How to uninstall the PC SmartCare program?

Also Known As: PC SmartCare potentially unwanted application
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

PC SmartCare removal instructions

What is PC SmartCare?

PC SmartCare is advertised as a tool which allows users to scan their computers for viruses, issues with network and security, installed software, hardware and connected devices. Although, it is being distributed using questionable methods - it is very likely that there are users who installed this program on a computer unintentionally. For this reason PC SmartCare is categorized as potentially unwanted application (PUA).

PC SmartCare unwanted application

The problem with most programs that are categorized as PUAs and supposed to improve computer performance and/or fix various issues is that they do not fix any actual problems. In other words, they perform fake scans - display fake results. It is common that PUAs are designed to generate fake results with a purpose to trick users into paying money for their activation/registration. It is unknown whether PC SmartCare detects real of fake issues, however, there is a possibility that it does not function as it supposed to. It is worthwhile to mention that developers often distribute PUAs alongside with other programs of this kind, for example, browser hijackers, adware. Typically, browser hijackers are designed to promote fake search engines (their addresses) by changing browser settings such as address of the default search engine, homepage and/or new tab so that users would visit a certain address when they enter search queries into URL bar, open a browser and/or new tab. Adware is a type of software that serves banners, coupons, surveys, pop-ups and/or other types of advertisements. Quite often those ads are designed to open shady, potentially malicious pages. Sometimes they are designed to cause downloads and/or installations of potentially unwanted applications by executing certain scripts. Both adware and browser hijackers can be designed to collect IP addresses, entered search queries, addresses of visited pages, geolocations, etc. Although, in some cases they can target sensitive information as well. Moreover, their developers may sell gathered data to third parties (potentially cyber criminals) or misuse it to generate revenue in other ways. These are the main reasons why apps of this type should not be installed, it is advised not to trust software like PC SmartCare as well.

Threat Summary:
Name PC SmartCare potentially unwanted application
Threat Type PUP (potentially unwanted program), PUA (potentially unwanted application)
Supposed Functionality Removal of issues with hardware, software, network, security
Detection Names DrWeb (Program.Unwanted.4698), Malwarebytes (PUP.Optional.AnswersBy), VBA32 (TScope.Trojan.Delf), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms A program that you do not recall installing suddenly appeared on your computer. A new application is performing computer scans and displays warning messages about 'found issues'. Asks for payment to eliminate the supposedly found errors.
Distribution Methods Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers.
Damage Monetary loss (unnecessary purchase of fake software), unwanted warning pop-ups, slow computer performance.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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PCMate Free Driver Backup, PCMate Free Registry Cleaner and SuperEasy Registry Cleaner are a couple of examples of other programs that are categorized as PUAs. What most of them have in common is that they detect various issues but do not fix them unless users pay for software activation. A couple of examples of how most users download and/or install PUAs are described in the next paragraph.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Usually PUAs are distributed by integrating them in download, installation setups of other programs as additional offers. This distribution method is known as "bundling". In most cases offers to download and/or install included apps can be found in settings like "Advanced", "Custom", "Manual" of setups. Nevertheless, not all users check and change those settings (or untick available checkboxes) when they download and/or install programs. When they download and/or install programs without changing default setting they allow for apps that are included in their setups to be downloaded and/or installed too. In some cases unintentional downloads, installations can be caused through deceptive advertisements that are designed to execute certain scripts. Although, those ads can cause it only if users click them.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Installations and downloads should not be completed without checking setups for settings like "Custom", "Advanced". If those settings mention offers to download and/or install unwanted apps, then they should be declined before completing download and/or installation process. Software (and files) should be downloaded only from trustworthy, official websites and via direct links. Third party downloaders (and installers), Peer-to-Peer networks such as torrent clients, eMule (and other networks of this type), unofficial pages, etc., can be and often are used to distribute/promote PUAs. Sometimes even malicious programs. Advertisements on shady pages should not be clicked as well - they can be designed to open various untrustworthy websites or even download, install unwanted apps. All unwanted, unknown apps (extensions, add-ons or plug-ins) that are (if are) installed on a web browser should be removed from it. The same should be done with software of this kind that is installed on a computer (operating system). If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Appearance of PC SmartCare application (GIF):

Appearance of PC SmartCare PUA (GIF)

Installation setup of PC SmartCare application:

PC SmartCare PUA installation setup

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Quick menu:

Removal of potentially unwanted applications:

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.

PC SmartCare adware uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window, look for "PC SmartCare" and other suspicious/recently-installed applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Remove rogue extensions from Internet browsers:

At time of research, PC SmartCare did not install any unwanted browser extensions, however, some unwanted applications can be installed together with adware and browser hijackers. If you experience unwanted ads or redirects when browsing the internet, continue with the removal guide below.

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

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 1

Click the Chrome menu icon Google 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.

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the pc smartcare potentially unwanted application, 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 rogue extensions 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 on "Extensions", in the opened window remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.

Removing rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox step 2

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with pc smartcare potentially unwanted application 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 pc smartcare potentially unwanted application, 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.

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing rogue extensions 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 rogue extensions from Internet Explorer step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the pc smartcare potentially unwanted application, 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

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 pc smartcare potentially unwanted application from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
If you have additional information on pc smartcare potentially unwanted application 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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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
PC SmartCare potentially unwanted application 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 PC SmartCare potentially unwanted application on your mobile device.
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