Ads by WikiBrowser
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on (updated)
What is WikiBrowser?
WikiBrowser is categorized as adware and a potentially unwanted program (PUP) for a number of reasons. Firstly, it claims to be a unique browser that provides complete safety, improved Internet browsing speed, and protection from various unwanted browser plug-ins (for example, toolbars).
By promising these features, WikiBrowser attempts to give an impression of being legitimate and virus-free, thereby encouraging users to install. Although this app has its own website with a download link, WikiBrowser is often 'bundled' as a third party application with regular software.
Once WikiBrowser is installed on the system, it sets itself as the default Internet browser. This app is not legitimate, and therefore, does not provide 'the fastest Internet browsing' as promised. In fact, it diminishes browsing and even computer performance.
Furthermore, rogue its behavior also includes the display of intrusive online advertisements and monitoring of users' Internet browsing activity.
When browsing the Internet, WikiBrowser generates many intrusive online advertisements not originating from the website visited. WikiBrowser employs the 'Pay Per Click' (PPC) advertising model as one way to generate revenue for the developers - when users click the displayed advertisements (banner, link, or others), the developers receive a specific amount of money.
The displayed ads provide no real use and diminish the Internet browsing experience, since the user must avoid clicking many ads concealing the underlying content. The displayed advertisements may also redirect to dubious websites, and thus, the Internet browsing session may result in further computer infection.
Another important downside of this PUP is information tracking. WikiBrowser continually monitors users' Internet browsing habits, gathers various information, and stores it on a remote server.
The collected information includes Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, sites visited, pages viewed, search queries, cookies, web beacons, Internet browsers used, Internet Service Provider (ISP), etc. This collected data is later shared with third parties, also to generate revenue.
Users may be unaware that the collected information might contain personally identifiable details (for example, bank or PayPal account login/passwords), and therefore, third party misuse of this information can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. If you are concerned about your privacy and Internet browsing safety, uninstall the WikiBrowser app immediately.
Adware-type applications have similar characteristics. Most gather personally identifiable information, display intrusive (possibly infectious) ads, and are distributed using the bundling method. Moreover, adware provides no real value for the user.
There are hundreds of applications (for example, Sale Clipper, WordAnchor, On Stage, Larparus, etc.) that offer various useful features in an attempt to trick users into installation. Applications such as WikiBrowser are designed to generate revenue for the developers and should never be installed.
Freeware download websites such as downloads.com, soft32.com, and softonic.com are popular with regular Internet users. These sites monetize their traffic and free services via small 'download programs' (also called 'download managers').
When users download applications, they are often forced to use download managers, which supposedly 'ease and speed-up' the download process. Despite this statement, download managers are simply used to distribute third party apps together with the chosen software.
How did WikiBrowser install on my computer?
WikiBrowser is distributed using a deceptive software marketing method called 'bundling', and thus, often installs without users' consent. Bundling is a way to install third party (mostly rogue) applications together with regular (often free) software.
Research shows that many users do not express enough caution when downloading and installing programs - they skip most steps and use 'Quick' download/installation, rather than checking options concealed within the 'Custom' or 'Advanced' section. This method of hiding third party software is therefore very effective.
The developers of bogus adware or malware aim to distribute as many rogue apps as possible, and for this reason, they do not properly disclose installations. Pay attention when downloading and installing apps, since this is one of the main causes of computer infection.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
Download your chosen software from the official website or a trusted distributor. If you are downloading from a freeware download website, use the direct download link (if there is one) as a priority.
Websites that demand use of their download clients are likely to include additional programs together with your chosen software, and therefore, check each step and opt-out of any additionally-included apps.
The installation procedure should be performed using the 'Custom' or 'Advanced' options, rather than 'Quick' or 'Typical' - this will reveal any third party software listed for installation, allow you to cancel it, and thus prevent computer infections.
Deceptive free software installers used in the distribution of WikiBrowser adware:
Online advertisements generated in Internet search results by WikiBrowser adware ('Ads by WikiBrowser'):
Screenshot of WikiBrowser application (Chromium based browser):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer 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 WikiBrowser?
- STEP 1. Uninstall WikiBrowser application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove adware from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove unwanted add-ons from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove malicious plugins' from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove unwanted extension from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
WikiBrowser 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 "WikiBrowser", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted program that causes WikiBrowser ads, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove WikiBrowser adware from Internet browsers:
At time of research, WikiBrowser 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 wikibrowser 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 "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, select these entries and click the trash can icon.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the wikibrowser 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 plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (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.
Computer users who have problems with wikibrowser 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 wikibrowser 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.
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