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How to remove apps promoting highercaptcha-settle.com?

Also Known As: Ads by highercaptcha-settle.com
Type: Adware
Damage level: Medium

What is highercaptcha-settle[.]com?

Highercaptcha-settle[.]com is pretty similar to news-rewuje[.]cc, nomore-spam[.]com, news-joruca[.]cc site, and lots of other untrustworthy websites. Depending on the visitor's geolocation, this page opens two, three other pages of this kind or displays deceptive content (for example, a deceptive message, fake CAPTCHA test). Usually, websites like highercaptcha-settle[.]com get opened by installed potentially unwanted applications (PUAs), visited unreliable pages, or clicked untrustworthy ads.

highercaptcha-settle[.]com pop-up redirects

Ighercaptcha-settle[.]com and PUAs in detail

Typically, websites like highercaptcha-settle[.]com are designed to use a clickbait technique to trick visitors into allowing them to show notifications. This particular page displays a deceptive message (a fake CAPTCHA test) encouraging visitors to click the "Allow" button to prove that they are not robots. It is strongly recommended not to allow highercaptcha-settle[.]com or any other similar page to show notifications - most of these pages show notifications containing links to questionable websites, shady advertisements, etc.

Also, highercaptcha-settle[.]com is likely to be designed to open untrustworthy pages designed to trick visitors into downloading potentially unwanted applications (for example, browser hijackers, adware-type applications), providing personal information (for example, credit card details, login credentials), and so on. A couple of examples of websites that sites like highercaptcha-settle[.]com can be used to promote are "Your Chrome Is Severely Damaged By 13 Malware!", "Your Device Might Have Security Issues", and "Firewall Spyware Alert". For these reasons, it is highly advisable not to trust highercaptcha-settle[.]com and websites that this address opens.

Quite often, apps (PUAs) designed to promote pages like highercaptcha-settle[.]com are designed to gather data and generate advertisements. Those PUAs collect IP addresses, entered search queries, geolocations, addresses of visited pages, or other browsing data. In some cases, apps of this kind can be designed to collect sensitive information (like saved passwords, credit card details) that could be used to steal accounts, make fraudulent purchases, etc.

Also, PUAs can be designed to generate coupons, banners, surveys, pop-up ads, and other advertisements. It is common that those ads are used to promote untrustworthy pages or distribute unwanted software. In the second case, those ads can cause downloads, installations of unwanted, potentially malicious applications by running certain scripts.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by highercaptcha-settle.com
Threat Type Push notifications ads, Unwanted ads, Pop-up ads
Detection Names Kaspersky (Malware), Full List (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address 5.8.34.26
Observed Domains a.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, b.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, c.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, d.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, e.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, g.highercaptcha-settle[.]com, h.highercaptcha-settle[.]com
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, potentially unwanted applications (adware)
Damage Decreased computer performance, browser tracking - privacy issues, possible additional malware infections.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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Pages like highercaptcha-settle[.]com and PUAs in general

In conclusion, highercaptcha-settle[.]com and similar websites cannot be trusted. Most of them are used to promote other untrustworthy pages and display deceptive content. Potentially unwanted applications designed to promote pages like highercaptcha-settle[.]com should not be trusted too.

It is uncommon for PUAs to be useful to their users. Typically, they do not improve the browsing experience, have any features, etc. The main purpose of PUAs is to generate revenue for their developers by gathering information, displaying ads and promoting shady websites.

How did adware install on my computer?

In some cases, users download or install potentially unwanted applications through deceptive advertisements - they cause it by clicking ads that are designed to execute certain scripts. It is uncommon for ads of this type to appear on legitimate websites.

In other cases, users download or install PUAs together with other programs when those apps are included in downloaders or installers for other programs and as additional offers. Typically, users can deselect unwanted apps (decline unwanted offers) via "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings or by unticking ticked checkboxes that downloaders or installers have. PUAs get permission to be downloaded or installed when users finish downloads, installations of other programs without modifying (changing) the aforementioned settings.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Software and files should be downloaded from official websites and via direct links. Files (or programs) downloaded via Peer-to-Peer networks (for example, eMule, torrent clients), third-party downloaders, from unofficial pages, etc., can be malicious. Apps installed via third-party installers can be designed to install malware too.

