How to remove Managed by your organization entry from Chrome?

Also Known As: Managed by your organization feature
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

"Managed by your organization" removal instructions

What is "Managed by your organization"?

"Managed by your organization" is one of the Google Chrome's features (it can be found in its main menu) which allows administrators to manage browsers (set various policies) for users in their organization. Normally, this feature is present on Chrome browsers that are managed by an organization, group. Although, it is possible that regular users who do not have their browsers controlled by any organization may see this feature too. There are cases where "Managed by your organization" appears in browser's settings due to some installed potentially unwanted application (PUA) such as browser hijacker, or even malicious application.

chrome managed by your organization browser hijacker

"Managed by your organization" policies management feature allows administrators to install extensions, block access to various pages, set homepage address, disable the "Print" feature, and control how browsers function in many other ways. However, these policies can be managed by some browser hijacker or malicious app that users unknowingly installed on a browser. It is known that one of the browser hijackers which is capable of setting, managing Chrome policies is called OptimumSearch. If "Managed by your organization" entry appeared in Chrome's main menu due to OptimumSearch or any other unwanted app, then it should be uninstalled as soon as possible. Another reason not to have apps of this type installed is that they promote fake search engines by changing browser's settings and can be designed to operate as information tracking tools. Browser hijackers modify settings such as address of a default search engine, homepage and new tab. They change them to an address of some fake search engine so that users would be forced to visit it when they open a browser, new tab and enter search queries into URL bar. Also, it is common that browser hijackers gather information related to user's browsing habits. In most cases they collect details like IP addresses, geolocations, entered search queries, URLs of visited websites and so on. However, there apps of this type that record personal details/data as well. It is common that their developers sell collected information to third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who misuse it to generate revenue. Such actions may cause problems related to browsing safety, privacy or even identity theft. Instructions on how to remove the "Managed by your organization" feature/unwanted policies from Chrome are provided below.

Threat Summary:
Name Managed by your organization
Threat Type Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab
Detection Names (fake Adobe Photoshop cracking tool that adds "Managed by your organization" feature) Avast (Win32:AdwareSig [Adw]), BitDefender (Adware.Agent.YCA), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of MSIL/ClassInstaller.A Potentially Unwanted), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.MSIL.KabanInst.gen), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
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.
Distribution methods Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers.
Damage Modified policies, Internet browser tracking (potential privacy issues), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious websites.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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Some examples of other browser hijackers are Sealoid, Spinyon and SearchConverter. it is common that apps of this type are advertised useful, legitimate. They supposed to deliver some features, improve browsing experience and/or provide some other value. However, more often they are designed only to promote some fake search engine and gather browsing data. Also, some of them can be designed to manage policies.

How did Managed by your organization install on my computer?

Most users download and/or install adware and other PUAs through the earlier mentioned intrusive advertisements or when they are included in download and/or installation setups of some other, usually free software. This distribution method is called "bundling", it is being used by developers with a purpose to trick people into downloading and/or installing unwanted apps together with other software. In most cases offers to download and/or install PUAs are hidden in "Custom", "Advanced" and other options of setups. Simply said, information about additionally included apps is not being disclosed properly. People who download and/or install software without checking (and changing) the aforementioned settings tend to download and/or install more than they wanted.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

All software should be downloaded only from official websites and through direct links. Peer-to-Peer networks (like torrent clients, eMule), unofficial websites, third party downloaders, installers, and other tools of this kind should not be used neither to download or install programs. Furthermore, it is important to check "Advanced", "Custom" and other settings of any download and/or installation setup and dismiss offers to download and/or install additionally included, unwanted apps. Various intrusive ads that appear on questionable pages should not be clicked, they usually lead to untrustworthy websites or download, instal unwanted, potentially malicious software. And finally, we recommend to make sure that there are no unwanted, suspicious extensions, plug-ins or add-ons installed on a browser and software of this kind on the operating system. Such entries should be uninstalled as soon as possible. If your computer is already infected with Managed by your organization, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.

