Spyware.SmartBrowse

Spyware.SmartBrowse

Updated:
13 February 2007
Version:
2.9.1.1
Publisher:
netster.com
Risk Impact:
High
File Names:
netster.dll
Systems Affected:
Windows

Behavior


The Netster Smart Browse toolbar:
  • Is an Internet Explorer toolbar with spyware-related functions.
  • Has replaced the Internet Explorer search destination to netster.com.
  • Tracks usage of search queries, clicked links on the toolbar, as well as search terms and other information in the netster.com server logs, which netster.com uses to better tailor future advertising content.
  • The user names and email addresses can be taken from several opt-in parts of the toolbar and given to third parties for advertising purposes.


Symptoms


One or more files is detected as Spyware.Smartbrowse.

Behavior


Spyware.Smartbrowse is installed via an ActiveX installer.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version 02 October 2014 revision 022
  • Latest Rapid Release version 02 October 2014 revision 022
  • Initial Daily Certified version 23 November 2004
  • Latest Daily Certified version 28 September 2010 revision 036
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date 23 November 2004
Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

When Spyware.Smartbrowse is executed, it performs the following actions:

  1. Creates the following file: netster.dll (this can be placed anywhere on the computer)

  2. Creates the following registry keys:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\
    Browser Helper Objects\{B98F79F4-3619-49FB-A7E7-B737E58C5727}
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.NetsterBand.1
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.NetsterBand
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{856D6A8E-A24C-498A-A55A-2B25C606A6B4}
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{B98F79F4-3619-49FB-A7E7-B737E58C5727}
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ACC63168-5876-439B-95BC-3BAE59CA860C}
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar\
    {856D6A8E-A24C-498A-A55A-2B25C606A6B4}
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\
    {856D6A8E-A24C-498A-A55A-2B25C606A6B4}
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.BHO.1
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.BHO
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.InitScript.1
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Netster.InitScript
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Netster


The following instructions pertain to all Symantec antivirus products that support Security Risk detection.
  1. Update the definitions.
  2. Uninstall Netster Bar using the Add/Remove Programs utility.
  3. Run a full system scan.
  4. Delete the value that was added to the registry.
For specific details on each of these steps, read the following instructions.

1. To update the definitions
To obtain the most recent definitions, start your Symantec program and run LiveUpdate.

2. To uninstall the Adware
  1. Do one of the following:
    • On the Windows 98 taskbar:
      1. Click Start > Settings > Control Panel.
      2. In the Control Panel window, double-click Add/Remove Programs.

    • On the Windows Me taskbar:
      1. Click Start > Settings > Control Panel.
      2. In the Control Panel window, double-click Add/Remove Programs.
        If you do not see the Add/Remove Programs icon, click "...view all Control Panel options."

    • On the Windows 2000 taskbar:
      By default, Windows 2000 is set up the same as Windows 98, so follow the instructions for Windows 98. If otherwise, click Start, point to Settings > Control Panel, and then click Add/Remove Programs.

    • On the Windows XP taskbar:
      1. Click Start > Control Panel.
      2. In the Control Panel window, double-click Add or Remove Programs.

  2. Click Netster Bar.


    Note:
    You may need to use the scroll bar to view the whole list.

  3. Click Add/Remove, Change/Remove, or Remove (this varies with the operating system). Follow the prompts.

3. To run the scan
  1. Start your Symantec antivirus program, and then run a full system scan.

    Note: If you ran the Add/Remove programs applet as described in the previous section, all the files may have been removed, and thus none of them will be detected.
  2. If any files are detected as Spyware.Smartbrowse and depending on which software version you are using, you may see one or more of the following options:

    Note: This applies only to versions of Norton AntiVirus that support Security Risk detection. If you are running a version of Symantec AntiVirus Corporate Edition that supports Security Risk detection, and Security Risk detection has been enabled, you will only see a message box that gives the results of the scan. If you have questions in this situation, contact your network administrator.
    • Exclude (Not recommended): If you click this button, it will set the threat so that it is no longer detectable. That is, the antivirus program will keep the security risk on your computer and will no longer detect it to remove from your computer.

    • Ignore or Skip: This option tells the scanner to ignore the threat for this scan only. It will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

    • Cancel: This option is new to Norton Antivirus 2005. It is used when Norton Antivirus 2005 has determined that it cannot delete a security risk. This Cancel option tells the scanner to ignore the threat for this scan only, and thus, the threat will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

      To actually delete the security risk:
      • Click its file name (under the Filename column).
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

        If Windows reports that it cannot delete the file, this indicates that the file is in use. In this situation, complete the rest of the instructions on this page, restart the computer in Safe mode, and then delete the file using Windows Explorer.

    • Delete: This option will attempt to delete the detected files. In some cases, the scanner will not be able to do this.
      • If you see a message, "Delete Failed" (or similar message), first make sure all Internet Explorer windows are closed and then, manually delete the file.
      • Click the file name of the threat that is under the Filename column.
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

        If Windows reports that it cannot delete the file, this indicates that the file is in use. In this situation, complete the rest of the instructions on this page, restart the computer in Safe mode, and then delete the file using Windows Explorer.

4. To delete the value from the registry

Important:
Symantec strongly recommends that you back up the registry before making any changes to it. Incorrect changes to the registry can result in permanent data loss or corrupted files. Modify the specified keys only. Read the document, "How to make a backup of the Windows registry ," for instructions.
  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type regedit

    Then click OK.

  3. Navigate to the key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar

  4. In the right pane, delete the value:

    "{8E718888-423F-11D2-876E-00A0C9082467}"

  5. Exit the Registry Editor.