Severity scale:  
  (9/100)

Remove Universalsearch.co virus (Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge) - Simple Removal Guide

removal by Lucia Danes - - | Type: Stealing programs

Should you rely on Universalsearch.co search engine?

Universalsearch.co virus is an irritating browser hijacker that aims at various web browsers. It usually comes inside the computer bundled with freeware or shareware. On the affected computer it alters web browsers’ settings and forces people to use Health New Tab search engine developed by Upwords Publishing. This website becomes default browser’s homepage and search engine. What is more, users are often prevented from getting rid of it easily. Browser hijackers are often capable of altering Windows shortcuts and registry or install helper objects[1] that help to remain on the system. Moreover, Universalsearch.co browser hijacker might be called advertising tool. In the Terms of Website Use, the developers reveal that they might deliver third-party ads and promotions in various forms and methods. Often commercial content shows up as pop-ups, banners, in-text ads or other types of online ads. Furthermore, the hijacker might initiate unwanted redirects to the promotional websites. Unfortunately, Universalsearch.co redirect tendencies might not be pleasant. You may end up on a malicious site where you can get infected with ransomware[2] or tricked to reveal personal information.[3] Also, we want to mention that sometimes hijackers might alter search results and replace organic links with sponsored third-party links. Though at the moment this search engine provides results from Bing, the situation might change at any time.

The developers of so-called Universalsearch.co virus are not responsible for any damage that might be caused by the third-party content. Thus, you should be extremely careful when browsing the Web because even one accidental click might cause you serious problems, such data loss or identity theft.[4] Browser hijacker cannot harm you or your PC itself; though its redirect tendencies are worth paying attention. However, it’s not the only one reason to remove Universalsearch.co from the machine. This little cyber parasite might also collect information about the users. This information is mostly related to the browsing history and habits; however, the hijacker might access other details as well. Usually, aggregated information is used to build users’ profiles to deliver targeted ads. However, in some cases collected data might be shared with third-parties or advertising networks. As a result, your browser and inbox might be filled with commercial offers, shopping deals, newsletters and other annoying stuff. Thus, if you found this website on your browser, scan the computer with ReimageIntego and start Universalsearch.co removal right now.

Questions about Universalsearch.co virus

The image of Universalsearch.co virusUniversalsearch.co virus might hijack popular web browsers and replace their homepage addresses with its domain.

Why was my browser hijacked?

The only one reason why was your browser hijacked is that you have chosen “wrong” installation settings when installing freeware or shareware.[5] All programs that you can download from the Internet might be hiding third-party applications. Thus, if you installed a particular program under Basic or Recommended mode, the Universalsearch.co hijack might have occurred. These settings do not disclose about extra downloads and install them by default. However, Advanced or Custom setups allows rejecting their installation. Carefully follow each installation step and look for the list of pre-selected toolbars, programs, extensions or agreements to make Health New Tab or another suspicious search engine as your homepage. Deselect these settings to prevent from negative features of the potentially unwanted programs.

How to remove Universalsearch.co from the browser?

Browser hijackers are not hard to remove manually. Thus, you can investigate the system on your own and remove Universalsearch.co browser hijacker along with its components manually. Our instructions presented below will guide you through this process. If you choose this method, don’t forget that you need to reset all web browsers that are installed on your PC as well. However, we want to suggest an easier Universalsearch.co removal option. Employ reputable anti-malware program and remove browser hijacker automatically. All you need to do is to scan the computer with one of the programs suggested below and wait for a couple of minutes.

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.

Offer
do it now!
Download
Reimage Happiness
Guarantee
Download
Intego Happiness
Guarantee
Compatible with Microsoft Windows Supported versions Compatible with OS X Supported versions
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 Universalsearch.co virus, follow these steps:

Erase Universalsearch.co from Windows systems

Make sure you follow the instructions carefully. If you leave some programs or files related to the Universalsearch.co virus, you might encounter another hijack soon.

