THREAT REMOVAL

Search.searchttw.com Browser Hijacker Removal Guide

Search.searchttw.com site home page image

The article will help you to remove Search.searchttw.com effectively. Follow the browser hijacker removal instructions at the end of this article.

A dangerous browser hijacker called Search.searchttw.com has been found to infect computer users worldwide. The victims report serious security and privacy issues and the domain has been known under the alias of TubeWorld or TubeWorld New Tab Search.

Threat Summary

NameSearch.searchttw.com
TypeBrowser Hijacker, PUP
Short DescriptionEvery browser application which is on your computer will get affected. The hijacker can redirect you and show you lots of advertisements.
SymptomsBrowser settings that get changed are the start page, search engine and the new tab page.
Distribution MethodFreeware Installations, Bundled Packages
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

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Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss Search.searchttw.com.

Search.searchttw.com – Delivery Methods

The Search.searchttw.com browser hijacker can be attained using different spread methods. One of the most popular ones is the distribution of spam email messages that feature social engineering tricks. The aim of the hackers is to confuse the victims into infecting themselves with the Search.searchttw.com browser hijacker. It may also be referred as TubeWorld or World New Tab Search. There are two main types of email spam campaigns that are usually employed:

  1. Embedded Malicious Links ‒ The criminals seek to insert links in the body contents that lead to dangerous executables. Once they download and start the downloaded program the browser hijacker is automatically started.
  2. Direct File Attachments ‒ The emails contain instructions on downloading and running attached files that contain the malicious instance. Depending on the case the hackers can resort to infected documents that serve as payload downloaders. They are usually office files (spreadsheets, rich text documents or databases) that contain built-in scripts (macros). When they are run the browser hijacker is downloaded from a remote server and executed on the local computer. In other cases the email host the malware directly.

Search.searchttw.com infections can also be attained by downloading infected software installers from the Internet. The criminals behind the browser hijacker create fake download sites that pose as legitimate sources. P2P networks like BitTorrent are often used as well.

Take note that browser hijackers redirecting to the Search.searchttw.com domain can also be deployed by web scripts, redirects and ad networks.

The Search.searchttw.com browser hijacker can also be obtained from various fake Chrome Web Store extensions and other application repositories.

Search.searchttw.com – In-Depth Overview

Computer criminals have devised the dangerous Search.searchttw.com browser hijacker to be compatible with several of the most popular web applications. Versions of it are also known as the TubeWorld or TubeWorld New Tab Search. Known instances of it include Google Chrome, however it is suspected that versions are made for other browsers as well: Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge.

Upon infection with the malware the victims will find that important settings on their browsers have been changed. One of the primary goals is to redirect the computer users into a hacker-controlled search engine ‒ at the moment this is the malicious address Search.searchttw.com. The made changes include the default home page, search engine and new tabs page.

At the onset of the infection the malware can also incur other actions against the compromised system:

  • Information Harvesting ‒ The malicious plugin can harvest sensitive information from the infected browsers. This includes: history, bookmarks, settings, passwords, form data and account credentials. The downloaded information can be used to break conduct identity or financial crimes.
  • Operating System Changes ‒ The virus engine is able to perform dangerous operating system changes. This can lead to performance and stability issues, user settings removal and other problems.
  • Persistent Installation ‒ Some certain strains can perform a persistent installation. This is an advanced infection technique that actively counters manual removal methods.

When the users are redirected to the Search.searchttw.com domain they are shown a familiar looking user interface. It shows a search engine, followed by several icon links that all redirect to familiar services and social networks. In the footer menu the users can see the alias of the domain TubeWorld. The main page itself is called New Tab Search.

Search.searchttw.com cookie image

When the users interact with the site and any of the links a tracking cookie is imposed on the victims. It is used to track all activity and habits, the data is transmitted to the hacker operators in real time.

The company operator of the domain is Polarity, a well known maker of browser hijackers and associated sites. They operate a large network of affiliate domains. The full mailing address provided is the following:

Polarity Technologies LTD
Nora Court, 3rd floor, office 301
Limassol, Cyprus 3040
customersupport@polarity.com.cy

Note that the use of the provided search engine leads to the generation of sponsored ads displayed by the malicious site are not the best search results. They are probably linked to affiliate money generation schemes. Use of the site or any of the linked services may lead to dangerous virus infections.

Search.searchttw.com – Privacy Policy

The privacy policy is available on the footer menu found on the bottom of the home page. It lists in detail all privacy-related issues that might arise from the use of the site or any of the linked services.

Among them is the fact that the users automatically consent to the document by accessing the site or any associated services. The Search.searchttw.com collects a lot of sensitive information ‒ data that can both identify the users individually and detailed statistics about the hardware componenets, installed software and configuration. Search queries are also included in the document. Every victim is assigned with a unique victim ID (UID) and all data is relayed automatically to the hacker operators.

  1. Anonymous Data ‒ Includes the site and hijacker usage patterns, responses to offers, type and version of the web browsers, operating system type and version, IP Address, your Internet service provider (ISP), geographical location and other “diagnostic” information.
  2. Personal Information Disclosure ‒ As all interaction is recorded and transmitted to the hackers, the service may come in contact with personal information. This includes names, email or mailing addresses or other data that can identify a site visitor.

The harvested data can be disclosed to other affiliates or subsidiaries as well as advertising networks. In addition they can be loaded into databases used to launch sponsored ads in a more efficient manner.

Remove Search.searchttw.com Effectively

To remove Search.searchttw.com 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.

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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 Search.searchttw.com from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Search.searchttw.com

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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com:

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 Search.searchttw.com. 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 Search.searchttw.com. 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com. 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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 Search.searchttw.com 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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