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Remove weknow.ac (Uninstall Guide) - Jan 2021 updated

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - - | Type: Browser hijacker

Weknow.ac virus – a PUP which modifies the default search engine on Macs to perform its dubious activity

Weknow.ac PUP

Weknow.ac is a browser hijacker which affects web browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, Microsoft Edge. After infiltration, the PUP starts modifying browser settings and sets the main page, new tab URL, default search provider to Weknow.ac. The most affected operating system is Mac OS X. As a result, the infected user is automatically forced to use the new search engine and is redirected to numerous sponsored sites. Notice that this browser hijacker has been actively promoting CleanYourMac, Mac Keeper and similar PUPs that are known to be highly suspicious.

Name Weknow.ac
Type Browser hijacker
Sub-type PUP
OS affected Mac operating system
Browsers affected Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, IE, etc.
Spreads by  Bundled freeware or shareware, strange-looking pages, and dubious links
Prevention tips Use only original installers, avoid visiting suspicious websites and networks, install antivirus protection to increase your computer system safety level
Deletion process Use ReimageIntego to get rid of the PUP automatically

In some cases, you can get tricked if the browser-hijacking app provides “useful” features such as fast access and links to commonly visited websites, daily news sites, weather forecasts, etc. However, you need to know that such unwanted programs as Weknow.ac virus do not bring any true value for users. They are created to earn revenue for their developers only. 

Nevertheless, Weknow.ac hijack has an ability to collect non-personal details. Such data includes browsing experience-related information:

  • Sites visited;
  • Pages and pictures viewed;
  • Bookmarks;
  • IPs;
  • Search queries;
  • etc.

If you want to avoid such data collection, you need to remove Weknow.ac virus from your computer and browsers as soon as you spot the symptoms. Install anti-malware such as ReimageIntego and you will be able to eliminate the PUP easy and safe.

Another reason to perform the Weknow.ac removal is dubious redirects. Browser-hijacking apps might take you to various networks and websites that are provided by third-parties and might have harmful content injected. This might lead you to malware installation and even more harm can be done to your computer system and various software.

Additionally, browser hijackers such as Weknow.ac infiltrate the computer system thru regular freeware or shareware that you can easily download from various websites. You need to be careful while browsing the web if you want to avoid PUPs and their components invading various browsers and systems.

Notice that you might have a browser hijacker infection if you spot such symptoms:

  • The homepage, URL section, search engine, and other settings have been modified without your notice;
  • You start facing dubious redirects to strange pages;
  • You are forced to use an unknown search engine each time you try to do browsing activity.

Weknow.ac hijackWeknow.ac - a hijack which can collect browsing-activity related information and use it to gain profit.

Avoid browser-hijacking apps by reading these tips

According to IT professionals, PUPS such as browser hijackers are very likely to spread thru a deceptive marketing method called “bundling”. This means that a hijack can hide in a package of programs which once installed bring the PUP and all its components together. If you want to prevent such activity, deselect Quick/Recommended settings and choose the Custom or Advanced option. After that, look thru all incoming downloads and opt-out all of the dubious-looking ones.

To continue, PUPs can enter the computer system and affect browsers if you like visiting third-party provided networks or websites. For example, P2P networks such as Torrents are produced by secondary sources and usually do not fit the security requirements. Due to the lack of protection, an unwanted program or even malware-related content might hide in such sites and wait for its victim.

Some piece of advice would be to install an antivirus tool if you do not have one yet. Such program needs to be updated regularly to be able to function properly. If everything is fine, the antivirus will slightly increase your computer system safety and scan it regularly to detect any cyber threats that might occur.

Eliminate Weknow.ac from PC and browsers

To remove Weknow.ac virus from your browsers manually, you need to follow the guide that is displayed below this article. The main thing you need to do is perform the elimination of all PUP-added components such as various browser-extensions, dubious plug-ins, add-ons, and apps. This method will help you clean web browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, and others.

