This article reveals more about the impacts of Search.tools hijacker and guides you through its thorough removal process from affected browser and system.
Search.tools is classified as a browser hijacker that alters main settings of the browsers installed on affected PCs. It usually gains access to target machines by being distributed in software bundles and compromised installers. Once started on the computer its associated files implement several changes that set the main page of the hijacker as homepage, new tab page and default search engine in all targeted browsers. The presence of Search.tools in the browser means that you agree with its data collection practices that are known to affect either personally and non-personally identifiable data.
|Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, PUP|
|Short Description||A website that provides questionable search enigne in order to collect data from afected browsers and display targetted ads.|
|Symptoms|| The main page of the hijacker replaces browser homepage, new tab page and default search engine without your knowledge. Browser slowdowns may occur due to increased number of online ads.td>|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by Search.tools |
Malware Removal Tool
|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Search.tools.|
Search.tools – Spread Techniques
How did Search.tools infect your PC? The first thing that comes to our minds one is software bundle. This is the most common channel used for the distribution of potentially unwanted programs like this hijacker. With the help of free third-party programs, its owners could easily spread the installation code of their suspicious app.
Usually, the installation code of such extra programs is incorporated and concealed into the installers of third-party apps. So you might have unnoticeably installed this annoying program on your computer during the installation process of any recently downloaded desired free app. Such side effect could be is prevented with the options presented in the Advanced or Custom configuration steps. They should inform you about the existence of any additional apps and let you opt out their installation.
Frequently used web browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari could be affected by Search.tools hijacker.
Search.tools Hijacker – More About Its Impact
After it is installed on the PC Search.tools hijacker starts to appear during each browsing session. Its files contain code that triggers several modifications of browser settings. They are most likely designed to set the main page of the hijacker as browser homepage, new tab page and default search engine. Once these changes occur you may start to see Search.tools each time you open the affected browser:
The main function of Search.tools is to provide searching services. What could be seen on its main page are a search field and a logo that resembles a lot the Google’s logo. Its simplistic design is an attempt by its owners to make you believe that its services alike the services of other trustworthy search engines are reliable and secure. However, its sudden and unexpected appearance in your browser is still a fact.
Search.tools aims to lure you into using its deceptive services and leave it on your system mainly because this enables it to spy on your online activities. More information about data collection practices associated with this hijacker is revealed in the next paragraph. Records with data of yours may be used by its owners for their business and advertising purposes. So as long as the undesired Search.tools resides on your system it could be used by them as a convenient advertising channel. As a result, you may become a target of lots of ads based on your interests.
Ads pushed by the hijacker may appear all over the browser in an attempt to leave you no other choice than visiting what they promote. This aggressive technique may be implemented due to the fact that each click on an ad injected by Search.tools generates revenue for its owners. The bad news is that it could display ads that land on compromised web pages set to trigger drive-by download attack each time a user loads them in the browser. So if you want to keep your system protected against malware you should install and activate a professional anti-malware tool on it.
According to information presented in the policy once the hijacker is running in your browser it automatically receives your permission to collect all of the following details:
- Visited URLs and websites
- Search queries
- Type of used browser
- Internet protocol (IP) address
- Cookie information
- The domain name of current Internet service provider (ISP)
The company owner that has the same name as the hijacker claims that their products do not collect personally identifiable information by default. However, SearchTools™ could attempt to trick you into providing some sensitive details of yours by presenting phishing web pages, questionnaires, polls, quests or other forms of inquiry.
“SearchTools™ does not automatically collect any personally identifiable information, such as names, e-mail, age, gender, address, telephone numbers, login names and passwords or other self-identifying information (“Personal Information”). SearchTools™ may request that a user provide an e-mail address if such user wishes to be contacted..”
Several cookies dropped on the hard drive by the hijacker allow it to obtain additional information related to your browsing habits, demographic data and Internet usage.
How to Remove Search.tools Browser Hijacker
In order to remove Search.tools hijacker and all associated files from your PC make sure to complete all the steps listed in the removal that follows. It presents both manual and automatic removal instructions that combined will help you to remove this undesired program in full. The automatic approach guarantees maximum efficiency as a scan with an advanced anti-malware tool reveals the exact location of all malicious files and objects created by Search.tools. The results enable you to access and remove all harmful files from the infected PC. Have in mind that files associated with this hijacker may be detected with different names than Search.tools.
In case that you have further questions or need additional help, don’t hesitate to leave a comment or contact us via email.