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Remove Smilebox (Removal Guide) - Feb 2018 update

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - -   Also known as Mystart.smilebox.com | Type: Browser hijacker

Smilebox – an app that poses security risks to its users

Screenshot of SmileBox

SmileBox is a free application that allows creating collages, slideshows, invitations, greetings and other creative stuff. The program is legitimate; however, it has features that can be attributed to the potentially unwanted program (PUP). If you have encountered Smilebox installer on your computer without downloading it, you should take care of its removal. 

According to computer experts, Smilebox application is also known as a browser hijacker due to these reasons:

  • silent installation;
  • alteration of browser’s settings;
  • delivery of commercial content, such as ads, banners or links.

The program spreads in software bundles and might get inside the computer unnoticed. For this reason, the appearance of the program makes people think that it’s SmileBox virus. However, it’s a huge misconception. This application is not malicious. Potentially unwanted programs cannot harm the system or files stored on the computer.

Users just have to learn to install freeware and shareware correctly[1] to avoid third-party apps. If you do not pay proper attention to software installation, you may have found yourself wondering what is Smilebox? And what does it do on my computer?

The signs that computer is infected are clear. As soon as the Smilebox malware gets inside the computer, it might alter browsers’ settings. These modifications consist of a changed homepage and/or default search engine to Mystart.smilebox.com, which is a commercial search engine[2] that might display modified search results.

Using this search tool, you can notice that search sessions are interrupted by various redirects. Thus, you may end up on unknown and even insecure third-party websites. Also, Smile box can also initiate annoying pop-up ads, in-text links, banner ads and other notifications that are mostly used for affiliate marketing.[3] While developers generate revenue from your clicks, you have to deal with inconveniences and potential threats. [4]

Moreover, Smilebox can start collecting particular information about its users. Collected data includes technical details about your computer, web browser and other software installed on your PC, browsing-related information, visited websites, search queries, clicked ads, interactions on social media, IP address, and in some cases email address, phone number, etc.

Thus, if you do not want that all this information would be used against you, you should perform SmileBox removal right now. Aggregated information usually is used to update, improve and maintain the application, provide interesting online ads, and might be shared with third-parties.
How partners, advertisers or advertising networks might use information about you is unknown.

In most cases, information is used for marketing purposes.[5] Though, you can even imagine what might happen if this data gets in the hands of cyber criminals. Thus, you should remove SmileBox from the computer to prevent all possible problems. Also, we recommend scanning the computer with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego to clean other suspicious applications from the device.

Questions about Smilebox

The image of SmileBoxSmileBox is legitimate program; however, it might spread in the software bundles and change browsers' settings.

The PUP might be distributed in software packages

Though in most of the cases this program is downloaded by people from its official website. However, it can also infiltrate computers behind people's back because it has been actively promoted with the help of bundling. To avoid system hijack, you need to monitor installation of the freeware:

  1. Opt only for Custom or Advanced installation of the freeware.
  2. Uncheck pre-checked check marks that say that you want to install browser add-ons, extensions, plugins, toolbars and similar components on your computer.

Security experts from Bedynet warn that skipping the latter step might lead you to additional problems, like the loss of your personally non-identifiable information, slowdowns on each of your web browsers, redirects, annoying pop-up ads, and similar issues.

Learn how to uninstall Smilebox from your device

In the article, we have explained what is Smilebox and what problems it might cause. We assume you want to get back full control over your browser, avoid suspicious redirects and ads, and access your favorite search engine from the main page.

Thus, after the hijack, you should waste no time and remove SmileBox from the system. To do it manually, please have a look at detailed instructions that are listed below. Please, follow them carefully to be sure that all hijacker-related components are gone. Otherwise, you may experience another hijack.

However, if you want to be 100% sure that SmileBox removal is successful, opt for automatic removal option. This method requires scanning the computer with an updated anti-malware tool.

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 Smilebox, follow these steps:

Remove Smilebox from Windows systems

Guidelines that are listed below will help you remove SmileBox via Control Panel. If you haven't installed this program yourself, please look for other unknown applications and uninstall them as well.

  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 Smilebox and related programs
    Here, look for Smilebox 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'
  5. Remove Smilebox from Windows shortcuts
    Right click on the shortcut of Mozilla Firefox and select Properties. Right click on browsers' icon and select 'Properties'
  6. Go to Shortcut tab and look at the Target field. Delete malicious URL that is related to your virus. Select 'Shortcut' tab and delete 'http://isearch.babylon.com...' or other suspicious URL

Repeat steps that are given above with all browsers' shortcuts, including Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. Make sure you check all locations of these shortcuts, including Desktop, Start Menu and taskbar.

Eliminate Smilebox from Mac OS X system

To get rid of this virus from Mac OS X, follow these steps. Make sure you double-check all suspicious components that could be related to this browser hijacking program.

  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 Smilebox 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'

Uninstall Smilebox from Internet Explorer (IE)

To remove SmileBox from IE, you have to reset the browser or remove EVERY suspicious add-on by following these steps:

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 Smilebox 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 Smilebox removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Get rid of Smilebox from Microsoft Edge

Remove the browser hijacker from Edge with the help of the guide given below.

