The Wave browser is a potentially unwanted program (PUP) that installs what looks just like Google Chrome. However, it’s entirely different software that is designed to display unwanted ads and promote the products they wish.
More often than not, users won’t even notice the difference between the Chrome browser and this doppelganger. And what’s worse, it automatically becomes a default browser on your device.
But what are the risks of using Wave browser? While this Wave browser is not exactly a virus or malware, it can make your computer vulnerable to malicious software. The browser can also track your data and make it accessible to cybercriminals.
So how do you identify it and get rid of it? Read our article to learn how to remove Wave browser from your computer.
The easiest way to remove the Wave browser from your device and similar PUPs is to run a full system scan with TotalAV. The tool gives your devices ultimate protection from malware and unwanted programs with strong security and real-time and cloud scanning features.
What is Wave browser?
Is the Wave browser a virus? Not really. The Wave browser is a browser application that resembles Chrome.
But experts warn the Chromium-based browser could pose data security and privacy concerns. That’s because the Wave browser contains ads and links that most people consider intrusive and bothersome. It’s these ads and links that could contain a virus or malware.
Once you click on a malicious ad or link, it might turn into a browser hijacker that comprises or controls your device. Those ads or links could also install spyware that gathers and tracks your personal data. Everything you do in your browser, including making payments or logging into bank accounts, becomes a gold mine for cybercriminals. They could also sell your info on the black market.
Here's a summary of the threats you and your devices could face with the Wave browser.
|Type||Browser hijacker, adware, PUP (Potentially Unwanted Program)|
|Device||Any device that uses web browsers|
|Symptoms||Changed default search engine, increased amount of adds and pop-ups, redirecting to potentially malicious websites, annoying ads|
|Damage||Possible phishing, data tracking, annoying browsing experience, browser hijacking|
How did Wave browser get on my computer?
Like most software, the Wave browser got on your computer because you installed it yourself either knowingly or unknowingly. The Wave browser is an application you can download online and install, similar to other browsers like Chrome or Firefox.
However, the browser may also be hidden in or bundled with other programs you install. You may not have noticed it as an optional program or bypassed custom installation options during the installation process. Sometimes these additional applications are known as bloatware or unwanted programs.
These programs can be browser hijackers like the Wave browser or contain malicious software. And before you know it, your device starts showing signs and symptoms of a virus or malware. Sometimes you can see unwanted programs listed in your operating system’s menus or the folders on your hard drive. But others have hidden installation processes and may become part of less obvious folders or your system’s registry.
Symptoms of Wave browser virus
Most malware and virus symptoms impact the performance of your device and its legitimate programs, such as web browsers and business productivity software. However, some symptoms can be subtle or resemble other root causes. Let’s review the typical signs of a computer virus or malware.
- Frequent pop-ups and annoying ads. If you suddenly start seeing more pop-ups and intrusive ads, it could be because of a virus. Some malware is also known as adware, which causes more pop-ups and ads. These annoying messages usually say you’ve won a contest you didn’t enter or a prize you don’t remember wanting. The ads and messages contain links that capture sensitive information or install additional malicious software.
- Changed browser settings. Have you noticed your browser’s homepage is different? Or you’ve got extensions that you don’t remember installing? These are classic signs of a virus. So are connection problems and random browser redirects to pages you don’t recognize.
- Antivirus programs become disabled. Viruses are sneaky. They’ll disable or uninstall your device’s antivirus and antimalware programs to wreak havoc. This is why it’s a good idea to check your antivirus programs every time you use your device. Check to see if it’s on and updating. Since new malware comes out every day, the latest database versions and real-time protection shields are a must.
How to get rid of Wave browser
Removing the Wave browser from your device will restore the original defaults in your browser and software settings. However, uninstalling Wave browser from your device isn’t as simple as deleting it from your program list or hard drive.
Our step-by-step guides will show you how to remove Wave browser from Windows, Mac OS, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Safari.
How to remove Wave browser on Windows
Step 1: Uninstall Wave browser
- Click on the Windows Start button from the taskbar and search for the Apps and Features panel.
- In the application list, find Wave browser, click on the three dots on the right side of the screen and select Uninstall.
Step 2: Close all running Wave browser tasks
- Open Task Manager by holding down the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys at the same time.
- Click on the Processes tab and look for anything that says Wave browser.
- Right-click on each process related to Wave browser and select End task. If you see an option to Open file selection, you can also select this to completely remove the process.
Step 3: Disable startup tasks related to Wave browser
- Within Task Manager, click on the Startup tab.
- Look for any processes related to the Wave browser and click Disable.
