PUP.Optional.ASK.A

PUP.Optional.ASK.A is deemed as potentially unwanted program that performs malicious actions once installed on the computer. This detection by Malwarebytes Anti-Malware program is given to specific software that user may optionally install together with third-party application. However, due to lack of notification during the install process, PUP.Optional.ASK.A often gets into the PC without user’s knowledge. Thus, you may see unwanted program on the computer without a notice.

Threat behavior

Installation

In usual situation, PUP.Optional.ASK.A is bundled to freeware or shareware applications. In fact, there may be other unwanted programs that are packed to the main software that users preferred to obtain. Authors behind malicious programs are utilizing pay-per-install scheme to deploy their products over the Internet.

There are also instances that malware are being used to deploy PUP.Optional.ASK.A. In this case, the threat can be acquired when visiting malicious web pages, downloading compromised files, or using file-sharing apps. Links from spam emails and social media sites are also one medium consumed by attacker to spread PUP.Optional.ASK.A.

How does this malware operate?

Once PUP.Optional.ASK.A is run on the computer, it targets mostly known browsers like Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Safari. This threat performs changes on browser settings that may result to home page hijacking and browser redirect problems. PUP.Optional.ASK.A also drops extension, add-on, and plug-in to achieve other malicious tasks.

To start instantly when browser is opened, PUP.Optional.ASK.A installs itself as browser helper object. This also gives the malware to have control on the browser and install its own search engine and toolbar object.

Symptoms

Presence of PUP.Optional.ASK.A affects your installed browser program. Here are some obvious signs that the malware has invaded the computer.

  • Modified start page, home page or search engine
  • Constant redirect to unwanted web sites
  • Excessive display of pop-up advertisements
  • Browser and new tabs opens on its own

How can you remove PUP.Optional.ASK.A?

To totally remove PUP.Optional.ASK.A from the computer and get rid of relevant adware, please execute the procedures as stated on this page. Make sure that you have completely scan the system with suggested malware removal tools and virus scanners.

Quick Fix - Scan the PC with Combo Cleaner for Windows

Combo Cleaner is a trusted PC security and optimization tool equipped with a powerful virus and malware detection engine. This program can get rid of hazardous viruses like PUP.Optional.ASK.A through this procedure.

1. Download the application from the following page:

2. Save the file to your preferred location.

3. Double-click the downloaded file CCSetup.exe and install with the default settings.

CC for Windows Installation

4. At the end of the setup process, click Finish to run Combo Cleaner.

5. The tool will update the signature file, please wait for this process to complete.

6. To begin checking for threats like PUP.Optional.ASK.A, click on the Start Scan button. Wait for this scan to finish.

CC for Windows Start Scan

7. At the end of the scan process, click on Remove all threats to delete the PUP.Optional.ASK.A virus, including all malicious objects from the computer.

Free features of Combo Cleaner for Windows include Disk Cleaner, Big Files finder, Duplicate files finder, and Uninstaller. To use antivirus, privacy scanner, and to delete identified threats, users have to upgrade to a premium version.

Please continue with the succeeding removal procedures if you are comfortable manually getting rid of the virus and malicious items linked to it.

Step 1 : Scan the computer with Norton Power Eraser

1. Download Norton Power Eraser from the link below. Save the file on your hard drive.

2. Once the download completes, double-click on the file NPE.EXE to run the program.

3. You will be prompted with End User License Agreement. Please click on Accept to continue.

4. Norton Power Eraser will check for the most recent version. Then, the main window will appear. Click on Scan for Risks to the scan and removal process for PUP.Optional.ASK.A.

NPE-Main

5. By default, Norton Power Eraser was configured to perform rootkit scan. This is essential to get rid of PUP.Optional.ASK.A or other relevant malware. To accomplish this, you will need to restart the computer. Please click Restart button.

NPE-Rootkit

6. After restarting Windows, the program will check for possible database update and then, proceeds with the scan. It may take a while, please wait for the scan process to complete.

NPE-Scanning

7. Once scanning is done, Norton Power Eraser will display a list of threats including PUP.Optional.ASK.A. Review identified threats and remove/repair them from the PC by clicking on Fix Now button.

8. If you are prompted to restart the computer in order to complete the virus removal process, please click on Restart Now.

Step 2 : Scan and remove PUP.Optional.ASK.A with Microsoft Security Software

Microsoft Windows has a built-in security application that you can use to double-check if your computer is still infected with PUP.Optional.ASK.A. For Windows 8 and 10/11 users, please run Windows Security. Users of Windows Vista and older versions can utilize Microsoft Security Essentials to remove the PUP.Optional.ASK.A virus.

Windows 8 / 10 / 11 Instructions:

Windows Security is a free tool that was built to help you remove PUP.Optional.ASK.A, viruses, and other malicious items from Windows 8 or Windows 10/11 systems. Follow these procedures to scan your computer with the tool:

1. Tap or click the Search charm, search for Windows Security, and then open the application.

Image of Windows Security Search

2. On the Home tab, click Virus and threat protection from the sidebar.

3. On the main window, click on Scan Options. Then, click on Full Scan button.

Image of Scan Options

4. Lastly, click on the Scan now button to start scanning for the presence of PUP.Optional.ASK.A. The process may take a while to complete.

5. After the scan, Delete/Quarantine identified threats, whether they were relevant to PUP.Optional.ASK.A or not. You may now restart Windows to complete the virus removal process.

How to protect the computer from PUP.Optional.ASK.A?

Installing an anti-virus or anti-malware tool is the first line of protection for any computer user. This action is logical and is most likely the best technique to safeguard the computer from PUP.Optional.ASK.A attack. Consequently, remember that owning security software does not guarantee complete protection, especially for newer threats. We are presenting the following information as advice to safeguard the computer from virus infection because the bulk of prevention still relies on people being vigilant.

Avoid Malicious Websites

Numerous websites have been created only with the intention of disseminating PUP.Optional.ASK.A. These websites frequently participate in the integration of harmful malicious pop-up and browser hijacker, which eventually lead to new malware outbreaks. Don't visit such websites.

Delete Phishing Emails

The attackers have the luxury of disseminating their dangerous code with just one send-off, thanks to the bulk digital mailing of computer viruses. This will look like an email from a reputable company when it enters the inbox. Therefore, it is best to delete any unusual emails that include links or attachments right away.

Do Not Click a Suspicious Link

Attackers occasionally use links from social media, forums, and blog sites to direct viewers to a malicious page that includes harmful code. Therefore, avoid clicking on random links, especially those that seem dubious. An infection with the PUP.Optional.ASK.A may result from an unintentional visit to the target website.

Be Careful When Downloading Files

Another way that the PUP.Optional.ASK.A malware spreads is through cracked software, serial key generators, and malicious shareware programs. Avoid obtaining these kinds of applications, and if you must download freeware or shareware, make sure to do so from a reputable source or the official website.

About the author

2 thoughts on “PUP.Optional.ASK.A”

  1. Thank you for this very detailed procedure that has allowed me to remove a very annoying program from a friend’s computer that was making her think she had some kind of virus on her machine that was being passed on to her friends and relatives.

  2. Thank you, I already use Malwarebytes Premium, in fact I have used it for several years and it has been a great program for checking and quarantining unwanted programs. This helped a lot!

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