Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus (Tech Support Scam) - Tutorial

Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus Removal Guide

What is Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus?

Helpline-12.xyz virus delivers misleading security warnings

Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus tries to trick computer users into calling a fake support line and solve some security-related issues. Earlier we have talked about the Helpline-9.xyz virus, which seems to be related to this new scam. Just like many other tech support viruses, this one delivers a fake security warning claiming that victim’s computer and privacy may be at risk. The scam spreads as an adware[1] program and infiltrates the computer with a help of freeware and shareware. Once inside, Helpline-12.xyz virus initiates redirects and delivers misleading pop-ups. On the particular website, malware delivers a message saying that connection to the site is not private and requires to enter username and password. In order to scare victims even more, Helpline-12.xyz scam delivers “Your computer has been Locked” warning and tells that victim’s IP address was infected. The message also informs that System Activation Key has expired, and for this reason, some personal information, such as passwords, messages or credit card details might be stolen. According to the message, users can protect their data and identity by calling to the provided Technical Support number +1 844 257 9402. However, calling provided number won’t solve any issues and may end up even worse.

The purpose of the Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus is to trick users into calling the provided number for several reasons. First of all, this call may be charged a lot, and you may receive a ridiculously huge bill next month. Secondly, scammers may offer you to purchase some bogus software which is capable of fixing these fake computer problems. However, you may not only waste your money[2] but also install a bogus software or malware. In this case, you may have to deal with even bigger cyber threats such as ransomware[3]. Thirdly, cybercriminals may try to convince you to install remote access tools[4] because it’s easier way to fix the computer. Though, giving full access to your PC to cyber criminals may end up terribly wrong. They might install malware or try to steal your private information. Lastly, scammers may try to get your personal information, such as banking or credit card details, passwords, and so on. Bear in mind that criminals are good in human psychology and you may not notice how and when you reveal personal details to the shady people. Protect yourself by performing Helpline-12.xyz removal as soon as you receive a fake security warning. The adware program, which is responsible for delivering these pop-ups, is not hard to remove manually. However, if you do not want to spend an hour for cleaning your computer, you can go the easier way. Scan your computer with ReimageIntego or other anti-malware program and remove Helpline-12.xyz automatically.

The picture of Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virusHelpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus tries to convince people to call fake tech support line.

How do scammers spread the virus?

The adware program which is responsible for delivering Helpline-12.xyz pop-up ads spread in the software bundle. It’s common distribution and infiltration method among potentially unwanted programs. Often adware, browser hijackers, and other shady tools are attached to the freeware or shareware[5]. The developers of these programs are aware that users often install new programs under wrong settings. By saying “wrong,” we mean quick, basic, standard or recommended setups which do not disclose about additional programs. Using these settings, you often risk installing unwanted and useless applications because all additional programs are installed by default. Therefore, one of the recently installed applications might be responsible for the Helpline-12.xyz hijack. In order to prevent this from happening, you should have opted for Advanced or Custom setup. These settings allow seeing the list of additional programs and rejecting their installation.

Getting rid of Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus

Probably, you can realize that calling the provided number won’t solve these issues. Indeed, in order to remove Helpline-12.xyz malware from the computer. The easiest way to clean your PC is to use anti-malware/anti-spyware program and scan infected computer’s system. The system scan assures that all suspicious entries are eliminated from the system. Adware programs are not hard to remove manually either. Therefore, if you are willing to terminate the virus on your own, carefully look through manual Helpline-12.xyz removal instructions presented below. If you decide to delete virus manually, be careful and don’t leave any adware-related component because you may receive another misleading security warning soon.

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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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.

Getting rid of Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus. Follow these steps

Uninstall from Windows

To remove adware which is responsible for delivering Helpline-12.xyz pop-ups you have to investigate computer’s system. The instructions below will guide you through this process. Then, check all web browsers that are installed on your PC and remove all questionable extensions from them.

Instructions for Windows 10/8  machines:

  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 the entry of the 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.

Delete from macOS

IfHelpline-12.xyz virus infected your Mac, follow the steps below to eliminate this adware from the system.

Remove items from Applications folder:

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

Remove from Microsoft Edge

Follow the instructions to fix Microsoft Edge after Helpline-12.xyz hijack.

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 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

Restore new tab and homepage settings:

  1. Click the menu icon and choose Settings.
  2. Then find On startup section.
  3. Click Disable if you found any suspicious domain.

Reset MS Edge if the 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 Delete Advanced 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” -Verbose Advanced 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 from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam virus may have installed various extensions, add-ons and other questionable entries to the Mozilla Firefox. Make sure you remove all of them.

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 unwanted plugin and click Remove. Remove extensions from Firefox

Reset the homepage:

  1. Click three horizontal lines at the top right corner to open the menu.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. Under Home options, enter your preferred site that will open every time you newly open the Mozilla 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

Reset Mozilla Firefox

If clearing the browser as explained above did not help, 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. Reset Firefox 2

Remove from Google Chrome

Check the list of extensions. If you see some suspicious entries you don’t remember installing, remove them immediately. They might be related with Helpline-12.xyz scam.

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 the unwanted program 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

Change your homepage:

  1. Click menu and choose Settings.
  2. Look for a suspicious site in the On startup section.
  3. Click on Open a specific or set of pages and click on three dots to find the Remove option.

Reset Google Chrome:

If the previous methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the unwanted 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. Reset Chrome 2

Delete from Safari

Eliminate all questionable extensions from the Safari that might be responsible for delivering fake security warnings.

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension 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

After uninstalling this potentially unwanted program (PUP) and fixing each of your web browsers, we recommend you to scan your PC system with a reputable anti-spyware. This will help you to get rid of Helpline-12.xyz Tech Support Scam registry traces and will also identify related parasites or possible malware infections on your computer. For that you can use our top-rated malware remover: ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes.

How to prevent from getting adware

Stream videos without limitations, no matter where you are

There are multiple parties that could find out almost anything about you by checking your online activity. While this is highly unlikely, advertisers and tech companies are constantly tracking you online. The first step to privacy should be a secure browser that focuses on tracker reduction to a minimum.

Even if you employ a secure browser, you will not be able to access websites that are restricted due to local government laws or other reasons. In other words, you may not be able to stream Disney+ or US-based Netflix in some countries. To bypass these restrictions, you can employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN, which provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, not slowing you down in the process.

Data backups are important – recover your lost files

Ransomware is one of the biggest threats to personal data. Once it is executed on a machine, it launches a sophisticated encryption algorithm that locks all your files, although it does not destroy them. The most common misconception is that anti-malware software can return files to their previous states. This is not true, however, and data remains locked after the malicious payload is deleted.

While regular data backups are the only secure method to recover your files after a ransomware attack, tools such as Data Recovery Pro can also be effective and restore at least some of your lost data.

About the author
Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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