Powershell is a crucial feature that Microsoft developed to help experienced IT people automate administrative tasks and configure their systems. It can't be harmful in any way on its own.
However, you might get into trouble if a Powershell.exe virus replaces your original Powershell. One of the dangers of the Windows Powershell virus is that it can be difficult to spot, and many users have it for a long time.
Today, we'll talk about everything you need to know about the Powershell virus and help you learn how to remove it.
In this article
What Is the Windows Powershell Virus?
The Windows PowerShell virus is a malicious script or program that uses Windows PowerShell to display and run unwanted pop-ups. The pop-ups come from different channels. Here are some of the most common possibilities:
- 📍Downloading suspicious tools or software;
- 📍Opening suspicious emails containing malicious files or attachments;
- 📍Clicking on notifications on your web browser;
- 📍Other suspicious activities or sources.
The Windows PowerShell virus can damage your system and your privacy. The longer you have it, the more consequences you can expect, including new malware, access to your microphone and sensitive data, changed settings, corrupted system files, poor device performance, etc. Therefore, it's imperative to learn how to recognize and remove a Windows Powershell virus.
How to Recognize a Windows Powershell Virus
Recognizing a Windows Powershell virus is easy if you know what to look for. However, if the purpose of the virus is to track your activity and steal data, you might have difficulty figuring out your device has been infected. Moreover, most antivirus systems even can't detect it on some occasions. So the bottom line is you must pay close attention to what's happening on your computer and your security.
Here are some signs you should look for when trying to determine if your computer has a Powershell virus:
- 🚨Look for any unwanted ads or pop-ups when using your computer;
- 🚨Check if your device is running slowly (including your internet connection). If your disk, CPU, or RAM memory usage is at its peak, you may have a virus;
- 🚨New icons appear;
- 🚨Your files or folders have been moved elsewhere or have been deleted;
- 🚨You have suspicious processes running in your task manager;
- 🚨You get unnecessary notifications or update requests for software you don't have or don't use;
- 🚨You're getting occasional phishing forms in your notification center.
How to Remove the Windows Powershell Virus
You can use several methods to remove the Windows Powershell virus. Here are the exact steps for each you should follow.
Reset the Browser to Default Settings
Resetting your browser to default settings might help you "disable" the powershell.exe virus and remove any malicious plugins or tools operating within the browser. It can be a temporary solution that can help you mitigate further damage, but you should also use permanent solutions to remove the virus completely.
The process of resetting your browser to default settings depends on the browser you're using, but they're all similar. Since most Windows users use Google Chrome, let's take a look at the steps:
- Open Google Chrome.
- Click the three dots in the upper right corner and select Settings.
- Click Reset settings and then Restore settings to their original defaults.
- Click Reset settings again.
Use Antivirus or Anti-malware
One of the first methods you should try when you have a Windows Powershell virus is to use anti-malware or antivirus software. You can try a full scan by Windows Defender before using a third-party antivirus or malware removal tool.
Here are the steps:
- Click on Start and type Windows Security.
- Click on Windows Security.
- When the Windows Security window opens, click Virus & Threat Protection.
- Click on Scan options in the Current Threats section.
- Select Full Scan and click Scan Now.
- Wait until the process is completed (it might take several hours, depending on your device and storage).
If you still can't find the virus, you can resort to the third-party antivirus tools. The steps are similar: scan your device and then remove threats when they're found.
Use System Restore
If you're using the Windows System Restore feature and have a restore point available, you can use this option to restore your system to a point when you haven't had the virus. This option can work only if you've noticed the virus on time. Rolling back to a previous restore point might be ineffective if it's been there long.
Here's what you need to do:
- Click on Start and write System Restore.
- Click on Create a restore point.
- Click System Restore.
- Click Next to continue the process.
- Click on Show more restore points to see all restore points. Select the one you need and click Next.
- Confirm the restore point in the next window. Click Finish and then Yes. Your device will have to be restarted for the changes to take effect.
Reinstall Your Windows OS
If you cannot remove the powershell.exe virus with any of the fixes mentioned above, the only method remaining is to reinstall your OS. Here are the steps for reinstalling your Windows OS:
- Download the official Windows Media Creation tool.
- Insert an empty USB drive into your computer.
- Run Media Creation Tool and select Create installation media for another PC.
- Click Next, select language,edition, and architecture, and click Next.
- Select the USB flash drive inserted into your computer and click Next.
- Wait until the tool downloads all Windows files and creates a bootable drive. (keep in mind that this process might take some time).
- Restart your computer and access BIOS by pressing F2, F9, F10, or DEL, depending on your device.
- Go to boot settings and select your USB drive as the first boot option.
- Save settings and exit BIOS.
- Your device will start the installation. Follow the steps and reinstall.
[Bonus] How to Ensure You Don't Lose Any Data Because of Viruses
No single solution can help prevent data loss in case of a virus attack. However, the more solutions you use, the higher the chances of preventing data loss or simply having the option to restore the data you've lost. Here are some of the best practices you should implement:
🚀Use a Data Recovery Tool
Data recovery tools can recover files even if a virus has deleted them. For example, Wondershare Recoverit is a professional-grade data recovery tool that can recover your files after a virus has deleted them.
Here's how to recover lost data using Wondershare Recoverit:
- After launching Wondershare Recoverit, click Hard Drives and Locations and select the drive affected by the virus.
- Wondershare Recoverit will automatically scan the drive for missing files and show them in real-time.
- Click Preview to see if the program has discovered the right files. Click Recover when you're ready.
- Name the file, select the save destination, and click Save when ready.
🚀Backup Your Data
If you want to ensure your data doesn't get lost, one of the best ways is to use a backup tool, such as Wondershare UBackit. Schedule regular backups to ensure your personal or business data is stored and updated. This way, you can quickly restore data.
As mentioned earlier, the Windows Powershell virus will often act as ransomware and encrypt your files, asking you for money before giving them back to you. However, you can use the same approach by encrypting your files to prevent anyone from stealing your data.
🚀Update Your Antivirus Regularly
Antivirus and software updates are essential. They all carry critical security patches that can make the difference between getting your device infected or keeping it clean.
If you want to remove the Windows Powershell.exe virus from your computer, try resetting your browser to default, settings scanning your system with an antivirus, doing a system restore, or reinstalling your Windows OS.
Moreover, take the time to set up a better security strategy to prevent future infections, including: data encryption, data recovery and backup, as well as regular antivirus updates.
Are there any specific ways to prevent Powershell viruses?Ensure your Powershell is updated, monitor for suspicious activity, use general security practices, and restrict execution policies. You should also use a reliable antivirus and update it regularly.
Can I uninstall Powershell?You can uninstall Powershell, but the virus might not allow you to perform this action if your device is already infected. These viruses might look for other tools in your system they can exploit.
Is Powershell a malicious tool?No, PowerShell isn't malicious on its own. However, multiple types of viruses might look to exploit this tool.