Power-Cleaner browser hijacker (virus) - Free Guide

Power-Cleaner browser hijacker Removal Guide

What is Power-Cleaner browser hijacker?

Power-Cleaner does not clean your browsing history or offer any other useful functions

Power-CleanerPower-Cleaner can force people to use only selected channels for browsing

Power-Cleaner is a browser hijacker, which means it can change the main settings, like the homepage, new tab address, and search engine. It can also cause an increased amount of commercial content on the machine in the form of pop-ups, banners, and redirects.

NAME Power-Cleaner
TYPE Browser hijacker; potentially unwanted program
SYMPTOMS The main settings of the browser get changed, like the homepage, new tab address, and search engine
DISTRIBUTION Shady websites, deceptive ads, software bundling, web stores
DANGERS The extension may lead to dangerous websites; display misinformation, inaccurate search results; track browsing, and collect data
ELIMINATION Remove the extension by going to your browser settings
FURTHER STEPS Use ReimageIntego to fix any remaining damage and optimize the machine

How did Power-Cleaner appear in my browser?

Although it is unknown how this browser hijacker specifically is distributed, people usually infect themselves while browsing through shady sites. Pages that engage in illegal activities are especially dangerous since they are unregulated. They are full of deceptive ads and sneaky redirects that can open new tabs automatically.

A quite common source of infection is fake “Downloader” pages, that have the “Download” button, and many deceptive messages. Users may see messages like “Recommended by Chrome,” or “Available in the Chrome Web Store.” However, usually, the name of the add-on is not present and it is impossible to know what you are actually installing.

Browser hijackers can also be found on official web stores, so it is important to always do your research. Read the reviews, look at the ratings, and the number of users. Choose those apps that have plenty of positive feedback and thousands of users. Read the description as well, and see if there are grammar or spelling mistakes.

PUAs (potentially unwanted applications),[1] like Power-Cleaner, can also appear in your system without your knowledge. This usually happens when people use freeware[2] distribution platforms Try to use official web stores and developer sites whenever you can. Even though it might get costly, you may save in the long run by keeping your system running smoothly.

Power-Cleaner browser hijackerPower-Cleaner can monitor your browsing activity with cookies

Keep your browsing activity private

Websites and web-based applications can track your browsing activity with the help of cookies.[3] These are small data files that can store information like your IP address, geolocation, pages you visit, links you click on, and things you purchase online. Normally, this data would be used to personalize the user experience but we notice that it is used to make a profit more and more often.

That is why security experts recommend clearing your browsers regularly. Cookies can be sold to advertising networks or other third parties, and in some cases, they can be hijacked and used for malicious purposes. Deleting them regularly stops the tracking process.

To make this step easy, you can use a maintenance tool like ReimageIntego. It can remove cookies and cache automatically. Besides, this powerful software can fix most system errors, corrupted files, and registry[4] issues, which is especially helpful after a virus infection.

Remove the unwanted extension

You can remove browser add-ons by going to your settings. Find the list of extensions installed in your browser and remove the Power-Cleaner. We show how to do that in the guide below:

Google Chrome

  • 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.Remove extensions from Chrome

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

MS Edge (Chromium)

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

Mozilla Firefox

  • 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.Remove extensions from Firefox

Safari

  • Click Safari > Preferences…
  • In the new window, pick Extensions.
  • Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall.Remove extensions from Safari

PUP distribution and elimination process

One of the most common ways that these kinds of PUAs are spread is through freeware installation sites. The creators of these platforms have learned that they can include additional programs in the installers and earn money that way. This method is known as software bundling and is very effective as most people rush through the installation process and skip all the steps.

If you want to avoid that in the future, always choose “Custom” or “Advanced” installation methods, read the privacy policy and terms of use to find out what information will be collected and what the application will be allowed to do in your system. The most important part is to check the file list and untick the boxes next to any items that you think are suspicious or unrelated.

The program that is causing settings changes could have any name or icon, so if you are not sure what to do and you do not want to risk deleting the wrong files, we suggest using SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes anti-malware tools that will scan your machine, eliminate it, and prevent such infections in the future by giving you a warning before a PUP can make any changes. If manual removal is what you still prefer, we have instructions for Windows and Mac machines:

Windows 10/8:

  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

Windows 7/XP:

  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.

Mac:

  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
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What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix 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.

How to prevent from getting browser hijacker

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.

 

Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author
Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Anti-malware specialist

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References