Step 4: Remove Windows Registry items
- Access the Registry through the Run window. You can open this window by holding down the Windows Key and the R key at the same time.
- Type regedit and click OK.
- Once the Registry Editor window opens, click on Edit from the dropdown menu and select Find.
- Search for “wave browser.” For each match or suspicious value that comes up, remove it by right-clicking on it and selecting Delete.
How to remove Wave browser on a Mac
The process for removing the Wave browser from a Mac is more straightforward. You can do it in three simple steps.
- On the Apple sidebar, click on Go and then Applications.
- Find Wave browser and drag it to the Trash/Bin.
- On the Apple sidebar, click on Finder and then Empty Bin.
How to remove malicious add-ons from your browsers
Since Wave can be a browser hijacker, you’ll also want to remove any malicious browser add-ons. The removal process can vary, depending on how many browsers you have on your device and which ones you use. Let’s look at how to remove malicious add-ons from Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple’s Safari.
Removing Wave browser extension from Google Chrome
Here’s how to remove Wave browser from Chrome.
- In Chrome’s address box, type chrome://extensions.
- Look for a Wave browser extension and click the Remove button.
- To ensure there aren’t any unwanted settings from Wave, reset your Chrome browser by typing chrome://settings in Chrome’s address box.
- On the left panel, find the section labeled Reset and clean up.
- Click on the option that says Restore settings to their original defaults.
Removing Wave browser extension from Mozilla Firefox
If you have Firefox on your device, here’s what you need to do.
- In Firefox’s address box, type about:addons.
- Look for a Wave browser extension, click on the three dots, and select Remove.
- Reset Firefox’s settings first by typing about:support in the browser’s address box.
- In the upper right corner, find and click on Refresh Firefox and confirm.
Removing Wave browser extension from Safari
Both Windows and Mac or Apple devices can have the Safari browser. If your device has it, be sure to take these steps.
- In Safari’s dropdown menu, choose Preferences.
- Click on the Extensions tab.
- Look for a Wave browser extension and click Uninstall.
- To reset the Safari browser, click on the Privacy tab in the same Preferences window.
- Click on the Manage Website Data option and choose to Remove All.
- Go to the browser’s Develop dropdown menu and click on Empty Caches.
- Then go to Safari’s dropdown menu and click on Clear History.
- Choose all history and confirm by clicking on Clear History.
How can I protect my PC from viruses?
Once you get a virus or malware on your machine, you never want it to happen again. Removing malicious programs takes some work, and you don’t want to jeopardize your data or device. Luckily, there are some steps you can take to prevent malware and viruses from installing on your devices.
- Regular software and operating system updates. One of the ways malware and viruses get onto your computer is through outdated software. Hackers know what application and operating system vulnerabilities exist and write programs that take advantage of them. So keep your software and operating system up to date.
- Install a trusted antivirus program and update it frequently. You really shouldn’t connect your computer to the internet without an up-to-date antivirus program. A trustworthy antivirus like TotalAV will run a full scan of your device and ensure there aren’t any viruses or malware. If the scan finds something, you’ll get an alert and can have the antivirus program remove it.
- Watch what you download and click. You can prevent a lot of viruses and malware by being extra vigilant about what you install and click on. If it seems out of place, suspicious, or too good to be true, it probably is. Do some research before you download and install a browser extension or application. See if there are any reports or complaints about it coming with unwanted programs. Also, pay attention to the installation process with programs that you legitimately want.
Everyone gets duped by a phishing link or pop-up occasionally. A rush to install desired browsers and applications can also cause people to overlook potentially unwanted programs that are part of the installation process.
Wave is a known browser hijacker that can capture or track your private information and increase your chances of getting a virus. That’s why it’s best to uninstall Wave browser and remove its extensions from Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. Try to stick to these major browsers to avoid potentially unwanted programs.
For additional protection, installing an antivirus program like TotalAV and scheduling automatic updates can stop most malicious software. You can also install ad blocks and browse in private or incognito mode. This can prevent your data and browsing history from getting into the wrong hands.
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Is Wave browser safe?
No, most tech experts don’t believe the Wave browser is 100% safe. It can increase the number of intrusive ads and pop-ups on your device. These pop-ups and ads often contain viruses and suspicious links. The Wave browser can also change your home page and your browser’s default settings.
Is Wave browser a virus?
No, technically, Wave browser is not a virus. It’s a legitimate application you can download or install with other software. However, Wave browser is known to operate as a browser hijacker, which can put your personal data and device at risk. For this reason, we recommend you remove the Wave browser or avoid installing it.