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Remove HomeGuard (Removal Instructions) - Simple Removal Guide

removal by Alice Woods - - | Type: Malware

HomeGuard belongs to the group of the potentially unwanted program (PUP) due to inappropriate distribution method

HomeGuard PUP

HomeGuard is promoted as advanced parental control and activity monitoring application[1] allowing patterns to keep their children away from pornographic websites, offensive content, shady gaming platforms, and other inappropriate content. While many people approve the app for its user-friendly interface, multi-functionality, and other features, cybersecurity researchers have already included it in the database of potentially unwanted programs (PUP).

HomeGuard app is not dangerous and, from the initial inspection, the functions it is programmed to perform are working. However, despite the fact that the application is available on the official website and third-party download sources like cnet, its download has been found bundled with other freeware and shareware.

Name HomeGuard
Type Potentially Unwanted Program (PUP) / malware
Reasons for classification HomeGuard is not a virus. Experts classified it as PUP due to stealthy distribution technique, known as bundling. Its free trial has been found added to freeware as a pre-selected “optional download”
Related files HomeGuard-Installer_x64.exe
Danger The application is not dangerous. Normally it is used for parental control to prevent children from visiting adult-content websites, as well as monitoring their activities. However, it may infiltrate PCs without being noticed and prevent regular users from browsing the web. Besides, it may get inside in a bundle with other PUPs that generate intrusive ads, cause redirects or use third-party cookies
 Is removal required? If you installed the application willingly and feel satisfied with its service, no HomeGuard removal is required. However, if you did not install it intentionally, we strongly recommend eliminating it without a delay. 
Uninstall methods  The tool can be eliminated manually or automatically. The method is optional, though we recommend using a professional anti-malware program to eliminate the whole bundle of unwanted freewares
Recommended A full system scan with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego tool is recommended after HomeGuard uninstall. Unwanted programs can initiate changes within Windows system that have to be undone with the help of optimization utilities

This relatively new application (added to third-party download sources in March 2020) seems to be gaining popularity among parental society. The key features of the app include:

  • Porn filtering
  • Websites blocking by name or URL, blacklists and whitelists
  • Block access to blocked websites in a predefined list
  • Screenshots capture
  • Restrict programs/games usage times or completely block a program
  • Keylogger Tool
  • Web search monitoring and blocking
  • Restrict Internet and computer usage times
  • Detailed program usage statistics
  • Web files content type blocking
  • Network monitoring and blocking
  • USB storage media monitoring and blocking
  • Monitor and block deleting and moving of files, etc.

The HomeGuard trial version can be downloaded and tested for 15 days. After a free trial version expires, the user has to pay a $49 one-time fee for one year's subscription. Despite the fact that the functions this application offers are really handy for parents in this digital world to keep a close eye on children, the app might get inside the system without being noticed and start implementing its blocking activities without being asked for. 

According to[2] experts, the HomeGuard virus is actively distributed bundled with free applications in a form of  HomeGuard-Installer_x64.exe. Usually, it is represented in an explicit way by indicating its purpose, functions, and the fact that it's not free to use. Nevertheless, its free trial version is often an additional installer of various download managers, PDF converters, media players, or games, which is why it may spread in the disguise of Quick or Basic installation option as a pre-selected component. 

The term HomeGuard virus is not the one that fits best. Atypical or aggressive behavior, such as advertising campaigns or data tracking behind one's back, is not the key tasks of this application. However, if it manages to infiltrate PCs without being noticed and enables its service without an explicit user's permission, the user may assume that there's a virus on the system. 

HomeGuard malware is capable of blocking hundreds of websites, limit internet access, register keystrokes, and initiate other activities. The tool comes with a long database of blacklisted sites and is programmed in a way to block suspicious content without informing about that. All it shows is a generic window saying “No Internet connection.” 

Thus, if the program is installed on the system without being noticed, the user of a host PC or another device may encounter multiple connectivity issues, encounter many problems when trying to download apps, visit forums, play games or participate in other online activities. Besides, a fact of being continuously tracked and registered can make users feel uncomfortable. 

