Dark It Online browser extension (virus) - Free Guide
Dark It Online browser extension Removal Guide
What is Dark It Online browser extension?
Dark It Online can inject advertisements into the search results and cause redirects
Dark It Online can cause the browser to behave erratically
Unlike many other browser hijackers, Dark It Online actually delivers on its promises. The ability to provide a dark mode for websites is functional. We previously wrote about other browser extensions that promise the same thing but are completely useless, like Mini Dark, Moon Darker, and Real Dark.
However, you should not cheer just yet. It was discovered that this application may inject advertisements into the search results and change the main settings, like the homepage, new tab address, and search engine. It might also cause an increased amount of commercial content, like pop-ups, banners, and redirects.
Even though the application does what it says it will do, keeping it in your system may be dangerous. Crooks often use rogue advertising networks that place ads leading to suspicious websites. People may be tricked into providing their personal information, downloading PUPs (potentially unwanted programs), and even malware.
|NAME||Dark It Online|
|TYPE||Browser hijacker; potentially unwanted program|
|SYMPTOMS||The main settings of the browser like the homepage, new tab address, and search engine get changed|
|DISTRIBUTION||Shady websites, deceptive ads, freeware installations|
|DANGERS||The app can lead to misinformation, dangerous pages, and collect browsing-related data|
|ELIMINATION||Remove the plugin via browser settings|
|FURTHER STEPS||Use a maintenance tool RestoroIntego to fix any remaining damage and optimize the machine|
Usually, fraudsters use unsecure sources to spread applications like Dark It Online. This includes fake “Downloader” pages and sites that use social engineering techniques. Nowadays, crooks do not need to have any hacking skills. All they have to do is come up with a convincing message and image.
This browser extension was found to be spread through a bogus site that looks like it has a video to play. It also displays a deceptive message:
Please use a extension to access blocked sites and view videos anonymously.
You should never download anything from random pages. Your browser should also never block any content so if you see this or similar messages, you should exit those pages immediately.
Dark It Online is spread through shady download pages
You should also keep in mind that even though we always recommend our readers to use official web stores, sometimes hijackers slip through the extensive review process. That is why doing your research is important. Read the reviews, look at the ratings, and the number of users an application has. It is best to choose those plugins that have plenty of positive feedback and thousands of users.
Remove the extension
The first thing you should do is go to your browser settings and check if you see Dark It Online in the list, any extensions with a similar name, or suspicious-looking add-ons in general. You can follow our guide if you need help:
- Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
- In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to the unwanted program by clicking Remove.
- Select Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and pick Extensions.
- From the list, pick the extension and click on the Gear icon.
- Click on Uninstall at the bottom.
MS Edge (Chromium)
- Open Edge and click select Settings > Extensions.
- Delete unwanted extensions by clicking Remove.
- Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
- Select Add-ons.
- In here, select unwanted plugin and click Remove.
- Click Safari > Preferences…
- In the new window, pick Extensions.
- Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall.
Delete cookies and cache to protect your privacy
Cookies are small pieces of data that are used to include all sorts of settings. While they are not malicious by themselves, they can be stolen by third parties and used for malicious purposes. Therefore, security experts advise cleaning web browsers regularly. You can employ automatic cleaning tools such as RestoroIntego, although you can also refer to the manual instructions below.
- Click on Menu and pick Settings.
- Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
- Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
- Click Clear data.
- Click Menu and pick Options.
- Go to Privacy & Security section.
- Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
- Click on Clear Data…
- Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear.
- Click on Menu and go to Settings.
- Select Privacy and services.
- Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
- Under Time range, pick All time.
- Select Clear now.
- Click Safari > Clear History…
- From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
- Confirm with Clear History.
Freeware distribution platforms
The hijacking could have been caused not only by a browser extension but also by a PUP (potentially unwanted program). If the previous removal method did not get rid of unwanted symptoms, this step should fix it. Adware usually hides in the background of the machine performing unwanted tasks without the users' knowledge.
Most times adware gets installed from freeware distribution sites. Because they do not make any money from giving away software for free, they include additional programs in the installers. Many users find the installation process boring so they skip through the steps and do not notice the additional files.
Scan the system with anti-malware tools
Identifying the program responsible for hijacking your browser might be difficult if you have never done this before. Fraudsters like to disguise them as “handy” tools, so they could look like an antivirus suite, image editing software, media player, system optimizer, etc.
If you are not sure what to do and you do not want to risk eliminating the wrong files, we suggest using SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes security tools that will scan your machine, eliminate it, and prevent such infections in the future by giving you a warning before a malicious program can make any changes. If manual removal is what you prefer, we have instructions for Windows and Mac machines:
- Enter Control Panel into Windows search box and hit Enter or click on the search result.
- Under Programs, select Uninstall a program.
- From the list, find the entry of the suspicious program.
- Right-click on the application and select Uninstall.
- If User Account Control shows up, click Yes.
- Wait till uninstallation process is complete and click OK.
- Click on Windows Start > Control Panel located on the right pane (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
- In Control Panel, select Programs > Uninstall a program.
- Pick the unwanted application by clicking on it once.
- At the top, click Uninstall/Change.
- In the confirmation prompt, pick Yes.
- Click OK once the removal process is finished.
- From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
- In the Applications folder, look for all related entries.
- Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash)
To fully remove an unwanted app, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:
- Select Go > Go to Folder.
- Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
- In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries and then delete them.
- Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the related .plist files.
How to prevent from getting browser hijacker
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. 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 the server or network manager that needs to monitor connections and activities. 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.
Recover files after data-affecting malware attacks
While much of the data can be accidentally deleted due to various reasons, malware is one of the main culprits that can cause loss of pictures, documents, videos, and other important files. More serious malware infections lead to significant data loss when your documents, system files, and images get encrypted. In particular, ransomware is is a type of malware that focuses on such functions, so your files become useless without an ability to access them.
Even though there is little to no possibility to recover after file-locking threats, some applications have features for data recovery in the system. In some cases, Data Recovery Pro can also help to recover at least some portion of your data after data-locking virus infection or general cyber infection.
- ^ Browser hijacking. Wikipedia. The free encyclopedia.
- ^ Chris Hoffman. PUPs Explained: What is a “Potentially Unwanted Program”?. Howtogeek. Technology Magazine.
- ^ What are cookies?. Norton. Security Center.