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How to fix a virus infected Galaxy S9 Plus (keeps redirected to a porn site)

It’s a sad reality that many Android users are still being victimized by virus or malware everyday. Today’s troubleshooting article will give you important tips on what you can do if your #GalaxyS9Plus has become infected. Follow our simple suggestions below and you can steer clear of any serious malware issue that may come your way.

Before we proceed, we want to remind you that if you are looking for solutions to your own #Android issue, you can contact us by using the link provided at the bottom of this page. When describing your issue, please be as detailed as possible so we can easily pinpoint a relevant solution. If you can, kindly include the exact error messages you are getting to give us an idea where to start. If you have already tried some troubleshooting steps before emailing us, make sure to mention them so we can skip them in our answers.

Problem #1: How to fix a virus infected Galaxy S9 Plus (keeps redirected to a porn site)

Hello. I was using the kodi app on my fire stick and it sometimes will ask to pair your device to play a link. I’ve never had any problems before. I just recently switched to the galaxy s9 plus from being with apple for 5+ years. Once I clicked the box confirming I wasn’t a robot and clicked pair Google popped up and it said if you don’t click on this button in 5 minutes a virus will have access to all this stuff on my phone and also a Samsung alert popped up too and said a virus was detected. I didn’t click on anything I just exited out of the internet. I haven’t gotten any more alerts but i keep getting notifications for ” new messages” for samsung internet and I accidentally clicked on one and it takes me to a xxx site. There was a lookout app that was already in my phone when I switched and its saying there is nothing wrong but I’ve never received these notifications until I did the pair thing.

Solution: We’re here to provide support to Android devices only so if you’re having issues with your phone after linking or pairing it with a third party device like Fire stick, you should consider getting help from its developer or manufacturer.

Factory reset

As far as Android troubleshooting is concerned however, we recommend that you wipe your S9 Plus by doing a factory reset. This is an important first step in making sure that you start from scratch. We have no idea if your phone is currently infected by a virus or malware so factory resetting it should be a good benchmark.

To factory reset your S9 Plus:

  1. Create  a backup of your important files such as photos, videos, music, etc. You can use Samsung Smart Switch app to back your data up to your PC.
  2. Turn off the device. This is important. If you can’t turn it off, you’ll never be able to boot to Recovery Mode. If you are not able to shut the device off regularly via the Power button, wait until the phone’s battery is drained. Then, charge the phone for 30 minutes before booting to Recovery Mode.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Filter installed app

Now that you’ve ensured that your phone’s software is clean, the next good thing to do is to pick the apps you add to the system. Not every app that you can download from Google Play Store or from other sources outside the Play Store are trustworthy. Some of them are designed to act as backdoors that will compromise your phone security to allow other malicious apps to be installed later on. Other malicious apps are built to steal personal information while others are more brazen, forcing your browser or other apps to redirect you to another website or to a download page in the Play Store. If you don’t screen what apps you install on your system properly, there’s a big chance that you’ll most likely end up with a compromised system. Needless to say, it’s your responsibility to ensure that only good apps are added to your phone. After factory reset, make sure that you install apps individually. Try to install official apps from reputable companies only and avoid products from unknown developers. If you are not sure whether an app can be trusted or not, visit its Play Store download page and check the reviews from other users. You can also do a quick Google search to see if the said app is a known malware or not.

If you get apps outside of Play Store, you’ll need to exert extra vigilance since there’s no longer any extra protection for you unlike when you get apps from the Play Store. Google screens apps in the Play Store but even then, some bad ones manage to sneak in and offer themselves to the general public. Apps from outside the Play Store can be more dangerous for average users in the sense that users are left without any anti-malware protection when installing them. Be sure to only install trusted apps from non-Play Store sources.

Avoid visiting booby-trapped websites

Some websites, like bad apps, are designed to exploit Android weaknesses. If you keep getting redirected to another website, that’s probably because your web browser has been hijacked, or there’s an installed app in the system that forces the browser to open another site. If you are positive that you did not install any bad app and your web browser keeps getting redirected, try wiping its data and see what happens.