To remove Universalsearch.co 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 Universalsearch.co 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.

Remove Universalsearch.co from Mac OS X system

If your Mac was hijacked, please follow the instructions below to fix this problem.

Remove Universalsearch.co virus from Applications folder:

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

Delete Universalsearch.co from Internet Explorer (IE)

Sometimes hijackers install suspicious add-ons on the affected browsers. Thus, you should check, whether any questionable entries haven’t been added to the Internet Explorer.

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 Universalsearch.co 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 Universalsearch.co virus removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Eliminate Universalsearch.co virus from Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge might have also been affected by the Universalsearch.co hijacker. To reject all its modifications, please follow these steps:

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 Universalsearch.co 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

Restore new tab and homepage settings:

  1. Click the menu icon and choose Settings.
  2. Then find On startup section.
  3. Click Disable if you found any suspicious domain.

Reset MS Edge if the 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

Uninstall Universalsearch.co from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

From the list of extensions remove all questionable toolbars, extensions, plugins or add-ons. They might be responsible for reinstalling Universalsearch.co browser hijacker.

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 Universalsearch.co virus and click Remove.Remove extensions from Firefox

Reset the homepage:

  1. Click three horizontal lines at the top right corner to open the menu.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. Under Home options, enter your preferred site that will open every time you newly open the Mozilla 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

Reset Mozilla Firefox

In case Universalsearch.co 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 Universalsearch.co virus removal.Reset Firefox 2

Get rid of Universalsearch.co from Google Chrome

Follow the instructions to fix Google Chrome after Universalsearch.co hijack.

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 Universalsearch.co 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

Change your homepage:

  1. Click menu and choose Settings.
  2. Look for a suspicious site like Universalsearch.co virus in the On startup section.
  3. Click on Open a specific or set of pages and click on three dots to find the Remove option.

Reset Google Chrome:

If the previous methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the Universalsearch.co 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 Universalsearch.co virus removal.Reset Chrome 2

Erase Universalsearch.co from Safari

Safari might have suffered from the hijack as well. Follow the steps below to reset the browser.

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension related to Universalsearch.co 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 Universalsearch.co 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.

Stream videos without limitations, no matter where you are

There are multiple parties that could find out almost anything about you by checking your online activity. While this is highly unlikely, advertisers and tech companies are constantly tracking you online. The first step to privacy should be a secure browser that focuses on tracker reduction to a minimum.

Even if you employ a secure browser, you will not be able to access websites that are restricted due to local government laws or other reasons. In other words, you may not be able to stream Disney+ or US-based Netflix in some countries. To bypass these restrictions, you can employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN, which provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, not slowing you down in the process.

Data backups are important – recover your lost files

Ransomware is one of the biggest threats to personal data. Once it is executed on a machine, it launches a sophisticated encryption algorithm that locks all your files, although it does not destroy them. The most common misconception is that anti-malware software can return files to their previous states. This is not true, however, and data remains locked after the malicious payload is deleted.

While regular data backups are the only secure method to recover your files after a ransomware attack, tools such as Data Recovery Pro can also be effective and restore at least some of your lost data.

About the author
Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

If this free removal guide helped you and you are satisfied with our service, please consider making a donation to keep this service alive. Even a smallest amount will be appreciated.

Contact Lucia Danes
About the company Esolutions

References

  1. Sorcha says:
    March 14th, 2017 at 9:13 am

    Ohh! I thought I was crazy or something when found this search engine on my Chrome. I guess it came along with one of the graphic designed programs Ive recently installed.. But thanks for the instructions. The hijacker is gone for good!

  2. Effie says:
    March 14th, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Is there a search engine that does not collect information about us??

  3. nasir says:
    March 14th, 2017 at 9:15 am

    My browser was hijacked too. Thanks for the instructions. Indeed, easy to follow!

Your opinion regarding Universalsearch.co virus