How to Remove the TaxCenterNow Redirect and Restore Your Browser

How to Remove the TaxCenterNow Redirect and Restore Your Browser

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

The TaxCenterNow is made by Mindspark, a company well-known for creating whole networks of threats. This particular redirect seems to be made in order to promote a web service. Read more about it in our detailed overview below.

Threat Summary

TypeBrowser Hijacker, PUP
Short DescriptionThe TaxCenterNow browser hijacker represents a malicious web browser plugin that is used to redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled page.
SymptomsThe homepage, new tab and search engine of all your browsers will be changed to TaxCenterNow. In addition viruses and other malware can be installed during the initiation process.
Distribution MethodFreeware Installations, Bundled Packages
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by TaxCenterNow


Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss TaxCenterNow.

TaxCenterNow – Distribution Ways

TaxCenterNow chrome web store extension entry

The TaxCenterNow redirect is a plugin-based threat that is distributed using different methods. The security research reveals that the main spread way is its availability in the various software repositories used by the most popular web browsers. An example instance is the Chrome Web Store where there is an elaborate description that attempts to coerce as many users to install it.

The browser redirect can also be installed through links and file attachments sent via spam email messages. They typically use forms of social engineering that attempt to coerce as many users into infecting themselves with the plugin. In many cases the senders may take text and graphics taken from legitimate sites and portals.

There are two related strategies that are often combined with email messages:

  • Malware Documents — The operators craft files that contain scripts (macros) that can lead to the TaxCenterNow redirect installation. The documents themselves can be of different types: rich text documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Once the users open up the respective documents they will notice a notification prompt that asks them to enable the built-in scripts (macros). If this is done the infection is downloaded from a remote site and executed on the local machine.
  • Malware Software Installers — The TaxCenterNow browser redirect code can be embedded in software installers. The campaign operators typically choose popular software such as applications, creative utilities, system helpers and computer games.

Using various web scripts such as banners, pop-ups and ad engines the threat can also be deployed to the intended victims.

TaxCenterNow – In-Depth Information

Upon installation of the TaxCenterNow it automatically starts to change browser settings. Usually addons like this one are made compatible with the most popular web browsers: Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, Microsoft Edge. The modified settings include the default search engine, new tabs page and home page. As a consequence the next time the victims open up their browser windows they will be shown the TaxCenterNow page. An additional consequence is the fact that the TaxCenterNow browser redirect institutes a tracking cookie and other web technologies that aim to create a detailed profile of the victims. The data is gathered into databases and they can then be sold to marketing agencies or other third parties.

It is designed in order to coerce the users into using the built-in search engine. Furthermore it is designed using a template used by many legitimate services and similar hijacker sites. Its home page is designed with the following components:

  • Top Menu Bar — It contains a customized Google Search instance alongside the TaxCenterNow online service. Using the harvested data it also displays the current weather conditions using the detected geographical location of the current user.
  • Main Search Engine — It shows a customized Google search engine. Warning: Any entered search queries may lead to false, affiliate or even virus results. Even though Google is shown as the underlying Internet service it is a customized version that is not comparable to the ordinary version.
  • Links — Underneath the search engine there are several links to popular services placed. Depending on the specific version of the TaxCenterNow redirect they may be changed to reflect regional services as well. In certain cases interaction with them may lead to hijacked account credentials.
  • Tax Service Links — They link to specific tax services linked to the linked application.
  • Bottom Menu Bar — It contains links to documents such as the privacy policy and terms of use.

TaxCenterNow – Privacy Policy

The TaxCenter Now redirect and its associated website is operated by MindSpark which is a well-known creator of similar software. They are known for creating hundreds of services that are linked between themselves. Their privacy policy and terms of use reveals that it pervasively tracks the users identity and creates a database containing a profile of each victim. The use of various web tracking technologies captures additional information such as the following:

  • Your name
  • Your address
  • Email address
  • Number of your page views
  • What links you clicked
  • Telephone number
  • Your login times

As stated in the Privacy Policy, Mindspark allows third-parties, including their authorized service providers, TaxCenterNow affiliates, advertising companies, and ad networks, to display advertisements or place ad tags or beacons on or via their Services. Thus, these companies could also obtain information about you and your online behavior. In case you do not want your private space to be invaded in this or any similar way, you should remove the unwanted software.

Remove TaxCenterNow Redirect

To remove TaxCenterNow 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.

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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