Downloaders and installers that have "Advanced", "Manual, "Custom" or other settings, or ticked checkboxes are likely to include additional offers. Those offers should be declined before finishing downloads, installations. Typically, unwanted apps are bundled with free programs.

Advertisements on unreliable pages should not be trusted - they can open potentially malicious pages or run scripts designed to cause downloads, installations. Any suspicious or unknown extensions, add-ons, or plug-ins installed on a web browser and software of this kind installed on the operating system should be removed. If your computer is already infected with rogue applications, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Appearance of highercaptcha-settle[.]com website (GIF):

highercaptcha-settle[.]com website appearance (GIF)

Notification from highercaptcha-settle[.]com:

highercaptcha-settle.com ads notification

IMPORTANT NOTE! This deceptive site asks to enable web browser notifications.

Therefore, before commencing, perform these steps:

Google Chrome (PC):

  • Click the Menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the screen
  • Select "Settings", scroll down to the bottom and click "Advanced"
  • Scroll down to the "Privacy and security" section, select "Content settings" and then "Notifications"
  • Click three dots on the right hand side of each suspicious URL and click "Block" or "Remove" (if you click "Remove" and visit the malicious site once more, it will ask to enable notifications again)

Disable pop-up' notifications in Google Chrome web browser

Google Chrome (Android):

  • Click on the Menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the screen and click "Settings"
  • Scroll down, click on "Site settings" and then "Notifications"
  • In the opened window, locate all suspicious URLs and click on them one-by-one
  • Select "Notifications" in the "Permissions" section and set the toggle button to "OFF"

Disable pop-up' notifications in Android Google Chrome web browser

Mozilla Firefox:

  • Click the Menu button (three bars) on the right upper corner of the screen
  • Select "Options" and click on "Privacy & Security" in the toolbar on the left hand side of the screen
  • Scroll down to the "Permissions" section and click the "Settings" button next to "Notifications"
  • In the opened window, locate all suspicious URLs, click the drop-down menu and select "Block"

Disable pop-up' notifications in Mozilla Firefox web browser

Internet Explorer:

  • Click the Gear button on the right upper corner of the IE window
  • Select "Internet options"
  • Select the "Privacy" tab and click "Settings" under "Pop-up Blocker" section
  • Select suspicious URLs under and remove them one by one by clicking the "Remove" button

Disable pop-up' notifications in Internet Explorer web browser

Microsoft Edge:

  • Click the menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the Edge window
  • Scroll down, find and click "Settings"
  • Scroll down again and click "View advanced settings"
  • Click "Manage" under "Website permissions"
  • Click the switch under each suspicious website

Disable pop-up notifications in Microsoft Edge web browser

Safari (Mac):

  • Click "Safari" button on the left upper corner of the screen and select "Preferences..."
  • Select the "Websites" tab and then select "Notifications" section on the left pane
  • Check for suspicious URLs and apply the "Deny" option for each

Disable pop-up' notifications in Safari web browser

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Quick menu:

Adware removal:

Windows 10 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.

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.

macOS (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.

highercaptcha-settle[.]com adware uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window, look for any potentially unwanted applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application that causes highercaptcha-settle[.]com redirects, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Remove adware from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to eliminate ads delivered by highercaptcha-settle[.]com website using Combo Cleaner:

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing highercaptcha-settle[.]com  ads 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 highercaptcha-settle[.]com ads from Google Chrome step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by highercaptcha-settle.com, 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 highercaptcha-settle[.]com 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 highercaptcha-settle[.]com ads from Mozilla Firefox step 2

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with ads by highercaptcha-settle.com 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 ads by highercaptcha-settle.com, 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 highercaptcha-settle[.]com 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 highercaptcha-settle[.]com ads from Internet Explorer step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by highercaptcha-settle.com, 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 ads by highercaptcha-settle.com 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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Removal Instructions in other languages
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
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