Cyber-Security researchers have detected a potentially unwanted program which pretends to be an actual antivirus and system protection software. The program, called PCProtect performs scans on your computer and it may display fake detections of various different types of issues, like viruses or other type of performance issues on your computer that may not even be real. The end goal for this program is to get you to purchase it’s full version and generate profits to it’s creators. If you have the PCProtect PUP installed on your computer, recommendations are to read the following article in order to learn more about it and how to remove it from your computer system.
|Type||Hoax antivirus, hoax system optimizer / PUP.|
|Short Description||The program may display fake virus and performance issues for your computer and to remove them it asks you to purchase the full version.|
|Symptoms||PCProtect may run automatic scans on your computer and may run on system start.|
|Distribution Method||Bundled Installers. Fake detection pop-up web pages on your browsers.|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss PCProtect.|
PCProtect PUP – Methods of Distribution
There are two main methods by which the PCProtect PUP could be spread onto your computer system. The primary one is believed to be a very particular method that prays on the fear of the inexperienced user. It may involve pop-ups that may appear on your computer, claiming it has been infected by viruses, similar to what the image below displays:
Such pop-ups may be introduced on your computer as a result of you visiting suspicious web sites without ad-blocking or if you already have adware or other unwanted programs which may have modified your web browser to introduce such advertisements.
In addition to this, the software may also be spread onto your computer as a result of a Bundling operation, which is basically to include the PCPRotect program in legitimate installers of free programs that you may have downloaded online. Such installers are often available on software-providing websites and via them, you may encounter PCProtected added “as a free extra” in one of the installation steps. The step is usually missed since often it is concealed within the “Custom” or “Advanced” installation modes.
PCProtect PUP – More Information
PCProtect is a program, published by SS Protect Limited and in general it does not do anything malicious on your computer. However, the program may display different types of detections on the computers of users. The first thing done after the program is installed on your computer is to drop it’s files in the %Program Files% directory, which are reported by Symantec researchers to be the following:
In addition to dropping the files, PCProtect also aims to modify the following Windows Registry sub-keys by adding the following Windows Registry entries on the victim’s computer:
After doing so, the application make sure that an automatic scan starts which displays different information on the victim’s computer of detections that may not even be real:
The app may also display different pop-ups above the system tray of Windows that aim to convince you that your computer is at risk. However, the actual surprise comes when you perform the removal action.
A pop-up appears which aims to convince you to purchase the full version of the software which can remove the “issues” on your PC. However, security analysts advise not to purchase the full version of the program, since it might as well scam you into purchasing a software that may not even be able to detect and remove actual malware.
Remove PCProtect Fully from Windows
In order to remove PCProtect from Windows, we advise you to follow the removal instructions down below. They are specifically designed to help you detect and remove all aspects and objects of this program either manually or automatically. If you lack the experience to remove this virus manually experts strongly recommend that your remove it automatically preferably by downloading an advanced anti-malware software. Such program will scan your computer and make sure that it is completely clean from all of the files, registry entries and other objects and settings, which may be modified by PCProtect plus ensure that your PC is protected against future infections as well.
Delete PCProtect from Windows and Your Browser
Remove PCProtect automatically by downloading an advanced anti-malware program.
- Guide 1: How to Remove PCProtect from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of PCProtect from Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove PCProtect from Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase PCProtect from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall PCProtect from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove PCProtect from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate PCProtect from Internet Explorer.
How to Remove PCProtect from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove PCProtect
Step 2: Uninstall PCProtect and related software from Windows
Here is a method in few easy steps that should be able to uninstall most programs. No matter if you are using Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP, those steps will get the job done. Dragging the program or its folder to the recycle bin can be a very bad decision. If you do that, bits and pieces of the program are left behind, and that can lead to unstable work of your PC, errors with the file type associations and other unpleasant activities. The proper way to get a program off your computer is to Uninstall it.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by PCProtect on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by PCProtect there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
Get rid of PCProtect from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall PCProtect and remove related files and objects
1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:
- Go to Finder.
- In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
- Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
- If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.
In case you cannot remove PCProtect via Step 1 above:
In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:
You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove PCProtect files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as PCProtect, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. SpyHunter for Mac offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Remove PCProtect from Google Chrome.
Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu
Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"
Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Erase PCProtect from Mozilla Firefox.
Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window
Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.
Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Uninstall PCProtect from Microsoft Edge.
Step 1: Start Edge browser.
Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.
Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".
Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.
Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.
Remove PCProtect from Safari.
Step 1: Start the Safari app.
Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.
Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the PCProtect will be removed.
Eliminate PCProtect from Internet Explorer.
Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.
Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'
Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.
Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.
Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.