This article will aid you to remove PlayCenter Search in full. Follow the browser hijacker removal instructions at the end of the article.
PlayCenter Search is a browser hijacker redirect. The extension and its website will redirect you to a search engine related to the hijacker’s search platform for games. From there, you can find yourself on pages with lots of adverts and sponsored content that go through this hijacker. The hijacker will modify the start page, new tab, and search settings for the browser applications you have on your computer system.
|Type||Browser Hijacker, PUP|
|Short Description||Each browser application on your computer could get affected. The hijacker can redirect you and will display lots of advertisements.|
|Symptoms||Browser settings which are altered are the homepage, search engine and the new tab.|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss PlayCenter Search.|
PlayCenter Search – Ways of Distribution
PlayCenter Search might be distributed via various methods. One of those methods is through third-party installations. Those installer setups come from bundled applications and freeware that could be set to install additional content by default on your computer system. Typically, that might happen without any notification. You might have tried installing a media player or free software and got your browser settings modified by the hijacker. To avoid unwanted programs from affecting your PC is doable if you find Custom or Advanced settings. There you should be able to deselect what you don’t want.
The browser hijacker redirect is also distributed via the Chrome Web Store under the name PlayCenter Search as seen from the below screenshot:
PlayCenter Search could be distributed via other methods, like add-ons or browser extensions which install on your browser (as the one shown above). Other distribution ways use advertisements, such as banners, pop-ups, pop-unders, and redirect links. Sponsored advertisements, including targeted content on suspicious websites could distribute the hijacker, too. These websites might also be partners or affiliates of the PlayCenter Search website and services. These browsers could be affected: Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari.
PlayCenter Search – Detailed Analysis
PlayCenter Search is a browser hijacker redirect. You will get redirected when you are using its services, from links, ads and pages hosted by its search engine. The main page can be viewed from the screenshot given below:
The following Web domains are related to the hijacker:
The PlayCenter Search browser hijacker will redirect you if you use its services and interact with links, ads and other content from its search pages. If you are using its search engine to browse the Web, you will be redirected to its search results page.
Below you can see an advertisement pop-up loaded from the hijacker:
Be aware that each search that you do on its pages will be sending information to servers connected to this PlayCenter Search hijacker. The pages displayed in the above and bottom image can replace the homepage, new tab and default search of every browser that you have installed.
If you have the PlayCenter Search extension related to the hijacker on your PC, all affected browsers will be modified by the malicious application as it will:
- Read and change all your data on the websites you visit
- Change your search settings to: play.eanswers.com
The screenshot that is shown underneath the paragraph shows what is one of the results when you try to make a search query through the PlayCenter Search search bar. It could redirect you to another search page which is related to the hijacker or to a search engine that looks like Yahoo! for instance. Every search query in the search results will get filtered and sent to servers associated with the malware developers. So, everything that you provide as information will be gathered by the browser hijacker.
In case another search engine loads rather than that of the website, you could be served with even more advertisements and redirects that could place browser cookies on your computer device, and they could track your online habits. Other, more advanced tracking technologies could have been used, too. Be wary of the information you provide on such search pages, especially on ones, associated with PlayCenter Search. Refrain from clicking on suspicious advertisements and links that can show up.
The following information can be collected from you, according to the Policy:
- Your Name
- E-mail address
- Country of Origin
- Telephone Number
- Your Website (if you have such)
- Company and Job Title
- Information you provide (Via Surveys etc.)
Cookies connected to the browser hijacking site and services of PlayCenter Search are also dropped by them to acquire more information related to your internet activity and habits. The PlayCenter Search service could collect even more data with which you could be identified.
To conclude, you should be wary of what information you give out to search engines and websites. In case you do not like the idea of any information to be acquired about you by this browser hijacker or its services, you should consider removing it.
Remove PlayCenter Search Redirect
To remove PlayCenter Search manually from your computer, follow the step-by-step removal instructions provided below. In case the manual removal does not get rid of the hijacker redirect and its files completely, you should search for and remove any leftovers with an advanced anti-malware tool. Such a program can keep your computer safe in the future.
- Guide 1: How to Remove PlayCenter Search from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of PlayCenter Search on Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove PlayCenter Search in Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase PlayCenter Search from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall PlayCenter Search from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove PlayCenter Search from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate PlayCenter Search from Internet Explorer.
- Guide 8: Disable PlayCenter Search Push Notifications in Your Browsers.
About the PlayCenter Search Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this PlayCenter Search how-to removal guide included, is the outcome of extensive research, hard work and our team’s devotion to help you remove the specific, adware-related problem, and restore your browser and computer system.
How did we conduct the research on PlayCenter Search?
Please note that our research is based on independent investigation. We are in contact with independent security researchers, thanks to which we receive daily updates on the latest malware, adware, and browser hijacker definitions.
Furthermore, the research behind the PlayCenter Search threat is backed with VirusTotal https://www.virustotal.com/gui/home/upload.
To better understand this online threat, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.
1.Browser Redirect – What Is It?