Here are the steps on how to clear the data of an app:

  1. Open Settings app.
  2. Tap Apps.
  3. Tap on More settings at the upper right (three-dot icon).
  4. Select Show system apps.
  5. Find and tap your app.
  6. Tap Storage.
  7. Tap Clear Data button.
  8. Restart your S9 and check for the problem.

Install an antivirus app

Having an antivirus in your phone won’t guarantee 100% protection but it’s one of the things that you can do to minimize bad apps from being installed. It does not mean that you can be laxed when it comes to selecting what apps to install or what websites to visit though. Some malicious apps or viruses are so advanced that even the best Android antivirus applications may not be able to detect them. Virus makers and security teams are always in a constant cat-and-mouse battle so you can help yourself by preventing viruses from infecting your device in the first place.

Problem #2: Galaxy S9 Facebook app keeps crashing on regular mode but works on safe mode

My Facebook app for the last 8 hrs has suddenly decided to crash within 2 seconds of opening it everytime. Giving me the option to send feedback or close app (which it does anyway) I went thru all the steps on your page and got to the start up in safe mode. That worked! The app didn’t crash. I then started back up as normal and deleted a lot of recent apps hoping it was one of them that was causing the FB app to crash. However it’s still crashing. I was hoping to get advise on what apps could be crashing it as it doesn’t say how to look out for that on the safe mode section on the website. I would really appreciate any help. Many thanks.

Solution: We don’t work for Facebook so we can’t provide you a list of possible apps that may be causing it to crash. We’re not even aware if there’s a specific app that can do that at this time. If you are positive however that Facebook does not crash on safe mode, that’s a clear indicator that you have a bad third party app issue, meaning one of the apps is causing the problem.

Safe Mode is a tool to help technicians check if a third party app is interfering with Android or with other apps. The thing is, it won’t pinpoint the exact app. You’ll have to use the method of elimination to identify the culprit. To identify which of your apps is causing the trouble, you should boot the phone back to safe mode and follow these steps:

  1. Boot to safe mode.
  2. Check for the problem. If Facebook works and doesn’t crash, you have a bad third party app.
  3. Once you’ve confirmed that a third party app is to blame, you can start uninstalling apps individually. We suggest that you begin with the most recent ones you added. Start by uninstalling the most recent app.
  4. After you uninstall an app, restart the phone to normal mode and check for the problem.
  5. If your S9 is still problematic, repeat steps 1-4.

You have to continue doing the cycle until you figure out the cause. This can get really tedious if you have plenty of apps but there’s no shortcut.

Problem #3: Galaxy S9 becomes unresponsive after system update

Hi there. Just today I received a prompt for a System Software Update, set it to install and left it on the side for a bit while busy with something else. Around 20 minutes later I picked my phone back up and the screen was off. I assumed it was mid-reboot and left it for a few more minutes, but the screen was still off and was completely unresponsive to being put on charge and holding the power button. I’ve attempted to boot to Recovery/Odin mode as per your troubleshooting guide but still no luck. Any advice as to what I could do?

Solution: You should try a forced reboot first. If you don’t know how, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Power + Volume Down buttons for approximately 10 seconds or until the device power cycles. Allow several seconds for the Maintenance Boot Mode screen to appear.
  2. From the Maintenance Boot Mode screen, select Normal Boot. You can use the volume buttons to cycle through the available options and the lower left button (below the volume buttons) to select. Wait for up to 90 seconds for the reset to complete.

If you’ve already tried that, or if the phone remains unresponsive (no LED light, no sound, no vibration), let if charge for at least an hour. Then, once it has charged that long, try to see if you can boot it up to Recovery Mode. Here’s how:

  1. Turn off the device. This is important. If you can’t turn it off, you’ll never be able to boot to Recovery Mode. If you are not able to shut the device off regularly via the Power button, wait until the phone’s battery is drained. Then, charge the phone for 30 minutes before booting to Recovery Mode.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).

If the phone won’t boot to Recovery Mode, try booting it to Odin or Download mode. If that won’t work either, you’re out of luck. You should send the phone to Samsung so they can repair or replace it.

 


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