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Search.societycake.com virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - - | Type: Browser hijacker
12

Search.societycake.com – the hijacker that targets Mac OS X

Screenshot of Search.societycake.com

Search.societycake.com is a simply-designed search engine. Despite the fact that it looks like an ordinary and legitimate search tool, it is known as a browser hijacker. Authors and distributors of this program are known as Societycake. It’s a network that specializes in Mac software distribution.

Therefore, this browser hijacker mostly aims at Mac OS X users. It’s quite uncommon activity because potentially unwanted programs usually target Windows OS devices. Hence, if you are one of Apple products users, you should be aware of this recent cyber threat.[1] However, if it’s too late for you to avoid Search.societycake.com hijack, we are here to help you to get rid of this questionable application.

In the Societycake.com website, owners of this platform tell that they offer a way for software developers and distributors to spread their applications successfully and get higher revenues. We believe that they have in mind bundling.[2] It’s a software marketing method that allows promoting programs in software packages and infiltrate devices without user’s knowledge.

Therefore, so-called Search.societycake.com virus is suspected of using the same distribution strategy and appearing on the browsers as soon as user carelessly installs freeware or unauthorized apps outside the Apple Store.

After the installation, this search engine might alter browser’s settings and prevent users from reverting them. After the hijack, you might:

  • Find Search.societycake.com set as your default search engine;
  • Suffer from redirects to societycake.com and other promotional websites;
  • Encounter numerous online ads when browsing the web;
  • Have to deal with data collection issues.

The search engine itself looks legitimate. It also redirects search queries to Yahoo. Therefore, many users may not suspect anything wrong with it. However, it mostly works as a marketing tool that is designed to promote other applications, boost traffic to sponsored sites and generate advertising-based revenue.

However, the biggest problems here are related to Search.societycake.com redirect issues. Developers of the program barely pay attention to its affiliate. As a result, they do not properly monitor what commercial content they deliver. Therefore, once you click on the eye-catchy ad, you might land on a high-risk website where cyber criminals are waiting for you.

The appearance of the browser hijacker negatively affects browsing quality and might put your computer at risk. However, it might also spy a little bit on what you are doing online. According to the Privacy Policy, Societycake collects this information:

  • the type and version of your computer’s operating system;
  • IE browser version and installed hardware;
  • Java resource availability;
  • .NET resources availability;
  • your C-Class IP address (the “Technical Information”);
  • country/region;
  • installed applications;
  • browsing-related details;
  • etc.

Aggregated details are said to be used for improving services. However, they might be used for advertising purposes. Therefore, if you do not want to be flooded with annoying ads, you should remove Search.societycake.com ASAP.

If you want a quick solution to this problem, you should employ Reimage or another security software and run a full system scan. However, if automatic Search.societycake.com doesn’t suit your preferences, you should have a look at manual elimination guidelines at the end of the article.

Be careful with software bundles; their installation might cause you browsing-related problems

This potentially unwanted application mostly spreads in software packages. As we have mentioned in the first paragraph, it might enter the system without your knowledge if you do not pay proper installation to freeware or shareware.

To avoid PUPs, you always have to choose Advanced/Custom setup instead of Standard/Quick. Advanced setup reveals the list of offered third-party apps and allows rejecting their installation. Meanwhile, Standard settings usually install them without notifying the user.

This hijacker mostly aims at Mac users in the United States. However, it is expected to spread in the United Kingdom[3] and other English-speaking countries.

Terminating Search.societycake.com virus from Mac

If you read the article carefully, you are aware of two Search.societycake.com removal methods. If you came here for the manual elimination option, you should scroll down a little further and start following a detailed guideline.

However, if these instructions look hard to follow, you should not torture yourself. You can remove Search.societycake.com automatically using reputable anti-malware software. Keep in mind that investing in such tools is a beneficial practice because your Mac will be protected from cyber threats in the future.

You can remove Search.societycake.com automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus, Malwarebytes Anti Malware. We recommend these applications because they can easily delete potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

We might be affiliated with any product we recommend on the site. Full disclosure in our Agreement of Use. By Downloading any provided Anti-spyware software to remove Search.societycake.com virus you agree to our privacy policy and agreement of use.
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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to uninstall Search.societycake.com virus. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.
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Manual Search.societycake.com virus Removal Guide:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Windows systems

  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 Search.societycake.com and related programs
    Here, look for Search.societycake.com 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 Search.societycake.com 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 'http://isearch.babylon.com...' 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.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Mac OS X system

Follow the steps below to get rid of the browser hijacker. It's important to delete all suspicious applications that might be responsible for the hijacked browser.

  1. If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications. Cick 'Go' and select 'Applications'
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for Search.societycake.com or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash.Click on every malicious entry and select 'Move to Trash'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Internet Explorer (IE)

  1. Remove dangerous add-ons
    Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top right corner of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons. Click on menu icon and select 'Manage add-ons'
  2. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for Search.societycake.com and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable: Right click on each of malicious entries and select 'Disable'
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the gear icon (menu) on the top right corner of the browser and select Internet Options. Stay in General tab.
  4. Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes. Delete malicious URL, enter your desired domain name and click 'Apply' to save changes
  5. Reset Internet Explorer
    Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  6. Here, select Reset.
  7. When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete Search.societycake.com removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com virus from Microsoft Edge

Reset Microsoft Edge settings (Method 1):

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge app and click More (three dots at the top right corner of the screen).
  2. Click Settings to open more options.
  3. Once Settings window shows up, click Choose what to clear button under Clear browsing data option. Go to Settings and select 'Choose what to clear'
  4. Here, select all what you want to remove and click Clear. Select 'Clear' button
  5. Now you should right-click on the Start button (Windows logo). Here, select Task Manager. Open the start menu and select 'Task Manager'
  6. When in Processes tab, search for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Go to details option. If can’t see Go to details option, click More details and repeat previous steps. Right-click 'Microsoft Edge' and select 'Go to details' Select 'More details' if 'Go to details' option fails to show up
  8. When Details tab shows up, find every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right click on each of them and select End Task to end these entries. Find Microsoft Edge entries and select 'End Task'

Resetting Microsoft Edge browser (Method 2):

If Method 1 failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method.

  1. Note: you need to backup your data before using this method.
  2. Find this folder on your computer: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select every entry which is saved on it and right click with your mouse. Then Delete option. Go to Microsoft Edge folder on your computer, right-click every entry and click 'Delete'
  4. Click the Start button (Windows logo) and type in window power in Search my stuff line.
  5. Right-click the Windows PowerShell entry and choose Run as administrator. Find Windows PowerShell, right-click it and select 'Run as administrator'
  6. Once Administrator: Windows PowerShell window shows up, paste this command line after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and press Enter:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    Copy and paste a required command and press 'Enter'

Once these steps are finished, Search.societycake.com should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Uninstall all browser extensions that might be related to Search.societycake.com. Then reset Mozilla Firefox.

  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 Search.societycake.com 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 Search.societycake.com removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Google Chrome

Follow the steps below to delete hijacker-related entries from the Chrome.

  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 Search.societycake.com 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 Search.societycake.com removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Search.societycake.com from Safari

In order to remove Search.societycake.com and set your preferred search engine, you have to revert changes made to the Safari. These guidelines will help you:

  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 Search.societycake.com 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 Search.societycake.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. 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 Search.societycake.com removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button
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 Search.societycake.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: Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware.

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

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