A suspicious browser add-on known as Hoopla Search has been reported by malware researchers and affected users all over the web to have a rogue behavior and heavily advertise third-party content. The web browsers that can be reportedly affected by Hoopla Search are Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer and Opera. Whichever the browser may be, Hoopla Search browser add-on is believed to set the web page nt(.)hooplasearch(.)com as a home page of the browser it is installed on. The consequences of having this PUP (Potentially Unwanted Program) may vary from boosting a third-party site’s traffic via redirects to getting infected by malware. This is why the removal of Hoopla Search add-on and the restoration of the web browser are highly recommended, tutorial for which you can find after this article.
|Type||Browser Hijacker, PUP|
|Short Description||The suspicious software changes the browser settings and dislays advertisements in your browser.|
|Symptoms||You see adverts in your browsers – pop-ups, pop-unders or others. You can be redirected. Slow computer even crashes.|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installers, Bundled Packages|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by Hoopla Search |
Malware Removal Tool
|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Hoopla Search.|
Hoopla Search Ads – Distribution
Hoopla can be directly added to the browser of the user by automatically visiting a web link that is also posed as a hotlink in the website of the add-on as well. However, this does not exclude the possibility that Hoopla Search may be found bundled (included) with other free program installers downloaded by unsuspecting users from shady websites, for example:
How Does Hoopla Search Ads Work
Initially, upon being added as a browser, extension, the software requests various out of the ordinary permissions from the user. Some of those permissions are to detect the physical location of the user and communicate with other websites.
After accepting, Hoopla Search hijacks your web browser and modifies its settings so that its custom search engine is set as your home page as well as a new tab web page.
Furthermore, the search engine does not provide HTTPs encrypted connection and has several different cookies which are set on the affected computer. These are all indicators of a hoax search engine:
Another symptom of Hoopla’s shady character is the redirect to Yahoo search results, indicating that it does not have its owns search database and may display adverts via custom Yahoo search results:
Not only this, but the company behind the shady software does not even hide the fact that they may obtain personally identifiable information and even share it with third-party websites:
In addition to that, Hoopla Search has also created several files and objects in the affected computer, which can be removed by scanning the computer with an advanced anti-malware program.
The bottom line for this software is that it is most likely created to generate hoax traffic and display various advertisements by literally anyone. This is done to drive profit to its creators, and it may conceal several risks from you:
- Redirect you to scamming websites.
- Malvertise dangerous URLs to you which can infect your computer, with malware, like Locky Ransomware, for example.
Remove Hoopla Search Ads and Refresh Your Computer
Since ads displayed by Hoopla Search may be of a dangerous character and may slow down your PC and cause it to crash, this software is considered by researchers to be unhealthy. This is why we advise removing it using the removal instructions posted after this article. For maximum effectiveness and complete detection of all Hoopla Search associated files, we strongly advise you to download and install a particular anti-malware software which will not only detect and remove the threat but protect you from threats in the future as well.