How to remove unwanted popups that keep showing up on Galaxy S9

Having popups problem on your Galaxy S9? Learn how to deal with it by following our suggestions in this post.

Problem: Galaxy S9 popups keep showing up

A pop up saying one of many things ‘helping’ pops up every couple of minutes. It will say either Optimizing Battery, Speeding Up Internet, Cleaning Phone, Cooling Down Phone and couple of others. It interrupts whatever I am doing. I have to close that And the follow up ad that is right after. I don’t really know how to proceed as most places tell me to run it in safe mode but don’t tell me what do to after. I can send a screen shot of what the pop up looks like.

Solution: Unwanted popups is usually a sign that there’s virus, malware, or bad third party app installed. In majority of cases, popups like the ones you’re getting are designed to force you to click or tap on an option such as a link for an app installation page that redirects to Play Store app. In other cases, popups may also be used by malicious developers to force you to download an app from a non-Play Store source. To fix your problem, there’s a number of troubleshooting steps that you must do.

Solution 1: Check on Safe Mode

Safe Mode is a software environment used by Samsung technicians to determined whether or not a downloaded app is problematic. In this mode, all the apps that did not come with the operating system will be suspended. So, to check if our suspicion that a third party app must be causing the popups on your phone, you can try to run your S9 on safe mode. If it works normally without these popups, that’s a confirmation of our guess. To boot your S9 to safe mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the model name screen.
  3. When “SAMSUNG” appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see Safe Mode.

Restarting your phone to safe mode won’t automatically remove the bad apps, nor would it tell  you which of the apps is the cause. Remember, if no popups show on safe mode, that’s an indication that you have an app problem. 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.
  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.
  4. After you uninstall a single app, restart the phone to normal mode and check for the problem.
  5. If popups remain, repeat steps 1-4.

Solution 2: Uninstall recently installed apps

If the popups started after you installed an app, you can skip the safe mode method and instead uninstall the suspect app. Some games may be used by malicious developers to compromise a device and force it to display ads or popups. Make sure to only install apps from reputable developers.

To uninstall an app:

  1. From the Home screen, swipe up on an empty spot to open the Apps tray.
  2. Tap Settings > Apps.
  3. Tap the desired application in the default list.
  4. To display preinstalled apps, tap Menu > Show system apps.
  5. Tap UNINSTALL > OK.

Solution 3: Wipe the phone

Another effective way to address malware, viruses, or popups is factory reset. As its name suggests, this procedure reverts all software settings to their defaults. If the first two solutions above won’t work at all, we suggest that you factory reset your S9.

  1. Create your file backups. Factory reset will erase all user data so be sure make copies of your photos, videos, documents, etc.
  2. Turn off the device.
  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.

How to prevent popups on your Galaxy S9

Just like in real life, prevention is always better than solutions. If you don’t want to compromise your phone security and information, you should learn how to prevent viruses or bad apps on the device. You are the first line of defense for your phone. If you are not careful with what apps to install or sites to visit, it’s only a matter of time before an issue like this occur.

Only install apps from Play Store

As much as possible, stay away from apps that can be installed from outside the Play Store. Only advanced users are encouraged to get apps from sources other than the Play Store. If you don’t know what we’re talking about here, that’s a sign that you’re not an advanced Android user. Stick with the ones you can get from Google’s Play Store. Otherwise, do more research before installing applications not sanctioned by Google.

Even Play Store apps may be compromised

Google uses an automated system to screen apps and sometimes, clever malicious developers know how to fool the system to allow their products to be distributed in the Play Store. So, it still falls on your shoulders to always be on the alert, even when you only get apps from the Play Store. Before you install an app, make sure to check reviews from other users. If the app is problematic or is suspected of hosting malware, some users may say so in their reviews. This is common with some game apps in Play Store.

Stick with official apps

In general, reputable companies also create their own apps to promote their products and services. Make sure that the apps you install only comes from such companies themselves. For instance, some apps may offer free services to handle purchases although they’re not officiall accredited by financial institutions. Such of such apps may actually be collecting information to be sold to other parties. Others may access device information or even hijack the system to force malware or viruses later on.

Use antivirus app

Although you are the best antivirus for your device, it also won’t hurt if you can install one good antivirus app. Just be sure to install a reputable antivirus app and not one that only poses to be one. There are many users who think they’ve installed an antivirus app when in fact, it’s really  a bad one and does the opposite. Do some research about some of the best antivirus out there.

Also, make sure to only install one security antivirus app. Having more than one can cause more problems and can seriously affect the performance of your device.

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