THREAT REMOVAL

OnlineGames Search Redirect Removal — How To Restore Your Browser

The article will help you to remove OnlineGames Search fully. Follow the browser hijacker removal instructions given at the end of the article.

The OnlineGames Search redirect is a recently discovered browser plugin that can be used for hijacker purposes. Interaction with it can hijack personal data belonging to the victims. Our in-depth article explores some of the dangers associated with its presence on infected hosts.

Threat Summary

Name OnlineGames Search
Type Browser Hijacker, PUP
Short Description The hijacker redirect can alter the homepage, search engine and new tab on every browser application you have installed.
Symptoms The homepage, new tab and search engine of all your browsers will be switched to OnlineGames Search. You will be redirected and could see sponsored content.
Distribution Method Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

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Malware Removal Tool

User Experience Join Our Forum to Discuss OnlineGames Search.

OnlineGames Search – Distribution Methods

The OnlineGames Search is a redirect that is mainly being distributed via plugin repositories that are used by computer users to download and install extensions. Like other similar threats it is made compatible with all popular web browsers. The relevant entries are posted under various names and often make use of fake developer credentials and user reviews, along with an elaborate description that promises to add useful additions to the software.

The other main delivery method is the use of email messages that can either directly attach the virus strains or hyperlink them in the body contents.

Browser hijackers like the OnlineGames Search may also be spread via fake download sites that are modeled after legitimate Internet sites. The criminals can also employ similar sounding domain names that are an additional measure used to confuse the users. File sharing networks like BitTorrent can be used along with email messages to spread infected payloads. Two of the most popular cases are the following:

  • Application Installers — The hackers can integrate the virus code into software installers of popular applications such as system utilities, creativity suites and productivity programs.
  • Documents — Using a similar mechanism the criminals can embed the virus code into files of various types: spreadsheets, rich text documents, presentations and databases.

OnlineGames Search – Detailed Description

Upon installation of the browser hijacker it may ask for the following permissions:

  • Read and change all your data on the websites you visit.
  • Display notifications
  • Change your search settings to another site

As soon as the OnlineGames search redirect is installed on the target computer it starts to execute a built-in behavior pattern. The infections begin by changing the default settings of the affected browsers, usually the hackers program the hijacker to manipulate the default home page, new start page and search engine to point to the hacker-controlled page. This means that the next time the victims start their browser they will be shown a page that they didnd’t set up.

Further modifications to the computers can be caused by any components that are installed alongside the main plugin engine. An example is the use of an information gathering component that can harvest sensitive data about the users and their devices. This is useful to the criminals as it can be programmed to obtain strings that can reveal the users’s name, address, telephone number, location, interests and passwords. In addition a full hardware profile is generated which reveals useful information that is used to further optimize the attack campaigns.

In addition the OnlineGames Search redirect can serve as an intermediate step for activating a Trojan instance. The typical cases employ a small network component that establishes a secure connection with a hacker-controlled server. It is used to deploy additional threats, spy on the victims and take over control of the devices at any given time.

The security analysis reveals that the OnlineGames Search redirect can lead to several different links depending on several factors: the individual user characteristics, priority of the hacker-controlled sites and etc.

In a test evaluation upon installation of the redirect code it redirected our machine to a live sports information page. Upon closer inspection we discovered that the page installed intrusive scripts and tracking cookies that monitor all of the victim’s behavior on the site.

The site is designed using a common template and displays data about the world cup results. This is used as a decoy which aims to drive away the victim’s attention from the intrusive tracking it performs.

The fact that the redirect can be used to drive the victims to all kinds of sites means that they can include malicious sites as well. All of them can include some scripts such as the following: pop-ups, banners, redirects, in-line hyperlinks and etc. Furthermore websites such as these ones are among the primary mechanisms for spreading cryptocurrency miners.

