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Summary: How to Uninstall Wave Browser

Wave Browser is considered a potentially unwanted program (PUP) by most cybersecurity organizations. Once installed, it will make system-level changes that allow it to continuously reinstall itself even when you try to remove the software. It also gathers personal data that can be sold to advertisers.

If you have Wave Browser installed on your device, we recommend uninstalling the software by following the steps we highlight in the article below. Here’s a brief overview of what you have to do on a Windows 11 device:

  1. Uninstall Wave Browser using the “Control Panel” or the “Apps and Features” section of your Settings.
  2. Close lingering Wave Browser tasks in “Task Manager.”
  3. Disable Wave Browser’s startup tasks.
  4. Delete Wave Browser from “Registry.”

You can also use an antivirus scanner like BitDefender to remove the program from your device. BitDefender is available for both Windows and macOS devices.

Visit BitDefender

For a complete walkthrough of how to delete Wave Browser, keep reading below.

Wave Browser is an internet browser that doesn’t quite meet the definition of malware. Instead, most sources classify it as a potentially unwanted program (PUP). Wave Browser makes system-level changes to your device, bombards you with ads, and re-installs itself even if you manually remove it from your device. In short, it is an extremely unsafe program.

In this article, we look into what Wave Browser is, how it affects your system, and how you can permanently remove it from your device.

What is Wave Browser?

Screenshot of Wave browser website homepage

At first glance, Wave Browser looks like an innocuous web browser. But in truth, Wave Browser is potentially malicious software.

The software was released in 2015 by Wavesor Software, which appears to be a subsidiary of another company with links to Genimous Technology Co. Ltd. in China. It has since become known as a subpar browser that keeps relentlessly installing itself on your device.

There are a few things that make this browser terrifying. The most pressing is that Wave Browser does not require administrative rights to execute changes to your device.

What’s more, it regularly deposits scheduled tasks to reinstall itself after a basic uninstall. And, as recently as 2021, only a few antivirus software were flagging Wave Browser as a threat despite its suspicious behavior.

Is Wave Browser safe?

No, Wave Browser is not safe. However, Wave Browser is not exactly a virus, either. Strictly speaking, it actually is a run-of-the-mill internet browser. You can still use it to browse the web, just like any other internet browser.

However, Wave Browser is invasive and insecure. As such, we strongly advise against using it. Below, we discuss the reasons why you shouldn’t use Wave Browser.

Why Should I Remove Wave Browser?

Let’s take a more detailed look at why you should uninstall Wave Browser and switch to a better browser that has stronger privacy features.

Infographic showing why should you remove Wave browser

It’s stuffed with advertising

Wave will routinely serve you with advertisements, discount offers, and more. Some of those ads may have links in them.

If you click on one of those, you may be opening the door for more malware, identity theft, phishing, and even remote takeover of your device.

It’s considered to be a browser hijacker

Many consider Wave Browser to be both a search hijacker and a browser hijacker. The software can take control of your search queries, your default homepage, and more.

Recent independent user research into the company behind Wave Browser, Genimous Technology Co. Ltd, claimed that they were using multiple other software products in a similar way. These browser extensions were designed to hijack and redirect people’s online searches, sending them to websites infested with malware or tools to gather and resell user data. They included extensions with names like Search Encrypt, Hide My Searches, and Encrypted Search.

Your personal data could be at risk

According to its privacy policy, Wave Browser may collect:

  • Cookies stored on your device
  • Third-party tracking information
  • Server logs (records of websites you’ve visited)
  • Demographic information, including your age, gender, household income, political affiliation, race, and religion
  • The type of device you’re using
  • Your IP address (which can be tied to your location)

This is a pretty extensive list and includes information you ideally shouldn’t be sharing, such as your IP address. Your IP can be tied to your location, which can give malicious actors a way to track you.

What’s more, the company doesn’t specify a data retention length. Instead, they’ll keep your data for “the length of time your personal information remains relevant.”

Wave Browser can make system-level changes to your computer

Wave Browser’s permissions let it make system-level changes to your computer. As a result, you could find your browser homepage and other settings changed without your permission. In the worst-case scenario, such software could feasibly install other malware onto your computer.

Screenshot of Wave browser installer

As you can see from the installer, Wave Browser wants a whole bunch of permissions upon installation. If you accept those checkboxes:

  • Any task that launches an internet browser will start using Wave Browser instead of your usual browser.
  • Wave Browser will inherit browsing history and other stored data from your usual browser.
  • You’ll give Wave Browser permission to run at startup.

That last permission is particularly worrisome. Once Wave gets onto your machine, it’ll dig its claws into your computer like a tick and assimilate into startup tasks that set up each computer session. This makes it so that, as you’re about to discover, uninstalling Wave is no walk in the park.

How to Uninstall Wave Browser

Uninstalling browser iconSince this software penetrates the System Registry and establishes itself there permanently, Windows users need to use the below guides to completely remove Wave Browser for good. Otherwise, it’ll keep coming back when that embedded scheduled task runs.

