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Remove virus (Virus Removal Guide) - Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge

removal by Alice Woods - - | Type: Browser hijacker

Reasons not to use search engine redirect issue (created by Eightpoint Technologies, Ltd.) is a questionable search engine which can hijack three popular web browsers – IE, Chrome, and Mozilla. However, it is presented as a tool that is supposed to protect user’s privacy.

According to the information provided on the website, this tool does not track and collect data. Thus, people who decide to use this search tool can feel safe that no one is building their online profile in order to provide interest-based ads.[1] Indeed, it may look like a reliable service for people who value their online privacy.

However, it has few negative features which gave it a name of a browser hijacker. This PUP[2] might be installed on the system indirectly – bundled with other software. Nevertheless, this distribution method is legitimate; it is also questionable. Inattentive computer users might install it accidentally, says experts from Zondervirus team[3].

As a result, they find this search tool set as their default one. The problem is that they often have problems with removal. This search tool does not leave their browser’s easily. If you are facing the same problem, we recommend scanning the computer with ReimageIntego. This anti-malware program will wipe out this cyber infection quickly.

The main problem with virus is related to developers partnership with third-parties. There’s no doubt that authors of the program are interested in generating revenue. Thus, they apply various marketing strategies. In the Terms of Service, they reveal about a possibility to find third-party promotional content or advertisements when using this search tool.

Browser hijackers are capable of placing sponsored content not only in the form of ads but also include in the search results page. The main redirect problem is that you might end up on a shady website. Some of these sites might offer to download questionable software, affect your computer with viruses[4] or try to get your personal details.[5]

Developers of this search tool do not take responsibility for third-party content; thus, for all negative consequences, you will need to blame only yourself. We want to remind that this search engine was categorized as PUP, not for nothing. Thus, you should remove to protect your computer from other cyber infections.

Questions about virus

The image of might become your default search engine after installing freeware or shareware incorrectly.

Main questions about SearchEncrypt answered

Question. How to remove Search Encrypt from Chrome?

Answer. To remove Search Encrypt from Chrome, you should open your browser, and type chrome://extensions in the address bar. Click Enter, and you will be taken to the list of extensions added to the browser. Find the unwanted extension here and click the trash icon next to it to delete it.

Question. What is SearchEncrypt?

Answer. SearchEncrypt is a potentially unwanted program that changes your browser's search provider to It promises not to track you as a user but provides third-party ads in the search results anyway. Search Encrypt does not “assume any responsibility regarding such content, products and/or services.” It is highly advisable to remove this questionable browser extension as well as related components from a computer system if you do not want to use SearchEncrypt services.

Question. Is Search Encrypt a virus? I found it in Chrome browser, and I am worried. I cannot remember installing this program on my computer or adding anything that changes browser's settings! I find such changes in browser unexpected and highly intrusive, and it gives me an impression that there is a dangerous program on my computer.

Answer. Although SearchEncrypt cannot be called a virus, many users find its activity annoying. Due to the number of complaints about this program, cyber security experts have labeled it as a “potentially unwanted program.” Its activity meets the characteristics of a typical browser hijacker.

Usually, this program is promoted via pop-ups that load domain. You may have clicked on the install button unknowingly, or someone who uses your computer did. An alternative scenario is that the software was installed as part of a software bundle you recently installed.

New version of virus. If domain appeared in your browser, it will likely redirect you to an ad suggesting to install Search Encrypt extension to your browser. The ads will likely suggest you to “stop search tracking.” Clicking on the agreement button which might display “stop tracking” takes to site which we described earlier.

If your browser displays these ads for you, it is an indicator of an adware program that is silently running on your computer system. In such situation, we recommend checking your computer for programs that were recently added to the system without your knowledge. This can also be done using certain security programs such as anti-spyware or anti-malware. Running a full system scan will remove redirect issue for good.

The image of might become your default search engine after installing freeware or shareware incorrectly.

