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Hackernoon logoDealing with My Annoying & Malicious Chrome Extensions by@mundia

Dealing with My Annoying & Malicious Chrome Extensions

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@mundiaJackson Mundia

ML enthusiast, a Cybersecurity expert.

As much as we love Chrome extensions and the ease they bring to use while surfing the web, it is wise to note that not all of them are authentic.

These extensions have intents such as:

  1. Spying on your data
  2. Getting remote access
  3. Executing commands with high

However, there is one particular malicious action carried out by these extensions that are specifically annoying.

Have you ever opened up Google then get redirects to Yahoo when you search? This can be caused by many reasons. First, you have to know that this is not normal behavior for browsers. Neither is it a minor problem. Many things may be happening in the background without your knowledge.

I recently installed five Chrome extensions that I was using for personal use. After some time in usage, I was getting redirects to Yahoo. This was very annoying. I Googled the problem (which again; took me to Yahoo) and saw that clearing the browser cache solves the problem. Some websites advised me to pay for software that would automatically detect the problem and remove it. This is also tempting, unfortunately not effective.

Another solution from Google themselves seemed to help many people. If you have the same problem this might be the solution for you:

https://support.google.com/websearch/thread/5362187?hl=en

This was not the solution to my problem. After 3-5 tries, redirects were still occurring. At this time, thoughts about installing a new operating system started running through my mind. However, I realized that one particular Chrome Extension that I installed was suspicious. This tool was for text processing and hashing tools such as MD5.

I went over to recheck this extension. After further analysis of the extensions, one of the biggest red flags was the name; "Toolbox." The second thing that alerted me is the date of the last patch which was January 26, 2014.

This type of extension hijacks a browser and gets users' information and IP Addresses with the motive of selling the information to third parties. How the data is used is not clearly known. This particular Chrome extension also recently received a bad rating which also signals a red flag.

Not all Chrome extensions are safe. Many of them have been flagged as malicious. More extensions that are considered as harmful can be found in an article at Toms Guide. Cautiousness is the only way we can stop and avoid these malicious programs from getting into our privacy. Having a relationship with a big name or company does not make software safe. Be aware!

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