What kind of application is Subtitles?
While investigating deceptive websites, our researchers discovered an installer containing an application called Subtitles. After inspecting this piece of software, we determined that it is adware.
Subtitles adware overview
Adware stands for advertising-supported software. Its goal is to generate revenue for its developers by feeding users with undesirable/deceptive ads. Software within this classification displays adverts on visited websites and/or other interfaces.
The advertisements (e.g., pop-ups, banners, overlays, coupons, etc.) predominantly promote online scams, untrustworthy/harmful software, and even malware. When clicked on, some intrusive ads can execute scripts to perform downloads/installations without user consent.
It is noteworthy that while legitimate content can be encountered via these adverts, it is unlikely to be endorsed by its actual developers. It is most probable that this promotion is undertaken by scammers who abuse the products' affiliate programs in order to obtain illegitimate commissions.
Advertising-supported software may not deliver intrusive ad campaigns if the browser/system or user geolocation is incompatible, specific websites are not visited, or other conditions are unsuitable. However, even if Subtitles does not display advertisements – its presence endangers device and user safety.
Furthermore, adware typically has data-tracking functionalities, and this might be true of Subtitles. Information of interest includes: URLs visited, webpages viewed, search queries typed, Internet cookies, usernames/passwords, personally identifiable details, credit card numbers, and so on. The collected data can then be sold to third-parties or otherwise abused for profit.
To summarize, the presence of advertising-supported software like Subtitles on devices can result in system infections, severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.
|Name||Ads by Subtitles|
|Threat Type||Adware, Unwanted ads, Pop-up Virus|
|Detection Names (installer)||N/A (VirusTotal)|
|Detection Names (app)
|Rogue Process Name||nwjs (process name may vary)|
|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).|
|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 Combo Cleaner.
Advertising-supported software usually appears legitimate and offers handy functionalities. However, these features seldom work as promised, and in most cases – they do not work at all. It must be stressed that even if a piece of software operates as indicated by its promotional material – that is not definitive proof of either legitimacy or safety.
How did Subtitles install on my computer?
We acquired Subtitles from a deceptive webpage. In addition to scam sites, adware can also be promoted on its "official" download pages. Most visitors to these webpages enter them via redirects caused by websites using rogue advertising networks, misspelled URLs, spam browser notifications, intrusive ads, or installed adware (with browser force-opening abilities).
Additionally, advertising-supported software is commonly proliferated by utilizing the bundling marketing technique, i.e., regular program installers packed with unwanted/malicious additions (such as adware).
The risk of inadvertently allowing bundled content into the system is increased by downloading from dubious channels (e.g., freeware and free file-hosting websites, P2P sharing networks, etc.) and by rushing through installation processes (e.g., ignoring terms, skipping steps/sections, using "Easy/Express" settings, etc.).
Intrusive advertisements spread advertising-supported software as well. When clicked on, some of these adverts can execute scripts to perform stealthy downloads/installations.
How to avoid installation of adware?
We strongly recommend researching software prior to downloading/installing it. Furthermore, all downloads must be performed from official and verified sources. When installing, it is important to read terms, study possible options, use the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings, and opt out of all supplementary apps, extensions, tools, features, and so on.
Another recommendation is to be careful while browsing since fake and dangerous online content usually appears legitimate and harmless. For example, intrusive advertisements may look innocuous yet redirect to highly questionable sites (e.g., scam-promoting, gambling, pornography, adult dating, etc.).
In case of encounters with such adverts/redirects, check the system and immediately remove all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with Subtitles, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this adware.
Screenshot of a deceptive website promoting the installer containing Subtitles adware:
Screenshot of Subtitles adware's process on Windows Task Manager ("nwjs" process name):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT 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 Subtitles?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Subtitles application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove rogue extensions from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove rogue extensions from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Subtitles adware removal:
Windows 11 users:
Right-click on the Start icon, select Apps and Features. In the opened window search for the application you want to uninstall, after locating it, click on the three vertical dots and select Uninstall.
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 "Subtitles", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application (which causes Subtitles ads), 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:
At time of research, Subtitles did not install browser plug-ins on Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, or Mozilla Firefox, however, it may be 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 extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Extensions" and click "Manage Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the ads by subtitles, 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 and themes". Click "Extensions", in the opened window locate all recently-installed suspicious extensions, click on the three dots and then click "Remove".
Computer users who have problems with ads by subtitles 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 subtitles, 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.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What harm can adware cause?
Adware can decrease browsing quality and system performance. It displays ads that endorse deceptive/malicious content capable of causing severe issues (e.g., system infections, financial losses, etc.). Adware can also have data-tracking abilities – hence, it is classed as a privacy threat.
What does adware do?
Adware stands for advertising-supported software. It is designed to run intrusive ad campaigns. The primary functionalities can include displaying advertisements on various interfaces, generating redirects, and collecting private data.
How do adware developers generate revenue?
Adware developers profit mainly via affiliate programs by endorsing various websites, apps, extensions, products, services, and other content.
Will Combo Cleaner remove Subtitles adware?
Yes, Combo Cleaner will scan your device and eliminate detected adware-type apps. Note that manual removal (unaided by security tools) might be ineffective. In some instances, even after the adware has been manually removed – various leftover files remain hidden within the system. Furthermore, the remnants can continue running and causing issues. Therefore, it is crucial to eliminate advertising-supported software thoroughly.