File Converter Now browser hijacker removal instructions
What is File Converter Now?
File Converter Now is a browser hijacker, and yet advertised as a 'free tool' for file format conversion. It is supposedly capable of converting thirty file types/formats into PDF documents. Most users install this rogue app inadvertently, and therefore it is classified as a Potentially Unwanted Application (PUA). File Converter Now operates by changing browsers to promote search.fileconverternowtab.com, a fake search engine. This application also has data tracking abilities, which it employs to monitor users' browsing activity. Note that File Converter Now is often distributed together another PUA called Hide My Searches.
Common targets of browser hijackers include Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, and other popular browsers. They operate by reassigning the browser homepage, default search engine, and new tab/window URL to their fake search engines. File Converter Now assigns these settings to redirect to search.fileconverternowtab.com. Each new tab/window opened and each search via the URL bar redirects to the fake search address. Few of these tools are capable of providing unique search results and simply redirect to Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other legitimate search engines. In the case of search.fileconverternowtab.com, it redirects to search.yahoo.com. These changes may seem insignificant, however, they can significantly diminish the browsing experience. With the browser hijacker still present, any attempts to change browsers will be reset (if access to the settings is even allowed). Therefore, to recover an affected browser, File Converter Now and other similar rogue applications must be removed. Typically, browser hijackers have data tracking abilities, and this includes File Converter Now. By recording users' browsing activity (browsing and search engine histories), it can collect personal information (IP addresses, geolocations, and personal details). This private data is then shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) intent on misusing it for financial gain. The presence of data tracking content on systems can thus lead to privacy issues, financial loss, and even identity theft. Uninstall all suspicious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins immediately.
|Name||File Converter Now.|
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab.|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:AdwareSig [Adw]), DrWeb (Adware.Spigot.145), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/WinWrapper.V Potentially Unwanted), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.Win32.WebSearch.gen), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Browser Extension(s)||File Converter Now, Converter.|
|Supposed Functionality||File format conversion.|
|Serving IP Address (search.fileconverternowtab.com)||126.96.36.199|
|Affected Browser Settings||Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine.|
|Symptoms||Manipulated Internet browser settings (homepage, default Internet search engine, new tab settings). Users are forced to visit the hijacker's website and search the Internet using their search engines.|
|Additional Information||File Converter Now is distributed with another browser hijacker called Hide My Searches.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers.|
|Damage||Internet browser tracking (potential privacy issues), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious websites.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Browser hijackers share many similarities, and those released by the same developers are often identical. My Weather Live, Online News Now, and EntertainmentNewsNow are just some examples of similar apps to File Converter Now. In general, PUAs have many common traits. They often advertise "useful" features, however, they are rarely operational. The only purpose of unwanted applications is to generate revenue for the designers. Rather than working as promised, PUAs cause redirects to dubious and malicious websites, run intrusive ad campaigns, and track vulnerable data.
How did File Converter Now install on my computer?
Untrustworthy download channels offer unwanted/malicious software and/or regular content bundled with it. Some PUAs, such as File Converter Now, have "official" download websites. "Bundling" is a deceptive marketing technique, by which normal programs are packed with unwanted applications. Rushed download/installation processes (e.g. ignoring terms, skipping steps, using pre-set options, etc.) increases the risk of bundled software infiltrating the device. By executing specific scripts, intrusive ads can also make stealthy download/installs of PUAs.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications
Research your software and content to verify its legitimacy before downloading/installing. Software should be downloaded only from trustworthy and verified sources. Untrusted channels (e.g. Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, free file-hosting and unofficial websites, third party downloaders, etc.) are dangerous and should not be used. Download/Installation processes should be treated with caution and carefully studied. Recommendations include reading terms, using "Custom/Advanced" options, and opting-out of downloading/installing additional apps, tools, features and other supplements. Note that intrusive advertisements usually seem legitimate and harmless, however, they can redirect to dubious websites (e.g. gambling, adult-dating, pornography, etc.). If you experience suspicious ads or redirects, inspect the device and immediately remove all suspect applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with File Converter Now, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
File Converter Now browser hijacker installer set-up:
File Converter Now browser hijacker asking for various permissions:
Website promoting File Converter Now browser hijacker:
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is File Converter Now?
- STEP 1. Uninstall File Converter Now application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove File Converter Now browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove search.fileconverternowtab.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
File Converter Now browser hijacker removal:
Windows 10 users:
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.
Windows 7 users:
Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.
macOS (OSX) users:
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.
In the uninstall programs window: look for any recently installed suspicious applications (for example, "File Converter Now"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications that cause browser redirects to the search.fileconverternowtab.com website, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
File Converter Now browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove browser redirects:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
Change your homepage:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window, remove hxxp://search.fileconverternowtab.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you launch Internet Explorer. You can also enter about: blank to open a blank page when you start Internet Explorer.
Change your default search engine:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". In the opened window, select "Search Providers", set "Google", "Bing", or any other preferred search engine as your default and then remove "File Converter Now".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect, 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 wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate "File Converter Now" and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons (e.g., "Hide My Searches"), and remove them.
Change your homepage:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, disable "File Converter Now" or "Hide My Searches", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://search.fileconverternowtab.com or hxxps://hidemysearches.com) below the “Open a specific or set of pages” option. If present, click on the three vertical dots icon and select “Remove”.
Change your default search engine:
To change your default search engine in Google Chrome: Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings", in the "Search engine" section, click "Manage search engines...", in the opened list look for "hxxp://search.fileconverternowtab.com" and "hxxp://hidemysearches.com", and when located click the three vertical dots near this URL and select "Remove from list".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the 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.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove "File Converter Now" (or simply "Converter"), as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins (e.g., "Hide My Searches").
Change your homepage:
To reset your homepage, click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), then select "Options", in the opened window disable "File Converter Now" (or simply "Converter") or "Hide My Searches", remove hxxp://search.fileconverternowtab.com or hxxp://hidemysearches.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you start Mozilla Firefox.
Change your default search engine:
In the URL address bar, type about:config and press Enter.
Click "I'll be careful, I promise!".
In the search filter at the top, type: "moz-extension"
Right-click on the found preferences and select "Reset" to restore default values.
Computer users who have problems with search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.
Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, in the opened menu, click Help.
Select Troubleshooting Information.
In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.
Remove malicious extensions from Safari:
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click Safari menu, then select Preferences...
In the preferences window select the Extensions tab. Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions and uninstall them.
In the preferences window select General tab and make sure that your homepage is set to a preferred URL, if its altered by a browser hijacker - change it.
In the preferences window select Search tab and make sure that your preferred Internet search engine is selected.
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...
In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.
Remove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:
Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate any recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, and remove them.
Change your homepage and new tab settings:
Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section look for the name of the browser hijacker and click "Disable".
Change your default Internet search engine:
To change your default search engine in Microsoft Edge: Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Privacy and services", scroll to bottom of the page and select "Address bar". In the "Search engines used in address bar" section look for the name of the unwanted Internet search engine, when located click the "Disable" button near it. Alternatively you can click on "Manage search engines", in the opened menu look for unwanted Internet search engine. Click on the puzzle icon near it and select "Disable".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.
In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.
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.
- If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.
A browser hijacker is a type of adware infection that modifies Internet browser settings by assigning the homepage and default Internet search engine settings to some other (unwanted) website URL. Commonly, this type of adware infiltrates operating systems through free software downloads. If your download is managed by a download client, ensure that you decline offers to install advertised toolbars or applications that seek to change your homepage and default Internet search engine settings.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove search.fileconverternowtab.com redirect from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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