Remove pop-ups, redirects, & other malware

You might have unwanted programs or malware on your computer if you see:

  • Pop-up ads that won’t go away
  • A homepage or search engine you don’t recognize
  • A redirect to an unfamiliar web page
  • Unfamiliar extensions or toolbars added to your browser
  • A search engine that looks like Google, but with the wrong logo or web address

Remove unwanted programs

To help find unwanted programs, download and run the Chrome Cleanup Tool. This tool searches your computer for suspicious programs and offers to remove them for you.

If unwanted programs still change your settings, follow the steps below to reset them.

Step 1: Get rid of unwanted programs

You should remove malware and other computer programs that you don't remember installing. You have to remove these programs before you can get your settings back to normal.

Programs to remove

Here are some common programs that are known to change your search settings.

  • Delta Search

Windows computer

Use MalwareBytes, an anti-malware program, to find unwanted programs the Chrome Cleanup Tool might not remove.

Mac computer

  1. At the bottom of your Mac computer, open Finder.
  2. On the left, click Applications.
  3. Look for any programs you don’t recognize.
  4. Right-click the name of any unwanted programs.
  5. Click Move to Trash.
  6. When you’re done, at the bottom, right-click Trash.
  7. Click Empty Trash
Step 2: Reset your browser settings

After you have removed unwanted programs from your computer, reset your browser settings.

Learn how to reset your settings on Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer.

Step 3: Get help from the Search forum

If resetting your browser settings doesn't work, visit the Google Search Forum. In your post, mention what steps you've already taken to fix the problem.

Report bad sites or programs to Google

Tips to protect your browser in the future

Only download from sites you trust

Sometimes you download a program you want, but the program also contains bad software. Even though you can see and use the program you wanted, the bad program might be running in the background, adding toolbars or ads to your browser.

To avoid this problem, only download programs from trusted sites.

Carefully review updates for your extensions

Safe extensions that you already have on your computer are sometimes purchased by hackers. When you update the extension, they can install malware onto your computer.

To prevent this, always read through the update notification carefully.

Aaron is a Search expert and author of this help page. Leave him feedback below about the page.

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