How to remove GoogleUpdate (2023)
Do you keep getting intrusive ads and pop-ups on your desktop or browser? Unfortunately, you might have GoogleUpdate installed. This cyber threat is malicious software that comes together with adware, browser hijackers, or other types of malware infections. Once it infects your device, it may overwhelm you with intrusive ads, slow down the system’s performance, and even steal personal information.
Luckily, you can easily detect this threat and remove it from your device. In fact, you can get rid of it in less than a few minutes. The most effective way is to use antivirus software, but you can also do it manually step by step.
Continue reading to learn how to effectively remove GoogleUpdate.exe and discover similar malicious examples. We’ll also talk about why you are seeing it, the symptoms it shows, and how you can protect your device from it and other potential threats.
What is GoogleUpdate?
GoogleUpdate or GoogleUpdate.exe is malicious software that usually brings adware, browser hijackers, and other types of cyber threats, such as PUPs, Trojans, and ransomware. This malicious program may appear on your device if you download and install seemingly legitimate software from untrustworthy sources with a malicious payload.
More precisely, by clicking on malicious links or email attachments, you can unintentionally allow the malware, especially if your system is not properly secured. But what does GoogleUpdate cause? This malware can overflow your system with unwanted ads or pop-ups, which potentially leads to a degraded browsing experience and a drastically reduced system performance.
It can also take control of your web browser, alter your homepage settings, redirect search queries, and even collect sensitive browsing data, such as browsing history, search queries, login credentials, geolocation, IP address, cookies, session data, etc.
Once it collects such information, GoogleUpdate virus utilizes it for numerous malicious purposes. For example, targeted advertising or even identity theft. As this malicious software is pretty advanced, it may be difficult to remove from your device.
|Threat name||GoogleUpdate, GoogleUpdate.exe|
|Type||Trojan, adware, browser hijacker|
|Symptoms||Excessive advertisements and pop-ups, browser redirects, changed browser’s settings (homepage, default search engine, new tab page), slower device performance|
|Damage||Potential further malware infections, stolen personal information, poorer device performance, interrupted browsing experience (browser redirects, changed browser’s settings)|
Similar malware examples
Unfortunately, GoogleUpdate is not the only such malicious software. In the era of advanced technology, hackers managed to implement different practices so they could develop complex cyber threats.
Some of the most similar examples are Altruistics virus, Trojan Wacatac, zgRAT, and VagusRAT. Keep in mind that these are all Trojan infections, meaning they all get into the device hiding in seemingly legitimate software or files.
How did GoogleUpdate virus get on my device?
There is no single explanation of why your device might be infected with GoogleUpdate. Here are some of the most common reasons:
- Software download from unreliable sources. If you install software from a source that isn’t reputable or reliable, you may encounter additional unwanted software components, such as the GoogleUpdate malware.
- Visiting compromised or malicious websites. Such websites can sometimes trigger drive-by downloads and cause the malware to be automatically downloaded and executed on your device without your consent or knowledge.
- Opening files from unverified sources. If you receive an email attachment from an unknown sender with software or download a file from such a source, you can easily introduce malware, like GoogleUpdate, to your device.
- Downloading a cracked program. Sometimes, it happens that you unintentionally download a cracked version of some legitimate program. This often occurs with gaming software. Unfortunately, such a version most often comes with malicious components.
Symptoms of GoogleUpdate
Because GoogleUpdate virus can enter your device without consent, you might not first notice it. But by detecting the symptoms your device displays, you should puzzle out whether it’s GoogleUpdate.exe on your device causing issues. Here are the main symptoms:
- Intrusive ads. Once you install GoogleUpdate, you will notice ads that appear in various forms, such as pop-ups and banners, within the browser and on your device’s desktop.
- Altered browser’s homepage. GoogleUpdate may also change your browser’s homepage and default search engine without your permission. Then, it will redirect you to unfamiliar, potentially malicious websites.
- Sluggish browser. Your browser might become laggy and take more time to respond due to the adware and browser hijacker activities that are consuming system resources.
- Compromised system stability. Another issue that GoogleUpdate causes is that it may compromise the overall system stability. This is because the malicious software interferes with system processes.
- Unfamiliar programs. There is a great chance that you will notice unknown programs or processes running in the background of your computer.
How to get rid of GoogleUpdate
You can get rid of GoogleUpdate in just a few steps, either automatically or manually. Therefore, we’ve put up a few step-by-step guides that will help you remove GoogleUpdate from your device effectively.
Detect and remove GoogleUpdate with antivirus software
The process of using a reliable antivirus software is the most effective one and allows you to remove GoogleUpdate from your device automatically in no time. Basically, all you need to do is follow four simple steps, and that’s it. Here’s how the process works:
- Choose a reputable antivirus program and purchase the subscription. We strongly recommend TotalAV, now 84% OFF
- Download and install antivirus software on your device
- Run a full system scan
- Follow further instructions provided by the antivirus program
Manual GoogleUpdate removal from your device
If you wonder how to remove GoogleUpdate without antivirus, you can do it manually. Although this process is more time-consuming and can appear a bit tricky, it’s still possible. Below, you’ll find three different ways – removing it on Windows and macOS and resetting your browser. Let’s proceed to the detailed step-by-step guides.