Screenshot of a fake Adobe Photoshop cracking tool designed to install a browser hijacker that adds the "Managed by your organization" entry to Chrome menu:

installer promoting browser hijacker that adds the managed by your organization entry

Screenshot of "Management" settings:

google chrome management settings window

Extension list with "Your browser is managed by your organization" feature:

chrome browser is managed in extensions list 

"Managed by your organization" entry can be removed from Chrome by:

Step 1: Resetting the Google Chrome (note that the entire browsing history and saved data [e.g., account credentials, website preferences, etc.] will be eliminated and the browser will be restored to its initial state):

  • Navigate to "C:\Users\[username]\AppData\Local" folder and delete the "Google" folder.

managed by your organization browser hijacker removal step 1

Step 2: Deleting unwanted entries (if present) in Windows Registry Editor:

  • Open the Windows "Run" tool by right-clicking on the Windows icon in the taskbar or either pressing "CTRL" and "R" buttons simultaneously.
  • Enter "regedit" and press Enter.

managed by your organization browser hijacker removal step 2

  • Navigate to "Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\" and delete "Chromium".
  • Navigate to "Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Google" and delete "Chrome".

managed by your organization browser hijacker removal step 3

Step 3: Deleting the group policy folders.

  • Enable the "Hidden Files" (instructions on how to enable this feature) view if its not enabled yet.
  • Navigate to "\Windows\System32\" folder and delete "GroupPolicy", as well as "GroupPolicyUsers" folders (deleting requires Administrator's permissions)

google-chrome-managed-by-your-organization-browser-hijacker-removal-step-4 

  • Open the Windows "Run" tool by right-clicking on the Windows icon in the taskbar and selecting "Run", or either pressing "CTRL" and "R" buttons simultaneously.
  • Enter "cmd" and press enter.

managed by your organization browser hijacker removal step 5

  • Enter "gpupdate /force" and press Enter.

managed by your organization browser hijacker removal step 6

  • Wait for the command to execute and reboot the system.

Step 4: Cleaning the leftovers.

  • Open the "Control Panel", navigate to "Programs and Features" ("Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Programs and Features") and remove all questionable/unwanted applications.
  • Run a reputable anti-virus software, perform a full system scan and eliminate all detected threats.

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Quick menu:

Browser hijacker 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.

browser hijacker uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window: look for any recently installed suspicious applications (for example, "OptimumSearch"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the deceptive address website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove browser redirects:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing unwanted address from Internet Explorer extensions

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 extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".

Change your homepage:

Removing unwanted address from Internet Explorer homepage

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove unwanted URL 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:

Removing unwanted address from Internet Explorer default search engine

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options 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 unwanted app (like "OptimumSearch").

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the managed by your organization feature, 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 unwnted Google Chrome extensions

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate unwanted extensions (like "OptimumSearch") and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, and remove them.

Change your homepage:

Removing unwanted address from Google Chrome homepage

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, disable browser hijacker (like "OptimumSearch"), look for a browser hijacker's URL 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:

Removing unwanted address from Google Chrome default search engine

To change your default search engine in Google Chrome: Click the Chrome menu icon Google 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 unwanted address, when located click the three vertical dots near this URL and select "Remove from list".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the managed by your organization feature, 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 plugins from Mozilla Firefox:

Removing unwanted Mozilla Firefox extensions

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove browser hijacker (like "OptimumSearch"), as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins.

Change your homepage:

Removing unwanted address from Mozilla Firefox homepage

To reset your homepage, click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), then select "Options", in the opened window disable browser hijacker (e.g., "OptimumSearch"), remove unwanted address and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you start Mozilla Firefox.

Change your default search engine:

Removing deceptive address from Mozilla Firefox 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: "extensionControlled"
Set both results to "false" by either double-clicking each entry or clicking the Mozilla Firefox switch about:config entry button button.

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with managed by your organization feature 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 browser hijackers from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

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

removing browser hijacker from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the preferences window select the Extensions tab. Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions and uninstall them.

Removing browser hijackers from safari step 3 - changing homepage

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.

removing browser hijackers from safari step 4 - changing the default Internet search engine

In the preferences window select Search tab and make sure that your preferred Internet search engine is selected.

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 browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) 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:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 2

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) 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:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 3

To change your default search engine in Microsoft Edge: Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) 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 Microsoft Edge (Chromium) puzzle icon near it and select "Disable".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the managed by your organization feature, 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 browser hijackers while downloading free software sampleA 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.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove managed by your organization feature from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
If you have additional information on managed by your organization feature or it's removal please share your knowledge in the comments section below.

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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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
Managed by your organization feature QR code
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