The Powershell.Exe Virus: What It Is and How to Remove It

Banish this pesky trojan

A conceptual illustration of the Powershell.exe virus destroying a laptop computer.

 Lifewire / Theresa Chiechi

Is your computer acting strangely? Are there multiple pop-up banner ads or strange icons appearing on your desktop? You may have been infected with the Powershell.exe virus

The Powershell.exe virus only affects Windows-based PCs. Macs and smartphones are unaffected. 

What Is the Powershell.exe Virus?

The Powershell.exe Virus is a potentially dangerous form of Trojan that's designed to steal your data and information. It can also disrupt activities on your PC such as web browsing. 

Potentially very destructive, it opens your computer up to many risks and dangers, while hiding discreetly behind an innocent-sounding name. 

Powershell.exe is also the name of a legitimate piece of software that is installed on all Windows-based computers. It's important to be able to tell the difference between the two types. 

How Does Powershell.exe Work?

Powershell.exe is an ordinary part of the Windows operating system, but it can also be hijacked by viruses and Trojans. The Powershell.exe virus commits multiple offenses against your computer.

At its simplest, it can force your browser to show multiple pop-ups and notifications for adverts with those adverts often being suspicious and malicious in themselves. But it can also wok as a Trojan allowing hackers to gain access to your data and information. Other times, it can make your PC act unusually. 

It's important that you delete the threat quickly so that the problem doesn't escalate and get worse.

How Do I Know I Have the Powershell.exe Virus?

How easily detectable Powershell.exe is depends on what it's doing to your system. Sometimes, it can be tricky to spot, working in the background allowing hackers to track your data and keystrokes. Other times, it can be obvious, showing up odd pop-up ads or banners, or making your PC act slowly.

Keep an eye on what your computer is doing. Is it acting unusually slowly? Are icons appearing that you don't remember installing? You may have been infected with the Powershell.exe virus. 

It's important to run regular antivirus software scans or use malware detection tools to spot any potential issues before they get worse. 

How Did I Get the Powershell.exe Virus?

Powershell.exe can infect your PC through a number of ways. It can be included via dubious software downloads you've made, such as via torrenting sites. It can also be included in spam emails which include malicious attachments or files. 

It's also possible to get the virus by accepting notifications on your web browser, so always be alert to what you click on. 

Anywhere that the source is dubious is the perfect breeding ground for both Powershell.exe and other Trojans. 

How Do I Get Rid of the Powershell.exe Virus?

The most effective way to get rid of the Powershell.exe Trojan virus is to use antivirus software, as well as a malware removal app. 

Antivirus software can take several hours to complete the process, depending on the speed of your computer, but it also offers you the best methods in which to remove the malicious files. 

It's also worth installing a malware removal tool which helps detect malware that Powershell.exe could have downloaded to your computer before it causes any problems.

Like antivirus software, malware scanning can take many hours depending on the size of your computer's hard drive, as well as its speed. 

You can also use System Restore to return to an earlier point on your computer before you picked up the Powershell.exe virus. Be sure to pick a time period where you know you definitely didn't already have the virus on your computer. 

Due to how dangerous Powershell.exe can be, it may be worthwhile reformatting and reinstalling your operating system. It's the best guarantee that you've completely deleted the Powershell.exe virus from your system. 

It can take a long time to do and requires a certain amount of knowledge when it comes to setting your computer up. Don't rush into the decision and try all other methods first. 

How Can I Avoid Getting the Powershell.exe Virus Again?

There are a few key ways in which you can lower your chances of being re-infected with Powershell.exe (or receiving any other virus). There are also specific tips that relate directly to Powershell.exe.

  • Update your antivirus software and malware protection. Keep your antivirus software and malware protection up to date. New virus definitions are released daily and these keep your PC informed on what to look for with new virus and malware-based threats. Make sure your anit-virus software updates itself at least once a day.
  • Be wary of new programs. It's important to know the source of the programs and apps you've downloaded. Less reputable sites can include viruses and Trojans like Powershell.exe.
  • Stick to well-known websites. Powershell.exe can also infect your computer through the suspicious websites you might browse. Clicking on the 'wrong' link can lead to you downloading Powershell.exe. Be careful on websites such as torrenting sites. 
  • Don't click on banner ads. When a pop-up banner appears when browsing a website, don't click on it. Often, it's safest to go to a different website than stay on a site that inundates you with pop-up adverts.