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Sowin8.com virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Browser hijacker
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Sowin8.com collects browsing-related data, serves highly untrustworthy search findings

Sowin8.com virus

Sowin8.com appears to be a highly untrustworthy search engine that silently tracks[1] user’s activities online. It often gets set up by questionable third-party programs that travel in software bundles[2]. Also, SoWin8 might attempt to serve you ads in the form of search results which it may inject into results of legitimate search engines.

Once installed, Sowin8 virus does not initiate any highly aggressive activities. It simply switches the value in every browser’s homepage and default search preferences. As a consequence, browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or others start launching the described domain on browser’s startup or in every new tab that the victim opens.

At first, the user might not suspect anything as the search site looks clean and trustworthy. There are no ads or pop-ups coming out of it; however, its services are shady. First of all, you won’t find Privacy Policy document nor Terms of Use on the main page of the search site, which is highly suspicious. The user is left out without any information regarding site’s data collection policies or similar details.

Unfortunately, browser hijackers like the described one have no doubts whether to collect details describing user’s interests or not. They transfer search queries, browsing history, clicks and other related data to their servers immediately. Using collected data, they build anonymous user profiles and store data about users’ preferences. Later on, gathered details are analyzed and used to serve catchy ads.

Catchy does not mean useful, says Udenvirus.dk team[3]. Clicking on doubtful ads can redirect to hazardous Internet sites. The primary purpose of serving these ads and causing redirects is pay-per-click revenue, and not user satisfaction. Therefore, we believe that Sowin8.com removal is the best option you can go for. Consider installing a reliable anti-spyware software like Reimage and deleting all of the hijacker’s remains automatically.

You have another option if you do not want to remove Sowin8.com using automated spyware or malware removal tool. Please use the instructions provided below the article and delete the unwanted hijacker manually.

Ways users install unwanted applications without realizing it

Potentially unwanted programs hijack user’s computer without user’s knowledge, but they do need user’s interaction in order to reach the target system. Therefore, they tend to present themselves as “recommended downloads” next to other free programs (usually popular ones).

  • When installing free software, you should always choose Custom or Advanced installation options because these will allow you to view and reject unwanted items bundled with your download.
  • Choosing Default or Standard settings leaves you no chance to configure components of your download, so we suggest avoiding these.
  • Finally, carefully choose Internet sources to download software from. We always recommend opting for websites of official software developers, and not some untrustworthy file sharing sources.

Remove Sowin8.com immediately

Now that your computer is compromised by a browser hijacker, your primary task is to remove Sowin8.com virus as soon as you can. The instructions that our team prepared will help you to get rid of the threat and continue using your computer safely.

Potentially unwanted programs often tend to travel in tandem with other suspicious software, and sometimes it can be hard to identify them. Therefore, we highly recommend finishing Sowin8.com removal with a complete system scan using trustworthy anti-malware software.

You can remove Sowin8.com automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus, Malwarebytes Anti Malware. We recommend these applications because they can easily delete potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

We might be affiliated with any product we recommend on the site. Full disclosure in our Agreement of Use. By Downloading any provided Anti-spyware software to remove Sowin8.com virus you agree to our privacy policy and agreement of use.
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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to uninstall Sowin8.com virus. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.
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Manual Sowin8.com virus Removal Guide:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com from Windows systems

  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 Sowin8.com and related programs
    Here, look for Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com 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.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com from Mac OS X system

Clean your Mac computer system by deleting unwanted applications.

  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 Sowin8.com 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'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com from Internet Explorer (IE)

  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 Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com virus 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, Sowin8.com should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com from Google Chrome

You should be able to find and remove So Win 8 components via chrome://extensions page as described below.

  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 Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Sowin8.com from Safari

Reset Safari by deleting Sowin8 virus first and then changing browser's settings back to default.

  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 Sowin8.com 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 Sowin8.com, 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 Sowin8.com removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button
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 Sowin8.com 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: Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware.

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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