2.Adware Is Malicious, and It Uses Advanced Techniques to Infect
3.The Thin Red Line Between Potentially Unwanted Programs and Malware
4.The Pay-Per-Install Affiliate Business – Making Millions out of Adware
5.Malicious Firefox Extensions Installed by 455,000 Users Blocked Updates
How to Remove PlayCenter Search from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove PlayCenter Search
Step 2: Uninstall PlayCenter 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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by PlayCenter Search on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by PlayCenter 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.
Step 4: Scan for PlayCenter Search with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool
1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.
2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.
3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.
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.
Video Removal Guide for PlayCenter Search (Windows).
Get rid of PlayCenter Search from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall PlayCenter Search and remove related files and objects
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 PlayCenter Search:
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 PlayCenter 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 PlayCenter 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 PlayCenter 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:
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 PlayCenter 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:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove PlayCenter Search files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as PlayCenter Search, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. SpyHunter for Mac offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Video Removal Guide for PlayCenter Search (Mac)
Remove PlayCenter 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.
Erase PlayCenter 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.
Uninstall PlayCenter 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.
Remove PlayCenter 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".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the PlayCenter Search will be removed.
Eliminate PlayCenter 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.
Remove Push Notifications caused by PlayCenter Search from Your Browsers.
Turn Off Push Notifications from Google Chrome
To disable any Push Notices from Google Chrome browser, please follow the steps below:
Step 1: Go to Settings in Chrome.
Step 2: In Settings, select “Advanced Settings”:
Step 3: Click “Content Settings”:
Step 4: Open “Notifications”:
Step 5: Click the three dots and choose Block, Edit or Remove options:
Remove Push Notifications on Firefox
Step 1: Go to Firefox Options.
Step 2: Go to “Settings”, type “notifications” in the search bar and click "Settings":
Step 3: Click “Remove” on any site you wish notifications gone and click “Save Changes”
Stop Push Notifications on Opera
Step 1: In Opera, press ALT+P to go to Settings.
Step 2: In Setting search, type “Content” to go to Content Settings.
Step 3: Open Notifications:
Step 4: Do the same as you did with Google Chrome (explained below):
Eliminate Push Notifications on Safari
Step 1: Open Safari Preferences.
Step 2: Choose the domain from where you like push pop-ups gone and change to "Deny" from "Allow".
PlayCenter Search FAQ
What is PlayCenter Search?
The PlayCenter Search threat is adware or browser redirect virus. It may slow your computer down siginficantly and display advertisements. The main idea is for your information to likely get stolen or more ads to appear on your device.
The creators of such unwanted apps work with pay-per-click schemes to get your computer to visit risky or different types of websites that may generate them funds. This is why they do not even care what types of websites show up on the ads. This makes their unwanted software indirectly risky for your OS.
What are the symptoms of PlayCenter Search?
There are several symptoms to look for when this particular threat and also unwanted apps in general are active:
Symptom #1: Your computer may become slow and has poor performance in general.
Symtpom #2: You have toolbars, add-ons or extensions on your web browsers that you don't remember adding.
Symptom #3: You see all types of ads, like ad-supported search results, pop-ups and redirects to randomly appear.
Symptom #4: You see installed apps on your Mac running automatically and you do not remember installing them.
Symptom #5: You see suspicious processes running in your Task Manager.
If you see one or more of those symptoms, then security experts reccomend that you check your computer for viruses.
What types of Unwanted Programs are there?
According to most malware researchers and cyber-security experts, the threats that can currently affect your Mac can be the following types:
- Rogue Antivirus programs.
- Browser hijackers.
- Fake optimizers.
What to do if I have a "virus" like PlayCenter Search?
Do not panic! You can easily get rid of most adware or unwanted program threats by firstly isolating them and then removing them from your browser and computer. One reccomended way to do that is by using a reputable malware removal software that can take care of the removal automatically for you. There are many anti-malware apps out there that you can choose from. SpyHunter is one of the reccomended anti-malware apps, that can scan your computer for free and detect any viruses, tracking cookies and unwanted adware apps and eliminate them quickly. This saves time when compared to doing the removal manually.
How to secure my passwords and other data from PlayCenter Search?
With few simple actions. First and foremost, it is imperative that you follow these steps:
Step 1: Find a safe computer and connect it to another network, not the one that your Mac was infected in.
Step 2: Change all of your passwords, starting from your e-mail passwords.
Step 3: Enable two-factor authentication for protection of your important accounts.
Step 4: Call your bank to change your credit card details (secret code, etc.) if you have saved your credit card for online shopping or have done online activiites with your card.
Step 5: Make sure to call your ISP (Internet provider or carrier) and ask them to change your IP address.
Step 6: Change your Wi-Fi password.
Step 7: (Optional): Make sure to scan all of the devices connected to your network for viruses and repeat these steps for them if they are affected.
Step 8: Install anti-malware software with real-time protection on every device you have.
Step 9: Try not to download software from sites you know nothing about and stay away from low-reputation websites in general.
If you follow these reccomendations, your network and all devices will become significantly more secure against any threats or information invasive software and be virus free and protected in the future too.
More tips you can find on our website, where you can also ask any questions and comment underneath the articles about your computer problems. We will try to respond as fast as possible.