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Wkalle.com. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Browser hijacker

Wkalle.com is a browser hijacker that targets Chrome, Firefox, and Edge users

Wkalle.com virus displays altered search results

Wkalle.com is an URL address that people may encounter in case of web browser's hijack.[1] It may appear as a start page and search provider, as well as replace new tab window and other browser's settings. Wkalle.com is classified as a browser hijacker and potentially unwanted program (PUP) as it spreads packed with freeware and gets installed as a default freeware's component. According to NoVirus.uk[2] cybersecurity researchers, it is capable of corrupting all types of browsers, including but not limited to Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge, and Safari.

Name Wkalle.com
Classification Browser hijacker
Browser's targeted Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Safari, Opera, etc. 
Danger level Low. Corrupts web browser's settings, but does not affect the system
Symptoms Altered browser's settings, common redirects to suspicious web domains, excessive amount of ads
Elimination A full system scan with Reimage is recommended

Wkalle.com malware is closely related to unknown third-parties. In other words, anonymous third parties exploit this dubious search site to drive visitors' traffic to their websites, increase sales or generate advertising revenue. However, some of the affiliate parties may have evil intentions, such as to spread the virus, such as Trojan, Spyware or Ransomware by initiating redirects via Wkalle.com domain.

As soon as it hijacks Windows OS (installs a PUP and drops an extension), web browser starts working abnormally, i.e., start page and search engine are replaced by Wkalle.com; a new tab URL may start continuously redirecting to Wkalle-related websites; suspicious links and advertisements can constitute search results.

Although Wkalle.com virus is more intrusive than dangerous, you can never be sure if it delivers reliable content. Apart from questionable content, Search Data[3] and some pieces of personal information are also targeted by this PUP. Security researchers found out that it's bundled with tracking cookies, web beacons, Geo-Locators, and pixels that are installed on the browser by default and start accumulating the following information:

  • Search queries;
  • Mostly visited websites;
  • Geo-location;
  • Web browser's type;
  • Language pack installed;
  • Name;
  • Email address;
  • IP address, etc.

The list is not dead-end, so it's not clear what specific browsing data can leak to the developer of this PUP and its affiliate parties. If you are concerned about your cyber security, we would strongly recommend blocking these cookies. For this purpose, you'll have to remove Wkalle.com package.

There are two Wkalle.com removal possibilities, i.e., manual and automatic. By manual, we mean that you will have to delete the PUP from programs' list and then delete its registry entries via Registry Editor. However, automatic PUP elimination is recommended to preserve the time and maintain PC's stability.

To get rid of Wkalle.com virus and its leftovers thoroughly, we would strongly recommend you to perform a full system scan with Reimage, Malwarebytes or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareNorton Internet Security.

Preventing the installation of browser hijackers

PUPs are being distributed alongside other free apps. Therefore, one and the primary precautionary measure that you should take in the prevention of browser's hijack is a careful installation or freeware and shareware.

Before downloading it, check whether it has the official website and if its developer is indicated. If neither one nor other information is accessible, then there's something wrong with it.

Besides, keep in mind that the essential information about the software you are going to install is disguised under Quick or Recommended installation. Thus, to find out every peculiarity, opt for Advanced or Custom setup and read the terms carefully.

Finally, make sure to deselect all “additional,” “recommended,” and “useful” components. Such attachments typically turn out to be PUPs.

Ways to remove Wkalle.com from Windows and Mac

In case of infection, do not ignore the presence of Wkalle.com since it may expose you to suspicious websites, promote expensive products, urge to download useless software, track your web browsing and initiate other highly-suspicious activities. If you want to try out your IT skills and eliminate this hijacker by yourself, the step-by-step instructions provided down below will surely help you.

If nevertheless, you prefer automatic removal, you should either download Reimage or update the anti-malware that is already running on your PC. After that, run a full system scan and reset your web browser as explained below.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Malwarebytes. 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.

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Alternate Software
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Alternate Software
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To remove Wkalle.com, follow these steps:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Wkalle.com from Windows systems

The only way to delete browser hijacker from Windows OS is to eliminate PUPs and then reset web browser's settings to default. The following instructions explain how to get rid of PUPs, while subsequent sections will overview the reset of the most popular web browsers.

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

Get rid of Wkalle.com from Mac OS X system

  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 Wkalle.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

Eliminate Wkalle.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 Wkalle.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 Wkalle.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

Erase Wkalle.com from Microsoft Edge

To disable Wkalle.com extension from Microsoft Edge, please follow this tutorial:

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, Wkalle.com should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

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

Uninstall Wkalle.com from Google Chrome

Google Chrome is by far the most frequently hijacked browser on the market. If, however, you don't know how to reset it because there were no need to do that, please follow this guide to find out:

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

Remove Wkalle.com 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 Wkalle.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 Wkalle.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 Wkalle.com removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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References

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