How to Remove Malware From Your PC
Malicious software (malware) can severely impact your machine, whether you’re using a work or home computer. This guide will show you how to remove malware from an affected machine and, of course, what needs to be done in order to prevent future occurrences.
What should I do to remove malware?
Depending on the type of malware rooted into your machine, you may experience negative changes such as slowdowns, freezes, denial of service, malvertising, high resource consumption, random messages appearing on the screen, browser redirection, and so on. If you experience one or more of these signs, chances are that there’s an infection rampaging through your machine.
Malware Removal Process
To remove malware from your machine, please follow the instructions below.
Step 1. Disconnect your machine from the Internet.
Ensure that your machine has been disconnected from the Internet. If you’re running on Wi-Fi, switch off the connection from the Wi-Fi menu (Settings –> Wi-Fi). Some types of infectors may prevent you from tampering with network controllers. In this case, consider shutting down or even unplugging your WAP (Wireless Access Point).
For wired connections, sever the connection from the Ethernet menu, under Settings or unplug the cable. Disconnecting your machine from the Internet servers several functions.
For instance, if your computer is part of a larger network, severing the connection prevents malware from infecting other machines. In ransomware attacks, disconnecting the machine may hinder the malware from communicating with the C2 (Command and Control) server.
Step 2. Back up all your documents and files
Regardless of your malware infection, the first thing to do is to backup all your important files and documents. You can do that by saving your essential data on external sources such as DVD/CDs, free cloud storage services, USB sticks or external drives. Use this guide to better back up your online data. By performing a backup process, you can save your essential data on an external source to keep it safe.
Step 3. Reboot in Safe Mode with Networking
Here’s what you should do:
- Unplug DVDs, CDs or other USB drives from your PC and then shut it down.
- Restart by pressing F8 key over and over again until it takes you to the Safe Mode with Networking.
This will make your system boot up only critical processes and prevent certain malware infections from starting up.
Step 4. Delete temporary files.
To make the scanning process smoother and simpler, you should delete all unessential temporary files from your computer.
To do this, right-click on a Windows drive, go to Properties, and click on Disk Cleanup. From the menu, choose which files you want to delete and remove.
Step 5. Reset your browser settings
In many cases, malware will change your browser settings in order to re-infect your computer, show advertisements, or facilitate any other malicious downloads. This is why you need to review some of your browser settings.
Fixing browser shortcuts altered by malware.
- Access your browser. Right-click on your browser, then go to Properties.
- Under the Shortcut tab, you’ll see the Target field.
What can actually happen is that the malware might have altered the target field and included a malicious URL in it. What happens is that now your browser will start up on this page each time you boot it up.
Normally, the browser target should look something like this:
Chrome: “C:\Program Files (x86) \Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe”
In our example case, the browser was targeted to go to a suspicious website, aimed at downloading malware on your PC.