Severity scale:  
  (9/100)

How to get rid of Congratulations you won (2020 update)

removal by Linas Kiguolis - - | Type: Adware

Congratulations, you won! — a scam offering valuable prizes for Chrome users in exchange for answering questionnaires

Congratulations you won

“Congratulations, you won” is a widespread internet scam[1] that has been popular for several years now. These alerts are typically triggered on Android (mostly Samsung), iOS, Windows and MacOS. No matter how harmless such scams seem, keep in mind that their one and only aim is to swindle users' personal information. Congratulations, you won virus poses as a lottery promising tempting prizes (iPhone, Samsung phones, Walmart, or Amazon gift cards or other prizes) in exchange for answering a few simple questions. Unfortunately, in the final stage, such surveys lead users to a form suggesting them enter their email address, full name, or even credit card information. This information might be used for further crimes, including credential stuffing,[2] identity theft, etc.

Name Congratulations, you won
Also known as
  • Congratulations, You have been selected;
  • Congratulations, Google user! You are our winner today!
  • Congratulations, Samsung user
Caused by Potentially unwanted program; adware
Main Aims  To swindle users' personal information; generate income from sponsored content
Main risks Identity theft, money loss
Symptoms The continuous reappearance of misleading ads on the web browser offering fake prizes
Ways to fix the problem Uninstall adware from the system and reset the affected web browsers. Next, scan the system with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego to fix virus damage, e.g. system files and other components

Congratulations, you won meme might look believable (especially for inexperienced users) because of the theme used. At first glance, it looks just like any pop-up window from Microsoft Corporation. Please be aware that scammers put a lot of resources and effort to make these type of scams to seem convincing. Thus, the pop up has nothing to do with Microsoft and is designed to deceive unsuspecting users.

Congratulations, you won website might be altered based on the users' location, device, and other browser preferences because the adware can track, monitor, and collect information regarding your browsing history, most viewed sites and searched items. Fake reward messages may state:

  • Congratulations, you won a Google gift;
  • Congratulations Samsung user;
  • Congratulations, you won $1000 Walmart Gift Card;
  • Congratulations, you won an iPhone;
  • Congratulations you have been selected;
  • etc.

The cyber threat which is hiding behind this scam is stating that you have won an expensive prize that you can claim once you complete a short survey which consists of three questions. However, the Gift Card or an iPhone can be requested after you enter your full name, email address, or even log in to your online banking account.

Remember that these specific survey questions given in the Congratulations, you won gif are extremely straightforward and are designed to convince users that it is particularly easy to obtain a valuable gift in just three steps. The following text is displayed in the pop-up:

“Congratulations User!
You have been selected today to receive a FREE iPhone X, PlayStation 4 or Samsung Galaxy S6!
Please click OK to claim the prize before we giveaway to somebody else!”

The time limit can also be given, so you are rushed to complete the survey within two minutes or so.[3] Otherwise, the gift is said to be given to somebody else. This is a common trick used by scammers to catch users at the right moment and lead them to fear of losing the promised free prize. However, as we have already said in this article, get rid of Congratulations, Samsung users without a doubt because it is a scam.

Congratulations, you have wonCongratulations, you have won is yet another version of the meme that focuses on getting sensitive data from users

What happens after falling for the scam

If you happen to fall for this scam and proceed with the offer, you will be prompted to enter your telephone number and then has to register for a service (which costs $5 a week) that you certainly do not need. As mentioned many times, decline all offers coming from Congratulations, you won meme. However, note that it doesn't eliminate the roots of the issue. For that, you will have to run a full system scan on your computer.

“Congratulations, you won!” might also:

  • deliver intrusive ads;
  • redirect to malicious websites;
  • gather non-personally identifiable information (URLs visited, IP addresses, search queries, etc.);
  • sell or share aggregated information with third-parties;

Keep in mind that ads generated by potentially unwanted programs might lead to malicious websites that could download and install various malware. Therefore, you should speed up with Congratulations, you won removal. Also, do not forget that scam messages may appear on various devices with different operating systems.

When trying to figure out how to get rid of Congratulations you won virus on iPad, iPad, or another device, use a reputable anti-malware tool for the OS your machine is based on. You can find trustworthy apps in the App Store and some of the programs that we offer below also have mobile versions. Also, recent scam campaigns targeted Android users, you can find removal instructions down below.

Security experts provide two methods to remove Congratulations, you won virus from the system. You can defeat it bare hands by following the guide below. Afterward, scan the system with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego to wipe out the leftover changes caused by the virus. 

Congratulations, you won virus"Congratulations, you won" virus is an adware seeking to trick users into falling for suspicious surveys where they have to enter personal information, such as phone number.

