My Maps Wizard is a browser extension for Google Chrome Developed by Mindspark Inc. This extension offers users access to different websites that offer route planning, map views, and other traveling tools.
While all this might sound interesting and useful, this extension has been marked as a Browser Hijacker by several popular anti-virus applications.
When installed this extension changes your default home page and new tab page to MyWay.com or Ask.com depending on the extension version. It also monitors and records user browsing activity that it later uses to display sponsored / unwanted ads throughout your browsing sessions. While browsing the internet with this extension active and installed you will see additional pop-up ads, sponsored links, and injected ads into search results.
About Browser Hijackers
Browser hijacking is a form of unwanted software, often a browser add-on or extension, which causes modifications in the browser’s settings. There are lots of reasons why you may experience a browser hijack; however commercial, advertising, and marketing are the primary reasons for their creation. It redirects you to the sponsored websites and injects ads on your internet browser that assists its creator to generate earnings. Although it may seem naive, these tools were created by malicious people who always attempt to take full advantage of you, so that hackers can easily earn money from your naive and distraction. Browser hijackers could also allow other harmful programs without your knowledge to further damage your personal computer.
How you can know whether the web browser is hijacked?
There are numerous symptoms of web browser hijacking:
1. you notice unauthorized modifications to your web browser’s homepage
2. you find new unwanted favorites or bookmarks added, usually directed to ad-filled or pornography sites
3. the default search engine and the default web browser settings are altered
4. you find many toolbars on the internet browser
5. never-ending pop-up ads appear and/or your browser pop-up blocker is disabled
6. your browser has instability problems or exhibits frequent errors
7. you can’t visit specific websites such as homepages of anti-malware software.
So how does a PC get infected with a browser hijacker?
There are a number of ways your PC can get infected by a browser hijacker. They generally arrive by way of spam email, via file-sharing websites, or by a drive-by download. They may also originate from any BHO, browser extension, toolbar, add-on, or plug-in with malicious intent. A browser hijacker may also come bundled up with some freeware that you unwittingly download to your PC, compromising your internet security. An example of some infamous browser hijacker includes Conduit, Anyprotect, Babylon, SweetPage, DefaultTab, RocketTab, and Delta Search, however, the names are often changing.
Browser hijacking can lead to severe privacy problems and even identity theft, affect your web browsing experience by taking control of outgoing traffic, drastically slows down your personal computer by consuming lots of system resources, and cause system instability as well.
Learn how to remove a browser hijacker
Certain browser hijacking can be quite easily stopped by finding and eliminating the corresponding malware software through your control panel. Having said that, the majority of hijackers are quite tenacious and need specialized tools to remove them. Furthermore, manual removals require in-depth system knowledge and therefore could be a very difficult task for novice computer users.
Industry experts always suggest users eliminate any malicious software including browser hijacker by using an automatic removal tool, which is simpler, safer, and quicker than the manual removal solution. One of the best tools for correcting browser hijacker infections is SafeBytes Anti-Malware. It will help you remove any pre-existing malicious software on your system and provides you real-time monitoring and protection against new internet threats. Employ a system optimizer (such as Total System Care) along with your antivirus software to correct various registry issues, eliminate computer vulnerabilities, and boost your computer performance.
What To Do When You Cannot Install Safebytes Anti-Malware?
All malware is bad, but certain types of malware do much more damage to your computer or laptop than others. Certain malware variants modify web browser settings by adding a proxy server or change the PC’s DNS configuration settings. In these instances, you’ll be unable to visit certain or all of the sites, and thus not able to download or install the required security software to eliminate the computer virus. So what to do if malicious software keeps you from downloading or installing Anti-Malware? There are a few actions you can take to get around this issue.
Install the anti-malware in Safe Mode
Safe Mode is actually a unique, basic version of Microsoft Windows in which just bare minimum services are loaded to stop viruses as well as other troublesome applications from loading. If the virus is set to load automatically when PC boots, shifting to this mode may prevent it from doing so. To get into Safe Mode or Safe Mode with Networking, press F8 while the system is starting up or run MSConfig and find the “Safe Boot” options under the “Boot” tab. Once you are in safe mode, you can try to install your antivirus application without the hindrance of malicious software. Now, you are able to run the antivirus scan to remove computer viruses and malware without hindrance from another malicious application.
