Erase all traces of the browser hijacker from Safari. Use this guide if help is needed:

  1. Delete suspicious browser extensions
    Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences. Click on 'Safari' and then select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for Softonic or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and remove untrustworthy extensions
  3. If virus altered your homepage, change it:
    Open your Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu section. Here, select Preferences as it was displayed previously and select General.
  4. Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by Softonic, remove unwanted link and enter the one that you want to use for your searches. Remember to include the "http://" before typing in the address of the page. Go to 'General' section and find Homepage field. Delete suspicious URL and replace it with a URL of your choice.
  5. Reset all Safari settings
    Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari.... Click on 'Safari' and then select 'Reset Safari...'
  6. Now you will see a detailed dialog window filled with reset options. All of those options are usually checked, but you can specify which of them you want to reset. Click the Reset button to complete Softonic removal process. Select all checkboxes and click 'Reset'

About the author

Alice Woods
Alice Woods

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Source: https://www.2-spyware.com/remove-softonic.html

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