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Remove virus (Removal Guide) - Feb 2020 update

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Browser Hijackers is a domain related to browser hijacking activities on your device

The picture of is URL users may find attached to the homepage and new tab of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, MS Edge, or another browser, seemingly out of nowhere. However, the reason for this is a potentially unwanted program that was installed on the system by the user – either intentionally or not.

Questions about virus

After the hijack, users might also notice that their search engine is set to Live Start Page or Parallax Search, and all the search results are filled with sponsored links, as well as ads within the page. This guarantees that most infected users would click on sponsored links instead of organic search results – the activity provides monetary benefit for the browser hijacker[1] authors. It is also important to note that is set to gather a variety of information about users' web browsing habits.

Type Browser hijacker, potentially unwanted program 
Search engine set to  Live Start Page or Parallax Search 
Infiltration  Most of the browser hijackers and other potentially unwanted programs are distributed within software bundle packages, so users often skip the step that allows the installer to bring the PUP into the system. Additionally, some users might install the app without knowing about the browser hijacking functionality
  • New tab URL and homepage of the web browser set to one of the Parallaxsearch domains
  • Search results are filled with sponsored links and ads
  • Increased amount of advertisements on all visited websites
  • Slow operation of the web browser
  • Unknown extensions installed without permission, etc.
Dangers Installation of PUPs or malware, loss of money due to scams, information disclosure to unknown parties, etc. 
Termination Getting rid of a browser hijacker is usually not a complicated process that can be achieved by accessing the installed application list. Nevertheless, if you are having troubles, scanning the machine with anti-malware software might help you get rid of the PUP automatically
Optimization In some cases, PUPs may cause stability issues on your Windows computer. To fix system files and ensure the smooth operation of the machine, scan it with a repair tool Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego hijacker is usually installed as additional components with freeware[2] or shareware. While for most users, it may seem like the PUP appeared out of nowhere, it is ultimately them who agree to install it, so these intruders cannot be called malware. Despite that, not many are happy to see the unforeseen changes of their web browsers, as well as increased amounts of ads.

After the infiltration, it might change your default search engine to one of these domains:

Once these changes are made, you will be forbidden to access other search providers from the homepage. It happens because the hijacker might install helper objects, modify Windows Registry or shortcuts. Thus, in order to get back access to your browser, you have to remove

What is more, parallaxsearch might integrate third-party advertisements[3] into the search results or display on any website you visit. This activity is a part of program’s monetization strategy. By redirecting users to the affiliate sites, authors of the hijacker get pay-per-click profit.

The image of is a potentially unwanted program that redirects search queries to Live Start Page.

However, redirect tendencies are concerning. While some of the third-party ads can be entirely secure to click on, others can lead to suspicious websites, where you can find links to even more questionable or malware-laden websites. It can be very hard to separate secure sites and harmless content from untrustworthy ones, therefore, be very careful.

In order to make ads more interesting, virus gathers specific information that summarizes user’s browsing habits, for example, search and browsing history, type of browser and operating system, clicks on online advertisements and links, search queries, etc.

Based on the gathered details, it picks up targeted ads from third-party partners. Of course, it needs to share such “statistical” data with them, but think if you really want to disclose such information to unknown parties. If not, you should perform removal with the help of our instructions below.

Due to hijacking activities, security experts highly recommend to reset all the installed web browsers and also scan the system with anti-malware, as well as repair tool Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego.

Users can avoid the hijack if they install new programs correctly

The unwanted program hijack might occur when users do not pay attention to freeware or shareware installation. Developers of the PUP rely on the same old software bundling method. However, you can avoid this and other undesired apps by following these simple tips:

  • Install programs only from trustworthy Internet pages.
  • Do not install software or updates from pop-up ads.
  • Read the Privacy Policy, EULA, and other provided documents to make sure that you do not agree to install third-party software.
  • Choose Advanced/Custom settings instead of Quick/Standard.
  • Unmark all third-party programs, extensions and other “optional downloads.”[4]

The hijacker has already caused numerous problems for the users in the United States and several European countries, such as Bulgaria[5] and Hungary. Thus, you should be careful with software installation no matter where you live. search results are not organic - multiple sponsored links can be seen at the top

Uninstall and reset browser’s settings

You can find manual removal instructions presented at the end of the article. By following them, you will need to investigate the system and wipe out all questionable files, programs, or extensions from the browser. Note that, while not mandatory, web browser reset is highly recommended because browser hijackers often change the settings that may remain even after you eliminate the PUP.