OnlineGames Search – Privacy Policy

The OnlineGames Search redirect lists a privacy policy on the bottom menu bar that gives further information about the harvested data. According to the document the site starts to collect information about the victims and their devices as soon as the reelvant site is loaded into the browser. The following excerpts lists some of the example files:

  • Usage Information — Browser type, operating system, device type, location, IP address, pages served, time, referral URLs and other related data.
  • Statistics Data — All manners of metrics that are used to monitor the users activity.
  • Tracking Cookies — Individually for each linked service or site. They are also used to personalize the advertising and promotional content.
  • Log Files — All user interactions are logged to the servers.
  • Pixels — This is a transparent graphic image that indicates if a certain section has been visited. It can also be used as a command to retrieve another element from a preset address.

The privacy policy reads that the obtained personal information can be disclosed to current or future affiliates, parent companies or subsidiaries for processing, marketing and other services.

Remove OnlineGames Search Browser Hijacker

To remove OnlineGames Search manually from your computer, follow the step-by-step removal instructions given below. In case the manual removal does not get rid of the browser hijacker entirely, you should search for and remove any leftover items with an advanced anti-malware tool. Such software helps keep your computer secure in the future. We remind our readers that certain hijackers (most likely this one as well) are configured to harvest the information to a database shared with other similar threats.

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Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

How to Remove OnlineGames Search from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove OnlineGames Search

OFFER

Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your PC with SpyHunter

Keep in mind, that SpyHunter’s scanner is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware removal tool to remove the malware threats. Read our SpyHunter 5 review. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria

1. Hold Windows key() + R


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
Tip: Make sure to reverse those changes by unticking Safe Boot after that, because your system will always boot in Safe Boot from now on.


4. When prompted, click on "Restart" to go into Safe Mode.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall OnlineGames Search and related software from Windows

Here is a method in few easy steps that should be able to uninstall most programs. No matter if you are using Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP, those steps will get the job done. Dragging the program or its folder to the recycle bin can be a very bad decision. If you do that, bits and pieces of the program are left behind, and that can lead to unstable work of your PC, errors with the file type associations and other unpleasant activities. The proper way to get a program off your computer is to Uninstall it. To do that:


1. Hold the Windows Logo Button and "R" on your keyboard. A Pop-up window will appear.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


3. This will open a window with all the programs installed on the PC. Select the program that you want to remove, and press "Uninstall"
Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


Step 3: Clean any registries, created by OnlineGames Search on your computer.

The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by OnlineGames Search there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.


3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Tip: To find a virus-created value, you can right-click on it and click "Modify" to see which file it is set to run. If this is the virus file location, remove the value.

IMPORTANT!
Before starting "Step 4", please boot back into Normal mode, in case you are currently in Safe Mode.
This will enable you to install and use SpyHunter 5 successfully.

Step 4: Scan for OnlineGames Search with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.


It is recommended to run a scan before purchasing the full version of the software to make sure that the current version of the malware can be detected by SpyHunter. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.


2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


4. After SpyHunter has finished scanning your PC for any files of the associated threat and found them, you can try to get them removed automatically and permanently by clicking on the 'Next' button.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

If any threats have been removed, it is highly recommended to restart your PC.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

Get rid of OnlineGames Search from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall OnlineGames Search and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy


1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to OnlineGames Search:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to OnlineGames Search. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.


6: Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to OnlineGames Search. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7: Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • Go to Finder.
  • In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
  • Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
  • If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.

In case you cannot remove OnlineGames Search via Step 1 above:

In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as OnlineGames Search. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Step 2: Scan for and remove malware from your Mac

When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts, programs and malware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. Combo Cleaner offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove OnlineGames Search from Google Chrome.


Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu


Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"


Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Erase OnlineGames Search from Mozilla Firefox.

Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window


Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.


Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Uninstall OnlineGames Search from Microsoft Edge.


Step 1: Start Edge browser.


Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.


Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".


Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.


Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove OnlineGames Search from Safari.


Step 1: Start the Safari app.


Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.


Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".

stf-safari preferences


Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.

stf-safari-extensions


Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.


Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.

stf-safari uninstall

A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the OnlineGames Search will be removed.


How to Reset Safari
IMPORTANT: Before resetting Safari make sure you back up all your saved passwords within the browser in case you forget them.

Start Safari and then click on the gear leaver icon.

Click the Reset Safari button and you will reset the browser.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Eliminate OnlineGames Search from Internet Explorer.


Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.


Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'


Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.


Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.


Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.


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