How to remove Wave Browser on Windows 10

There are several steps to uninstalling Wave Browser from your Windows computer. We’ve set these out in separate stages below to help you work through them.

1. Uninstall Wave Browser

  1. Click on the “Start” button, then search for your “Apps and Features” control panel.
  2. Under your list of apps, find “Wave Browser.”
  3. Click the “Uninstall” option beside Wave.

Screenshot of Windows, Apps and features

2. Close lingering Wave Browser tasks

Next, you’ll need to check that the software doesn’t have any tasks running on your machine.

  1. Locate the “Task Manager” by hitting Ctrl, Shift, and Esc simultaneously, or by searching for it in the “Start” menu.
  2. In Task Manager, click the “Processes” tab.
  3. Find anything containing “Wave Browser” or similar.
  4. Click on each suspicious process, then click “End Task.” If you’re in doubt, drop us a comment. You can cause problems on your computer if you kill the wrong task.
  5. If you’re unsure about a task, you can also right-click on them, then click “Open File Location.” If you see a mention of Wave, you can delete the file location completely.

Screenshot of Windows Task Manager

3. Disable Wave Browser startup tasks

This is where you could well find lingering Wave Browser tasks. Startup tasks literally run when your machine is starting up. Essentially, by depositing a task into the startup routine, Wave can reinstall itself if left unchecked.

  1. Return to the “Task Manager.”
  2. Click on the “Startup” tab this time.
  3. Click on any processes related to Wave, then click “Disable.” In the example, it’s the “Wavesor Software” task.

Screenshot of Startup Tasks, Windows Task Manager

4. Delete Wave Browser from Registry

The Windows Registry contains many of the settings for your operating system, software, and more. Since Wave Browser can embed itself in your Registry, it can make system-level changes and even repopulate itself when you think you’ve uninstalled it. So, the next step is to cleanse your Windows Registry:

  1. Open your Windows search bar and search for “Registry Editor,” then launch it.
  2. Click on “Edit” and choose “Find” from the drop-down list.
  3. Search for “Wave Browser” in the text field and click “Find Next.”
  4. Any time that you discover a Wave Browser entry in the Registry, delete it.
  5. Repeat the above step until you’ve deleted all of the entries.

Screenshot of Reg Editor

Congratulations! Now, you know how to delete the Wave Browser on a Windows computer. If you need to use another browser in the meantime, we’ve covered this in more detail further down in the article. However, we advise against Microsoft Edge, one of the least privacy-friendly, big-name browsers around.

How to Remove Wave Browser on Mac

If you’re wondering how to uninstall the Wave Browser app on a Mac, it’s similar to Windows. However, as the software differs, you’ll need to follow the steps below.

1. Move Wave to the Trash

  1. Click on the “Finder” application.
  2. Click “Go,” then “Applications.”
  3. Look for the Wave Browser program. If you find suspicious applications, move them to trash.

Screenshot of Applications folder, Mac

2. Remove browser plugins and extensions

  1. Open Safari and go to “Preferences” in the top-left of your screen.
  2. Navigate to “Extensions.”
  3. Click on any suspicious extensions you don’t recognize, then click “Uninstall.”

Screenshot of Safari, Extension Panel

It’s worth noting that you should only use trusted browser extensions. If you’re not sure which to avoid, check out our guide on the privacy risks of browser extensions. This guide also contains information on removing browser extensions on other browsers.

How to Protect Yourself Against Wave Browser

The best way to protect yourself against any PUP is to stick to the beaten path. Use the tried-and-tested, well-reviewed software products chosen by millions around the world and reviewed by experts.

There are also specific, concrete steps you can take to protect yourself from Wave Browser and other potentially unwanted programs. Let’s take a look at them below.

Infographic showing how to protect yourself against Wave browser

1. Be careful what you click

Much of the advice for avoiding Wave and similar PUPs is the same as with any dangerous software. Avoid clicking on pop-up adverts, links within spam emails, and other unrecognized messages.

2. Avoid suspicious or unofficial software downloads

Refrain from downloading software from anywhere but official websites and verified marketplaces (like Google Play Store and Apple App Store).

iOS users are automatically a little safer than Android users as Apple has stringent checks around apps allowed on its devices. Meanwhile, Android allows for custom APKs (software downloads) to be installed, so be careful about downloading apps from unofficial sources.

3. Use cybersecurity software

Another way to shore up your defenses is to use the best cybersecurity software as an additional layer of protection. Tools like virtual private networks (VPNs) can reduce the chance of you becoming a victim.

Even if you accidentally download browser hijackers, your VPN can still obscure your IP address so that third parties can’t get a hold of your IP. VPNs also encrypt your internet activity from prying eyes.

We recommend anyone browsing online to use a VPN. Find out more about VPN software, or go straight to checking out our top-recommend VPN, NordVPN. NordVPN consistently tops our stringent tests in security, privacy, speed, and user-friendliness.

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4. Use an antivirus scanner

Unfortunately, not all antivirus scanners will pick up Wave Browser as a potentially unwanted program. Thankfully, premier antivirus software like BitDefender will.