If you want to proceed with the Weknow.ac removal in a faster and more simple way, consider doing it automatically. For this purpose, download and install a trustworthy anti-malware tool. Such program will provide simple deletion instructions, guide you thru the entire process, and ensure that your PC will be cleaned from the cyberthreat.

After you get rid of the Weknow.ac hijack, be sure to complete one more step. We strongly recommend refreshing your browsers that were affected by the cyber threat. This should be done to make sure that there is no more PUP-related content that might still be active and intruding your surfing activity.

You may remove virus damage with a help of ReimageIntego. SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner and Malwarebytes are recommended to detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Supported versions Compatible with OS X Supported versions
What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Security Tools
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Security Tools
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

To remove weknow.ac, follow these steps:

Uninstall weknow.ac in Windows systems

  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 weknow.ac and programs related to it
    Now, take a look at the list of programs and find weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac removal. In 'Advanced' tab, click 'Reset'. Then tick 'Delete personal settings' and click 'Reset'.

Delete weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac-free.

Delete weknow.ac from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

  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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac removal. Hit 'Reset Firefox' button a few times

Delete weknow.ac from Google Chrome

  1. Remove malicious extensions
    Launch Google Chrome, and then open menu (click a button at the top right corner). Then, go to Tools Extensions. Open browser's menu, then click 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Now, look for weknow.ac and other suspicious extensions and then click the trash icon to remove them. Find malicious extensions and click on the Trash bin icon to remove them
  3. If virus altered your homepage, change it:
    Open menu and select Settings.
  4. Find Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup section and click Set pages. Open browser's menu, then go to 'Settings' and select 'Set pages' under 'On startup' section
  5. An additional window should pop-up. Here, remove dubious URLs and add a new page that you wish to set as a homepage. Remove malicious search sites by clicking 'X'
  6. Open Chrome menu and go to Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. Once you open browser's 'Settings', click on 'Manage search engines...' button
  7. In Search Engines..., configure default search engine settings. Remove untrustworthy ones. We advise you to leave only Google or another reputable website of your choice. Remove malicious search sites by clicking 'X'
  8. Reset all Google Chrome settings
    Open menu by clicking the button at the top right corner of Google Chrome, and go to Settings.
  9. Scroll down to find Reset browser settings button. Click on it. When in 'Settings', click Show advanced settings and then find 'Reset browser settings' button. Click on it.
  10. Click Reset to approve this action and finish weknow.ac removal. Click 'Reset' to finish the removal process.

Delete weknow.ac from Safari

  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 weknow.ac 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 weknow.ac, 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 weknow.ac removal process. Select all checkboxes and click 'Reset'

Prevent the government from spying on you

As there is a growing debate in government about collecting users' data and spying on citizens, you should take a closer look at this issue and find out what shady ways of gathering information can be used to collect information about you. You need to browse anonymously if you want to avoid any government-initiated spying and tracking of information. 

You can enjoy secure internet browsing and minimize the risk of intrusion into your system if you use Private Internet Access VPN program. This VPN application creates a virtual private network and provides access to the required data without any content restrictions.

Control government and other third party access to your data and ensure safe web browsing. Even if you do not engage in illegal activities and trust your ISP, we recommend being careful about your security. You should take extra precautions and start using a VPN program.

Recover files damaged by a dangerous malware attack

Despite the fact that there are various circumstances that can cause data to be lost on a system, including accidental deletion, the most common reason people lose photos, documents, videos, and other important data is the infection of malware.

Some malicious programs can delete files and prevent the software from running smoothly. However, there is a greater threat from the dangerous viruses that can encrypt documents, system files, and images. Ransomware-type viruses focus on encrypting data and restricting users’ access to files, so you can permanently lose personal data when you download such a virus to your computer.

The ability to unlock encrypted files is very limited, but some programs have a data recovery feature. In some cases, the Data Recovery Pro program can help recover at least some of the data that has been locked by a virus or other cyber infection.

About the author
Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - Expert in malware removal

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