Congratulations, you won virus is an adware virus spreading with the help of bundling

The most common way of a PUP getting into your system is with bundling. Typically, users tend to install free software from the internet while using Recommended settings and skipping steps. However, if Advanced/Custom modes are not used, PUPs might sneak into the computer. Therefore it is highly recommended to always use Advanced settings and opt-out of any unwanted programs (browser toolbars, optimization utilities, etc.).

To protect yourself, you should also follow these security tips provided by Utanvirus.se[4] specialists:

  • Download software from official sources and never use third-party or Torrent websites;
  • If you need to update your software, always visit official websites instead of clicking on pop-ups generated from dubious sites;
  • While installing software, carefully read through terms and conditions and untick any unwanted programs while in Advanced mode;
  • Obtain an anti-malware/anti-adware software that offers real-time protection.

Remove Congratulations, you've won virus from Android or iPhone

Congratulations, you won! virus has been actively spreading on Android and iOS devices. If your iPhone, iPad or other dives has been interrupting you with ads offering the reward or valuable prize, there is a great chance that your system is infected with the Fakeyouwon malware or similar virus.

To uninstall Congratulations, you won from Android, follow these steps:

  • Scan the device with a reputable anti-malware tool for Android.
  • Reboot the device in Safe Mode:
    When in Safe mode go to Settings and click on Apps or Application manager.
    Look for suspicious apps and uninstall them.
  • If the problem persists, perform a factory reset:
    Go to Settings.
    Select Privacy and Factory reset.
    Back up your data 
    before the reset.
    Reset device to remove the virus.

To get rid of Congratulations you won from iPhone, use the guide given below:

  1. Go to Settings;
  2. Tap on Safari icon;
  3. Select Clear History and Website Data;
  4. Close the window.

Additionally, follow these steps: 

  1. Go to Settings -> General;
  2. Tap on Erase All Contents option.

Get rid of Congratulations, you won virus for good

Fortunately, it is relatively easy to remove Congratulations, you've won virus from Windows or MacOS. If you are a proficient user, please follow the step-by-step guide below, presented to you by our experts.

Please be aware that you need to follow every step carefully and in the correct order, otherwise the PUP might be re-installed after a restart of your browser/computer.

If you are having issues with manual Congratulations, you won removal, you can use an anti-malware software as it can detect the unwanted program, delete all its registries and related files with ease.

You may remove virus damage with a help of Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego. 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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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 Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

To remove “Congratulations, you have won” scam, follow these steps:

Erase “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Windows systems

To remove “Congratulations, you won” adware manually, follow these instructions:

To remove “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Windows 10/8  machines, please follow these steps:

  1. Enter Control Panel into Windows search box and hit Enter or click on the search result.
  2. Under Programs, select Uninstall a program.Uninstall from Windows 1
  3. From the list, find entries related to “Congratulations, you have won” scam (or any other recently installed suspicious program).
  4. Right-click on the application and select Uninstall.
  5. If User Account Control shows up, click Yes.
  6. Wait till uninstallation process is complete and click OK.Uninstall from Windows 2

If you are Windows 7/XP user, proceed with the following instructions:

  1. Click on Windows Start > Control Panel located on the right pane (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
  2. In Control Panel, select Programs > Uninstall a program.Uninstall from Windows 7/XP
  3. Pick the unwanted application by clicking on it once.
  4. At the top, click Uninstall/Change.
  5. In the confirmation prompt, pick Yes.
  6. Click OK once the removal process is finished.

Uninstall “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Mac OS X system

If your macOS is displaying some infection symptoms, proceed with the following guide:

Remove “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for “Congratulations, you have won” scam-related entries.
  3. Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash)Uninstall from Mac 1

To fully remove “Congratulations, you have won” scam, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:

  1. Select Go > Go to Folder.
  2. Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
  3. In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries related to “Congratulations, you have won” scam and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the “Congratulations, you have won” scam-related entries.Uninstall from Mac 2

Get rid of “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Internet Explorer (IE)

Reset Internet Explorer to get rid of fake pop-ups.

Remove dangerous add-ons:

  1. Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top-right corner of the browser
  2. Pick Manage Add-ons.
  3. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for “Congratulations, you have won” scam and other suspicious plugins. Click on these entries and select Disable.Remove add-ons from Internet Explorer

Change your homepage if it was altered:

  1. Open IE and click on the Gear icon.
  2. Select Internet Options.
  3. In the General tab, delete the Home page address and replace it by your preferred one (for example, Google.com).
  4. Click Apply and then select OK.Reset IE homepage

Delete temporary files:

  1. Press on the Gear icon and select Internet Options.
  2. Under Browsing history, click Delete…
  3. Select relevant fields and press Delete.Clear temporary files from Internet Explorer

Reset Internet Explorer:

  1. Click on Gear icon > Internet options and select Advanced tab.
  2. Select Reset.
  3. In the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete “Congratulations, you have won” scam removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Eliminate “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Microsoft Edge

