Search.gg Removal Guide

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Category: Browser Hijackers

When Search.gg, a new questionable search website, appears in your browser, you may not even realize that something has changed and that you could be at risk. This browser hijacker may show up in your Google Chrome browser after you install questionable and potentially unwanted extensions. It is possible that you do not even recall installing it for this reason. In any case, you should know that although this search engine page looks very similar to Google, you cannot trust its search results. You could be introduced to potentially unreliable third-party ads and sponsored links on modified search results pages. The presence of this hijacker in your browser as your new home page can also be a sign that there are malware infections hiding on board. Therefore, we suggest that you remove Search.gg and make sure that you do not leave any other potentially unwanted and malicious programs either on your computer.

Strangely enough this browser hijacker does not travel in freeware bundles like most of its peers. However, the browser extensions that can install it in your browser can actually show up on your computer in bundles. We have found that, for example, Iloveplay Search is a potentially unwanted program (PUP) that promotes this hijacker. It is quite suspicious though that its official Chrome web store page, chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/iloveplay-search/gfppelbhbfmfobbniagiigiiiaaaodlh, does not work anymore. This usually happens when enough users report an extension to Google as potentially harmful or malicious and it gets taken down. Such a bundle that contains such PUPs and adware programs that may install this browser hijacker can be downloaded in a couple of ways.

For example, you may click on a pop-up ad that is shown to you while you are viewing a webpage. This pop-up or banner ad could claim that you need to install a plugin to be able to see the content of the page but it can also relate to a security situation. If you click to install, you could drop a bundle of threats onto your system instead of a legitimate update or plugin. This is why it is important that you always download software and updates only from official and trustworthy sites. You can also download a malicious bundle if you end up on suspicious websites usually associated with file sharing, gaming, and dating. These pages hold risks for you in the form of third-party advertisements.

Do not think for a second that it is always obvious that a content is an ad. There are of course easily recognizable commercial ads but there are those that are disguised as something else like a button (download, next-page, or previous-page), a fake notification, or simply invisible content. If you click on any of these, you could either open a new tab with a malicious page in it or directly drop an infectious bundle. Remember that if this may have happened to you, first, you need to delete Search.gg and then, run a reliable online malware scanner on your system to detect all possible threats. Of course, once you know the list of your “enemies,” you need to take action before it is too late.

Our research indicates that this browser hijacker is an identical clone of Searchengage.com. This search website looks very similar to Google with its colorful Search logo above the search box in the middle of the page. Obviously, this is a trick some hijacker authors like to use to fool unsuspecting computer users into believing that their new home page is Google itself, a trustworthy search engine. However, this browser hijacker may collect information about you that could be shared with third parties and can be used to provide you with customized content. This is what the Privacy Policy has to say about this, and no wonder why we emphasize that you always read the legal documents to understand what you are up against:

“Search Engage and its affiliates work with various companies, such as advertisers, ad networks and data management platforms, that may help us and other companies to tailor online ads”

This browser hijacker redirects all your queries to yandex.com that could contain potentially unsafe third-party ads and links that promote affiliates. Since there is no guarantee whatsoever that these affiliates can all be trusted, you can never know what might happen when you click on a link or an ad on the search results pages. What if you get redirected to a malicious website where cyber criminals can scam you out of your credit card details and money? What if you might download more serious threats in the background? If you do not want to find out about the answers to these questions yourself, we recommend that you remove Search.gg right now.

Finally, we can provide you with a manual solution if you want to eliminate this threat yourself. Since it is possible that this browser hijacker only changes your home page setting in your Google Chrome browser, you can either use the menu to restore this setting or you can use our instructions below. Please make sure that you tackle all other threats as well since you will not be fully safe in your virtual world unless you remove all PUPs and malicious programs. If you need effective help to protect your PC against all kinds of threats, we advise you to employ a trustworthy anti-malware application like SpyHunter.

How to remove Search.gg from your browser

Google Chrome

  1. Tap Win+E and locate the “%LocalAppData%\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default” folder.
  2. Delete these files: Preferences, Secure Preferences, and Web Data
  3. Empty the Recycle Bin.
Download Remover for Search.gg *
*SpyHunter scanner, published on this site, is intended to be used only as a detection tool. To use the removal functionality, you will need to purchase the full version of SpyHunter.

Search.gg Screenshots:

Search.gg

Search.gg technical info for manual removal:

Files Modified/Created on the system:

# File Name File Size (Bytes) File Hash
1siteError.dll
2SearchNugget Toolbar features.lnk
3Tell a friend about Skywriter Plane Screen Saver!.lnk
4SkyEmail.exe
5Screen Saver will not work.lnk
6Skywriter Plane Screen Saver 1.0.lnk
7sbar.dll
8Acez.com - More Screen Savers!.lnk
9toolbar.exe32128 bytesMD5: 5c33d977da7c7a767a11639376a8a1ba
10SrngInit.exe

Registry Modifications:

The following Registry Keys were created:

  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTsbar.SBAR
  • SNHelper.SNHELPER
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTsbar.SBARToggle Button
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE SOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows CurrentVersionExplorerBrowser Helper Objects{4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7D}
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE SOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows CurrentVersionUninstallSbar
  • Acez.Band.1
  • E68C36A4-16FF-4DDE-8B82-3558F6631BE6
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftInternetExplorerMainStartPage=[siteaddress]
  • Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar\4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7D
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTCLSID{4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7E}
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionUninstallSbar
  • Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Extensions\88E50F1D-4790-4C6B-BEE3-D54E46B6EEF6
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTsbar.SBARMenu Button
  • 4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7F
  • 4E7BD74F-2B80-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7F
  • sbar.SBARMenu Button
  • Acez.Band
  • Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Management\ARPCache\SBAR
  • 4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FB-EF60B19DB42E
  • Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Management\ARPCache\Acez SiteError
  • Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Management\ARPCache\Acez.com Toolbar Button
  • HKEY_USERS.DEFAULTSoftwareMicrosoftInternet ExplorerMainStart Page=[site address]
  • HKEY_USERS.DEFAULTSoftwareMicrosoftInternetExplorerMainStartPage=[siteaddress]
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER SoftwareSbar Toolbar
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTCLSID{4E7BD74F-2B80-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7F}
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTsbar.SBARToggleButton
  • Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Management\ARPCache\Skywriter Plane Screen Saver 1.0
  • Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar\WebBrowser\4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7D
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTCLSID{4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7D}
  • Sbar Toolbar
  • 00000FF6-0043-40AE-A591-3FB8AB4B8316
  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTsbar.SBARMenuButton
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareSbarToolbar
  • 4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7D
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER SoftwareMicrosoftInternet ExplorerMainStart Page=[site address]
  • Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Extensions\CmdMapping\88E50F1D-4790-4C6B-BEE3-D54E46B6EEF6
  • sbar.SBAR
  • sbar.SBARToggle Button
  • 4E7BD74F-2B8D-469E-C0FF-FD7FF4D5FA7E

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