This page contains removal instructions for the Portaldosites browser hijacker. Please use this guide to remove Portaldosites and any associated adware from your computer. Most of us have seen browser hijackers and adware, even if we’re not familiar with the terms. The truth is, both terms are closely related because scammers hijack web browsers to push their ads or misleading products. Of course, technically each threat is different. In short, browser hijacking is the method and adware is the goal. So what is adware, how do I know if I’ve seen it, and why should I even care, you ask? Well adware is a compound of two words: advert and software. So, adware is basically adverts in software format. But why would an advert be software? Surely it’s just something that appears on your laptop screen or computer monitor. Well, it’s not quite as simple as that. Let me explain.
Have you ever been browsing the internet just as normal - you’ve looked at the usual websites, and at nothing ‘untoward’ but then the next time you log on, your browser’s homepage has been changed from, say Google or Yahoo, to one that you’ve never seen before, in this case it's portaldosites.com? You may also notice that you have a program that you don't recall installing on your desktop.
Welcome to the wonderful world of adware. Unfortunately adware is all over the internet, and its intent is to take control of your PC for someone else’s gain. The majority of adware is concealed inside ‘free’ downloads – for example games - and in pop-up adverts. You’ve probably seen adverts on the web that have underlined words in their text. When your cursor hovers over these words pop-up windows appear, trying to tempt you to click on them.
Once you’ve downloaded the game or clicked on the pop-up, the adware will install software on your computer’s system which allows the author of the software to steal and corrupt your files and data (such as passwords and credit card details) and even also attack other computers whilst hiding behind yours to do the same to their users.
Some adware simply switches your browser’s home or search engine so that it redirects you to sites that it wants you to visit, which although perhaps not a threat to your PC’s security, can be very annoying and time consuming. Of course not all free downloads are malicious and not all adverts or pop-ups are created to try and hijack your computer by installing software, but malware (i.e. malicious software) does exist in these formats and therefore you should pay close attention to exactly what you are downloading, the licensing agreement of free downloads plus your web browser’s security settings.
So how do you take control of your computer and stop it firstly, redirecting you to portaldosites.com or sites you don’t want to visit, and secondly and most importantly, ensure that no-one is stealing your data or maliciously corrupting your operating system? Unfortunately this is easier said than done because adware is normally integrated with your system to be hidden and installed in such a way that the average computer user will not be able to remove it. Modern malware can even be extremely tricky for those who do have technological know-how to remove as it will be hidden in an area of the system that is difficult to access.
So how do you protect yourself from falling victim to adware? One thing to do is to ensure that you always read the EULA – the End User Licensing Agreement - before you install any software, especially free software as this is most likely to be bundled with adware, but the rule applies to reputable programs too.
You should also be extremely wary when opening emails from unknown senders – and in particular never open a document or download a file from someone you don’t know as it may be adware in disguise. If someone has sent you an offer, free game or free software that seems too good to be true, it probably is.
However, as described above, not all pop-up windows and free software are malicious – there really are some great free games and software available on the internet, but there can be a lot of bad guys out there too and some adware is even designed to track your internet usage so that the ad banners (that create the nasty pop-up windows) can be targeted towards you, making it more likely that you will click on them.
So when you look at it that way, is it really worth clicking on that pop-up advert purely out of boredom, or downloading that awesome looking freebie bubble popping or poker game? Probably not. Identity theft and financial theft are two incredibly serious crimes which can take months, even years to recover from. The rule of thumb: if in doubt, do not click.
If you've been having trouble getting rid of this pesky virus called "portaldosites" which apparently is just a parody web search engine, please follow the removal instructions below. If you have any questions or comments regarding this infections, leave a comment below. Good luck and be safe online!
Written by Michael Kaur, http://deletemalware.blogspot.com
Portaldosites removal instructions:
1. First of all, download recommended anti-malware software and run a full system scan. It will detect and remove this infection from your computer. You may then follow the manual removal instructions below to remove the leftover traces of this browser hijacker. Hopefully you won't have to do that.
2. Uninstall Portaldosites and related programs from your computer using the Add/Remove Programs control panel (Windows XP) or Uninstall a program control panel (Windows 7 and Windows 8).
Go to the Start Menu. Select Control Panel → Add/Remove Programs.
If you are using Windows Vista or Windows 7, select Control Panel → Uninstall a Program.
If you are using Windows 8, simply drag your mouse pointer to the right edge of the screen, select Search from the list and search for "control panel".
Or you can right-click on a bottom left hot corner (formerly known as the Start button) and select Control panel from there.
3. When the Add/Remove Programs or the Uninstall a Program screen is displayed, scroll through the list of currently installed programs and remove eSave Security Control, Portaldosites toolbar, New Tabs Uninstall, Desk 365, BrowserProtect and any other recently installed application. As I said earlier, this application is rarely listed as Portaldosites in the currently installed programs list. So, either look for applications mentioned here or try to remember what software you installed recently. It's probably the culprit.
Simply select the application and click Remove. If you are using Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8, click Uninstall up near the top of that window. When you're done, please close the Control Panel screen.
Remove Portaldosites from Google Chrome:
1. Click on Customize and control Google Chrome icon. Go to Tools → Settings.
2. Click Set pages under the On startup.
Remove portaldosites.com by clicking the "X" mark as shown in the image below.
3. Click Show Home button under Appearance. Then click Change.
Select Use the New Tab page and click OK to save changes.
4. Click Manager search engines button under Search.
Select Google or any other search engine you like from the list and make it your default search engine provider.
Select Portaldosites from the list and remove it by clicking the "X" mark as shown in the image below.
5. Right-click the Google Chrome shortcut you are using to open your web browser and select Properties.
6. Select Shortcut tab and remove "http://www.portaldosites.com...." from the Target field and click OK to save changes. Basically, there should be only the path to Chrome executable file. Nothing more.
Remove Portaldosites from Mozilla Firefox:
1. Click on the Portaldosites search icon as shown in the image below and select Manage Search Engines....
2. Select Portaldosites from the list and click Remove to remove it. Click OK to save changes.
3. In the URL address bar, type about:config and hit Enter.
Click I'll be careful, I promise! to continue.
In the search filter at the top, type: portaldosites
Now, you should see all the preferences that were changed by Portaldosites. Right-click on the preference and select Reset to restore default value. Reset all found preferences!
4. Right-click the Mozilla Firefox shortcut you are using to open your web browser and select Properties.
5. Select Shortcut tab and remove "http://www.portaldosites.com...." from the Target field and click OK to save changes. Basically, there should be only the path to Firefox executable file.
Remove Portaldosites in Internet Explorer:
1. Open Internet Explorer. Go to Tools → Manage Add-ons.
2. Select Search Providers. First of all, choose Live Search search engine and make it your default web search provider (Set as default).
3. Select Portaldosites and click Remove to remove it. Close the window.
4. Right-click the Internet Explorer shortcut you are using to open your web browser and select Properties.
5. Select Shortcut tab and remove "http://www.portaldosites.com...." from the Target field and click OK to save changes. Basically, there should be only the path to Internet Explorer executable file.
6. Finally, go to Tools → Internet Options and restore your home page to default. That's it!