Follow these instructions to stop annoying pop-ups and redirects:

Delete unwanted extensions from MS Edge:

  1. Select Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and pick Extensions.
  2. From the list, pick the “Congratulations, you have won” scam-related extension and click on the Gear icon.
  3. Click on Uninstall at the bottom.Remove extensions from Edge

Clear cookies and other browser data:

  1. Click on the Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and select Privacy & security.
  2. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  3. Select everything (apart from passwords, although you might want to include Media licenses as well, if applicable) and click on Clear.Clear Edge browsing data

Reset MS Edge if that above steps did not work:

  1. Press on Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details arrow at the bottom of the window.
  3. Select Details tab.
  4. Now scroll down and locate every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right-click on each of them and select End Task to stop MS Edge from running.Reset MS Edge

If this solution failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method. Note that you need to backup your data before proceeding.

  1. Find the following folder on your computer: C:\\Users\\%username%\\AppData\\Local\\Packages\\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  2. Press Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all folders.
  3. Right-click on them and pick DeleteAdvanced MS Edge reset 1
  4. Now right-click on the Start button and pick Windows PowerShell (Admin).
  5. When the new window opens, copy and paste the following command, and then press Enter:

    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\\AppXManifest.xml” -VerboseAdvanced MS Edge reset 2

Instructions for Chromium-based Edge

Delete extensions from MS Edge (Chromium):

  1. Open Edge and click select Settings > Extensions.
  2. Delete unwanted extensions by clicking Remove.Remove extensions from Chromium Edge

Clear cache and site data:

  1. Click on Menu and go to Settings.
  2. Select Privacy and services.
  3. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  4. Under Time range, pick All time.
  5. Select Clear now.Clear browser data from Chroum Edge

Reset Chromium-based MS Edge:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. On the left side, pick Reset settings.
  3. Select Restore settings to their default values.
  4. Confirm with Reset.Reset Chromium Edge

Remove “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

This guide will help you to remove suspicious components related to “Congratulations, you won” scam:

Remove dangerous extensions:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
  2. Select Add-ons.
  3. In here, select plugins that are related to “Congratulations, you have won” scam and click Remove.Remove extensions from Firefox

Clear cookies and site data:

  1. Click Menu and pick Options.
  2. Go to Privacy & Security section.
  3. Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
  4. Click on Clear Data…
  5. Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear.Clear cookies and site data from Firefox

In case “Congratulations, you have won” scam did not get removed after following the instructions above, reset Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click the Menu.
  2. Go to Help and then choose Troubleshooting Information.Reset Firefox 1
  3. Under Give Firefox a tune up section, click on Refresh Firefox…
  4. Once the pop-up shows up, confirm the action by pressing on Refresh Firefox – this should complete “Congratulations, you have won” scam removal.Reset Firefox 2

Delete “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Google Chrome

Uninstall questionable add-ons and reset Googe Chrome to stop adware's activities:

Delete malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

  1. Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
  2. In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to “Congratulations, you have won” scam by clicking Remove.Remove extensions from Chrome

Clear cache and web data from Chrome:

  1. Click on Menu and pick Settings.
  2. Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
  3. Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
  4. Click Clear data.Clear cache and web data from Chrome

If the above-methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the “Congratulations, you have won” scam-components:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. In the Settings, scroll down and click Advanced.
  3. Scroll down and locate Reset and clean up section.
  4. Now click Restore settings to their original defaults.
  5. Confirm with Reset settings to complete “Congratulations, you have won” scam removal.Reset Chrome 2

Erase “Congratulations, you have won” scam from Safari

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension related to “Congratulations, you have won” scam and select Uninstall.Remove extensions from Safari

Clear cookies and other website data from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Clear History…
  2. From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
  3. Confirm with Clear History.Clear cookies and website data from Safari

Reset Safari if the above-mentioned steps did not help you:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. Go to Advanced tab.
  3. Tick the Show Develop menu in menu bar.
  4. From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches.Reset Safari

Access your website securely from any location

When you work on the domain, site, blog, or different project that requires constant management, content creation, or coding, you may need to connect to the server and content management service more often. It is a hassle when your website is protected from suspicious connections and unauthorized IP addresses.

The best solution for creating a tighter network could be a dedicated/fixed IP address. If you make your IP address static and set to your device, you can connect to the CMS from any location and do not create any additional issues for server or network manager that need to monitor connections and activities. This is how you bypass some of the authentications factors and can remotely use your banking accounts without triggering suspicious with each login. 

VPN software providers like Private Internet Access can help you with such settings and offer the option to control the online reputation and manage projects easily from any part of the world. It is better to clock the access to your website from different IP addresses. So you can keep the project safe and secure when you have the dedicated IP address VPN and protected access to the content management system.

Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack

Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.

When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.

About the author
Linas Kiguolis
Linas Kiguolis - Expert in social media

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References
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