Apart from questionable installation and unapproved performance, it may be difficult to uninstall HomeGuard. As one of the users reported:

I recently installed Home guard pro 4.1.1 on my laptop cos I wanted to monitor whats going on on while I'm away. I tried uninstalling it today, but I can't seem to find it in my installed programs even third party softwares can't find the application. But its still running on my pc and I can't launch the application.. No activity when I open the app.

It may be difficult to remove HomeGuard virus because it has been designed to run in a silent mode and disguise itself to prevent children from eliminating it. Therefore, the main installer may not be placed in a regular Programs and Features location. Therefore, you should carefully check the system for unknown installers manually or use anti-malware programs like SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes to detect and eliminate it. 

HomeGuard scannerHomeGuard virus is a parental control tool, which has been classified as PUP due to the stealthy distribution of a free trial version

Anyway, if this monitoring tool has been installed on your device along with another freeware, make sure to remove HomeGuard virus and all its package. Otherwise, your PC may start working in an abnormal way. Not only access to particular websites may be limited. You may also notice an excessive amount of ads, redirects to third-party websites, or find your web browser hijacked. 

Besides, when a free trial version expires, you may start getting annoying reminders to purchase the license key to keep using the service. Those who are not intended to use the service should perform HomeGuard removal without any delay. 

Freeware bundling allows unwanted apps to enter PCs without authorization

Potentially unwanted programs are not viruses. Typically, freeware is bundled[3] with infamous free plug-ins and add-ons that seek access to web browsers where various advertising campaigns can be initiated or browsing data leaked. Besides, free trial versions of charged applications are also frequently promoted via freeware to increase the number of potential users. However, it's very annoying when the unwanted application starts displaying popups urging to purchase a license. 

Anyway, the freeware installation process has to be monitored all the time to prevent PUPs from installing on the system. Additional applications are always disguised under Quick or Basic installation techniques and, since they are pre-checked, clicking the Next button grants access to any of 'optional downloads'. To disjoint the bundle, you should:

  • select either Advanced or Custom installation options;
  • read Terms and Conditions provided on each installation setup window;
  • unmark checkboxes saying that you agree to install add-ons, plug-ins, etc. before clicking the Next button;
  • reject the installation of freeware at any time of the process if it turns out to be suspicious. 

HomeGuard blocks hundreds of blacklisted websitesHomeGuard application can block hundreds of blacklisted websites or limit Internet access

Learn how to initiate HomeGuard removal automatically and manually

HomeGuard removal is the first thing that you should do if this app entered the system without being asked. Since it's not a virus, its installer should be placed among other Windows apps. Therefore, search for it manually, right-click if detected, and select Uninstall. 

If, however, you cannot remove HomeGuard virus because its installer is hidden, try using a professional anti-malware program to get rid of it. Try SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes tools. Upon the successful elimination of PUPs, we also recommend fixing damage that unwanted programs might have triggered. According to experts, applications like this can cause changes within Windows registries and logs, thus scanning the system with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego may help to keep it optimized.  

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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Reimage Happiness
Intego Happiness
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 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 HomeGuard, follow these steps:

Delete HomeGuard from Windows systems

Those who have never dealt with a PUP before, our security experts created an explicit guide on how to uninstall HomeGuard from Windows. Follow each step carefully.

  1. Click Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs). Click 'Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features' (if you are 'Windows XP' user, click on 'Add/Remove Programs').
  2. If you are Windows 10 / Windows 8 user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once Quick Access Menu shows up, select Control Panel and Uninstall a Program. If you are 'Windows 10 / Windows 8' user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once 'Quick Access Menu' shows up, select 'Control Panel' and 'Uninstall a Program'.
  3. Uninstall HomeGuard and related programs
    Here, look for HomeGuard or any other recently installed suspicious programs.
  4. Uninstall them and click OK to save these changes. Right click on each of suspicious entries and select 'Uninstall'

Get rid of HomeGuard from Mac OS X system

HomeGuard virus is currently not compatible with Mac OS.

