Written by Tomas Meskauskas
Damage level: Moderate
Plusnetwork.com Virus - how to eliminate browser redirects to plusnetwork.com and remove messenger plus community toolbar?
What is Plusnetwork.com?
The Plusnetwork.com website is promoted through Messenger Plus! Community toolbars. Users who install this toolbar without closely inspecting each installation window, are redirected to the Plusnetwork.com website each time they start their Internet browsers (i.e. Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome). Furthermore, after installation of this toolbar, each new opened tab within users' browsers is also redirected to Plusnetwork.com The Messenger Plus! Community toolbar is installed when computer users' download and install the Messenger Plus! software (free extension) for Windows Live Messenger or for Skype.
While these extensions alone are quite useful (they add emotion sounds, skins, emoticons, etc.), the bundled toolbar uses deceptive methods to monetize incoming web traffic. The Messenger Plus! Community toolbar displays deceptive ads and attempts to trick unsuspecting PC users into installing unwanted software. Furthermore, the Plusnetwork.com website is crowded with dubious advertisements, which can lead to identity theft. Computer users should not click on them. The banners stating that you have won a prize, commonly lead to online surveys or subscriptions to expensive mobile services. The main purpose of redirecting computer users to Plusnetwork.com is to monetize the free software (Messenger Plus!) Developers need to monetize their free software, but in this case the methods are deceptive and they could have used more legitimate ones.
The search bar presented by Plusnetwork.com uses a customized Google search service. The organic search results are legitimate, however, the sponsored results are delivered by third parties and clicking them could lead to the installation of unwanted software, browser add-ons, or malware. There are no real benefits of using Plusnetwork.com for your daily Internet searches, and the deceptive ads could lead to some serious problems regarding your privacy and computer security. Plusnetwork.com and the Messenger Plus! community toolbar use deceptive means to gain profit from unsuspecting PC users. Thus, if you care about your computer's security and your privacy, uninstall this toolbar and cease using Plusnetwork.com immediately.
- What is Plusnetwork.com?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove Plusnetwork.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove Plusnetwork.com browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove Plusnetwork.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
Plusnetwork.com redirect removal:
Windows 7 users:
Click "Start" ("Windows Logo" in the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose "Control Panel". Locate and click "Programs and Features".
Windows XP users:
Click "Start", choose "Settings" and click "Control Panel". Locate and click "Add or Remove Programs".
WIndows 8 users:
Right-click in the screen’s bottom-left corner, select Control Panel. In the opened window choose "Uninstall a Program".
In the uninstall programs window, look for "Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar", select this entry and click " Uninstall" or "Remove"
After removing Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. Use recommended malware removal software.
Plusnetwork.com redirect removal from browsers:
Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:
Remove Plusnetwork.com redirect from Internet Explorer:
Click on the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer) select "Manage Add-ons". Look for Messenger Plus! related entries (Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar, Messenger Plus! Community SmartbarEngine) and disable them.
To change your homepage from plusnetwork.com to your preferred domain: Click on the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer) select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove plusnetwork.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you launch Internet Explorer.
If you continue to have problems with redirects to hxxp://Plusnetwork.com, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.
Windows XP users: Click "Start", click "Run", in the opened window type "inetcpl.cpl" In the opened window click the "Advanced" tab, then click Reset.
Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type "inetcpl.cpl" and click enter. In the opened window click the "Advanced" tab, then click Reset.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the "gear" icon. Select "Internet Options".
In the opened window, select the "Advanced" tab.
Click the "Reset" button.
Confirm that you want to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the "Reset" button.
Remove Plusnetwork.com redirect from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon(at the top right corner of Google Chrome) select "Tools" and click on "Extensions". Locate "Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar", select it and click on the trash can icon.
To change your homepage from plusnetwork.com to your preferred domain, click the Chrome menu icon(at the top right corner of Google Chrome) select "Settings". In "On startup" section click "set pages", hover your mouse over the plusnetwork.com and click the x symbol. Now you can add your preferred website as your homepage.
If you continue having problems with the removal of Plusnetwork.com browser hijacker you can reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon(at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select "Tools". From the opened menu, select "Extensions". In the opened window, select "Settings" (at the left corner of the screen). Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the "Show advanced settings…" link.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen click the "Reset browser settings" button.
In the opened window confirm that you want to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the "Reset" button.
Remove Plusnetwork.com redirect from FireFox:
Click on the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window) select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and disable "Messenger Plus! Community Smartbar".
To reset your homepage click on the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window) then select "Options", in the opened window remove plusnetwork.com and enter your preferred domain.
If you continue to have problems with redirects to hxxp://Plusnetwork.com, reset your Mozilla FireFox settings to default.
Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window click the Firefox menu,in the opened menu, click the "Open Help Menu" icon,
Select "Troubleshooting Information".
In the opened window click the "Reset Firefox" button.
In the opened window confirm that you want to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the "Reset" button.
A browser hijacker is a type of adware that alters user's Internet browser settings by changing one's homepage and default Internet search engine to some unwanted website. Most commonly this type of adware infiltrates user's operating system through free software downloads. While browser redirects might seem as a low risk security infection, computer users should know that the websites to which they are being redirected to commonly contain deceptive online advertisements and the Internet search engine that is presented in such websites might return shady Internet search results. Using such websites for one's daily Internet searches might easily end up in privacy issues, identity theft or malware infections.
A computer that is affected by a browser hijacker is exposed to high risk security infections. To prevent further privacy and security issues it's recommended removing any Internet browser settings altering adware as soon as possible. Here are some examples of free software download clients that are used in Plusnetwork.com Virus distribution:
To avoid installation of Plusnetwork.com Virus be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. If your download is managed by a download client be sure to opt out of installing advertised toolbars or applications that seek to change your homepage and default Internet search engine:
Some of the mentioned free software download clients don't allow downloading the chosen free program if user decides to decline installation of it's offered toolbars, in such cases it's recommended to cancel the installation and look for an alternative download source.
Symptoms indicating that your Internet browsers are affected by a browser hijacker:
- Your homepage and/or default Internet search engine is changed.
- Appearance of new toolbars.
- Slow performance of Internet browsers.
- New Bookmarks or Favorites added.
- You can't change your homepage or default search engine.
- You see online ads on your screen that are not served by the website.
- You get redirected to pages you never intended to visit.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove Plusnetwork.com Virus from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware removal forum.
If you have additional information on Plusnetwork.com Virus or it's removal please share your knowledge in the comments section below.