What is ProTabs?
According to IT security researchers, ProTabs is a PUP (potentially unwanted program) which falls under the category of Browser hijackers. Browser hijackers are created to take over the web-browser and control user’s surfing preferences. It commonly aims at Google Chrome browser, but it’s possible that it can hijack other internet browser too. Browser hijackers and potentially unwanted programs can sneak into the personal computer unnoticed due to the fact that it’s actively being promoted in free applications. We recommend that you delete ProTabs as soon as you notice the changes it has made to your homepage, newtab page and default search provider.
When you are performing searches using the web browser that has been affected by ProTabs, the search results will be returned from Bing, Yahoo or Google Custom Search. The creators of the browser hijacker are most likely doing this to generate advertisement profit from the advertisements displayed in the search results.
The ProTabs hijacker can gather your Web browsing activity by recording webpages visited, Internet Service Provider (ISP), cookie information, URLs visited, IP addresses and web-browser version and type. Such kind of behavior can lead to serious security problems or sensitive information theft. This is another reason why the browser hijacker should be uninstalled immediately.
How can a browser hijacker get on your computer
Many browser hijackers and PUPs like ProTabs are included in freeware setup files. Most commonly, a user have a chance to disable all included “offers”, but some installers are developed to confuse the average users, in order to trick them into installing an adware or PUPs. Anyway, easier to prevent the browser hijacker rather than clean up your PC after one. So, keep the internet browser updated (turn on automatic updates), run a good antivirus software, double check a free applications before you run it (do a google search, scan a downloaded file with VirusTotal), avoid malicious and unknown web sites.
|Type||start page hijacker, PUP, browser hijacker, redirect virus, search engine hijacker|
|Affected Browser Settings||search provider, new tab URL, homepage|
|Distribution||free applications setup packages, fake software updaters, malicious pop-up ads|
|Symptoms||Advertising pop-ups won’t go away. When you go to a webpage, you’re constantly re-directed to another webpage that you do not intend to visit. There is an unexpected application in the ‘Uninstall a program’ section of your Control Panel. An unexpected web-browser addon appears in your web-browser. Your internet browser homepage or search provider keeps changing or is not set to Google anymor.|
|Removal||ProTabs removal guide|
How to remove ProTabs hijacker
When a hijacker such as ProTabs gets installed on your personal computer without your knowledge, it is not easy to delete. Most commonly, there is no Uninstall program which simply uninstall the hijacker from your computer. So, we suggest using several well-proven free specialized tools such as Zemana, MalwareBytes Anti-Malware (MBAM) or Hitman Pro. But the best method to get rid of ProTabs hijacker will be to perform several manual steps, after that additionally use free malware removal tools.
To remove ProTabs, perform the following steps:
- How to manually remove ProTabs
- Automatic Removal of ProTabs
- How to stop ProTabs redirect
How to manually remove ProTabs
Most common hijackers may be uninstalled without any antivirus applications. The manual hijacker removal is guide that will teach you how to remove the browser hijacker. If you do not want to get rid of ProTabs in the manually due to the fact that you are not skilled at computer, then you can use free removal tools listed below.
Remove ProTabs associated software by using Windows Control Panel
Some programs are free only because their installer contains a hijacker like ProTabs. These unwanted programs generates revenue for the authors when it is installed. Many browser hijackers can be removed by simply uninstalling them from the ‘Uninstall a Program’ that is located in Microsoft Windows control panel.
|Windows 7||Windows 8|
|Windows 10||Mac OS|
Remove ProTabs from Chrome
Reset Chrome settings will remove ProTabs from homepage, search engine and newtab and disable harmful extensions. It will also clear cached and temporary data (cookies, site data and content). However, your saved bookmarks and passwords will not be lost. This will not affect your history, passwords, bookmarks, and other saved data.
- First, run the Google Chrome and click the Menu icon (icon in the form of three dots).
- It will open the Google Chrome main menu. Choose More Tools, then press Extensions.
