Android chrome opens random pages

Android chrome opens random pages DEFAULT

Fix your browser opening by itself in Android

Milan Stanojevic
by Milan Stanojevic

Windows & Software Expert

Milan has been enthusiastic about PCs ever since his childhood days, and this led him to take interest in all PC-related technologies. Before joining WindowsReport, he worked as a front-end web developer. Read more

  • A smartphone is a device that all of us use on daily basis, and this is why it’s crucial that your phone is working properly.
  • Many users reported that the browser keeps opening by itself on Android, but there’s a way to fix that.
  • Want to learn more about Android phones? You can find all the information you need in this Android article.
  • Having additional problems? Our dedicated Fix Hub has more fix guides like this one, so be sure to check it out.
browser keeps opening by itself android
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Android phones are great because they are so customizable, but in some instances, you can encounter certain problems.

Many users reported that the browser keeps opening by itself on Android, and this can be an annoying issue, so today we’ll show you how to fix it once and for all.

How do I stop Android from automatically opening my browser?

1. Clear cache and browser data

  1. On your phone, go to Settings > Apps > All and then select your web browser.
  2. Now select Force Stop, Clear Cache, and Clear Data.
    clear cache browser keeps opening by itself android
  3. Note: If you use the same browser on your PC, it’s advised to clear its history and cache and turn off syncing temporarily.
  4. Start the browser again and check if the problem is resolved.

This is a simple solution, and in some cases, you just need to Force Stop the browser, but if that doesn’t work try clearing the cache. If the issue persists, use the Clear Data option to reset your browser to the default.

2. Remove any suspicious apps

  1. Go to Settings > Apps > All.
  2. Locate the app that has no name and select it. It’s usually located at the bottom.
    unknown app browser keeps opening by itself android
  3. Now choose the Uninstall option.
    uninstall app browser keeps opening by itself android

Sometimes this problem can occur if you install an application from a third-party source. These types of apps can be malicious and cause similar problems, so be sure to remove them.

Note: Sometimes the malicious application can have a normal name, and it can come from the Play Store. Users reported issues with Bluetooth Auto Connect, but after removing it, the problem went away.

Other applications that can cause this problem are:

  • GPS Averaging
  • ApkExtractorLite
  • Bluetooth Toggle
  • Deleo
  • Spelling Corrector
  • Peel Remote
  • S Voice
  • Save & Repost for Instagram

These are the common culprits, but the cause can be some other app as well.

3. Change your web browser and scan your phone with an antivirus

phone browser keeps opening by itself android
  1. Download and install a different web browser and check if the problem persists.
  2. If the issue appears on another browser, scan your phone with an antivirus app.

If your browser keeps opening by itself, the most common cause is a malicious third-party application, so be sure to check installed apps and remove any apps that look suspicious to you.

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How to find out which app is trying to open spam websites?

Based on the troubleshooting OP did following my advices, the culprit appeared to be a system app as a malware named System Locker with package name com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker. The issue appears to be a result of a system update, per some users of the device.

As usual with a system app, if you get to use the Disable option under Settings → Apps → System apps/All apps → the culprit, than by all means, do disable that app, force-stop it or reboot the Android. The issue should stand resolved until you factory reset the device.

Before you begin with a bit technical steps mentioned below, you would want to try a rather user friendly solution suggested here. It that doesn't work for you, than come back and follow the rest of my answer.

Here's how I found out the culprit. The in-built Android tool dumpsys inter alia shows which app was called by which other app. The caller is referred to as Calling Package.

Provided that you have setup adb and usb-debugging successfully in the PC and Android device, do the following:

  1. keep the device connected to PC

  2. reboot the device or force-stop that default browser app

  3. let the malware do its job, that is, have the browser be launched automatically

  4. as soon as the browser is launched, do nothing with the device physically, but run the following adb command on PC:

Here's the output from OP's device:

ACTIVITY MANAGER ACTIVITIES (dumpsys activity activities) Display #0 (activities from top to bottom): Stack #1: Task id #2 * TaskRecord{8190ba1 #2 A=android.task.browser U=0 sz=1} userId=0 effectiveUid=u0a64 mCallingUid=u0a26 mCallingPackage=com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker affinity=android.task.browser intent={act=android.intent.action.VIEW dat= flg=0x10000000} ... ... Hist #0: ActivityRecord{66cd59b u0 t2} launchedFromUid=10026 launchedFromPackage=com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker userId=0 app=ProcessRecord{5ad1810} Intent { act=android.intent.action.VIEW dat= flg=0x10000000 }

In the output: :

  • is the package name of stock Android browser in your device
  • com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker is the package name of the malware app and is referred as calling package.

If you've found the malware, avoid next troubleshooting and skip to the heading Nuke the malware.

(In response to a duplicate posted here -- the culprit app was Farming Simulator 18)

In certain circumstances, aforesaid troubleshooting may not be able to help, such as when calling package name is the package name of the browser itself shown in dumpsys output. In that case, prefer logcat. Setup logcat like this:

adb logcat -v long,descriptive | grep "dat=http" # you can grep anything from URL too. It is purely up to you. adb logcat -v long,descriptive > logcat.txt # alternative; if grep is not installed in your OS. You need to search into that file now.

Now unlock the device and let the browser with that URL be launched automatically. Also, press with if you are saving the output into a file.

The output we're seeking would look akin to:

[ 11-27 16:03:22.592 3499: 6536 I/ActivityManager ] START u0 {act=android.intent.action.VIEW dat= flg=0x10000000 pkg=org.mozilla.firefox cmp=org.mozilla.firefox/.App} from uid 10021 ... [ 11-27 16:03:22.647 3499:15238 I/ActivityManager ] START u0 {act=android.intent.action.VIEW dat= pkg=org.mozilla.firefox cmp=org.mozilla.firefox/org.mozilla.gecko.BrowserApp} from uid 10331

See the two highlighted UIDs 10021 and 10331. One of them (they would be different in you case) is for the browser app launched, and one of them is malware app requesting that URL. So, how to find what is what?

If you've root access, simply do:

adb shell su -c 'ls -l /data/data/ | grep u0_a21' adb shell su -c 'ls -l /data/data/ | grep u0_a331'

Output would be like:

drwx------ 5 u0_a21 u0_a21 4096 2018-01-01 10:31 drwx------ 5 u0_a331 u0_a331 4096 2018-01-01 10:31 com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker

If you don't have root access, do:

Now search for the line with your UIDs such as "userId=10021" and "userId=10331". The line above the line searched would give you the package name, and may look something like this:

Package [] (172ca1a): userId=10021 ... Package [com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker] (172ca1a): userId=10331

The two package names are (for Chrome browser -- certainly not a malware) and com.tihomobi.lockframe.syslocker. To know the app's name from package name, use my answer here.

Now that you know the culprit, you can disable it through GUI as stated above. If that is not possible, do:

adb shell pm disable-user PKG_NAME # disables the app adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 PKG_NAME # removes the app for primary user adb shell am force-stop PKG_NAME # only force-stops the app

Replace PKG_NAME with package name of the malware you noted in the troubleshooting above.

That should do the trick. Furthermore, you can also consider removing the malware app permanently for all users, but that requires root access though.

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