If you are a Windows user, then you will most likely find the COM Surrogate process on your Task Manager. This is a genuine process of Windows 10 and is designed particularly to run extensions for different programs. However, many users think that this is a virus, well that is not true. But, there are many viruses that disguise themselves as COM Surrogate making them difficult to detect.
The process COM Surrogate points out that your computer is running many software extensions at the same time. These extensions are known as COM Objects. The regular users may not be able to detect this process because it has no icon and the name is also not very common. Due to this, normal users think that their system is infected.
The genuine COM Surrogates will run the application of “dllhost.exe”. However, if you check its properties and see that it is running some other application, then it means that this is a virus.
How did the COM Surrogate Virus Get on your Computer?
There are many ways for this virus to get on your computer. These reasons include fake software updates, trojans, downloading third-party software, and spam emails. Thousands of emails containing malicious content are sent using spam campaigns. If you open any such email, your computer will get infected. The downloads that are from unofficial sites are also a great source of this COM Surrogate virus.
Sometimes, the users are tricked to manually install this malware. There are also some trojans that can create chain infections. After they get into a computer, they install additional malware automatically. Additionally, by exploiting the bugs and flaws of outdated software, they make the users download the malware.
How to Avoid the COM Surrogate Virus?
The reason why this virus gets installed into computers is due to careless behavior and lack of knowledge at the user end. If you always stay cautious, then you can avoid getting affected by this virus. You must not download any third-party software while you are browsing the internet. If you receive any suspicious email from any unknown address, you must never open the links attached to it. When you want to download any apps, you must do it from the official website only and not from any other website. You must always keep all of your applications and your system updated. For doing this, you must always use the provided tool or implement the functions which are officially provided by the developer. Also, use a good antivirus suite. These will help you to detect any malicious elements on your computer.
Solutions to Remove COM Surrogate Virus
Anti-malware softwares are the best to remove malware. However, there is also a manual process to remove this malware. So, the first step for you will be to identify the malware. You can check the Task Manager to find the malware. After locating the malware, you can follow the steps below:-
First, you have to download “Autoruns”. This program will show you the location of the system files, Registry, and applications.
Now, you have to restart your computer into Safe Mode. This process is different for different versions of Windows.
Windows XP and Windows 7– First, you have to start your computer in safe mode. To do that, you have to press the Start button and then press the option of Shut Down. Then, select the option of “Reset” and then press “OK”. While your computer is starting up, you have to press the F8 key multiple times. You have to do this until you see the menu for “Windows Advanced Option”. From this menu, you have to select the option of “Safe Mode”.
Windows 8– Here also you have to start Windows 8 in the Safe Mode. Open the Start screen and in the search bar, you have to write “Advanced”. Select the option of “Advanced startup”. From here, you have to click on the button of “Restart now”. Now, your computer will start up in the “Advanced Startup options menu”. From this list, you have to select the option of “Troubleshoot”. Then, click on the button of “Advanced options”. After that, you have to select the “Startup Settings” option. From here, you have to press the button of “Restart”. Now your computer will boot up into the screen of “Startup Settings”. You have to press F5 to make the computer start-up in Safe Mode.
Windows 10– Go to the Start Menu and press the icon of “Power”. Now, in the menu that is opened, you have to select the option of “Restart” and you must also hold down the button of “Shift” at the same time. After that, you have to select the option of “Troubleshoot” on the window of “choose an option”. Then, select the option of “Advanced option”. In this window, you have to click on “Startup Settings and then press the button of “Restart”. Now, on the next window, you have to press the button of F5 from the keyboard. In doing this, the system will restart into the Safe Mode.
Now, go to the downloaded file of “Autoruns” and extract it. After that, run the file of “Autoruns.exe”.
Open the application of Autoruns and click on “Options”. This will be located at the top of the page. Here, you have to uncheck the box of “Hide Windows Entries” and “Hide Empty Locations”. Then, press the icon of “Refresh”.
Now, go through the list provided by Autoruns and find the malware that you want to delete. Any COM application that is not running the dllhost.exe COM Surrogate application is malware. You must write down the path for this malware. You must know that some malware disguises their name after some legitimate process name of Windows. After finding the malware, right-click on it and select the option of “Delete”. Be extra cautious that you do not delete any system files.
After deleting the malware, you must search your computer for the same malware. This will ensure that there are no more of the malware present on your computer. You must first enable the “hidden files and folders”. Be sure to remove any remaining files of the malware if you find any. Now, restart your computer in “Normal Mode”.
By following the above steps, you will be able to remove the malware from your system. If you see a COM process that is not running the dllhost.exe COM Surrogate application, then that means it is a malware. However, this manual process of removing the malware is for skilled computer users. A normal user will not be able to effectively implement the process. Moreover, if you are infected with advanced malware, this process might not work.
To keep your computer safe, you can download a robust anti-malware software. It is always better to protect your computer from threats rather than fixing the problem later. COM Surrogate in itself is not a virus. This is a genuine Windows process.