24×7 Help icon (a man/woman with a headphone) appears with every window you open on your PC or laptop? In this article you will find how to get rid of this 24×7 Help scam, or rather adware.
An issue from user,
“Recently a icon (a woman with a headphone) appeared on my desktop and also at the top of any open window. It ‘s called “24×7″ Help and opens a screen with a telephone number 0800-030-4160 and saying it’s “Microsoft trained technicians are standing by ready to help you solve all your PC issues and more”. Is this a scam? Because I’m having trouble with the screen display I called and got a call centre in India and was shown umpteen “errors” (over ten thousand) and, if I got a Certified Microsoft Technician, he could clear the errors and sort out my computer. The cost was over $200. So, again, have I been scammed. ….”
What is 24×7 Help Popup?
24×7 Help popup shows as a small applet that displays contact information for a remote support company and suggests that you download a variety of security program. Typically this program comes bundled with other software that you download from the Internet. These software are often software informer, audio/video player, PDF converter, download manager and even toolbars, browser hijackers or other PUPs.
The image of 24×7 Help popup
Once installed, 24×7 Help will automatically start when you login to Windows and constantly display an icon of a support person’s head on the title bar of the active Window. If you click on this head, you will be shown a screen that promotes their remote support services as well as a variety of security and backup products that they have developed. The products it promotes are PCRx Registry Cleaner, Spyware Terminator 2012, and Online Vault Backup, MyPC Backup, PC Fix Speed, etc, which all are also installed with bundling toolbars or PUPs including browser hijacker. Also 24×7 Help will create a shortcut on your desktop.
Besides, 24×7 Help may also create a dll file shown as little icon named after a hash value on your desktop as shown in below picture. When you click its popup from its icon, this dll file will lead you its target place, usually to urge you use some programs it promoted.
Then, is 24×7 Help a virus?
24×7 Help is not distributed using exploits or trojans. At this point, it is strictly not a virus, however it is definitely not a thing to believe or keep. Often, the presence of 24×7 Help results from installing many other PUPs or toolbars. These PUPs or toolbars can be Search Protect by Conduit, MyPC Backup, PC Fix Speed, Eazel Toolbar, WinZip Driver Updater, PCRx Registry Cleaner, Spyware Terminator 2012, and Online Vault Backup, etc.
As such, 24×7 Help is a software promoting platform although it masquerades like technical support from Microsoft. In this regard, 24×7 Help is tricky and cunny, and we may even call it scam, needless to mention it slows down the system and even cause system crashes from time to time.
For any reason, remove 24×7 Help upon sight.
Below is a removal guide to get rid of this 24×7 Help and related PUPs.
—To keep away from 24×7 Help and related PUPs, you can take below measures into practice:
♥ 1. Use caution when surfing online. Basically you should ensure turn on security features of your web browser (see detailed instructions to turn on security features of IE, Firefox and Chrome). Or you can also make full use of some tools like Anvi Ad Blocker (download) to block any tricky pop up ads or risky/phishing websites to trick you into downloading PUP or even malware.
♥ 2. Use caution when you do need to install some freeware from the Internet, ensure it is malware-free also with no extra bundles.
♥ 3. Pay close attention when you are installing some freeware from the Internet. Always opt for custom install instead of continuing hitting next step and finally find unwanted programs are bundled.
♥ 4. During the install, be attentive about pre-checked items. If anything unwanted or suspiciously risky, uncheck it to continue the install.
♥ 5. Chances are some PUP still installed even after you deselect it to install. Then, the last solution would be to uninstall the PUP and the bundling software.
Please note, to remove some PUPs like 24×7 Help that present with browser search redirects or hijacking, to uninstall the unwanted programs from computer will not recover normal browser search. To completely fix the issue, you also need to repair the browser settings at the same time.
How to Get Rid of 24×7 Help (Removal Guide)
-only if you also get infected by some browser hijackers or search redirects.
Step 1. Remove hidden components using Antimalware
To facilitate the afterward removal and ensure the computer is clean from any hidden components of the infection, it is necessary to use Antimalware/antivirus scan and removal. Here we use the antimalware Anvi Smart Defender as an example for demonstration purpose. You can also take a try by following below steps:
Antimalware Download: www.dotfab.com/download_asd.html
(If you want more protection of Anvi Smart Defender, you may upgrade it here. )
Step 2. Uninstall 24×7 Help and related PUP from computer
Choose an option you prefer to uninstall:
Tips: If you can not figure out which software is related to 24×7 Help, it is a good idea to remove all programs installed on the date that you firstly detect the presence of 24×7 Help icon on your web browser.
