What is About:Blank? How to Get Rid of it?

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You are probably quite familiar with your browser’s address bar, the text box that contains the URL of the web page you are on, but you may have been surprised to see something like :blank there instead of a real web page address.

Common sense has probably already helped to make sure that the empty part of about:blank is clearly related to the fact that you are viewing a completely empty page in your browser.

About:blank is a special page in most browsers (Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Firefox or Google Chrome) that does nothing more than display a blank page. Although most popular web browsers have a default web page to which the browser redirects you on startup, corrupted profile data can instead cause your web browser to display a blank page with the subject “about:blank” in the URL bar.

About:blank is not really “about” anything. The word “about:” is a keyword that some browsers use to enable certain features or display standard pages.

About:blank is not malware, but…

Since I keep hearing from people who suspect otherwise, I want to be particularly clear:

about:blank is not malware…

The problem is that IE may choose to display about:blank because of malware.

Again, about:blank is not malware; at worst, it is a symptom of malware. Malware sometimes breaks things and IE can’t display a page, in which case it displays about:blank.

The solution in these cases is to run up-to-date scans for malware.

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How to Stop Seeing the About:Blank Error?

Although about:blank is not malicious in itself, the main cause for concern when you see an about:blank page is that it may indicate that your computer is infected with something malicious. This would mainly happen outside of normal browsing. So don’t worry if you see the strange about:blank page in Google Chrome, for example. However, if you see this several times without changing your behaviour, it could be a sign that you have been hacked or that a hacker has control of the device.

There are malware programs that use these “near-empty” pages to flood a computer system with annoying pop-ups, but these alone will not damage your PC, but rather distract you. In this case, it is best to run anti-virus software, adware or spyware. This should solve the problem and allow your computer to quickly return to normal use. Don’t forget to reset your browser’s URL if it has also been changed to something like a blank.

As mentioned above, Chrome has a well-known problem that sometimes makes the weird “About:Blank” page appear instead of doing something useful. This is caused by a corrupted page cache, which causes the browser to try to access the “About:Blank” page instead of the page it is supposed to get. Fortunately, this corruption is easy to fix.

Other Causes of About:Blank

In some cases, incomplete removal of malware may result in About:Blank pages or pop-up windows with About:Blank. In this case, the active part of the malware has been removed, but the embedded browser instruction remains.

This instruction tells the browser to open these pop-up windows, but since the main malware application has disappeared, the pop-up windows are never filled with new links and hacked content. So, although it’s not very malicious, it can certainly be very annoying to deal with.

But the solution to this problem is quite simple. You should perform a complete malware and antivirus scan to remove all traces of malware and antivirus software from your system. The worst is probably over, but your previous scan didn’t cover everything.


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