SearchToolHelper Removal [Explained]

SearchToolHelper is a browser hijacker that targets Macs

SearchToolHelper is a rogue app, categorized as adware. It also has browser hijacker qualities. Following successful infiltration, this application runs intrusive advertisement campaigns, modifies browser settings and promotes fake search engines.   The hijacker becomes rather obvious as soon as it installs, even if you didn’t see it installing. You’ll observe your browser behaving oddly, such as redirects to random pages, search results filled with sponsored content, etc. Many users, however, might not connect the strange behaviour with browser hijacker if they don’t know what they are. But if they were to use a search engine to research the site they’re redirected to, it would not be hard to tell that it is a hijacker.

SearchToolHelper

 

  • SearchToolHelper Detection Names (VirusTotal Link) Avast (MacOS:Adload-AD [Trj]), DrWeb (Adware.Mac.Loader.17), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of OSX/TrojanDownloader.Adload.), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Cimpli.k), Full List
  • SearchToolHelper Symptoms: Your Mac becomes slower than normal, you see unwanted pop-up ads, you are redirected to dubious websites.
  • SearchToolHelper Damage: Internet browser tracking (potential privacy issues), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious websites, loss of private information.

You’ll notice that your browser’s settings will be modified, in addition to the weird redirects. It will be evident that your browser now has a different homepage/new tabs, and annulling canceling what has been modified may be difficult. By making those changes, hijackers are able to redirect you.

Hijackers need you to install them because they’re not malware or viruses, even if many users consider them as such. It usually happens unintentionally to users, but they provide consent for the hijacker to install themselves. The hijackers, adware and potentially unwanted programs (PUPs), employ software bundling to install, which is essentially attaching them to freeware as additional offers allowing them to install alongside. If you carry on reading, we’ll clarify how you can stop these undesirable installations in the future.

It is not the most dangerous things your Mac may get infected with, but SearchToolHelper elimination should still be performed as soon as possible. Your normal browsing might be interrupted by the hijacker but it might also expose you to malware, scams and other content that could harm your computer.

How does a hijacker spread

In the majority of cases, hijackers install with freeware. Adding hijackers and other similar threats to freeware is known as bundling programs. Users generally do not notice any items being added but they’re preselected to install alongside, which makes program bundling quite dubious. The installations are very easily stoppable, however, as long as you follow software installation processes and pay attention.

Selecting Advanced (Custom) settings is important when installing free programs. The extra offers will be concealed in Default settings. Advanced settings will unhide the offers, and you will be able to deselect them. To prevent their installation, just uncheck the boxes. It doesn’t take long to stop these unnecessary installations as unchecking a box is all that has to be done, while it takes much more time to remove already installed threats. It ought to also be mentioned that if you pay attention when installing programs, you will avoid filling up your PC with junk.

What does the hijacker do

Soon after infection, redirect viruses begin to redirect you to random pages no matter which browser you are using, whether it’s Safari, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox, which helps immediately see that an infection is present. Your homepage and new tabs will be set to a web page the hijacker is promoting, and every single time you open your browser, that’s the website you’ll be redirected to. The browser will also have another search engine. You will be redirected to a page the hijacker is promoting and then shown search results that have been altered every time you carry out a search through the browser address bar. You might note that the results include sponsored content that doesn’t really relate to your searches. Because the main intent of a hijacker is generating traffic and profit, it redirects users to those sponsored websites. The random won’t only be very aggravating but they can also be harmful. It isn’t a good idea to engage with any sponsored or advertisement content while a redirect virus is installed because of that. Hijackers do not review the safety of the pages they lead users to, so it’s quite likely that you may end up on an unsafe one. You might be led to a website hosting malware, or one that’s attempting to scam you. So even if hijackers are not directly harmful to the Mac, don’t permit them to stay installed.

We ought to also note that browser hijackers snoop on users, and collect information about what they search for, what content they are more likely to engage with, sites visited, their IP addresses, etc. The hijacker would also possibly share it with third-parties, and it’s very unlikely that you want that.