However, you can choose the easiest way and remove automatically using anti-spyware software. All you have to do is to install security software, update it, and run a full system scan.

You may remove virus damage with a help of Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego. SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner and Malwarebytes are recommended to detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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Reimage Happiness
Intego Happiness
Compatible with Microsoft Windows Supported versions Compatible with OS X Supported versions
What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

To remove virus, follow these steps:

Get rid of from Windows systems

Below, you can find a manual hijacker's removal guide. Follow the instructions carefully to wipe out all suspicious entries.

  1. Click Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs). Click 'Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features' (if you are 'Windows XP' user, click on 'Add/Remove Programs').
  2. If you are Windows 10 / Windows 8 user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once Quick Access Menu shows up, select Control Panel and Uninstall a Program. If you are 'Windows 10 / Windows 8' user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once 'Quick Access Menu' shows up, select 'Control Panel' and 'Uninstall a Program'.
  3. Uninstall and related programs
    Here, look for or any other recently installed suspicious programs.
  4. Uninstall them and click OK to save these changes. Right click on each of suspicious entries and select 'Uninstall'
  5. Remove from Windows shortcuts
    Right click on the shortcut of Mozilla Firefox and select Properties. Right click on browsers' icon and select 'Properties'
  6. Go to Shortcut tab and look at the Target field. Delete malicious URL that is related to your virus. Select 'Shortcut' tab and delete '' or other suspicious URL

Repeat steps that are given above with all browsers' shortcuts, including Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. Make sure you check all locations of these shortcuts, including Desktop, Start Menu and taskbar.

Eliminate from Mac OS X system

If your macOS is displaying some infection symptoms, proceed with the following guide:

Remove from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for entries.
  3. Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash)Uninstall from Mac 1

To fully remove, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:

  1. Select Go > Go to Folder.
  2. Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
  3. In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries related to and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the entries.Uninstall from Mac 2

Delete from Internet Explorer (IE)

Follow these steps to clean Internet Explorer after the hijack:

Remove dangerous add-ons:

  1. Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top-right corner of the browser
  2. Pick Manage Add-ons.
  3. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for and other suspicious plugins. Click on these entries and select Disable.Remove add-ons from Internet Explorer

Change your homepage if it was altered:

  1. Open IE and click on the Gear icon.
  2. Select Internet Options.
  3. In the General tab, delete the Home page address and replace it by your preferred one (for example,
  4. Click Apply and then select OK.Reset IE homepage

Delete temporary files:

  1. Press on the Gear icon and select Internet Options.
  2. Under Browsing history, click Delete…
  3. Select relevant fields and press Delete.Clear temporary files from Internet Explorer

Reset Internet Explorer:

  1. Click on Gear icon > Internet options and select Advanced tab.
  2. Select Reset.
  3. In the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Remove virus from Microsoft Edge

After the hijack, these guidelines will help you to reset Microsoft Edge:

Delete unwanted extensions from MS Edge:

  1. Select Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and pick Extensions.
  2. From the list, pick the extension and click on the Gear icon.
  3. Click on Uninstall at the bottom.Remove extensions from Edge

Clear cookies and other browser data:

  1. Click on the Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and select Privacy & security.
  2. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  3. Select everything (apart from passwords, although you might want to include Media licenses as well, if applicable) and click on Clear.Clear Edge browsing data

Reset MS Edge if that above steps did not work:

  1. Press on Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details arrow at the bottom of the window.
  3. Select Details tab.
  4. Now scroll down and locate every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right-click on each of them and select End Task to stop MS Edge from running.Reset MS Edge

If this solution failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method. Note that you need to backup your data before proceeding.

