Ads by USB Locker

Also Known As: USB Locker adware
Type: Adware
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

USB Locker removal instructions

What is USB Locker?

USB Locker is presented as a legitimate application that supposedly allows users to modify access to various external drives (USB, SSD, memory cards, etc.) On initial inspection, this app may seem legitimate and useful, however, due to rogue behavior (stealth installation, display of intrusive advertisements, tracking of browsing activity), USB Locker is classed as a potentially unwanted program (PUP) and adware.

USB Locker adware

Following successful infiltration, USB Locker generates various intrusive online advertisements. To achieve this, developers employ a 'virtual layer' - a tool that enables placement of third party graphical content on any site. None of the displayed advertisements originate from users' visited websites and conceal underlying content, significantly diminishing the Internet browsing experience. In addition, these ads can lead to malicious websites containing infectious content - clicking them is risky and might cause high-risk adware or malware infections. In addition, USB Locker gathers various information relating to Internet browsing activity including IP addresses, website URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, and other similar data. This may seem insignificant, however, the information might contain personally identifiable details that developers of USB Locker share with third parties (who misuse private data to generate revenue). This behavior can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. We strongly advise you to eliminate USB Locker adware immediately.

USB Locker shares similarities with hundreds of other adware-type applications that also offer 'useful functions' including VMC Media Player, BrowsingGuard, QkSee - these are just some examples from many. Note that all adware claims to be legitimate and useful, however, the only purpose of this software is to generate revenue for the developers. Most of these apps provide no value for regular users. PUPs such as USB Locker gather personally identifiable information (which is later sold to third parties) and deliver intrusive online advertisements (via the "Pay Per Click" advertising model).

How did USB Locker install on my computer?

USB Locker has an official promotion website, however, many users install this PUP inadvertently, without their consent, since they do not express enough caution during the download/installation processes. Research shows that developers of USB Locker employ a deceptive marketing method called "bundling" - stealth installation of PUPs with regular software - and hide bundled programs within the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings of the download/installation processes. Therefore, skipping this section exposes systems to risk of various infections and puts users' privacy at risk.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Installation of potentially unwanted programs can be prevented by taking two simple steps. Firstly, closely analyze each step of the download/installation processes using the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings. Secondly, opt-out of third party applications and decline offers to download/ install them.

Deceptive free software installer distributing USB Locker adware:

Deceptive installer promoting USB Locker

Screenshot of USB Locker application:

USB Locker PUP

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Quick menu:

USB Locker adware removal:

Windows 7 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 7

Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.

Windows XP users:

Accessing Add or Remove Programs in Windows XP

Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.

Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 8

Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.

Mac OSX users:

Uninstall app in OSX (Mac)

Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.

USB Locker adware uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window, look for "USB Locker", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted program that causes USB Locker ads, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Remove USB Locker adware from Internet browsers:

At time of research, USB Locker did not install its browser plug-ins on Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, or Mozilla Firefox, however, it was bundled with other adware. Therefore, you are advised to remove all potentially unwanted browser add-ons from your Internet browsers.

Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing USB Locker ads from Internet Explorer step 1

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently-installed suspicious browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".

Removing USB Locker ads from Internet Explorer step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the usb locker adware, 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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows XP

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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 7

Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.

Reseting Internet Explorer settings to default in Windows 8 - accessing

In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - Internet options advanced tab

Click the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - click the Reset button in the Internet options advanced tab

Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - confirm settings reset to default by clicking the reset button

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing USB Locker  ads from Google Chrome step 1

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome options icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, select these entries and click the trash can icon.

Removing USB Locker ads from Google Chrome step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the usb locker adware, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.

Google Chrome settings reset step 1

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 2

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 3

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Removing USB Locker ads from Mozilla Firefox step 1

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click "Extensions", in the opened window, remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.

Removing USB Locker ads from Mozilla Firefox step 2

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with usb locker adware removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.

Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, firefox menu icon in the opened menu, click Help.

Accessing settings (Reset Firefox to default settings step 1)

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Accessing Troubleshooting Information (Reset Firefox to default settings step 2)

In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.

Clicking on Refresh Firefox button (Reset Firefox to default settings step 3)

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.

Confirm your want to reset Firefox settings to default (Reset Firefox to default settings step 4)

safari browser logoRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

removing adware from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....

removing adware from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.

Optional method:

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...

resetting safari step 1

In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.

resetting safari step 2

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) logoRemove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the upper-right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and click "Remove" below their names.

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the usb locker adware, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 1

In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 2

Select Restore settings to their default values. In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Microsoft Edge settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 3

  • If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.

Summary:

declining installation of adware while downloading free software sampleCommonly, adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate Internet browsers through free software downloads. Note that the safest source for downloading free software is via developers' websites only. To avoid installation of adware, be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing previously-downloaded free programs, choose the custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal any potentially unwanted applications listed for installation together with your chosen free program.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove usb locker adware from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Software uninstall instructions
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
USB Locker adware QR code
A QR code (Quick Response Code) is a machine-readable code which stores URLs and other information. This code can be read using a camera on a smartphone or a tablet. Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of USB Locker adware on your mobile device.
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