Option 1. Automatic Uninstall
Anvi Uninstaller featured in Cloud System Booster contains a Recently Installed Tab can help you conveniently find the related PUP from recently installed program list to uninstall.
To use Anvi Uninstaller, you can follow below steps:
2. Start it and click on Toolbox at the bottom of the main screen to access where you can locate Anvi Uninstaller to Download and Run.
3. Locate the Recent Installed tab and then find the related programs to uninstall.
Note: The related PUPs would be multiple. Ensure uninstall all PUPs related to the browser hijacker or PUP.
Then you will see below window
Please note that here the process 3 is only available for Pro version users. This step can help you clean out those left files, mainly registry entries of the uninstalled PUP.
And if you want this, you can conveniently purchase the Cloud System Booster here: http://www.dotfab.com/csbupgrade.php
Option 2. Manually uninstall 24×7 Help and Related PUP from Control Panel
Some adware or PUP related will install its program to the Control Panel. To remove it, you can:
For Win 8 users: Press Windows key or hover the cursor in the bottom left of the screen to access Start Menu →locate 24 x7 Help and related PUP → right click on the icon→ Click Uninstall from the appeared toolbar at the bottom of the screen.
For Windows 7/Vista: Click Start →Click Control Panel → Locate Programs, and click Uninstall a program→ find 24 x7 Help and related PUP from the opened list → Locate the item you want to uninstall and right click to open the dropped menu, where you need to click Uninstall/Change. If there comes an confirmation, click Yes to proceed.
Note: As shown in above screenshot, you need to remove Eazel US Toolbar for IE and other related or unwanted PUPs from computer in order to make it clean. Below are some PUPs mostly reported to associate with Eazel Toolbar or Conduit hijackers:
MyPC Backup, Search Protect by Conduit, WinZip Driver Updater, PC Fix Speed, WinZip Driver Updater, Trend Genius, PCRx Registry Cleaner, Spyware Terminator 2012, and Online Vault Backup, Wajam, Value Apps, Internet Helper, Internet Updater, BrowserProtect, WhiteSmoke, SweetIM, Sweetpacks, Delta Search, Mixi.DJ, Monogenie, Connect toolbar, Spring Smart, etc.
For Windows xp: Click Start → Select Control Panel → Click Add/Remove Programs → Find 24 x7 Help and related PUP from the opened list → locate and right click the item which you want to uninstall → click Remove to proceed the uninstall.
Step 3. Delete desktop shortcut and dll file of 24×7 Help
You still need to delete desktop shortcut and dll file of 24×7 Help after the uninstall.
Back to your PC desktop, find the shortcut icon and the dll file created by 24×7 Help, and then right click the icon to navigate to Delete from the dropped menu to remove them respectively. That’s it.
Step 4. Remove search redirects or homepage hijacking from Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome (Optional)
Only if you also encounter browser hijacking or search redirects with 24×7 Help, then you can use below steps to repair the browser settings.
Choose an option below:
Highly recommended for users who have installed multiple web browsers
Option 1. Automatic Removal
To remove search redirects from web browser, generally there are mainly three aspects in fixing browser settings in IE, Firefox and Chrome: remove add-on and related search engine, fix the homepage. Now to conveniently repair the browser settings, you can use this tool-Anvi Slim Toolbar. (download: www.dotfab.com/download_ast.html )
Instructions: 1. Download and install 2. Start the program and click Manage on its main screen. 3. Find and locate related/unwanted browser add-on and remove it from the appeared list. 4. Switch to the main screen and click Repair button to repair the homepage and search engine.
Remove unwanted browser extension using Anvi Slim Toolbar
Reset homepage and search engine using Anvi Slim Toolbar
Option 2. Manual Removal
1. Remove extension
Open Google Chrome and click bars icon to navigate to toolbars and extensions, find related or unwanted extensions to locate and click on the Trash can icon to remove it.
2. Remove unwanted startup page
Click Settings at the left menu, find On startup area and click set page
Then locate it and click X to remove the unwanted startup page like this search.conduit.com.
3. Remove homepage
Then locate the Appearance area, click Change.
Then remove the url from the text box. Click OK to save the change and exit.
