About the Google Membership Rewards Scam
If you’ve got Google Membership Rewards on your computer, then you’ll need to know that you’re experiencing what IT professionals refer to as Browser Hijacker. It is easy to identify a Hijacker because, unlike with infections like Ransomware, or Trojans, which hide their symptoms, with a program like Google Membership Rewards you can almost immediately notice the pop-ups, banners and various other advertisements, that will cover the screen of your Computer. In fact, it is impossible to ignore them, not to mention that you may not be able to remove them because they may aggressively take over your web browser and every page you land on. It is impossible also not to notice the changes in the browser’s homepage, the redirects and the new search engine, which may come along with this software. Down below this article, however, we’ve provided our readers with a detailed guide on how one can uninstall such intrusive hijacker programs and how to safely and effectively remove all of their components and nagging ads.
Do you think Google Membership Rewards is a virus? Then read this.
People unfamiliar with what Browser Hijackers really are, often think of such programs as a computer virus. This is a common confusion which has its explanation. After all, what would you think of a program that pops-up out of nowhere, takes over your main browser and starts to spam your monitor with hundreds of potentially unwanted third-party commercials that link to sites you’ve never heard of? Exactly! A strange malware! However, real computer viruses are software much different than a simple Browser hijacker and much more threatening than any ad-generating or page-redirecting piece of software could ever be. PC threats like Ransomware, Trojans or Spyware can damage your computer very seriously by erasing and stealing data, monitoring the actions of their victim and more. But the good news is you are not dealing with any of those now. Programs like Google Membership Rewards, “Dear Virgin Media Customer Congratulations”, www1.ecleneue.com are type of software which is different from computer viruses in the sense that it cannot harm your computer, corrupt your data or steal your information. It only can aggressively spam your screen with sponsored messages with the hope that you click on them and generate pay-per-click income for the people who create it. On the other hand, it’s true that Hijackers may be very annoying. They may redirect you to sites you never wanted to visit, mess with the settings in your browser and even cause your PC to become sluggish by exploiting its system resources for useless ads generation. Yet, overall, they are usually not damaging. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should tolerate their aggressive behavior. If such software is causing you trouble and preventing you from using your browser normally, you should use a removal guide like the one below to quickly uninstall it. Once you manage to get rid of Google Membership Rewards it will be gone as if it never actually existed, so stay relaxed and proceed with the instructions. If you are not that confident to follow manual steps or just want to quickly bring things back to normal, you can use the attached removal tool and let it do the job in no time.
|Name||Google Membership Rewards|
|Danger Level||Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)|
|Symptoms||You may constantly get spammed with various ads, pop-ups and banners.|
|Distribution Method||Software bundles, torrents ads, free downloads, spam emails, free installers, shareware.|
Google Membership Rewards Scam Removal
The following guide is only for windows users, it will help our readers get rid of the unpleasant Google Membership Rewards software. Follow the instructions and complete each step for best results. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them using our comment section down below.
Preparation: Entering Safe Mode and Revealing Hidden Files and Folders
Before you proceed with the actual removal instructions, you will need to take two extra steps in order to ensure that the guide has maximum effect.
For best results, we advise our readers to boot into Safe Mode prior to attempting to remove Google Membership Rewards. If you do not know how to do that, here is a separate How to Enter Safe Mode guide.
Also, in order to be able to see any potentially undesirable files, you should reveal any hidden files and folders on your PC – here is how to do that.
Removing Google Membership Rewards From Windows
Step 1: Checking the Task Manager
Before we start deleting files related to Google Membership Rewards we want to make sure that all services related to the viruses are killed before we proceed.
Open your Task Manager by using the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys and go to the Processes tab. Look for any suspicious processes. For example, any unfamiliar process that uses high amounts of RAM and/or CPU. If you aren’t sure if a certain process comes from malware, tell us in the comments.
Right-click on any process that you consider shady and select Open File Location. Delete anything from the file location of the process.
Step 2: Disabling Startup programs
Use the Winkey + R keyboard combination to open the Run search bar and type msconfig. Hit Enter and in the newly opened window, go to the Startup tab. There, look for suspicious entries with unknown manufacturer or ones that have the name Google Membership Rewards on them. Right-click on those, and select disable.
Step 3: Uninstalling unwanted programs
Go to Start Menu > Control Panel > Uninstall a Program. Click on Installed On to sort the entries by date from most recent to oldest and look through the programs that come at the top of the list. Right-click on any entries that appear shady and unwanted and then select Uninstall to remove them from your PC. If you see the name Google Membership Rewards in the list of programs, be sure to remove the software without hesitation.
Step 4: Checking for shady IP’s
Open your Start Menu and copy-paste notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts in the search bar. In the notepad file, look below Localhost and see if there are any IP addresses there. If there are some, send them to us in the comments and we will tell you if you should take any action. [add_forth_banner]
Step 5: Cleaning-up the browsers
You will also have to uninstall any undesirable browser extensions from your browser programs. Here’s how to do that for some of the more popular browsers:
Getting rid of Google Membership Rewards from Chrome
Open Chrome and open its main menu. Go to More Tools > Extensions. Look through the list of extensions and uninstall any that you think could be suspicious. To remove them – click on the trash can icon next to each extension.
You can also use a specialized Chrome CleanUp tool if you cannot manually remove a certain extension. Here is an article where you can learn more about the CleanUp tool.
Removing Google Membership Rewards From Firefox
Open Firefox and go to its Menu. Select the Add-ons button.From the left panel, select Extensions and take a look at the different entries. Remove any of the that might be unwanted.
Removing Google Membership Rewards From Windows Internet Explorer
Once you open your IE browser, click on the Tools button at the top-right corner of the program and from the drop-down menu select Manage Add-ons. Check each one of the four different groups of add-ons and search for anything that seems undesirable. If you find anything, click on it and them select Remove.
Removing Google Membership Rewards From Windows Edge
Open the main menu of Microsoft Edge and go to Extensions. Find the extensions that you believe could be unwanted and right-click on them. Then, select Uninstall.
Step 6: Checking the Registry Editor
Open the Run search bar again and type regedit in it. Hit Enter and once the Registry Editor opens press Ctrl + F. In the search field type Google Membership Rewards and click on Find Next. Tell us in the comments if any results came up when you searched for Google Membership Rewards in your PC’s Registry.
Step 7: Deleting recent entries
For this step, you will have to open your Start Menu and copy-paste the following lines, one by one:
Hit Enter after each one to open a file directory. In the directories, delete the most recent entries that you find there. In the Temp folder, delete all files.
Step 8: System Restore
In order to be fully sure that the unwanted software has been removed from your machine, you can also try using a Restore Point to roll back your system its last stable configuration. However, in order to do that, you would have to previously had had a restore point created. On most systems, such points get created automatically but this isn’t always the case.
- If you want to learn how to configure System Restore and how to manually create Restore Points, follow this link.
- Open your Start Menu and type System Restore.
- Click on the first result – a setup wizard should open.
- Read the brief description of the process and select Next.
- Now, choose a restore from the presented list. You can also check the Show more restore points option in order to reveal any other restore points that might be saved on your PC.
- Click on Scan for affected programs to see what programs will get deleted or restored after you use the Restore Point. (optional)
- Click on next and take and then select Finish.
- A warning window will appear telling you that once the process starts, it shouldn’t be interrupted. Select Yes and be patient as this might take some time. Do not do anything on your PC throughout the duration of the process.
Step 9: Windows Refresh/Reset
Use this method only if nothing else has worked so far as it is a last resort option. If you do not know how to do it, this separate guide will give you the information that you need.