The article will help you to remove Searchvaults.com fully. Follow the browser hijacker removal instructions given at the end of the article.
The Searchvaults.com browser hijacker is a recently discovered malware extension that has been made for the most popular browsers. It aims to redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled page and steal sensitive data from the victim computers.
|Type||Browser Hijacker, PUP|
|Short Description||The Searchvaults.com browser hijacker represents a malicious web browser plugin that is used to redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled page.|
|Symptoms||The homepage, new tab and search engine of all your browsers will be changed to Searchvaults.com. In addition viruses and other malware can be installed during the initiation process.|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Searchvaults.com.|
Searchvaults.com – Distribution Ways
Searchaults.com is a dangerous new malware browser extension that is being spread on various Internet sources. One of the most popular ways for spreading such instances is the creation of dangerous hijackers and spreading them on the official repositories of the most widely used web browsers such as the Chrome Web Store for Google Chrome. The criminals behind the threat usually post elaborate descriptions, screenshots and ideos in order to fool the target users that the extension will bring useful new additions to the web browsers or enhance already existing ones. They may also use counterfeit user comments and user reviews.
Another strategy is to embed the dangerous code into software installers. They are frequently distributed on hacker-controlled portals that take legitimate text and graphics from legitimate sources. The scam installers are usually done by taking the real ones from the official vendors and modifying the files to include the malware code. In the most common case they are free or trial versions of utilities, creative apps or games.
The searchvaults.com browser hijacker can also be installed through various malware scripts. They are usually in the form of pop-ups or banner ads and can be placed in all sorts of sites — portals, shopping markets or news pages.
Searchvaults.com – In-Depth Information
Once the malware code has infected the target computer it would usually change the default settings in order to automatically redirect the victims every time they their browsers. The code is usually made compatible with the most popular web browsers: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, and Internet Explorer.
Changed settings include the default home page, new tabs page and search engine. It appears that this particular extension is related to another previous threat called Photorito which uses the same spread tactics and is probably made by the same developers. WARNING! We remind our readers that the use of such sites automatically inserts tracking cookies and other related technology to the victim’s machine that starts to send out data to the hacker controllers. Depending on the specific targets they can be used simply to gather information on the victims.
Once installed the malware can initiate a variety of dangerous actions against the targets. One of them is the ability to use it as a payload mechanism for deploying viruses of all sorts, including Trojans and ransomware. Advanced hijacker configurations can lead to the following:
- Registry Changes — Additional modifications can be made to the Windows registry. Usually hijackers only change the browser configuration values. In many cases registry modifications cannot be easily remedied manually and this makes it harder for the victims to restore their browsers without the use of a quality anti-spyware solution.
- Boot Options Modifications — When the Searchaults.com browser hijacker has been used together with a virus the contained code can modify the boot options to disable the recovery menu.
- Additional Threats Deployment — The Searchvaults.com browser hijacker can install a variety of threats including ransomware and Trojans.
One of the most worrying facts about these type of malware files is the fact that they engage an advanced information gathering component. It is able to extract two main types of data. The first type is associated with personal data about the victim users themselves. The module is configured in such a way to uncover details that can expose their identity. Example strings include the following: names, address, phone number, interests, passwords and account credentials. The other type of data that is hijackeed is classified as anonymous data. It primarily includes information about the available hardware components and installed software applications, as well as specific configuration values.
It appears that the searchvaults.com browser hijacker follows the common strategy of impersonating well-known Internet services. Once the victims are redirected to the hacker-controlled page they will see a familiar looking template. The main page uses a white background and is made of two elements:
- Top Menu Bar — It shows links to the “About section”, customization options and the “back to the default” function. By taking this popular function from other search engines the visitors can be manipulated into thinking that this is a legitmate site.
- Main Search Engine Box — It is placed in the center of the page and is made to get the victim’s attention. It shows a small logo image along with the search box. Underneath it are placed grid-style links to popular web services.
Its important to note that the available web service links are usually affiliate or scam ones. In the first case the hackers make profit by promoting them through their site. The second attack takes advantage of elaborate phishing schemes that can be pushed through these type of viruses. At the moment the site displays links to the following services:
Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Gmail, LinkedIn, Netflix, Twitch, Booking
- Personal Information — Names, e-mail, age, gender, address, telephone numbers, login names and passwords or other self-identifying information.
- Private Preferences — Specific user interests.
- Site Interactions — All website usage is recorded for analytical purposes.
- Demographic Information — Data such as the age and location of the victims is recorded and represents an essential part of the victim’s profile.
The profiles of the victims is recorded in a database that may be shared with other partners and companies.
Remove Searchvaults.com Redirect
To remove Searchvaults.com 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.
- Guide 1: How to Remove Searchvaults.com from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of Searchvaults.com from Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove Searchvaults.com from Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase Searchvaults.com from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall Searchvaults.com from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove Searchvaults.com from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate Searchvaults.com from Internet Explorer.
How to Remove Searchvaults.com from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Searchvaults.com
Step 2: Uninstall Searchvaults.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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Searchvaults.com 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 Searchvaults.com there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
Get rid of Searchvaults.com from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall Searchvaults.com 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:
- 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 Searchvaults.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:
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 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.
Remove Searchvaults.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.
Erase Searchvaults.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.
Uninstall Searchvaults.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.
Remove Searchvaults.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".
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 Searchvaults.com will be removed.
Eliminate Searchvaults.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.