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 Smilebox-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

Delete Smilebox from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

To fix Firefox, check the list of extensions and remove suspicious ones. Follow the steps below to reset this web browser as well.

  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 Smilebox 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. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the menu (top right corner), choose Options General.
  4. Here, delete malicious URL and enter preferable website or click Restore to default.
  5. Click OK to save these changes. When in 'General' tab, delete malicious URL from 'Home Page' section or click on 'Restore to Default' button. Click 'OK' to save changes
  6. 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'
  7. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete Smilebox removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times

Erase Smilebox from Google Chrome

To uninstall Smilebox from Chrome, check browser extensions and uninstall unknown entries that might be related to this virus. You can also reset browser's settings.

  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 Smilebox 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. Change your homepage and default search engine if it was altered by your virus
    Click on menu icon and choose Settings.
  4. Here, look for the Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup option and click on Set pages. After clicking on menu and 'Settings', select 'Set pages'
  5. Now you should see another window. Here, delete malicious search sites and enter the one that you want to use as your homepage. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  6. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  7. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  8. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  9. 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
  10. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete Smilebox removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal

Remove Smilebox from Safari

If you need to recover Safari to its previous state, fix it by following these steps.

  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 Smilebox or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Open your Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu section. Here, select Preferences as it was displayed previously and select General.
  4. Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by Smilebox, remove unwanted link and enter the one that you want to use for your searches. Remember to include the "http://" before typing in the address of the page. When in 'General', delete malicious URL and enter your desired domain name
  5. 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...'
  6. 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 Smilebox removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

Do not let government spy on you

The government has many issues in regards to tracking users' data and spying on citizens, so you should take this into consideration and learn more about shady information gathering practices. Avoid any unwanted government tracking or spying by going totally anonymous on the internet. 

You can choose a different location when you go online and access any material you want without particular content restrictions. You can easily enjoy internet connection without any risks of being hacked by using Private Internet Access VPN.

Control the information that can be accessed by government any other unwanted party and surf online without being spied on. Even if you are not involved in illegal activities or trust your selection of services, platforms, be suspicious for your own security and take precautionary measures by using the VPN service.

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
Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

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Contact Ugnius Kiguolis
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References
Removal guides in other languages

  1. Adela says:
    December 12th, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    I hate smilebox. Please remove me from this service and unsubscribe me ASAP

  2. DARLENE ATKINS says:
    January 4th, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    I WOULD LIKE U TO TAKE ME OFF SMILEBOX…. I DO NOT USE IT BUT HAVE TO PAY 4 IT EACH MONTH. THANK YOU.

  3. Adela says:
    December 12th, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    now delete this from my computer

  4. LLOYD ARNOLDI says:
    March 30th, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    PLEASE DELETE SMILEBOX ON MY COMPUTER .I NO LONGER WANT TO PAY FOR SOMETHING THAT I DONT USE .ALSO I DO NOT WANT MY CHKING ACCOUNT CHARGED IN THE FUTURE . 3-30-2013 6:00 CDT

  5. Pat Lawson says:
    April 1st, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    Please delete smilebox off my computer and out f my checking account. I used it once.

  6. Melissa says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    I used Smilebox once, didnt find what I needed and it changed all of the settings on my computer. I learned latter that Smilebox has a D- rating with the Better Business Bureau, I am not surprised. I want it off my computer and out of my life too!

  7. Anonymous says:
    August 23rd, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    I downloaded Smilebox awhile ago and found out that its not really what I needed. I googled on how to uninstall this program from your computer and heres what I found (go to this link): http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_do_you_uninstall_smilebox Now I have already gotten rid of Smilebox and I want to share it with those people with this same problem.
    * * *
    If you wish to uninstall the Smilebox program from your computer, please do the following:

    If you have Windows XP, click the Start button, then Control Panel. Select “Add or Remove Programs”. When the list of programs comes up, click on Smilebox and then on the “Remove” button. If you are using a partner version of Smilebox it may have a slightly different name, such as, Hallmark Smilebox.*

    If you have Windows Vista or Windows 7, click on the Start button, then Control Panel. Select “Programs and Features” (“Programs” for Windows 7 users). When the list of programs comes up, click on Smilebox and then on the “Uninstall” button. If you are using a partner version of Smilebox it may have a slightly different name, such as, Hallmark Smilebox.*

    If you have Mac, the uninstall is a 3 step process: 1) close the icon on the menu bar (click the Smilebox icon and then select Quit from the menu options), 2) from the Applications folder, drag the Smilebox application to the trash, and 3) from your home directory, choose Library > Application Support folder, drag Smilebox to the trash. You can then empty your trash to clear Smilebox.

  8. Violet says:
    January 15th, 2014 at 1:33 am

    Smilebox MyStart was installed on my computer when I downloaded a Macromedia Flash update. Why on earth did a reputable program such as Flash come bundled with this invasive piece of trash??

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