Download the security software in an alternate browser
Malicious code may exploit vulnerabilities in a particular internet browser and block access to all anti-malware software sites. The best solution to avoid this issue is to go with a browser that is well known for its security features. Firefox contains built-in Malware and Phishing Protection to keep you secure online.
Run antivirus from a pen drive
Another way is to download and transfer anti-malware software from a clean PC to run a virus scan on the affected computer. Try these simple measures to clean up your infected computer by using portable anti-malware.
1) Download Safebytes Anti-Malware or Windows Defender Offline onto a virus-free computer system.
2) Mount the USB drive onto the same computer.
3) Double-click on the downloaded file to open the installation wizard.
4) When asked, select the location of the pen drive as the place where you want to store the software files. Follow activation instructions.
5) Remove the pen drive. You can now utilize this portable antivirus on the infected computer.
6) Double click the Safebytes Anti-malware icon on the flash drive to run the application.
7) Press the “Scan Now” button to begin the malware scan.
Let's Talk About SafeBytes Anti-Malware!
If you’re looking to download an anti-malware application for your PC, there are lots of tools out there to consider however, you cannot trust blindly to anyone, regardless of whether it is paid or free software. A few are very good ones, some are decent, and some are merely fake anti-malware applications that will harm your PC themselves! You must pick one that is efficient, practical and has a good reputation for its malware protection. One of the recommended software programs is SafeBytes Anti-Malware. SafeBytes has a superb history of excellent service, and customers are very happy with it.
Safebytes is among the well-established computer solutions firms, which provide this complete anti-malware software. Using its cutting-edge technology, this software will help you remove multiples types of malware like viruses, PUPs, trojans, worms, ransomware, adware, and browser hijackers.
SafeBytes anti-malware provides a plethora of advanced features which sets it aside from all others. The following are some of the features you may like in SafeBytes.
World-class AntiMalware Protection:
Built upon a greatly acclaimed anti-virus engine, this malware removal application can identify and get rid of numerous obstinate malware threats such as browser hijackers, potentially unwanted programs, and ransomware that other typical anti-virus programs will miss.
SafeBytes offers complete and real-time security for your PC. It’ll constantly monitor your pc for hacker activity and also provides users with superior firewall protection.
Through its unique safety rating, SafeBytes informs you whether a site is safe or not to visit it. This will make sure that you’re always certain of your online safety when browsing the web.
SafeBytes is a lightweight and user-friendly anti-virus and anti-malware solution. As it uses minimum computer resources, this application leaves the computer power exactly where it belongs to: with you.
Fantastic Tech Support Team:
You can get high levels of support 24/7 if you’re using their paid version.
SafeBytes can keep your personal computer safe from the latest malware threats automatically, thus keeping your internet experience secure and safe. You can be sure that your computer system will be protected in real-time once you put this tool to use. If you want advanced forms of protection features & threat detections, buying SafeBytes Anti-Malware could be worth the money!
Technical Details and Manual Removal (Advanced Users)
To remove My Maps Wizard manually, go to the Add/Remove programs list in the Windows Control Panel and select the offending program you want to get rid of. For internet browser extensions, go to your browser’s Addon/Extension manager and select the add-on you would like to remove or disable. You will additionally also want to totally reset your web browser to its default configuration settings.
To ensure complete removal, find the following Windows registry entries on your computer and remove them or reset the values appropriately. But bear in mind, this can be a tricky task and only computer professionals could carry it out safely. In addition, some malicious programs are capable to defend against its removal. You’re advised to do this process in Safe Mode.
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\explorer\Shell Folders] Common Startup = C:\windows\start menu\programs\startup
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\explorer\User Shell Folders] Common Startup = C:\windows\start menu\programs\startup
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServices] Whatever = c:\runfolder\program.exe