A common browser hijack virus known as the "Google Redirect Virus" basically takes over your web browser, sending any searches you request off to random and irrelevant advertising websites. The main telltale symptom is when your computer redirects your search efforts at least 2 or 3 times before it finally takes you to the site you were trying to visit.
Another way to tell if you have this virus, or not, is if you're getting various pop-up windows along with new tabs while you're trying to browse the Internet.
The Google Redirect Virus has a bit of a different spin, which makes it harder to pinpoint and harder to get rid of. Most viruses use an application or file that runs continually on your computer, so your antivirus program can catch and fix the problem.
The Google Redirect Virus, on the other hand, loads onto your system, changes some web browser files and vanishes. That's why it's so hard to remove. Your antivirus program has to find the virus before it can remove it and after the virus has done its damage and disappeared, finding it becomes impossible.
To remove the virus, you have to fix the infected files and settings. This is done by using a tool or method that targets the infected files. Unfortunately, it's not common knowledge as to which settings and files have been changed, which is why most antivirus programs can't remove it. The best way to remove it is to try an application called ComboFix. This basic program isn't listed on most download websites, but is very effective and fast at removing the Google Redirect Virus. It uses a script to fix the files on that script, which removes the virus.
Following the ComboFix attempt, use a registry cleaner program to scan your PC. This will find and fix any errors that may remain in the system. Most people don't realize that the Google Redirect Virus leaves hundreds of files and settings on your computer that will cause you lots of grief in the future. That's why you need to use a registry cleaner to be positive that there's nothing left behind after the virus is removed. The registry cleaner will insure that.