How to Remove the Google Toolbar Virus
By Juliana Torres
In 2006, a Web security company called SufControl detected a Trojan virus associated with a fake download of Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer. A link was sent via email, sending users to a site that looked identical to the real Google download site. However, instead of the real Google Toolbar, you downloaded W32.Ranky.FW, a Trojan designed to turn your computer into a bot, controlled by an outside entity.
Whether you fell victim to the fake Google Toolbar or feel that the Google-designed program itself is a virus, removing the program and associated malicious software can be completed by uninstalling the program and then using antivirus software to scan your computer.
Uninstall the Program
Open the "Control Panel" In the Windows Start menu and click "Uninstall a program" or "Add/Remove Programs" from the list of options.
Scroll down to find "Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer" and click on that. Click "Uninstall."
Follow the instructions for removing the program. The most recent versions of the program are almost automatic, asking only that you fill out an optional online survey about why you've uninstalled the program.
Removing Malicious Software
Update the virus definitions on your antivirus program. If you don't already have a antivirus program, download one using the links to suggested virus programs in "Resources." Load the program and look for some variation of a "Check for Updates" or "Update now" link on the main screen of the program.
Disable System Restore. Open the "Computer" folder from the Start menu, click "System properties" button from the top menu of the window and click "System Protection" from the left-hand list of the new window. Click "Configure" and select the button for "Turn off system protection," and press "OK."
Reboot your computer in SafeMode by restarting your computer and pressing "F8" as it boots up until a menu appears. Use your keyboard arrows to select "Restart in SafeMode" on the list and press "Enter." Sign on as the administrator if you have more than one user for the computer.
Open your antivirus program again and run a full scan of your computer. Be patient; this will likely take a while. Quarantine or delete all files the programs finds to be malicious.
Re-enable System Restore. Repeat your ear;ier steps, only select "Restore system settings and previous versions of files" instead off "Turn off system protection." Click "OK."
Juliana Torres started writing in 2004 for "The Daily Texan." She was an intern at "People en Español" and "Texas Monthly" and co-authored the book, "A Legacy Greater Than Words." While writing for the "Osceola News-Gazette," she won several Florida Press Association awards. Torres earned a Bachelor of Journalism and a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from the University of Texas-Austin.