BrowserWatchdog removal instructions
What is BrowserWatchdog?
Developed by Intriguing Apps, BrowserWatchdog is a rogue browser add-on claiming to enhance users' Internet browsing protection by preventing malware and spyware infections. The developers of this rogue browser add-on make assurances that BrowserWatchdog is 100% virus-free; indeed, the add-on may indeed seem to provide useful and legitimate functionality, however, be aware that BrowserWatchdog is categorized as adware or a potentially unwanted application. This rogue browser add-on employs a deceptive software marketing method called 'bundling' to stealthily install on Internet browsers (Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox) without users' consent. Following successful infiltration, BrowserWatchdog generates intrusive online advertisements and tracks users' Internet browsing activity.
These intrusive advertisements include banner, pop-up ads, interstitial ads, coupons, targeted video ads, and even download offers of other potentially unwanted applications also considered to be adware. It is highly probable that clicking these advertisements will cause high-risk adware or malware infections. In addition, BrowserWatchdog continually monitors users' Internet browsing activity by collecting various software and hardware information, which may be personally identifiable. For example: search queries entered, website URLs visited, pages viewed, Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, unique identifier numbers, geographic locations, and other details. This behavior may lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft, and for this reason, you are strongly advised to eliminate BrowserWatchdog from your Internet browsers. At time of research, BrowserWatchdog was distributed via fake downloads (Java updates, browser updates, etc.) as well as freeware downloads (deceptive free software 'download clients'). This potentially unwanted application is also distributed via other adware such as Coupon Server, DiscountCow, and Savings Hen.
BrowserWatchdog is similar to other rogue ads-generating browser extensions including Surf Safer, ProtectedBrowsing, Web Security App, amongst many others. Neither BrowserWatchdog, nor any of these other browser plug-ins, add any real value for the user - their purpose is to generate revenue by the display of intrusive online advertisements. Most adware such as BrowserWatchdog is installed on browsers during download of free software via small programs called 'download clients' on freeware download websites (including download.com, soft32.com, softonic.com, etc.) Download clients are used by these websites as as a fee service monetization tool, since they offer installation of promoted 'virus-free' browser add-ons together with the chosen free software. Thus, careless download and installation of freeware often results in adware or malware infections. Installation of BrowserWatchdog, or other similar adware, can be prevented by closely inspecting each step of the free software download process and declining any offers to install additional programs. If you are installing downloaded software, select the 'Custom' or 'Advanced' installation options, rather than 'Quick' or 'Regular' - this will reveal any bundled applications listed for installation and allow you to decline them. Internet users who have already installed BrowserWatchdog adware, and observe intrusive online advertisements, should read the following removal guide to uninstall the extension from their Internet browsers.
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- What is BrowserWatchdog?
- STEP 1. Uninstall potentially unwanted applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove BrowserWatchdog ads from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove BrowserWatchdog advertisements from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove Ads by BrowserWatchdog from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove BrowserWatchdog extension from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
BrowserWatchdog ads 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 "BrowserWatchdog" (or other potentially unwanted applications - at time of testing, BrowserWatchdog ads were generated by various coupon ads-displaying adware), select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted program (which causes BrowserWatchdog ads), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove BrowserWatchdog ads from 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 "BrowserWatchdog", select this entry and click "Remove". Note that BrowserWatchdog ads can be caused by other adware. In the Manage Add-ons window, remove all suspicious browser add-ons.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the browserwatchdog adware, 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 "Tools" and click on "Extensions". Locate: "BrowserWatchdog", select this entry and click the trash can icon. Note that BrowserWatchdog ads can be caused by other adware. In the "extensions" window of Google Chrome, remove all suspicious browser extensions.
If you are unable to remove BrowserWatchdog (or any other add-on) and it is greyed-out ("Installed by enterprise policy"), follow this removal guide - how to remove a Google Chrome extension that is "Installed by enterprise policy"?
If you continue to have problems with removal of the browserwatchdog adware, 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 "BrowserWatchdog". Note that BrowserWatchdog ads can be generated by other adware. In the "Add-ons Manager" window, remove all suspicious browser add-ons.
Computer users who have problems with browserwatchdog adware 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 browserwatchdog adware, 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 browserwatchdog adware from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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