- You’ll see the list of installed extensions. If the list has the add-on labeled with “Installed by enterprise policy” or “Installed by your administrator”, then complete the following instructions: Remove Chrome extensions installed by enterprise policy.
- Now open the Chrome menu once again, press the “Settings” menu.
- Next, click “Advanced” link, that located at the bottom of the Settings page.
- On the bottom of the “Advanced settings” page, click the “Reset settings to their original defaults” button.
- The Google Chrome will display the reset settings prompt as shown on the image above.
- Confirm the internet browser’s reset by clicking on the “Reset” button.
- To learn more, read the article How to reset Google Chrome settings to default.
Remove ProTabs from Mozilla Firefox by resetting web browser settings
If the Mozilla Firefox browser new tab page, home page and default search provider are changed by ProTabs and you want to recover the settings back to their original settings, then you should follow the few simple steps below. However, your saved passwords and bookmarks will not be changed or cleared.
First, start the Mozilla Firefox. Next, click the button in the form of three horizontal stripes (). It will open the drop-down menu. Next, click the Help button ().
In the Help menu click the “Troubleshooting Information”. In the upper-right corner of the “Troubleshooting Information” page press on “Refresh Firefox” button as displayed in the following example.
Confirm your action, press the “Refresh Firefox”.
Remove ProTabs browser hijacker from Microsoft Internet Explorer
By resetting Internet Explorer internet browser you restore your web-browser settings to its default state. This is basic when troubleshooting problems that might have been caused by hijacker like ProTabs.
First, run the Microsoft Internet Explorer. Next, click the button in the form of gear (). It will display the Tools drop-down menu, click the “Internet Options” like below.
In the “Internet Options” window click on the Advanced tab, then press the Reset button. The IE will open the “Reset Internet Explorer settings” window as shown on the image below. Select the “Delete personal settings” check box, then press “Reset” button.
You will now need to restart your personal computer for the changes to take effect.
Automatic Removal of ProTabs
There are not many good free antimalware applications with high detection ratio. The effectiveness of malware removal utilities depends on various factors, mostly on how often their virus/malware signatures DB are updated in order to effectively detect modern malware, adware, browser hijackers and other PUPs. We suggest to run several programs, not just one. These programs that listed below will help you get rid of all components of the hijacker from your disk and Windows registry and thereby get rid of ProTabs hijacker.
Get rid of ProTabs browser hijacker with Zemana Free
Zemana Anti-Malware (ZAM) is free full featured malware removal tool. It can scan your files and Microsoft Windows registry in real-time. Zemana Anti-Malware (ZAM) can help to remove ProTabs hijacker, other PUPs and adware software. It uses 1% of your computer resources. This tool has got simple and beautiful interface and at the same time effective protection for your PC system.
First, visit the following page, then click the ‘Download’ button in order to download the latest version of Zemana Free.
Author: Zemana Ltd
Category: Security tools
Update: July 16, 2019
When downloading is finished, close all applications and windows on your PC. Open a directory in which you saved it. Double-click on the icon that’s named Zemana.AntiMalware.Setup as displayed below.
When the installation starts, you will see the “Setup wizard” which will help you install Zemana on your computer.
Once install is done, you will see window as displayed on the screen below.
Now click the “Scan” button to scan for ProTabs browser hijacker. A system scan may take anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes, depending on your PC system. While the Zemana Anti Malware tool is scanning, you can see number of objects it has identified as being infected by malware.
As the scanning ends, Zemana Anti Malware will prepare a list of unwanted applications and hijacker. Review the results once the utility has complete the system scan. If you think an entry should not be quarantined, then uncheck it. Otherwise, simply click “Next” button.
The Zemana will start to remove ProTabs hijacker.
Get rid of ProTabs hijacker from web browsers with Hitman Pro
The Hitman Pro utility is free and easy to use. It may scan and remove ProTabs hijacker, malware, potentially unwanted apps and adware software from personal computer (MS Windows 10, 8, 7, XP) and thereby return internet browsers default settings (new tab, search provider by default and start page). HitmanPro is powerful enough to search for and remove malicious registry entries and files that are hidden on the PC system.