BitDefender conducts regular scans of your PC so it can weed out potentially malicious programs. This will keep your device from getting infected. It can also be used to manually quarantine and delete software like Wave Browser.

Visit Bitdefender Antivirus

You can check out our Bitdefender review for more information, or visit the Bitdefender website through the link above.

5. Surf the web with a private browser

Instead of using Wave Browser, choose a trusted browser that has proven to be beneficial to your privacy.

We recommend Tor Browser if you’re a power user who needs to access the most remote places on the web. Just be warned that it can slow down your browsing experience. For casual or everyday use, your best bet is Mozilla Firefox or Brave.

We discuss these browsers in more detail in the section below.

What are the Best Browsers for Privacy?

Clearly, Wave Browser isn’t the best example of online privacy. Your internet browser is your primary tool for browsing the web, so it needs to be safe and secure.

Check out the best internet browsers for privacy if you need a replacement. Here’s a quick rundown.

BrowserDetails
Tor Logo

Tor Browser

The Tor Browser masks your identity by sending your traffic through three levels of encryption. It also deletes cookies after each session. Tor is the most secure browser on the market by far, but it slows down loading time and grants you access to the dark web, which can lead you to dangerous websites.
Brave logo mini

Brave

The Brave web browser automatically blocks a number of malicious and undesirable tools, including trackers and third-party cookies, certain phishing attempts, and malware. It can also block advertising pop-ups on every website you use, plus it upgrades unsecured HTTP connections to HTTPS where possible.
Firefox Logo Small

Mozilla Firefox

Some of the security features built into Mozilla Firefox include enhanced tracking protection, DNS over HTTPS, and total cookie protection. The browser also offers some protection against phishing attacks and malware. You can also benefit from the Firefox extensions store, which offers things like in-browser VPN connections and other useful tools.
Safari Logo Small

Safari

Being an Apple product, Safari is pretty secure. Safari uses Google’s Safe Browsing database, which helps guard your device against malware and phishing. It can also automatically block malicious websites and pop-up ads.
Chromium Logo Small

Chromium

Chromium is a secure browser offered by Google-sanctioned third parties, though it has no official download source, so be wary of where you source it from. Upon startup, Chromium connects to Google to verify the legitimacy of installed extensions. Bear in mind though that this browser is intended for technical users like developers. We recommend choosing one of the above browsers if you’re simply looking for a day-to-day browser.

Conclusion: Avoid Wave Browser, Browse the Web Safely

Browsers and search engines iconWave Browser is a potentially unwanted program that doesn’t quite meet the classification of malware. But it’s considered unsafe, and you should take steps to remove it from your machine and choose another browser.

This potentially malicious software has several characteristics that make it an undesirable browser. It’s an evasive app that can embed itself into your device’s software, making it very difficult to remove.

Wave Browser can also redirect your search queries while collecting a range of personal data, some of which are considered invasive. The app is also linked to a Chinese development company, and China’s privacy laws lack the protection we might expect.

You can uninstall Wave browser using Bitdefender, but for complete removal, we recommend using the steps outlined in the above article. We also recommend using the best cybersecurity tools to defend yourself, such as NordVPN.

How to Uninstall Wave Browser: Frequently Asked Questions

Got questions about Wave or how to uninstall Wave Browser? Check out our frequently asked questions below.

Is Wave Browser a virus?

Wave Browser isn’t a virus, but it does cause serious issues. It’s a functional internet browser that’ll let you surf the web. However, it collects your personal data and reinstalls itself upon deletion. It’s also capable of changing your default search engine just like other well-known browser hijackers do. As such, we don’t recommend using Wave Browser. We advise you to choose a tried-and-tested browser for privacy instead, such as Mozilla Firefox or Brave.

What is Wave Browser used for?

Wave Browser is an internet browser. You use it to surf the internet in the same way that you would use Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, or Safari. However, unlike those browsers, Wave Browser comes with serious privacy concerns. To protect your privacy online, we advise that you choose a trusted browser such as those mentioned above.

How do I get rid of Wave Browser?

With most software, you can simply uninstall the program to get rid of it. Unfortunately, Wave Browser is capable of reinstalling itself. As a result, the process is more in-depth. We strongly advise reading our full guide to uninstalling Wave Browser if you want to permanently remove it from your computer.

Is it safe to install Wave Browser?

While there’s no guarantee that installing Wave Browser will lead to negative consequences, we advise against using it for a number of reasons:

  • Wave Browser is capable of making system-level changes to your device.
  • The software’s capabilities could allow it to hijack your online search queries.
  • Wave can reinstall itself, even if you’ve attempted to uninstall it.
  • The browser is capable of capturing personal information, and it has links to a Chinese company that has been named in user research into browser hijackers.
Is Wave Browser a browser hijacker?

Wave Browser is often called a “browser hijacker.” What this means is that the software could potentially change your browser’s settings. This includes your default search engine, but browser hijackers can also redirect you to unsafe websites and gather personal information. Wave Browser does indeed appear to meet most of these criteria, as it can change your Windows Registry settings, hijack your searches, and gathers personal data.

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