  1. Find the following folder on your computer: C:\\Users\\%username%\\AppData\\Local\\Packages\\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  2. Press Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all folders.
  3. Right-click on them and pick DeleteAdvanced MS Edge reset 1
  4. Now right-click on the Start button and pick Windows PowerShell (Admin).
  5. When the new window opens, copy and paste the following command, and then press Enter:

    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\\AppXManifest.xml” -VerboseAdvanced MS Edge reset 2

Instructions for Chromium-based Edge

Delete extensions from MS Edge (Chromium):

  1. Open Edge and click select Settings > Extensions.
  2. Delete unwanted extensions by clicking Remove.Remove extensions from Chromium Edge

Clear cache and site data:

  1. Click on Menu and go to Settings.
  2. Select Privacy and services.
  3. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  4. Under Time range, pick All time.
  5. Select Clear now.Clear browser data from Chroum Edge

Reset Chromium-based MS Edge:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. On the left side, pick Reset settings.
  3. Select Restore settings to their default values.
  4. Confirm with Reset.Reset Chromium Edge

Erase from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Uninstall suspicious add-ons and reset Firefox in order to get rid of

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions. Click on menu icon and select 'Add-ons'
  2. Here, select and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries. Select 'Extensions' and look for malicious entries. Click 'Remove' to get rid of each of them
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the menu (top right corner), choose Options General.
  4. Here, delete malicious URL and enter preferable website or click Restore to default.
  5. Click OK to save these changes. When in 'General' tab, delete malicious URL from 'Home Page' section or click on 'Restore to Default' button. Click 'OK' to save changes
  6. Reset Mozilla Firefox
    Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information. Click on menu icon and then on '?'. Select 'Troubleshooting Information'
  7. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times

Uninstall from Google Chrome

Remove unknown browser extensions and reset Google Chrome. Then you will be able to set your preferred domain instead of

  1. Delete malicious plugins
    Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions. Click on menu icon. Select 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Here, select and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries. Look for malicious entries and delete each of them by clicking on the Trash bin icon
  3. Change your homepage and default search engine if it was altered by your virus
    Click on menu icon and choose Settings.
  4. Here, look for the Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup option and click on Set pages. After clicking on menu and 'Settings', select 'Set pages'
  5. Now you should see another window. Here, delete malicious search sites and enter the one that you want to use as your homepage. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  6. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  7. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  8. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  9. Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings. When in 'Settings', scroll down to 'Reset browser settings' button and click on it
  10. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal

Get rid of from Safari

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences. Click on 'Safari' and select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Open your Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu section. Here, select Preferences as it was displayed previously and select General.
  4. Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by, remove unwanted link and enter the one that you want to use for your searches. Remember to include the "http://" before typing in the address of the page. When in 'General', delete malicious URL and enter your desired domain name
  5. Reset Safari
    Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari.... Click on 'Safari' and select 'Reset Safari...'
  6. Now you will see a detailed dialog window filled with reset options. All of those options are usually checked, but you can specify which of them you want to reset. Click the Reset button to complete removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

Do not let government spy on you

The government has many issues in regards to tracking users' data and spying on citizens, so you should take this into consideration and learn more about shady information gathering practices. Avoid any unwanted government tracking or spying by going totally anonymous on the internet. 

You can choose a different location when you go online and access any material you want without particular content restrictions. You can easily enjoy internet connection without any risks of being hacked by using Private Internet Access VPN.

Control the information that can be accessed by government any other unwanted party and surf online without being spied on. Even if you are not involved in illegal activities or trust your selection of services, platforms, be suspicious for your own security and take precautionary measures by using the VPN service.

Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack

Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.

When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.

About the author
Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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  1. Yout4h says:
    September 16th, 2016 at 5:55 am

    I am so miserable… I always infect my PC with something…

  2. solitude says:
    September 16th, 2016 at 5:56 am

    What is this virus doing on my PC? I swear, didnt install any programs lately. So how come its in my browser?

  3. Dance56 says:
    September 16th, 2016 at 5:57 am

    I have accidentally infected computer with this! Hope my parents wont notice anything, I have tried to uninstall using these instructions and so far it seems that it is gone…

  4. muaythai99 says:
    September 16th, 2016 at 5:58 am

    Successfully uninstalled !

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