What is Pics4newTab?
The Pics4newTab extension is known for offering free background pictures to the user every time he opens a new tab in the browser. In realty this extension is a potentially unwanted program which exposes a computer system to major vulnerabilities. If your computer system is infected by Pics4newTab then here is how your browser will look like:
- Name: Pics4newTab
- Browsers Affected: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Internet Explorer
- Targeted Operating System: Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows Vista and Windows 8/10
- Category: Adware and Browser Hijacker
- Symptoms: System works slower than usual, Changed browser homepage and frequent browser redirects
Why is Pics4newTab dangerous for your computer system?
The Pics4newTab is a malicious program which infringes the user’s internet security and makes the system prone to other vulnerabilities. This chrome extension even asks for the user permission to make the malicious changes in the browser’s settings but unfortunately, a majority of users ignore it and click on the add extension button.
It is depicted to be a browser extension which allows the user to change background images for their browser. This is how your browser will look like when you install this extension. The user is redirected to the thank you page as soon as the user installs this adware. On this thank you page, the user is asked to install another browser extension which is 4Newtab DS Extension.
If you install this extension then it will contribute to infringe your system security.
How did Pics4newTab get installed on your PC?
The cybercriminals use various strategies for malware distribution which include –
- Software Bundling: Software bundling is the process in which a malicious program is distributed with other free software, to get an unnoticed entry into your computer system. When a user installs a free application, the malicious programs gains a front door entry with the free application, the user has downloaded. Thus, it is a good idea to keep an eye on the installation screens while installing these free applications.
- Infected Storage Devices: Your system can also get infected by using removable media such as USB hard drives and jump drives without scanning them with an anti-virus.
- Spam Emails – Spamming is the most economic and common method used for the distribution of such malware. The targeted users get genuine looking emails which contain .doc, .txt, and other similar attachments. These attachments can be named as anything which can grab the user’s attention and triggers him/her to open the attachment. As soon as the user opens this attachment, the malware infects the user’s computer system.
- Malicious Websites or Malevolent Advertisements: The malicious websites are the ones which are created just for promoting the malware infections. Such websites include but are not limited to porn sites, torrent sites and other free downloading platforms. By visiting such websites, the adware infects the user’s computer without permission. Fake advertisements and updates like Flash player and windows updates which ask the user to update to the latest version are a few examples. When the users click on such links, their computer system gets infected. That is why, it is highly recommended to resist clicking on such links. Also avoid clicking on advertisements offering free stuff such as Win an iPhones, cars or free overseas trips etc.
How to remove Pics4newTab adware?
Step A – Uninstall Pics4newTab from control panel
Note: Before we begin, try to remember how the extension got downloaded on your computer system. Generally, these programs come bundled with free applications that we download off the internet. It is a good practice to locate and uninstall such programs while removing the Browser Hijacker/ Extensions.
Step B – Show hidden files and folders
- Left click on the Organize button on the Windows Explorer. A drop down menu will appear.
- On this menu left click on the option that reads “Folder and search options” as shown above. A folder options dialogue box will appear.
- On the View tab under the Advanced settings, Check the option that reads “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” and uncheck the option that reads “Hide protected operating system files“.
- Click on the “OK” button to save your changes. This will make all the hidden files and folders visible to you.
Windows 8 and 10
Step C – Remove the extensions installed by Pics4newTab
Step D – Restore the browser settings changed by Pics4newTab
- Open Google chrome and click on the three vertical dots () located on the top right corner of the Chrome Window.
- From the Drop down menu that appears, click on the “Settings”. A new browser tab will open up, displaying all the settings.
- Now, we will make changes to the appearance section. Under the “Appearances” section, we will enable the “Show Home Button” option. You can select New Tab page or can add Google or any of your preferred browsers under the “Show Home Button” option.
- After this, we will go to the “Search Engine “section.
- Here, make Google or any of your preferred browsers as your default browser in the drop-down menu under the option “Search engine used in the address bar”.
- After this click on Manage Search Engines. Now you can remove Other Search Engines that were added by the browser hijacker. Simply click the three vertical dots () and select the option “Remove from list”.
- You can make Google or any other preferred browser as your Default Search Engine by clicking the three vertical dots () and clicking on the “Make default” option.
- At the end, we will go to the section “On Startup”. You can select the “Open the New Tab page” or can “Continue where you left off”. If you want to open a specific page or set of pages, select the option “Open a specific page or set of pages” and remove any pages added by the browser hijacker by clicking on the three vertical dots () and selecting “Remove”.
- Then, add Google or any of your desired URL in “Add a new page” option under the “Open a specific page or set of pages”.
- This is a very important step and we would like you to pay very close attention here. This step has to be repeated with all the shortcuts to the browser that you can locate; like your desktop, start menu and the shortcut pinned to your taskbar. Right click on the shortcut and a context menu will appear. On this menu select the last option that reads Properties.
- A Google Chrome Properties Dialogue box will appear as below. Replace whatever is there in the text box next to the label Target with the following: Make sure that inverted commas are included.“C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe”
- Click OK at the end to save the changes.
Tips to prevent malware from infecting your system
Tips to prevent your computer system from getting infected –
- Keeping the Operating System Updated- In order to remain protected and avoid such infections, it is recommended to keep your Operating System updated by enabling the automatic update on your system. The systems with outdated or older versions of Operating System become an easy target for the attackers.
- Resist clicking on spam emails – One of the major techniques used for malware distribution is forwarding spam emails to the user. The system gets infected as soon as the user clicks on the attachment. These mails appear to be genuine, so be aware and resist falling for these tricks.
- Keep an eye on third party installations- It is quite important that you take due care while installing any third party applications for they are major source of such infections. Such malware programs come bundled with the free applications thereby requiring the user to remain cautious.
- Regular periodical backup- In order to keep your data and files safe, it is recommended to take regular back up of all your data and files either on an external drive or cloud.
- Use Anti-Virus Protection- We strongly recommend the use of antivirus protection/internet security in your PC like Hitman Pro and Sophos so that it remains safe.
- Enable the Ad Blocker/Popup Blocker in your browser- Enabling the popup blocker/ ad blocker in your chosen browser will help you to stay protected from annoying adware.