In this article we are going to try and help you remove Your computer has been locked “Virus”. Our instructions cover all Windows versions as well as most browsers – Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer etc.
In case that your Chrome, Firefox or other browser you are using has been invaded by a program called Your computer has been locked “Virus”, some of the symptoms that we are going to describe here may seem familiar to you. Your homepage may have been changed to another page. Also, your search engine may have been replaced with some unknown one and as a result, now most of your searches may get redirected to various unknown web locations, full of ads, pop-ups, banners and promotional links. The program that may be causing all these changes is a typical Browser hijacker – one of the many and we assume that you have landed on this page looking for a way to remove these annoying changes once and for all. Luckily, we have a removal guide, which will help you do exactly this – uninstall “Your computer has been locked” and remove all of its traces from your computer. So take a look at it, as it may be the solution you are looking for.
Does “Your computer has been locked” belong to any malicious family?
Facing the rather intrusive and undesired changes that “Your computer has been locked” may impose to your browser once it gets installed on your computer may be a disturbing experience. Nobody likes some strange program messing with their browser settings and getting their searches redirected to dozens of aggressively popping advertisements. That’s why it is not surprising that many users who are facing the need to deal with “Your computer has been locked” may often call it a virus. Fortunately, this is a very wrong assumption. “Your computer has been locked” is not a virus but a Browser hijacker – a specific type of software, which is not created to do harm to your PC, but it may flood you with undesired advertisements and expose you to tons of them through your browser. Security experts differentiate Browser hijackers from malicious threats like viruses, Trojans, Ransomware and other harmful programs. However, this doesn’t make them any less annoying; that’s why such programs may be considered potentially unwanted. Some users find the browser hijacker quite intrusive when it replaces their homepage and search engine and prompts them to different pages, making it difficult to browse the web normally. That’s why they may decide to remove it from their system. If you also want to do that, the removal guide below is exactly what you need.
How can a browser hijacker invade your system?
Browser hijackers are widely distributed on the web. Such programs can be found in torrents, free software download platforms, shareware pages, spam emails, installation kits, or even can be directly downloaded from the web when you download something else. Usually, this method of distribution is called a software bundle. Bundling is a common method to spread different software and advertisement generating programs like “Your computer has been locked”. Many software developers use it to pack their free programs with some browser hijacker because this way they can benefit from the ads that the hijacker will generate once it gets installed on the PC. And although this may sound like a strange and shady tactic to distribute software and earn from its ads, it is not illegal either. Thanks to a method called Pay-Per-Click, earning from advertisement clicks and views is possible. Browser hijackers are just one of the tools that are used for that. Programs like “Your computer has been locked” have been created to serve the needs of the advertising industry and their developers receive some money every time users click on the redirected pages and ads that the hijacker is exposing them to. This offers a good explanation why such programs may be so aggressively displaying ads and different promotional pages of products, services, websites and all. However, overdoing it may often lead to users’ irritation and disturbance, thus, making the affected users wish to remove this software.
Preventing browser hijackers – is this possible?
A key role in browser hijacker prevention is the way you install new software on your PC. Most users make a critical mistake here when they simply run the installer of a given bundle and proceed to the standard installation option. The standard installation usually will install the full bundle as it is, including all the additional software, such as browser hijackers or other potentially unwanted programs, without giving the users the option to choose which software to install and which not to. This sometimes can be risky, because some malware like Trojan horses or Ransomware may be hiding inside the installation setup, especially if it is downloaded from an insecure web location. That’s why, the best is to opt for the advanced/custom installation option when attempting to install new software. It will open a menu where you can see and manually disable any programs that you don’t want to get installed. If you skip doing that before the installation has completed, you may have to deal with the additional software and its changes later. In that case, a removal guide like the one below may be of use, especially if you want to effectively uninstall the unwanted software and all of its traces.
Your computer has been locked “Virus” Removal
Many types of malware will restrict your access to their core files. It is highly recommended that you reboot your PC in safe mode before attempting to use this guide.
- To enable Safe Mode reboot you PC, then hit F8 repeatedly. When the corresponding menu opens please select Safe Mode with Networking.
WARNING! If you are using Windows 8,0 or later and/or your operating system is installed on a fast SSD drive this may fail to work. In this case click here to see how to start your PC in Safe Mode.
#1: Uninstall the malicious program from your control panel
Enter control panel to look for any suspicious programs, which may have installed on your PC. To do that:
- Navigate to your Desktop
- Press simultaneously the Win button together with the R button (Win+R)
- In the Run window that just opened type appwiz.cpl
- Go through the list of programs and find “Your computer has been locked” or anything else that may seem suspicious. Right-click on it and choose the uninstallation option
WARNING! Carefully read any confirmation messages that may be created in the process. Sometimes you may get offers to download more Adware applications and this can be linked to either the Yes or the No answer depending on the wording!
Go through the list of programs again and check online for any potentially unwanted programs. We have an article that covers this awesome free software that makes sure that your computer is free from bloatware and programs that you don’t need.
#2: Remove “Your computer has been locked” From Chrome
Now we’ll remove the extensions that the malware has attached to your browser.
- Open your Google Chrome browser.
- Type chrome://extensions/ in the URL address bar and press Enter.
- Click on “Developer Mode” on the top right and look for the extension installed by “Your computer has been locked” and anything that might be related to it. Copy their IDs (the string of letters), then remove them by clicking on the trash bin icon.
- Type Regedit in the Windows Start Menu and press Enter. Go in : HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Google\Chrome\Extensions and delete the entries corresponding to the suspicious IDs you recorded.
#3: Remove “Your computer has been locked” From Firefox
- Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
- Type “about:support” in the URL address bar and press Enter.
- Click on the “Refresh Firefox” button on the right and confirm.
#4 Remove “Your computer has been locked” From Internet Explorer
- Open your Internet Explorer internet browser.
- Click on the Gear icon on the up right, then on manage add-ons.
- Go through the list disable any suspicious extensions.
#5 Remove any leftover parasitic processes
From the task manager:
- Use Ctrl + Shift + Esc and open the Task manager, then click on the Processes
- Go through the list of processes and look for unknown or otherwise suspicious entries.
- If you see anything suspicious right click on the process and shoes Open File Location, then terminate the process and delete any files you find in the directory.
WARNING! If the directory you open from this menu has no files inside of it it’s probably because the malware has hidden them. You need to reveal hidden files and folders in order to be able to see them. Click here if you don’t know how to do that.
From the start menu:
- Press simultaneously the Win button together with the R button (Win+R)
- In the Run window that just opened type msconfig
- Click on the Startup tab.
This menu controls which programs are loaded when windows starts after a reboot. Disable anything that seems suspicious. Optionally you can also disable any program that you don’t need and also has a high impact on your startup time.
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