Search-operator.com – a browser hijacker which has been spreading together with Advanced Mac Cleaner
Search-operator.com is a browser hijacker that has been targeting MacOS with an infamous Advanced Mac Cleaner or similar software. It has been using Google's colors in its logo, so there is no surprise that people have been taking it as a legitimate app. Once it infects the system, it modifies the main search engine, homepage and new tab URL to http://search-operator.com/. If you try performing a search request by using the new engine, you will still be provided with query results by Google, so why not use just the original search engine? Also, all redirects are filled with ads displayed to trick users into visiting sponsored sites, including the suspicious ones.
|Program type||Browser hijacker/Potentially unwanted program/PUP/Mac virus|
|Operating system affected||MacOS is the main target if the virus|
|Distribution||Software bundling, rogue websites, fake reviews|
|travels in one bundle||Advanced Mac Cleaner, Weknow.ac, Smart Search virus|
|unnoticed activities initiated behind THE user's back||Tracking, the collection of details provided while browsing the web, the collection of browsing habits|
|Annoying actions caused on the system||Redirects to third-party sites, numerous ads displayed in search results|
|Elimination||You can complete the removal of this browser hijacker with ReimageIntego|
Search-operator.com virus is also a term that is used for this rogue app as it pushes unwanted actions straight on the infected web browser application. However, technically, it is not malware but some actions might cause you trouble. One of them is frequent redirecting to other third-party sources and affiliate websites.
Search-operator.com might accidentally take you to an infectious website where malware might be distributed and waiting for its turn to infect a user. Furthermore, browser hijackers are famous for collecting browsing details about various activities, for example, what type of pages are commonly visited, what kind of bookmarks were recently saved, etc.
Later on, Search-operator.com might also start providing a big number of advertisements on the targeted computer. The cost-per-click marketing strategy is also known as a beneficial one which is supported by numerous browser hijacker and adware developers. It works every time a user steps on the pop-ups.
Besides, changes that are applied to web browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari cannot be reversed unless you complete the Search-operator.com removal automatically or manually. ReimageIntego is a tool which will help you to deal with the entire process much faster and easier.
Search-operator.com is a potentially unwanted program that can modify the default search engine
If you do not remove Search-operator.com from your Mac computer, the unwanted activities might become even worse and cause regular computer freezes. Overusing system resources such as the CPU's power is a common occurrence when potentially unwanted programs are hiding somewhere on the machine.
Additionally, Search-operator.com might come together with other suspicious software or components. Adware or even fake system tools might be distributed within the software bundle and you will supposedly end up with a few or even several potentially unwanted applications on your computer system.
Search-operator.com - a browser hijacker that appears on Mac computer systems
Distribution guidance of potentially unwanted applications
LosVirus.es experts believe that it is very important to be aware of all possible adware or browser hijacker distribution sources so that these PUPs will not enter your computer system. Nevertheless, where a PUP is planted, there might also be some malware traces left which is ten times more dangerous.
Talking about the main distribution source it is bundled programs. Browser hijackers and similar products often appear on the system after completing suspicious downloads from unreliable sources. You can prevent secret entrance all possibly infectious content by using the Custom/Advanced configuration mode.
Furthermore, if you have a reputable antimalware tool on your system, it will also guard your computer system against suspicious and malicious programs. What you need to do is just choose a reliable program and make sure that it never lacks required updates or contain any bugs.
Search-operator.com browser hijacker can be terminated within a few mouse clicks
If you are interested in Search-operator.com removal, you have come to the right place. Here you can learn how to complete the elimination from all web browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Explorer, Safari) manually and remove suspicious processes, files, software from your Mac operating system on your own.
Additionally, our expert team has provided some reliable anti-malware programs that can appear very beneficial for you. Choose the right tool and remove Search-operator.com from the system with putting less effort then you would if you decided to take care of the potentially unwanted program by yourself.
Furthermore, automatical removal for Search-operator.com hijack is a better option also when you lack the required skills and capabilities in the virus elimination field. However, if you are sure that the process will be successful and you are self-confident enough, take a look at the below-provided instructions.
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.
To remove Search-operator.com, follow these steps:
Eliminate Search-operator.com from Mac OS X system
These instructions should help you to get rid of the potentially unwanted program from your computer system and stop its operating on the machine:
If your macOS is displaying some infection symptoms, proceed with the following guide:
Remove Search-operator.com from Applications folder:
- From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
- In the Applications folder, look for Search-operator.com-related entries.
- Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash)
To fully remove Search-operator.com, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:
- Select Go > Go to Folder.
- Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
- In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries related to Search-operator.com and then delete them.
- Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the Search-operator.com-related entries.
Uninstall Search-operator.com from Internet Explorer (IE)
If you have found any suspicious-looking add-ons, extensions, or other objects on your Internet Explorer web browser, this type of content can be eliminated by following the guide:
Remove dangerous add-ons:
- Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top-right corner of the browser
- Pick Manage Add-ons.
- You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for Search-operator.com and other suspicious plugins. Click on these entries and select Disable.
Change your homepage if it was altered:
- Open IE and click on the Gear icon.
- Select Internet Options.
- In the General tab, delete the Home page address and replace it by your preferred one (for example, Google.com).
- Click Apply and then select OK.
Delete temporary files:
- Press on the Gear icon and select Internet Options.
- Under Browsing history, click Delete…
- Select relevant fields and press Delete.
Reset Internet Explorer:
- Click on Gear icon > Internet options and select Advanced tab.
- Select Reset.
- In the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete Search-operator.com removal.
Get rid of Search-operator.com from Mozilla Firefox (FF)
Spotting some suspicious changes in Mozilla Firefox is not a good sign. You can reverse all unexpected modifications with the help of these instructing lines:
Remove dangerous extensions
Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons → Extensions.
- Here, select Search-operator.com and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries.
Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
Click on the menu (top right corner), choose Options → General.
- Here, delete malicious URL and enter preferable website or click Restore to default.
- Click OK to save these changes.
Reset Mozilla Firefox
Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information.
- Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete Search-operator.com removal.
Remove Search-operator.com from Google Chrome
Cleaning Google Chrome is possible if you carefully follow these steps and get rid of the potentially unwanted program that has been triggering your browsing process:
Delete malicious plugins
Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools → Extensions.
- Here, select Search-operator.com and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries.
Change your homepage and default search engine if it was altered by your virus
Click on menu icon and choose Settings.
- Here, look for the Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup option and click on Set pages.
- Now you should see another window. Here, delete malicious search sites and enter the one that you want to use as your homepage.
- Click on menu icon again and choose Settings → Manage Search engines under the Search section.
- When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name.
Reset Google Chrome
Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
- Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings.
- Click Reset to confirm this action and complete Search-operator.com removal.
Erase Search-operator.com from Safari
Erase all questionable-looking objects from your Safari web browser. Use the below-provided instructions for guidance:
- 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.
- Here, select Extensions and look for Search-operator.com or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them.
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.
- Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by Search-operator.com, 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.
Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari....
- 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 Search-operator.com removal process.
Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool
Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.
Lost your files? Use data recovery software
While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.
To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.