- Download HitmanPro on your PC system from the link below.
Category: Security tools
Update: June 28, 2018
- Once downloading is complete, double click the Hitman Pro icon. Once this tool is started, press “Next” button . HitmanPro program will scan through the whole computer for the ProTabs browser hijacker. This task may take some time, so please be patient. While the HitmanPro is checking, you can see number of objects it has identified either as being malicious software.
- When the scan get completed, a list of all threats found is prepared. Once you have selected what you want to delete from your device click “Next” button. Now click the “Activate free license” button to begin the free 30 days trial to delete all malicious software found.
Remove ProTabs browser hijacker with MalwareBytes AntiMalware (MBAM)
We recommend using the MalwareBytes Anti Malware. You can download and install MalwareBytes AntiMalware to detect and remove ProTabs hijacker from your computer. When installed and updated, this free malicious software remover automatically identifies and removes all threats present on the personal computer.
First, please go to the following link, then press the ‘Download’ button in order to download the latest version of MalwareBytes Free.
Category: Security tools
Update: April 15, 2020
Once the downloading process is complete, close all applications and windows on your device. Double-click the install file named MBSetup. If the “User Account Control” dialog box pops up as shown on the screen below, click the “Yes” button.
It will open the Setup wizard which will help you set up MalwareBytes AntiMalware on your PC system. Follow the prompts and do not make any changes to default settings.
Once installation is finished successfully, click “Get Started” button. MalwareBytes will automatically start and you can see its main screen as shown on the image below.
Now click the “Scan” button . MalwareBytes AntiMalware (MBAM) program will scan through the whole computer for the ProTabs hijacker. A system scan can take anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes, depending on your computer. While the MalwareBytes tool is scanning, you may see count of objects it has identified as being infected by malware.
Once MalwareBytes Free has finished scanning, the results are displayed in the scan report. Make sure to check mark the items which are unsafe and then click “Quarantine” button. The MalwareBytes will get rid of ProTabs browser hijacker. Once finished, you may be prompted to reboot the computer.
We recommend you look at the following video, which completely explains the process of using the MalwareBytes Anti Malware (MBAM) to remove adware software, hijacker and other malicious software.
How to stop ProTabs redirect
Use ad blocking application like AdGuard in order to stop advertisements, malvertisements, pop-ups and online trackers, avoid having to install malicious and adware browser plug-ins and add-ons that affect your computer performance and impact your PC security. Surf the Net anonymously and stay safe online!
Please go to the link below to download the latest version of AdGuard for Microsoft Windows. Save it on your MS Windows desktop or in any other place.
Author: © Adguard
Category: Security tools
Update: November 15, 2018
When the downloading process is complete, double-click the downloaded file to run it. The “Setup Wizard” window will show up on the computer screen similar to the one below.
Follow the prompts. AdGuard will then be installed and an icon will be placed on your desktop. A window will show up asking you to confirm that you want to see a quick guidance as displayed below.
Press “Skip” button to close the window and use the default settings, or click “Get Started” to see an quick instructions that will assist you get to know AdGuard better.
Each time, when you launch your personal computer, AdGuard will start automatically and stop undesired advertisements, block ProTabs, as well as other harmful or misleading web-sites. For an overview of all the features of the program, or to change its settings you can simply double-click on the AdGuard icon, which is located on your desktop.
Once you have removed the browser hijacker using this steps, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge will no longer show the ProTabs page on startup. Unfortunately, if the guidance does not help you, then you have caught a new hijacker, and then the best way – ask for help.
Please create a new question by using the “Ask Question” button in the Questions and Answers. Try to give us some details about your problems, so we can try to help you more accurately. Wait for one of our trained “Security Team” or Site Administrator to provide you with knowledgeable assistance tailored to your problem with the ProTabs hijacker.