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Remove (Removal Instructions) - updated Sep 2019

removal by Julie Splinters - - | Type: Browser Hijackers is the browser hijacker that distributes various add-ons and PUPs via software bundles and freeware installations is a browser hijacker that changes particular settings on the browser, so all the processes get redirected to this or a similar ad-supported site. is a website that appears as an in-browser search engine and shows altered results that should improve your time online. However, all those claims created for promotional purposes are not true. This potentially unwanted program is everything but useful and valuable. There is no need to use this search engine as your default tool because all the results get filled with advertisements and suspicious redirects. 

Constant commercial content delivered by virus can also offer installations of questionable programs, tools, extensions. All that content can also have direct downloads embedded on the pop-up or website, so when the user triggers particular script PUP automatically gets on the system and starts affecting the performance even more. This intruder is related to many other intrusive hijackers and adware programs like that is mostly affecting macOS devices, so there is no one device that can be immune to potentially unwanted programs.[1]

Type  Browser hijacker
Symptoms  Changes the homepage, new tab, default search engine to, modifies web browser settings, redirects all the search attempts and delivers tons of pop-ups with commercial content
Distribution Freeware installations, deceptive pages, other PUPs
Main danger Uses various data tracking techniques and can share the collected information with third-party advertisers for malvertising purposes
Known since 1994
Elimination Clean the machine fully with Reimage and remove completely by InfoSpace Holdings LLC is an untrustworthy search engine that seeks to hijack Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, IE, Edge, Safari, and other less popular web browsers for the sake of affiliate marketing.[2] With the help of freeware bundling, its developers foist virus to unaware users, and they make people visit suspicious third-party websites or see intrusive advertisements.

While it's possible to skip the installation of extension unnoticed, it's hardly possible to take no notice of corrupted web browser's start page, search provider, new tab URL, as well as additional browser toolbars. Once this virus hijacks the web browser, all the customized settings are superseded without user's permission asked.

However, seeing website as a default search engine or Web Crawler Toolbar injected without user's permission is not only irritating but should also be treated as potentially dangerous. The more programs like this you encounter, the more difficult it becomes to get rid of the PUP. hijack removal will stop irritating browser's redirects and terminate misleading pop-up ads is dubbed as a potentially unwanted program (PUP), and browser hijacker as it can compromise not only settings but also do the following:

  • Install tracking cookies and pixels. The small files dropped onto the web browser can monitor user's web browsing activities 24/7 and transmit collected information to third parties. Those who don't mind the leakage of browsing-related information should beware that IP address, email address, approx. Geographical location, most frequently visited websites go for the list of non-personal information, though it might be used for initiating malspam[3] and similar shady activities.
  • Return altered search results. malware displays a combination of Google and Yahoo-based search results. However, they should not be trusted equally because this browser hijacker might try to promote suspicious or even unsafe third-party websites. Based on previous practice with browser hijackers proved the fact that continuous web browser's redirects are not only irritating but can also redirect to phishing websites containing JavaScripts in pushing malware onto the system.
  • Generate intrusive browsing-related ads. Those who have already been infected with this unwanted program do not consider whether to remove or not. That's because some of the ads it displays are so intrusive that it gets difficult to browse the net. Random pop-ups, full-screen graphics, auto-playing videos or audio, brute-force subscription pop-ups, hyperlinks, etc. – that's how the routine of people with the infected browser will look like. There's only one way to prevent this scenario from materializing – initiating a complete removal.

If you don't know how to remove and browser hijackers in general, be free to use the instructions provided at the end of this article. The tool that may assist you in this process is Reimage. Besides, draw your attention to the fact that for removal to be complete, you will have to eliminate PUPs and the reset the hijacked web virus

Potentially unwanted program installation risk

Browser hijacker does not have malicious traits, so don't fall for panic if your web browser's settings were compromised because it's not a virus. Besides, it's your fault. Indeed. Adware-type programs and browser hijackers are not injected into PCs stealthily, though sometimes it looks like that. Usually, they spread as optional downloads and are installed with users' permission.

Of course, the permission won't be required directly. Those who opt for Quick or Basic installation option probably won't see the windows of the installation wizard, which claim that by clicking “Next,” they agree with the installation of toolbars, extensions, add-ons, or other pretend-to-be useful tools.

Experts from[4] recommend to select the Advanced or Custom installation option and monitor the installation of free programs. That should be sufficient for keeping the system PUP-free, at least in most of the cases.

Terminate and other associated hijackers or PUPs

Although dubbed as a virus, URL cannot pose harm to your PC directly. However, the same cannot be said about the content that it may expose you to. This potentially dangerous search site can try to promote fake software updates, expensive products, or flood with scam alerts.

Manual removal is possible, so those who have enough time to analyze the system's content can follow the instructions given below. Nevertheless, it's much easier to remove with the help of a reputable anti-malware tool. Anyway, don't forget to reset your web browser's settings.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner, 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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Reimage (remover) Happiness
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, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. 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.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with SpyHunter 5.
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, follow these steps:

Uninstall from Windows systems

The success of removal depends on how many related components does it have. If it turns out to consist of a sole component, accessing Control Panel and removing one unknown/suspicious entry should be sufficient. If you need a guide, here it is:

  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.

Get rid of from Mac OS X system

You can eliminate potentially unwanted programs (PUP) from Mac by following these simple steps:

  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 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'

Erase 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 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 removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again

Delete from Microsoft Edge

As soon as you delete the PUP, reset IE to eliminate potentially malicious extensions:

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, should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

Remove 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 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

Eliminate from Google Chrome

If you have never reset Google Chrome before, you can use this guide for help:

  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

Uninstall 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

About the author

Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Malware removal specialist

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