To summarize, the hijacker didn’t ask for your explicit consent to install, made not wanted changes to your browsers, started leading you to sponsored web pages for revenue, and potentially subjected you to unreliable content. The quicker you remove SearchToolHelper, the better.

How to remove SearchToolHelper from your Mac computer

For the simplest way to uninstall SearchToolHelper, use anti-spyware programs. The spyware removal software will ensure that the threat is uninstalled successfully. However, you may also attempt manual SearchToolHelper removal, if you know what you’re doing. If you successfully uninstall SearchToolHelper, you can change your browser’s settings back to what they were.

Offers

You can find more information about WiperSoft on its official website, and find its uninstallation instructions here. Before installing, please familiarize yourself with WiperSoft EULA and Privacy Policy. WiperSoft will detect malware for free and gives Free trail to remove it.

  • WiperSoft

    WiperSoft is an anti-virus program with real-time threat detection and malware removal features. It detects all types of computer threats, from adware and browser hijackers to trojans, and easily removes them.

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  • Combo Cleaner

    ComboCleaner is an anti-virus and system optimization program for Mac computers. The program will keep your Mac secure from different types of malware, as well as clean it to keep it running smoothly.

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  • MalwareBytes

    Malwarebytes is a powerful anti-virus program that detects and removes all types of malware, as well as less serious threats like adware and browser hijackers. It has both free and paid versions.

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Automatic SearchToolHelper removal

The simplest way to delete SearchToolHelper from both your Mac and Windows devices would be using security software like anti-spyware. Anti-spyware applications can uninstall all types of infections so they should have no issues with SearchToolHelper. These applications are easy enough to use and should have no trouble uninstalling SearchToolHelper. However, it’s also possible to remove SearchToolHelper manually, and we will explain in the below given instructions.

How to manually uninstall SearchToolHelper from Windows

Windows XP

  1. Click Start (the windows logo bottom-left corner of the screen) or click the window key on your keyboard, select Settings and then Control Panel.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Choose Add or Remove Programs.
  3. Remove SearchToolHelper.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. Uninstall any additional program that causes suspicion.

Windows 7

  1. Open Control Panel by pressing Start and then Control Panel.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Select Programs and Features and then Uninstall a program.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Delete SearchToolHelper.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. If there are any other questionable applications, uninstall them as well.

Windows 8/10

  1. You will need to access Programs and Features by right-clicking on Start and pressing Programs and Features.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Remove SearchToolHelper.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. If there are any other suspicious programs, remove them as well.

How to manually uninstall SearchToolHelper from Mac OS

It is pretty simple to uninstall SearchToolHelper from your Mac. But we’ll also guide you through removing any remaining files after you remove SearchToolHelper.

  1. Access Finder – Applications.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Locate SearchToolHelper and drag it to the trash (the trash icon located on the dock).
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Look through all applications installed on your device for anything else that is questionable and trash them.
  4. If you press Go on the menu bar, you will see Go to Folder, press that.
    SearchToolHelper
  5. Type /Library/LaunchAgents, and if you notice any dubious and recently added files, drag them to the trash.
    SearchToolHelper
  6. Go back to Go to Folder, and type /Library/Application Support. Search for any recently-added or otherwise dubious files and trash them.
    SearchToolHelper
  7. Go back to Go to Folder, and put in ~/Library/LaunchAgents. Look for any recently-added or otherwise dubious files and drag them to the trash.
    SearchToolHelper
  8. Access Go to Folder again, and put in /Library/LaunchDaemons. If Any recently-added files seem questionable, drag them to the trash.
  9. You will have to right-click on the trash icon and press Empty Trash.
    SearchToolHelper

SearchToolHelper deletion from your Internet browser

Remove SearchToolHelper from Internet Explorer

  1. Open Internet Explorer.
  2. Press on the gear icon (top-right corner), and press Manage Add-ons.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Click Remove on SearchToolHelper and all unknown extensions.
  4. Gear icon to access menu – Internet Options.
  5. In the General tab, change the homepage to a site of your choice.
    SearchToolHelper
  6. Access Manage Add-ons by clicking on the browser menu (the gear icon) and clicking Manage Add-ons.
    SearchToolHelper
  7. Click Search Providers (from the menu on the left), change the search engine after you remove the one set by SearchToolHelper.

