PotPlayer adware removal instructions
What is PotPlayer?
PotPlayer is a rogue application, endorsed as a multimedia player compatible with Windows Vista, XP, 7 and 8 operating systems. It is classified as adware. Following successful infiltration, PotPlayer begins running intrusive advertisement campaigns. In other words, it delivers various undesirable and even harmful ads. Due to the dubious methods used to promote this app, it is also deemed to be a PUA (Potentially Unwanted Application). Additionally, most PUAs have data tracking abilities, which are employed to spy on users' browsing activity and it is not unlikely to that PotPlayer does so as well.
Software classified as adware, operates by delivering pop-ups, surveys, coupons, banners and other intrusive adverts. These advertisements seriously diminish the browsing experience, since they limit the browsing speed and site visibility (by overlaying page content). Once clicked on, intrusive ads redirect to sale-based, promotional, untrustworthy, rogue, deceptive/scam, compromised and malicious webpages. Furthermore, said adverts can be triggered (by being clicked on) to execute scripts, designed to download/install software without user permission. PUAs are a prime example of software infiltrated into systems in this manner. Aside from running intrusive ad campaigns, PUAs can force-open similarly dangerous websites. Another type of PUA called browser hijackers modify browser settings in order to promote fake search engines. With a browser hijacker installed, every single search query typed into the URL bar and every new browser tab/window opened - redirect to the address of an illegitimate web searcher. The promoted search engines are usually unable to provide search results, so they tend to redirect to Google, Yahoo, Bing and other legitimate ones. Furthermore, browser hijackers can reset any changes users try to make to their browsers and/or restrict/deny access to the browser's settings outright. Most PUAs (adware included) can track data. They can monitor browsing activity (URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries typed, etc.) and collect personal information extracted from it (IP addresses, geolocations and other details). The gathered data is often monetized by being shared with and/or sold to third parties (potentially, cyber criminals). Therefore, presence of unwanted apps on devices can lead to system infections, financial losses, serious privacy issues and even identity theft. To protect device integrity and user safety, it is highly recommended to eliminate all suspect applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins immediately upon detection.
|Name||Ads by PotPlayer|
|Threat Type||Adware, Unwanted ads, Pop-up Virus|
|Supposed Functionality||Multimedia player|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:AdwareSig [Adw]), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.34055019), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of MSIL/Adware.TekhNetvork.A), DrWeb (Trojan.DownLoad4.13619), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Symptoms||Seeing advertisements not originating from the sites you are browsing. Intrusive pop-up ads. Decreased Internet browsing speed.|
|Distribution Methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers.|
|Damage||Decreased computer performance, browser tracking - privacy issues, possible additional malware infections.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
MusiCalm, MessengerHub, Access+, Best Media Converter - are some examples of other adware-type applications. They appear legitimate and harmless. This software also typically offers various "useful" and "advantageous" functionalities. However, the promised features are rarely operational and this applies to practically all PUAs. The sole purpose of unwanted apps have but one goal - to generate revenue for the developers; to users - they have no real value and can instead cause severe issues. PUAs are designed to deliver intrusive advert campaigns, cause redirects to untrustworthy and malicious sites, hijack browsers and track private information.
How did PotPlayer install on my computer?
Some PUAs (e.g. PotPlayer) have "official" promotional webpages, from which they can be downloaded. PUAs are also distributed via download/installation setups of other products. This deceptive marketing technique of pre-packing regular software with unwanted or malicious additions - is called "bundling". By rushing through download/installation processes (e.g. by ignoring terms, skipping steps and sections, using pre-set options, etc.) - users risk unintentionally allowing bundled content into their devices. Intrusive ads proliferate these applications as well. Upon being clicked, they can execute scripts to stealthily download/install PUAs without user consent.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is recommended to research software prior to download/installation and/or purchase. All downloads must be done from official and verified sources. Unofficial and free-file hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, eMule, Gnutella, etc.) and other third party downloaders - are deemed to be untrustworthy, due to commonly offering deceptive and/or bundled content. When downloading/installing, it is important to read terms, explore all available options, use the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings and opt-out from additional apps, tools, features, and so on. Intrusive advertisements look legitimate and harmless, however they redirect to various questionable sites (e.g. gambling, pornography, adult-dating and others). In case of encounters with such ads/redirects, users must inspect the system and immediately remove all suspicious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins from it. If your computer is already infected with PotPlayer, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this adware.
Screenshot of the deceptive installation setup:
Screenshot of the website used to promote PotPlayer adware:
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is PotPlayer?
- STEP 1. Uninstall PotPlayer application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove PotPlayer adware from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove PotPlayer ads from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove 'Ads by PotPlayer' from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove PotPlayer extension from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
PotPlayer adware removal:
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.
Windows XP users:
Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.
Windows 10 and Windows 8 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.
Mac 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 "PotPlayer", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application (which causes PotPlayer ads), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove PotPlayer adware from Internet browsers:
At time of research, PotPlayer 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:
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 browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by potplayer, 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 all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and remove them.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by potplayer, 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 plugins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions", in the opened window remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.
Computer users who have problems with ads by potplayer 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, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....
In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.
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 upper-right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and click "Remove" below their names.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by potplayer, 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.
Commonly, 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.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove ads by potplayer from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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