4. Remove related search engine
Browser hijacker also changes your default search engine in chrome. Check it and choose your preferred search engine as default.
Find Search area, click manage search engines… button to make your preferred search engine, like Google.com, as default and then remove any other suspiciously related search engine from chrome by locating it and clicking X as it shows.
When finished, open Chrome to check if the issue is gone.
1. Remove add-on
Open Mozilla Firefox, click on Firefox button on the top left of the window to open a dropped menu where you need to select Add-ons to open the mange add-ons window.
On the opened window of manage add-ons, locate the Extensions tab to locate related add on and click Remove button to remove it.
Besides, you also need to check for the plugin tab on the add-on manage window, where you may also find the Conduit plugin and if any, make sure remove or disactivate it as well.
2. Reset homepage
On the opened window, locate General tab and reset the homepage by either entering your desired homepage like www.google.com or click on Restore to Default button. When finished, click OK to save the change and exit.
3. Repair search engine
In the opened Firefox window, click the right place besides the search box as shown in below image to drag out a dropped menu from there to select Manage search engines…
Then there will comes out a windows as shown in below picture. Click on suspiciously related search engine like Eazel-PR Customized Web Search, Web Search in below screenshot...locate it and then click Remove to remove it. Or you can just click restore to default button to repair it. Click OK to save the change and exit the window.
4. Configure Firefox
Open a new blank tab in your Firefox, and type about:config in the address bar to open a window as shown in below picture.
Click I’ll be careful, I promise! to continue.
Then, on the appeared window, type Eazel and Conduit respectively in the search box to find any items with value containing the keywords of the PUP from list there and highlight the item, right click on it to select Reset, one by one.
When finished, restart the Firefox to check. That’s it.
1. Remove add-on
Open Internet Explorer, click Settings icon to select Manage add-on
There will open a window of Manage add-ons, where you need to locate on Toolbars and Extensions tab, search through the list to find related add-on. Click the item to disable and remove.
Note: Some PUP’s inserted add-on/plugin in IE can only be removed through control Panel, that is to say, if you uninstall it from the Control Panel, this add-on will automatically disappear in IE.
2. Remove Search provider
Still on the window of manage add-ons, switch to Search Providers tab, and then search for related or unwanted search provider to locate it and click on Remove button at the bottom to get rid of it. (Please note if the search provider to remove is set as default, firstly you need to set other search engine like bing or google as default and then proceed the removal. )
3. Reset homepage
Click on Settings icon and then select Internet Options. On the coming up window, locate → General tab → Home page area, you can either click on the Use Blank button or type your desired homepage like www.google.com in the edit box. Then, click OK to save the change and exit. That’s it.
Restart the Internet Explorer to check. That’s it.
Step 5. Remove key leftovers and maintain system performance
Browser hijackers often use tracking cookies or other means to track your online search habit and access to all your browser data in order to display more related advertisements. Thus it is necessary to remove the related browser data including its tracking cookies and browser history to prevent its survival. To do so, Cloud System Booster would be helpful. Not only will it help you automatically clean the browser data, but also it will maintain your system performance in order to return a smooth uncluttered OS.
Cloud System Booster download: www.dotfab.com/download_csb.html
Instructions: 1. Download and install.
2. Click Disk Cleaner button on the main screen and then on the left navigator, locate the web browser like Internet Explorer or Google Chrome that you use, and then select item of removing cookies. It is recommended to select all web browsers that you have on your PC.
2. Click Home button to back on home page and click Quick Care button and the system maintenance begins.
Recommended for a slow PC→
If you want deep optimization, it is a good idea to defrag your hard disk using Anvi Ultimate Defrag:
This is a trial version of Anvi Ultimate Defrag download: www.dotfab.com/download_aud.html
Step 6. Block malicious websites and pop up ads using Anvi Ad Blocker
To block malicious websites and pop up ads for safer surfing online, some tools like Anvi Ad Blocker would be a nice choice. It provides a huge online database to help you filter most malicious/phishing websites and annoying advertisements.
Anvi AD Blocker download: www.dotfab.com/download_adb.html
Please note this is a trial version of Anvi Ad Blocker for 15 days free use. If you want it for longer time, you can conveniently buy it here.
Not only can this tool help you block those malicious, phishing websites and most advertisements to reduce risks of getting infected, but also it can assist you in filtering those unwanted URLs like this nationzoom.com by adding the URL into its black list.
If any question in the process, leave it below.