Exterminate It! Antimalware

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Known threats:699,742 Last Update:November 20, 22:46

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File: SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal

Location of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal and Associated Malware

Check whether SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal is present in the following locations:

SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal file locations that are Windows version independent:

  • C:\Windows\System32\SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal

If you find SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal file in any of these locations, your computer is very likely to be infected with the following malware:

IMPORTANT: Malware files can be camouflaged with the same file names as legitimate files. The SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal file is associated with malware only if found in the locations listed above.

Notes:

Different Variations of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal File^

File SizeFile Md5Last Seen
828928D9504D8F9ACE20A9418CBAB1447FE825Feb 27, 2016

Why Is It Important to Remove Malware Files?^

It is imperative that you delete malware-associated files as soon as possible because they can be used - or are already being used - to inflict serious damage on your PC, including:

  • Disrupting the normal functioning of the operating system or rendering it completely useless.
  • Hijacking valuable private information (credit card numbers, passwords, PIN codes, etc.)
  • Directing all your Web searches to the same unwanted or malicious sites.
  • Dramatically slowing down your computer.
  • Gaining total control of your PC to spread viruses and trojans and send out spam.

How to Remove SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal^

  1. To enable deleting the SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal file, terminate the associated process in the Task Manager as follows:
    • Right-click in the Windows taskbar (a bar that appears along the bottom of the Windows screen) and select Task Manager on the menu.
    • In the Tasks Manager window, click the Processes tab.
    • On the Processes tab, select SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal and click End Process.
  2. Using your file explorer, browse to the file using the paths listed in Location of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal and Associated Malware.
  3. Select the file and press SHIFT+Delete on the keyboard.
  4. Click Yes in the confirm deletion dialog box.
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 for each location listed in Location of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal and Associated Malware.
  6. Notes:

    • The deletion of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal will fail if it is locked; that is, it is in use by some application (Windows will display a corresponding message). For instructions on deleting locked files, see Deleting Locked Files.
    • The deletion of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal will fail if your Windows uses the NT File System (NTFS) and you have no write rights for the file. Request your system administrator to grant you write rights for the file.

Deleting Locked Files^

You can delete locked files with the RemoveOnReboot utility. You can install the RemoveOnReboot utility from here.

After you delete a locked file, you need to delete all the references to the file in Windows registry.

To delete a locked file:

  1. Right-click on the file and select Send To -> Remove on Next Reboot on the menu.
  2. Restart your computer.

The file will be deleted on restart.

Note: In the case of complex viruses that can replicate themselves, malware files can reappear in the same locations even after you have deleted those files and restarted your computer. Exterminate It! Antimalware can effectively eradicate such viruses from your computer.

To remove all registry references to a SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal malware file:

  1. On the Windows Start menu, click Run.
  2. In the Open box, type regedit and click OK. The Registry Editor window opens.
  3. On the Edit menu, select Find.
  4. In the Find dialog box, type SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal. The name of the first found registry value referencing SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal is highlighted in the right pane of the Registry Editor window.
  5. Right-click the registry value name and select Delete on the menu.
  6. Click Yes in the Confirm Value Delete dialog box.
  7. To delete all other references to SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal, repeat steps 4-6.
IMPORTANT: Malware files can masquerade as legitimate files by using the same file names. To avoid deleting a harmless file, ensure that the Value column for the registry value displays exactly one of the paths listed in Location of SEARCHPROTECTSERVICE.EXE.mal and Associated Malware.