Your browser’s settings will have to be reset if SearchToolHelper is still causing problems.

  1. For Windows XP users, click start and open Run and put in inetcpl.cpl, open Advanced and press Reset.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. For Windows Vista/7 users, press the windows logo, type inetcpl.cpl in the search box and click Enter. Open the Advanced tab and press Reset.
  3. For users using computers operating Windows 8/10, launch Internet Explorer, press on the gear icon, choose Internet Options, access the Advanced tab and click on Reset. Confirm the reset by pressing Reset again.
    SearchToolHelper

SearchToolHelper deletion from Google Chrome

  1. Open Google Chrome.
  2. Access the menu by pressing on the three dots at the top-right corner, then More tools and Extensions.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Find all extensions you do not know, as well as SearchToolHelper, and remove them.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. Click the three dots top-right and select Settings.
    SearchToolHelper
  5. In the On startup section, delete the homepage set by SearchToolHelper and set one of your choice.
    SearchToolHelper
  6. Proceed to Search engine from the menu tab on the left, then Manage search engines, delete the search engine set by SearchToolHelper and pick your preferred one.
    SearchToolHelper

If you are still struggling with SearchToolHelper, your browser’s settings may need to be restored to default.

  1. Launch Google Chrome, click on the three dots to access menu, open Settings.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Scroll down, press on Advanced and go down until you see Reset.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Press on Reset and press Reset again in the new window that pops up.
    SearchToolHelper

Uninstall SearchToolHelper from Mozilla Firefox

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox.
  2. Open Add-ons through the menu (the three bars top-right corner).
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Open Extensions, find all extensions you do not recognise, as well as SearchToolHelper, and delete them.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. Access Preferences via the menu (the three dots).
    SearchToolHelper
  5. In the Home tab, delete the page SearchToolHelper set as your homepage and choose your preferred one.
    SearchToolHelper
  6. Proceed to the Search tab from the menu on the left, change your search engine.

Restoring your browser’s settings might be necessary if you are still having problems with SearchToolHelper.

  1. Menu (the three bars) – Help – Troubleshoot information.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. In the window, press Refresh Firefox.
  3. Press Refresh Firefox again.
    SearchToolHelper

SearchToolHelper removal from Safari

  1. Launch Safari.
  2. Press on Safari from the menu bar, and select Preferences.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Access the Extensions tab, identify all extensions you can’t identify, as well as SearchToolHelper, and delete them.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. Access the General tab, you’ll see a homepage set by SearchToolHelper, change it to one of your choice.
    SearchToolHelper
  5. Open the Search tab, delete the search engine set by SearchToolHelper and set it to one of your choice.

If that didn’t solve your trouble, you’ll need to reset your browser’s settings.

  1. Clear History by clicking on Safari (the menu bar) when the browser is running, and click on Clear History.
    SearchToolHelper
  2. Click Safari (from the top menu) again – Preferences – Advanced tab.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Check the Show Develop menu in menu bar box.
    SearchToolHelper
  4. The Develop menu will appear at the top, click on that and then press on Empty Caches.

How to remove SearchToolHelper from Microsoft Edge

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge.
  2. Menu (the three dots at the top-right corner) – Extensions.
    SearchToolHelper
  3. Find all extensions you do not know, as well as SearchToolHelper, and remove them.
  4. Access Settings via the menu (the three dots).
  5. If you go to the On startup tab, you’ll see that SearchToolHelper set a weird website as your homepage, change it to one of your choice.
    SearchToolHelper
  6. Go to Privacy and services tab, change your search engine.
    SearchToolHelper

Your browser’s settings will have to be reset if SearchToolHelper is still present.

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge, access menu (the three dots), select Settings, press on the Reset settings tab.
  2. Select Restore settings to their default values. Confirm the reset.
    SearchToolHelper

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