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Remove Private-seeking.com virus (Removal Guide) - Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Stealing programs

Private-seeking.com does not operate as a safe and legit search engine

The image of Private-seeking.com search engine

Private-seeking.com is a shady search engine that is widely distributed in software packages. Therefore, it can hijack your Chrome, Firefox, Explorer or other web browser and trigger numerous unwanted activities on the browser. This browser hijacker might:

  • set the PrivateSeeker as your default search engine and homepage address;
  • deliver altered search results;
  • redirect to questionable websites;
  • display suspicious ads;[1]
  • track information about users.

The slogan in the Private-seeking.com site says “we care about your privacy.” However, it might not be true. If you click on the links at the button of the page that should redirect to About, Privacy Policy or other pages, you will be redirected to “File not found” page. Therefore, users cannot learn how this program treats their data and who is standing behind it.

The main purpose of these type of potentially unwanted programs (PUP) is to control user’s browsing habits. Therefore, Private-seeking.com virus might be used for driving traffic to affiliate’s sites. For instance, when you click on the link in the results page or other online content, you might be forced to visit the irrelevant third-party site.

The biggest problem with these Private-seeking.com redirect issues is that some of these sites might be potentially dangerous. Hence, you might be forced to visit tech support scam, phishing or even infected website.[2]

If you were forced to use this suspicious search tool after installing some freeware or shareware, you should run a full system scan with ReimageIntego or another anti-malware to remove Private-seeking.com from the PC. Then you just need to reset the browser and continue browsing the web safely again.

Additionally, you can opt for the manual Private-seeking.com removal (instructions are below the article). However, you have to investigate the system attentively and make sure that all hijacker-related entries are eliminated entirely.

The picture of Private-seeking.com virusPrivate-seeking.com virus is a browser hijacker that alters targeted browser's settings and forces people to use a shady search tool.

Be careful with freeware: software bundles spread browser hijackers

The Private-seeking.com hijack is most likely to occur during the installation of free programs that you can download from various file-sharing websites, P2P networks or torrents. Typically free programs do not spread alone. They often have additional components included, and most of the time they are PUPs.

Users can reject installation of suspicious apps and prevent from annoying activities on the browser if they install freeware correctly. Do not rush to choose Quick or Standard installation settings because they rarely ask the permission to download additional components.

You should always rely on Advanced or Standard settings and carefully follow the installation guidelines. If you see the checkbox with pre-selected entries, unmark them all. Reading EULA, Privacy Policy or other documents before installing the program is also recommended.

Remove Private-seeking.com virus from the browser entirely

If you have accidentally agreed to make PrivateSeeker your startup page or search engine, you should take back your decision immediately. Soon you will be bothered by diminished browsing experience or suffer from annoying redirects. Thus, you should choose between two hijacker’s elimination methods.

The first method offers to remove Private-seeking.com manually. By following the instructions below, you have to investigate the system, uninstall suspicious programs or files that might be related to the browser hijacker, and reset web browsers.

The second option can simplify Private-seeking.com removal. It requires scanning the system with an updated and reputable anti-malware/anti-spyware. Security experts from Sweden[3] suggest choosing this method in order to ensure successful removal and computer’s protection in the future.

You may remove virus damage with a help of ReimageIntego. 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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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 Private-seeking.com virus, follow these steps:

Remove Private-seeking.com from Windows systems

Follow these steps to remove Private-seeking.com from the Windows computer entirely. Please be attentive and wipe out all hijacker-related files and programs.

To remove Private-seeking.com virus from Windows 10/8  machines, please follow these steps:

  1. Enter Control Panel into Windows search box and hit Enter or click on the search result.
  2. Under Programs, select Uninstall a program.Uninstall from Windows 1
  3. From the list, find entries related to Private-seeking.com virus (or any other recently installed suspicious program).
  4. Right-click on the application and select Uninstall.
  5. If User Account Control shows up, click Yes.
  6. Wait till uninstallation process is complete and click OK.Uninstall from Windows 2

If you are Windows 7/XP user, proceed with the following instructions:

  1. Click on Windows Start > Control Panel located on the right pane (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
  2. In Control Panel, select Programs > Uninstall a program.Uninstall from Windows 7/XP
  3. Pick the unwanted application by clicking on it once.
  4. At the top, click Uninstall/Change.
  5. In the confirmation prompt, pick Yes.
  6. Click OK once the removal process is finished.

Erase Private-seeking.com from Mac OS X system

It's unlikely for the hijacker to attack Mac OS X. However, if it happened, follow these steps to solve the issue:

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

Remove Private-seeking.com virus from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for Private-seeking.com virus-related 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 Private-seeking.com virus, 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 Private-seeking.com virus and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the Private-seeking.com virus-related entries.Uninstall from Mac 2

Get rid of Private-seeking.com from Internet Explorer (IE)

Reset Internet Explorer to speed up the removal procedure:

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 Private-seeking.com virus 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, Google.com).
  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 Private-seeking.com virus removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Delete Private-seeking.com virus from Microsoft Edge

Follow these guidelines to terminate hijacker from the system entirely:

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 Private-seeking.com virus-related 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

Eliminate Private-seeking.com from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Remove PrivateSeeker or other suspicious extensions from Mozilla Firefox. Then, reset the browser to delete tracking cookies or other invisible components:

Remove dangerous extensions:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
  2. Select Add-ons.
  3. In here, select plugins that are related to Private-seeking.com virus and click Remove.Remove extensions from Firefox

Clear cookies and site data:

  1. Click Menu and pick Options.
  2. Go to Privacy & Security section.
  3. Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
  4. Click on Clear Data…
  5. Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear.Clear cookies and site data from Firefox

In case Private-seeking.com virus did not get removed after following the instructions above, reset Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click the Menu.
  2. Go to Help and then choose Troubleshooting Information.Reset Firefox 1
  3. Under Give Firefox a tune up section, click on Refresh Firefox…
  4. Once the pop-up shows up, confirm the action by pressing on Refresh Firefox – this should complete Private-seeking.com virus removal.Reset Firefox 2

Uninstall Private-seeking.com from Google Chrome

In order to remove Private-seeking.com from the Chrome entirely, you have to uninstall suspicious extensions and reset the browser.

Delete malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

  1. Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
  2. In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to Private-seeking.com virus by clicking Remove.Remove extensions from Chrome

Clear cache and web data from Chrome:

  1. Click on Menu and pick Settings.
  2. Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
  3. Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
  4. Click Clear data.Clear cache and web data from Chrome

If the above-methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the Private-seeking.com virus-components:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. In the Settings, scroll down and click Advanced.
  3. Scroll down and locate Reset and clean up section.
  4. Now click Restore settings to their original defaults.
  5. Confirm with Reset settings to complete Private-seeking.com virus removal.Reset Chrome 2

Remove Private-seeking.com from Safari

Uninstall suspicious browser extensions and reset Safari to delete the hijacker entirely:

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension related to Private-seeking.com virus and select Uninstall.Remove extensions from Safari

Clear cookies and other website data from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Clear History…
  2. From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
  3. Confirm with Clear History.Clear cookies and website data from Safari

Reset Safari if the above-mentioned steps did not help you:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. Go to Advanced tab.
  3. Tick the Show Develop menu in menu bar.
  4. From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches.Reset Safari

After uninstalling this potentially unwanted program (PUP) and fixing each of your web browsers, we recommend you to scan your PC system with a reputable anti-spyware. This will help you to get rid of Private-seeking.com registry traces and will also identify related parasites or possible malware infections on your computer. For that you can use our top-rated malware remover: ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes.

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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