A new adware malware disguising itself as a Google browser look-alike has begun plaguing some unsuspecting Internet users. The malware dubbed ‘eFast’ makes it’s way on to users’ computers as part of a bundle when they attempt to download legitimate software online.

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer The eFast adware malware installs itself as a part of a bundle when users try to download legitimate software online Softopedia

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer eFast malware installer MalwareBytes

Once installed, eFast malware serves up ads to its victims while also tracking their activities and selling it to third-party advertisers. The malicious software is allegedly owned by Clara Labs, who have developed a range of other browsers including Unico, Tortuga and BoBrowser.

The reports of this fake Google browser malware come to us first from security bloggers at Malwarebytes. According to the researchers, the malware installs itself as the default Internet browser, hijacking links as well as the and the default program for viewing various popular file types, including .html, .jpg, .gif and .pdf. It also hijacks various URL-associations so that links with protocols like ftp, http, https, irc, mailto and more will be opened with eFast, despite what browser you might be using. The malware then inserts ads in searches, serves pop-ups and other fun adware.

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer eFast inserts adware into searches pcrisk.com

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer eFast pop-up ad MalwareBytes

To further confuse users who may suspect something fishy is going on with their system, eFast also deletes all taskbar and desktop shortcuts to Google Chrome, replacing them with its look-alike links. This makes the hoax even more rattling for the less savvy internet user.

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer the eFast malware deletes Chrome browser links on users' desktops and replaces them with eFast look-alike links. MalwareBytes

The malware was able to mimic the design of Google Chrome browser by using the same source code for the UI, which is found on the Chromium project site.

While those who have been pwned by the malware I’m sure are feeling exasperated, this new kind of malware seems to actually have positive connotations for Google and Chrome users in general. As popular a popular security new and discussion handle @SwiftOnSecurity tweeted,

 “Major props to the Chrome team that it’s getting so hard to hijack Chrome that malware literally has to replace it to effectively attack.”

How Can I Check If eFast Malware Is On My Computer?

For those who have noticed something a little “off” about their Chrome browser, there is a pretty simple way to check it it is “real” or not. Simply open your browser, and type in chrome://chrome

If you are using the authentic Chrome browser, this link will take you to the “About” section for the Chrome Browser and will even check if you Chrome Browser software is up to date.

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer Typing in chrome://chrome in an authentic Chrome browser will take you the the "About" section of the Chrome Browser where you can update it if it is out of date. iDigitalTimes

If you are using a fake version of Chrome browser you will either encounter a fake Google Chrome "About" section like the one below, the link will not open, or you will get some kind of error message.

new google chrome browser malware looks alike efast how to remove adware malware windows microsoft computer A "fake" Google Chrome like interface comes up when you type chrome://chrome into the browser pcrisk.com

 

How Do I Remove The Fake 'eFast' Google Chrome Browser?

If you find you are running the fake Chrome browser, eFast, then it is fairly simple to remove. Thus far the malware has only been reported on Windows Machines so Mac users likely don’t have anything to worry about.

To remove the eFast malware,

Open ‘Programs and Features’ on your computer

Search for a file name like eFast

Uninstall it.

You can also remove the eFast malware and other possible malware on your machine by downloading, installing and running Malwarebytes Anti-Malware tool. It’s free and easy to use and one of the best ways to clear your computer of malicious programs. There is also a paid version which can give you added anti-virus protection if so desired.