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“Turn Off Search Tracking” ads. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Jake Doevan - - | Type: Adware

“Google is Tracking Your Searches” pop-ups hide dishonest marketing tricksGoogle is Tracking Your Searches adware virus

“Google is Tracking Your Searches” virus is a term that users tend to use when describing the unwanted pop-ups that start showing up on their web browser. The users are right about one thing — these pop-ups are not trustworthy and most likely signal that your PC has been infected by a sneaky adware [1] virus.

Naturally, adware victims are unaware of that. They do not give consent to the adware entering their computers. People may have downloaded a freeware carrying a malicious file unknowingly when visiting shady websites. We’ll expand more on that later. But first, let us look closer to how this adware infiltrates computers and why it does it.

If you are here for “Google is Tracking Your Searches” removal instructions, you can simply skip to the end of the article where you will find all the necessary information.

The main reason why Google is Tracking Your Searches virus infiltrates computers, is advertising. While the notification supposedly tries to protect you from Google tracking [2], its real intention is to make you install Privacy Switch software on your computer.

The “STOP TRACKING LINK” will redirect you to Privacy Switch download page and ask you to replace your Google search engine with Privacy Switch one. You should not do that, of course, as it may put your PC in danger. You should remove “Google is Tracking Your Searches” without much consideration.

We recommend using Reimage or similar software for this purpose.

According to the statistics, the Privacy Switch site is most popular in USA, Brazil, and France [3], so we can presume the advertising of this site is more intensive in these countries as well. Keep that in mind and stay protected!

Ways to get infected with adware

As mentioned previously in the article, “Google is Tracking Your Searches” hijacks the system without user’s consent. There are a few typical ways the malware can end up on your PC:

  • Questionable freeware and shareware may be bundled with it and bring the adware on your computer;
  • You may click on a malicious ad when browsing online;
  • A malicious payload may be installed on your PC after accidentally visiting infectious websites or interacting with infected download buttons.

The mentioned techniques are the primary ways “Google is Tracking Your Searches” adware spread around. You should keep in mind that without proper protection and careful behavior online, you become much more vulnerable to all sorts cyber infections.

“Google is Tracking Your Searches” removal instructions:

Adware may tempt you with anonymous and untracked web browsing experience, but you should remember that it is only an attempt to draw you into the circle of online advertising.

If you ignore it or, worse, agree to install the promoted software, you will not only have to remove “Google is Tracking Your Searches” virus but possibly deal with a bunch of other problems.

Quick “Google is Tracking Your Searches” removal will help solve these issues. Just act quickly, obtain a reliable PC scanning utility and scan your entire system with it.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes. We recommend these applications because they detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove “Turn Off Search Tracking” ads, follow these steps:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Uninstall “Turn Off Search Tracking” from Windows systems

You will rid your Windows of Turn Off Search Tracking ads by performing the following steps:

  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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” and related programs
    Here, look for “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Eliminate “Turn Off Search Tracking” from Mac OS X system

If your Mac OS X has been targeted by the adware, please follow these instructions:

  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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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

Erase “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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

Get rid of “Turn Off Search Tracking” ads from Microsoft Edge

Reset your Microsoft Edge to eliminate the remaining virus features from your PC.

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, “Turn Off Search Tracking” should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove “Turn Off Search Tracking” from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

  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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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. 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'
  4. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete “Turn Off Search Tracking” removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete “Turn Off Search Tracking” from Google Chrome

Reset your Google Chrome browser following the below-presented instructions.

  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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  4. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  5. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  6. 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
  7. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete “Turn Off Search Tracking” removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Uninstall “Turn Off Search Tracking” 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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. 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...'
  4. 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 “Turn Off Search Tracking” removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

About the author

Jake Doevan
Jake Doevan - Computer technology expert

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