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Remove Wawsearch.com virus

removal by Lucia Danes - - | Type: Browser hijacker

What should you know before using Wawsearch.com search engine?

Wawsearch.com virus belongs to a huge group of potentially unwanted programs (PUP) [1]. Speaking more specifically, it is a browser hijacker that it designed to take over web browsers and provide commercial content for the users. Usually, hijackers are used for boosting traffic for various websites and developers generate revenue from this activity. Wawsearch.com browser hijacker gets inside computers bundled [2] with other software as an optional component. Once it steps in the system, it attacks all web browsers and alters their settings. It sets its domain as the homepage and search engine and prevents users from setting their preferred websites. When it settles in, hijacker starts modifying search results, redirecting to various sites, delivering misleading ads, and spying on the users. All these activities are not only annoying but might also be dangerous. That’s why we recommend Wawsearch.com removal as soon as this bogus website shows up on the screen.

Questions about Wawsearch.com virus

The main page of the browser hijacker includes shortcuts to popular social media websites, online shops, email services and a search engine. For many computer users this search engine might look reliable because it is “Powered by Google.” However, it is not Google. The developers of Wawsearch.com virus can alter search results and include sponsored links. In this case, they can trick users that it is relevant search result and they click it. However, the disappointment of website’s irrelevance is the least problem. Some of these links might lead to infected websites that have been created for spreading malware. Wawsearch.com redirect issues are concerning because hijacker can also provide misleading advertisements that can redirect to questionable third-party sites. Besides, some ads [3] might offer fake software downloads and updates. During the time these ads might look more and more familiar and similar to latest search queries. Indeed, it might happen because hijacker might be capable of monitoring and collecting browsing-related activity. Unfortunately, the main page of the website includes only inactive link the Privacy Policy [4], so we cannot tell what specific information might be interesting for the developers or if they share aggregated information with third-parties. It’s the last reason why you should remove Wawsearch.com immediately; besides, you can speed up the process with ReimageIntego.

The screenshot of Wawsearch.com virus

How can it infect my computer?

Wawsearch.com virus cannot get inside computers on its own. It’s not such a strong and powerful computer infection. Hijacker steps in the system with the help of other free programs that users download from the Internet. Many users believe that they install one program and don’t have a clue that it might be a software package full of optional applications. Therefore, Wawsearch.com hijack might occur when users least expect it. Additional programs can sneak inside silently and without asking permission when users install new programs using “Quick” or “Standard” settings. However, if they choose “Advanced” or “Custom” installation mode, they can stop PUPs from getting inside [5]. During the installation, they might see the checkbox of pre-selected applications or statement “I agree to set Wawsearch.com as my homepage.” All they have to do is to deselect all these ticks. However, if installation wizard does not let to do it, users should quit installation and look for another reliable program.

The first aid for Wawsearch.com removal

Probably, you have tried to reset your Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox hundred times. However, browser hijacker does not let you get rid of it so simply. You will be able to customize your browser and browse the Internet safely again only when you remove Wawsearch.com from the system. You can do it either hard or easy way by choosing manual or automatic elimination method. Both methods are effective, but we always recommend saving your time and leaving computer infection’s removal for professional tools. Our advice is automatic Wawsearch.com removal; however, we know that lots of computer users prefer manual elimination method. For this reason, our team has prepared illustrated step-by-step guide how to get rid of it manually.

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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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 Wawsearch.com virus, follow these steps:

Uninstall Wawsearch.com from Windows systems

Be careful and attentive while looking for Wawsearch.com virus and its components. It’s important to eliminate all suspicious entries from your computer and all web browsers installed on it. However, if this bogus search engine still appears as your homepage or default search engine, scan you PC with reputable antivirus or anti-malware software because you have left some of the hijacker’s components.

  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 Wawsearch.com and related programs
    Here, look for Wawsearch.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 Wawsearch.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.

Eliminate Wawsearch.com from Mac OS X system

If your Mac OS X has experienced Wawsearch.com hijack, you have to follow our prepared instructions below and remove the hijacker with all its related components. Then, check your web browsers and reset their settings.

If your macOS is displaying some infection symptoms, proceed with the following guide:

Remove Wawsearch.com virus from Applications folder:

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

Remove Wawsearch.com from Internet Explorer (IE)

Follow the steps below and clean your browser from suspicious entries.

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 Wawsearch.com 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 Wawsearch.com virus removal.Reset Internet Explorer

Get rid of Wawsearch.com virus from Microsoft Edge

Make sure that Wawsearch.com virus hasn’t installed any questionable extensions without your knowledge. If you find something suspicious, uninstall them as shown below.

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 Wawsearch.com 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

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

Erase Wawsearch.com from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Browser hijacker might have installed suspicious extensions, so you should remove them and reset browser’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 Wawsearch.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 Wawsearch.com removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times

Delete Wawsearch.com from Google Chrome

Look through the list of extensions and uninstall all plugins, extensions or toolbars that might be related to Wawsearch.com.

  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 Wawsearch.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 Wawsearch.com removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal

Uninstall Wawsearch.com from Safari

If you see some questionable toolbars or find unknown extensions on your Safari, follow the instructions below and fix your browser.

  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 Wawsearch.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 Wawsearch.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 Wawsearch.com 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
Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

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