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Remove Cursor Mania (Removal Guide) - Jun 2018 update

removal by Olivia Morelli - -   Also known as CursorMania | Type: Adware

Cursor Mania – a toolbar that can alter browser's settings and connect your machine to a botnet

Cursor Mania adwareCursor Mania is adware program that can connect devices to a botnet.

Cursor Mania (also known as CursorMania) is a potentially unwanted program (PUP)[1] created by Mindspark Interactive. The program operates as adware, but also has features of the browser hijacker. Moreover, it might operate as a trojan[2] on Internet Explorer and Opera browsers. The application was very active for more than a decade. However, since 2013 is no longer available to download from the official site.

Summary of the cyber threat
Name Cursor Mania
Release date 2000s
The end of official distribution 2013
Developers Mindspark Interactive
Type Adware
Affected OS Windows
Targeted browsers Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera
Symptoms Replaced homepage/search engine, installation of unknown toolbars, redirects to questionable sites, an increased amount of ads
Distribution Software bundling
To uninstall Cursor Mania, install Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego and run a full system scan

Cursor Mania is presented as a toolbar that allows changing the icon of your mouse cursor. This might seem like a fun feature that lets changing your ordinary mouse pointer to an animal or sword. However, this application also changes some browser’s settings. However, developers described it as bonus features:

Also includes smileys, ecards, screensavers, skins, avatars, the MyWebSearch search box and Search Assistant – relevant search results in response to misspelled or incorrectly formatted browser address requests.

However, all these activities and modifications on the browser might show up out of nowhere. This might happen due to the distribution method. The app was actively distributed via software bundling that allows infiltrating the system unnoticed when uses incorrectly download freeware or shareware. However, soon after the installation, it makes some changes to the system and creates Cursormania.exe process in the Windows Task Manager.

Cursor Mania ads

Cursor Mania virus might hijack Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Opera web browsers and cause the following problems:

  • changing browser’s default homepage/default search engine to MyWebSearch;
  • installs Cursor Mania toolbar and many other additional plugins, extensions, and toolbars;
  • displays intrusive ads and pop-ups;
  • promotes questionable software, toolbars or updates.

All of these changes slow down the browser and cannot be reverted by the users. This PUP operates in a way that all user’s attempts to change default search engine or homepage are rejected. Hence, every time you open the browser after the system reboot, the unwanted search engine and toolbars might reappear again.

CursorMania adwareCurso Mania adware might change affected browser's search engine to MyWebSearch which cannot be trusted.

CursorMania is also known as a toolbar trojan that might cause different effects on the browsers installed on Windows OS. When it hijacks Internet Explorer or Opera, it can connect users to the botnet[3] called DragonDog. Then affected browser’s homepage is set to a fake website, for instance, Facebook or YouTube. These bogus pages look identical to the original ones, so unsuspecting victims might reveal their login details to cyber criminals.

Just like many other adware programs, CursorMania virus might also collect various information about users.[4] It may start tracking your browsing on the web and may collect your search terms, most visited websites, data that you enter when visiting your favorite sites, your email address, computer's IP address, its location, etc. While you may think that this information can't be used for dangerous activities, it can.

All the aggregated details might be used for displaying appealing and encouraging ads or shared with unknown third-parties. To avoid clicking on potentially dangerous Cursor Mania ads or being redirected to tech support scam[5] or malware-related website, you need to get rid of this toolbar.

Cursor Mania virusCursor Mania virus floods the browser with promotional content.

We highly recommend opting for the automatic Cursor Mania removal and terminate all adware-related components within a few clicks. You will need to obtain Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego or another reputable anti-malware software for this task.

Of course, you can do the job yourself. If you are willing to remove Cursor Mania manually, you should find our elimination instructions handy. Do not forget to check all browsers installed on your PC and uninstall all related apps from your Windows machine.

CursorMania virusCursor Mania virus is a potentially unwanted program that not only shows aggressive ads but might connect the browser to the botnet.

Adware hijack might occur during careless freeware or shareware installation

This potentially unwanted program was available to download on the official website CursorMania.com. However, the site is shut down for a couple of years. Though, direct downloads have never been the major distribution method.

Such programs typically spread bundled with freeware and shareware. Hence, if you do not pay attention to the installation process, you can install unwanted toolbars and agree to change your default search engine. To avoid that, you should follow the security tips prepared by NoVirus.uk[4] security team:

  1. Always use reliable downloads sources for software. Do not use third-party file-sharing sites or P2P networks.
  2. Download apps only from trusted developers.
    Read Terms of Use and Privacy Policy before installing applications. If these documents are not provided, quit the
  3. procedure.
  4. Use Advanced/Custom settings instead of Quick/Standard because the latter ones do not reveal what additional downloads might be included in the same software package.
  5. Follow the installation wizard attentively and opt out all pre-selected additional downloads.

Uninstall CursorMania from your PC

To remove Cursor Mania from your Windows computer entirely, you have two options: manual and automatic elimination. The latter one is definitely easier. It requires only scanning the device with anti-malware software and resetting affected browsers.

Automatic Cursor Mania removal is recommended because PUP usually arrives in the system together with other undesired apps. Hence, you need to clean all of these entries to stop redirects, pop-ups, and other unwanted activities on the browser.

However, you can still uninstall Cursor Mania manually. As you may have figured out, you will need to search for and delete other PUP-related components from Windows and each of the browser. Please, follow our guide attentively. In case of the failure, please switch to the automatic elimination method.

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 Cursor Mania, follow these steps:

Uninstall Cursor Mania from Windows systems

Follow these steps to get rid of Cursor Mania from Windows OS:

To remove Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania (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.

Remove Cursor Mania from Mac OS X system

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

Remove Cursor Mania from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for Cursor Mania-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 Cursor Mania, 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 Cursor Mania and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the Cursor Mania-related entries.Uninstall from Mac 2

Erase Cursor Mania from Internet Explorer (IE)

Reset Internet Explorer to clean this ad-supported application:

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 Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Delete Cursor Mania from Microsoft Edge

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 Cursor Mania-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

Eliminate Cursor Mania from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Follow these steps to delete CursorMania from Mozilla Firefox:

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 Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania removal.Reset Firefox 2

Get rid of Cursor Mania from Google Chrome

This guide will help you to locate adware-related components and remove them from Google Chrome:

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 Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania-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 Cursor Mania removal.Reset Chrome 2

Uninstall Cursor Mania 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 Cursor Mania 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
Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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References
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