How to remove ProtectedBrowsing adware

Just wanted to write a short post before going back to coding on FreeFixer. Found another adware called ProtectedBrowsing right now.

If ProtectedBrowsing is installed on your machine, you will find ads labeled Ad by ProtectedBrowsing and green links inserted into web pages saying Click to Continue by ProtectedBrowsing.

Ad by ProtectedBrowsing pop-up Ad by ProtectedBrowsing ad by ProtectedBrowsing bannerClick to Continue by ProtectedBrowsing links are inserted into web pages

You will also see a notification message from the system tray saying Proxy Protection Enabled and an icon in the system tray. New processes will appear in the Windows Task Manager: bservice.exe, bservice64.exe, wd.exe, pwdg.exe and proc.exe. ProtectedBrowsing also adds a new entry “ baefoldjnepdncjikpmjiamfbjgicfol”  in the HOSTS file. I’ll show how to remove ProtectedBrowsing in this blog post with the FreeFixer removal tool.

Pproxy Protection Enabled message from system tray ProtectedBrowsing in the System Tray

oops, something changed in your proxy settings - ProtectedBrowsing Auto-Protect

bservice.exe and bservice64.exe int the task manager

ProtectedBrowsing also installs add-ons in your browsers. Here’s two screenshots showing the adware in Chrome and Firefox:

ProtectedBrowsing 1.0 in Chrome ProtectedBrowsing 1.0 Firefox add-on

ProtectedBrowsing is bundled with a number of downloads. Bundling means that software is included in other software’s installers.

Generally, you can avoid bundled software such as ProtectedBrowsing by being careful when installing software and declining the bundled offers in the installer.

When I test some new bundled software I always upload it to VirusTotal to test if the anti-virus scanners there find something fishy. I uploaded FrameworkBHO.dll which is digitally signed by Gratifying Apps. The detection rate is very low. Only 1 of the scanners detected the file. AVG names ProtectedBrowsing as Generic.D4C.

protectedbrowser virustotal

Removing ProtectedBrowsing is pretty easy with FreeFixer. Here’s a few screenshots from the removal that should help you: A restart of your system may be required to complete the removal. Problem fixed.

wd.exe pwdg.exe cl.exe startups ProtectedBrowsing firefox freefixer ProtectedBrowsing Chrome Extension ProtectedBrowsing BHOs bservice.exe bservice64.exe process bhelper64.dll internet explorer bhelper64.dll in explorer bench updater.exe task baefoldjnepdncjikpmjiamfbjgicfol in HOSTS file

To remove the ProtectedBrowsing Chrome extension, open up the Settings menu in Chrome and click on Extensions in the left pane.

Hope this helped you remove the ProtectedBrowsing adware.

Do you also have ProtectedBrowsing on your machine? Any idea how it installed? Please share your story the comments below. Thanks!

Thanks for reading!

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