Remove GoogleUpdate on Windows
Step 1: Uninstall the suspicious program
- Open the Control Panel
- Under Programs, select Uninstall a program
- Look for the GoogleUpdate related or another similarly named program. Right-click on it and select Uninstall
Step 2: Remove malicious browser policies
- Open the Command Prompt as an administrator by typing “cmd” in the Windows search bar and selecting Run as administrator
On the newly opened screen, type the following commands:
RD /S /Q “%WinDir%\System32\GroupPolicyUsers” and press Enter
RD /S /Q “%WinDir%\System32\GroupPolicy” and press Enter
gpupdate /force and press Enter
Step 3: Remove malicious scheduled tasks
- In the Windows search bar, search for Task Scheduler
- In the Task Scheduler window, go to the Task Scheduler Library
- On the list, look for suspicious tasks. It can have a randomly generated name like Chrome_Display, Chrome_Folder, or something similarly dubious
- Right-click on the suspicious task and select Delete
Step 4: Remove malicious files located in the AppData/Roaming and AppData/Local folders
- In the Windows search bar, type run or press the Windows key + R to open the Run app
- In the box on Run app, type %AppData% and click OK
- In the opened Roaming folder, search and delete unknown and suspicious folders. They can be named Markets, Energy, or something else dubious
- Again, in the Windows search bar, type run or press the Windows key + R to open the Run app
- Type in the box %localappdata% and click OK
- In the AppData/Local directory, search and delete suspicious folders like WindowsApp or ServiceApp
- Go to Google folder – Chrome – User Data – Default (or Profiles) – Extensions. Here, look for unusually looking extension folders and delete them
Remove GoogleUpdate on Mac
Step 1: Remove malicious applications
- Open the Go menu and click on Applications
- Look for the app that looks like it doesn’t belong here and move it to the Trash/Bin
- Empty the Trash/Bin
Step 2: Delete malicious files
- Open the Go menu and select Go to Folder…
- In the opened folder search dialogue, type in /Library/LaunchAgents, and click Go
- Inspect the contents of the LaunchAgents folder and delete anything dubious on it. The items most likely won’t look suspicious from their names, so look for recently added and weird-looking entries
Repeat the same with these directories as well:
/Library/Application Support and click Go
~/Library/LaunchAgents and click Go
/Library/LaunchDaemons and click Go
Reset your browser
Sometimes, the best way is to hit the reset button. To make sure GoogleUpdate is completely gone from your device, we recommend resetting your browser.
Reset Google Chrome
- In the upper right corner, click on three vertical dots, and in the drop-down menu, click on Settings
- On the left, find and click Reset settings
- Choose Restore settings to their original defaults
- Confirm by clicking Reset settings
Reset Mozilla Firefox
- In the upper right corner, click on three horizontal lines, and in the drop-down menu, select Help. Then, choose More troubleshooting information
- In the newly opened window, click on Refresh Firefox
- Confirm by clicking again on Refresh Firefox
- Click on the Safari menu and select Clear History…
- Choose a time period (we recommend choosing all history) and click on Clear History
- Click on the Safari menu – open Preferences – open the Advanced tab. Then, click Remove All Website Data
- Remove extensions: click on the Safari menu – open Preferences – open the Extensions tab – select all suspicious extensions, and click Uninstall. If you are not sure which could be malicious, just remove them all
Reset Microsoft Edge
- In the upper right corner, click on three horizontal dots and, in the drop-down menu, click on Settings
- On the left, click on Reset settings, then Restore settings to their default values
- Confirm by clicking Reset
How can I protect my device against GoogleUpdate?
Protecting your device from GoogleUpdate, and, in fact, any other threats, is crucial. More precisely, you should prevent malicious software from entering your device and protect yourself from the hassle of the potential issues it causes. Here are a few ways to protect your device against GoogleUpdate:
- Download software only from reputable sources. Downloading your desired software or files from an official and reliable source will save you from potential threats.
- Regularly update your OS, browser, and antivirus software. If you regularly update your OS, antivirus program, web browsers, and other software, you can be sure you’ll have the latest protection against various cyber threats. This is because you will receive the most advanced security patches.
- Download a reputable antivirus software and keep it up-to-date. Finding a trustworthy antivirus software, like TotalAV, is crucial for high security. Reputable antivirus programs provide constant monitoring and detection of malicious activity. They can even remove cyber threats automatically.
- Don’t open emails from unknown sources. Be cautious of unsolicited emails, especially those with attachments and links, as they can often be malicious. That’s why you should always verify the sender’s authenticity before clicking on links or downloading particular files.
- Backup confidential data to an external source or cloud storage. In the event of malware infection, having backups ensures you can recover your data. Having it on an external source boosts your security and privacy even more.
GoogleUpdate is a malicious program that can enter your device by installing software from an unknown source. Besides this, it can come bundled with other threats. For example, you may face adware, browser hijackers, Trojans, etc.
Luckily, there are a few ways to help you remove GoogleUpdate from your device, both automatically and manually. The quickest and most effective way is by installing a trusted antivirus program, such as TotalAV, which will keep your device constantly monitored and protected from any potential threats.
More antivirus guides from Cybernews:
What is GoogleUpdate?
GoogleUpdate is malicious software that enters your device if you download something from an unreliable or unknown source. It can cause further damage because it might come bundled with other Trojans, adware, or browser hijackers. The best way to remove it is with antivirus software, like TotalAV.