  1. If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications. Cick 'Go' and select 'Applications'
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for HomeGuard or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash. Click on every malicious entry and select 'Move to Trash'

Eliminate HomeGuard from Internet Explorer (IE)

If you have noticed HomeGuard ads on IE, it might be that you have downloaded an advertising plug-in along with this tool. Eliminate the main installer in the first place and then reset your web browser's settings as explained below.

  1. Remove dangerous add-ons
    Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top right corner of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons. Click on menu icon and select 'Manage add-ons'
  2. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for HomeGuard and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable: Right click on each of malicious entries and select 'Disable'
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the gear icon (menu) on the top right corner of the browser and select Internet Options. Stay in General tab.
  4. Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes. Delete malicious URL, enter your desired domain name and click 'Apply' to save changes
  5. Reset Internet Explorer
    Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  6. Here, select Reset.
  7. When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete HomeGuard removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again

Remove HomeGuard from Microsoft Edge

The following steps explain how to eliminate unwanted add-ons from Microsoft Edge.

Reset Microsoft Edge settings (Method 1):

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge app and click More (three dots at the top right corner of the screen).
  2. Click Settings to open more options.
  3. Once Settings window shows up, click Choose what to clear button under Clear browsing data option. Go to Settings and select 'Choose what to clear'
  4. Here, select all what you want to remove and click Clear. Select 'Clear' button
  5. Now you should right-click on the Start button (Windows logo). Here, select Task Manager. Open the start menu and select 'Task Manager'
  6. When in Processes tab, search for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Go to details option. If can’t see Go to details option, click More details and repeat previous steps. Right-click 'Microsoft Edge' and select 'Go to details' Select 'More details' if 'Go to details' option fails to show up
  8. When Details tab shows up, find every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right click on each of them and select End Task to end these entries. Find Microsoft Edge entries and select 'End Task'

Resetting Microsoft Edge browser (Method 2):

If Method 1 failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method.

  1. Note: you need to backup your data before using this method.
  2. Find this folder on your computer: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select every entry which is saved on it and right click with your mouse. Then Delete option. Go to Microsoft Edge folder on your computer, right-click every entry and click 'Delete'
  4. Click the Start button (Windows logo) and type in window power in Search my stuff line.
  5. Right-click the Windows PowerShell entry and choose Run as administrator. Find Windows PowerShell, right-click it and select 'Run as administrator'
  6. Once Administrator: Windows PowerShell window shows up, paste this command line after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and press Enter:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    Copy and paste a required command and press 'Enter'

Once these steps are finished, HomeGuard should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

Uninstall HomeGuard from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions. Click on menu icon and select 'Add-ons'
  2. Here, select HomeGuard and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries. Select 'Extensions' and look for malicious entries. Click 'Remove' to get rid of each of them
  3. Reset Mozilla Firefox
    Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information. Click on menu icon and then on '?'. Select 'Troubleshooting Information'
  4. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete HomeGuard removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times

Erase HomeGuard from Google Chrome

Google Chrome add-ons can initiate advertising campaigns, trigger unwanted redirects, or track browsing activities. If you inadvertently installed the HomeGuard virus and a couple of dubious browsers objects were installed alongside, follow these steps to get rid of them.

  1. Delete malicious plugins
    Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions. Click on menu icon. Select 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Here, select HomeGuard and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries. Look for malicious entries and delete each of them by clicking on the Trash bin icon
  3. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  4. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  5. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  6. Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings. When in 'Settings', scroll down to 'Reset browser settings' button and click on it
  7. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete HomeGuard removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal

Delete HomeGuard from Safari

  1. Remove dangerous 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 select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for HomeGuard or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Reset Safari
    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 select 'Reset Safari...'
  4. 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 HomeGuard removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

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 various losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Software issues created by malware or direct data loss due to encryption can lead to problems with your device or permanent damage. When you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work.

It is crucial to create updates to your backups after any changes on the device, so you can get back to the point you were working on when malware changes anything or issues with the device causes data or performance corruption. Rely on such behavior and make file backup your daily or weekly habit.

When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware occurs out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the system restoring purpose.

About the author

Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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