Ways to let this hijacker into your system

Users can set Search Encrypt as their default search engine directly from the official website. However, this search tool might also be promoted in the software bundles. Various applications might be attached to the primary program and offered as an optional download.

However, if you do not opt for the right installation settings, you might agree to install all additional programs indirectly. Quick or Standard setups do not inform about extra applications; thus, if you install new programs under these settings, all third-party apps are installed as well.

That’s how hijack might occur too. As you already know, potentially unwanted programs might cause you lots of problems. Thus, you should be careful with software installation.[6] Always read EULA and Privacy Policy, choose reliable sources for downloads and opt for the Advanced/Custom installation mode.

Using these settings, you can see all third-party apps that offered to install. If you see pre-selected statement agreeing to set as you default search engine on Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox, you should deselect it without consideration. It goes without saying that all unknown applications should not be installed on your device as well.

Remove from Chrome and other web browsers

First of all, you should go to Control Panel and look through the Program’s list. Remove virus or other applications that might be related to it. Then, check your browsers and delete questionable extensions from them. Lastly, reset browsers’ settings in order to terminate this hijacker entirely.

The instructions below will guide you through this process. However, you can simplify this task and perform automatic removal. If this option seems more suitable for you, install or update anti-malware program and run a full system scan. Within several minutes, browser hijacker will be eliminated.

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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If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
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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:

Erase from Windows systems

Go to Control Panel and open the Program's list. Look for the programs that you don't remember installing. They might be related to the browser hijacker; thus, you should uninstall it. The instructions below will help you.

  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

Uninstall from Internet Explorer (IE)

Check the list of extensions. We recommend sorting them by date in order to see what apps might have been recently installed on the IE. Remove all questionable entries that might be related to virus. Then, reset Internet Explorer's settings as shown below.

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

Delete virus from 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

Get rid of from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Go to the list of extensions and uninstall all suspicious plugins, add-ons or toolbars. They might be responsible for hijack. Once you do that, reset Mozilla's settings.

  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

Remove from Google Chrome

When dealing with Search Encrypt Chrome hijacker, you need to complete two tasks. The first one is to remove all questionable browser extensions from the Chrome. The second requires resetting browser's settings. The instructions below will help to complete both of them.

  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

Erase 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

Protect your privacy – employ a VPN

There are several ways how to make your online time more private – you can access an incognito tab. However, there is no secret that even in this mode, you are tracked for advertising purposes. There is a way to add an extra layer of protection and create a completely anonymous web browsing practice with the help of Private Internet Access VPN. This software reroutes traffic through different servers, thus leaving your IP address and geolocation in disguise. Besides, it is based on a strict no-log policy, meaning that no data will be recorded, leaked, and available for both first and third parties. The combination of a secure web browser and Private Internet Access VPN will let you browse the Internet without a feeling of being spied or targeted by criminals. 

No backups? No problem. Use a data recovery tool

If you wonder how data loss can occur, you should not look any further for answers – human errors, malware attacks, hardware failures, power cuts, natural disasters, or even simple negligence. In some cases, lost files are extremely important, and many straight out panic when such an unfortunate course of events happen. Due to this, you should always ensure that you prepare proper data backups on a regular basis.

If you were caught by surprise and did not have any backups to restore your files from, not everything is lost. Data Recovery Pro is one of the leading file recovery solutions you can find on the market – it is likely to restore even lost emails or data located on an external device.

About the author
Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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  1. Cecily says:
    April 12th, 2017 at 8:45 am

    I dont know why but all these search engines that promises privacy protection look suspicious for me. I do not trust them. Its possible to customize Google and avoid all unwanted tracking.

  2. Emmett says:
    April 12th, 2017 at 8:45 am

    I gave Search Encrypt a try, and I did not like it.

  3. Evelyn says:
    April 12th, 2017 at 8:46 am

    I guess, I agreed to install it during media players installation. Damn.. Quick installation…

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