How to remove TheSmartSearch.net Browser Hijacker
What is TheSmartSearch.net:
Threat Classification: Browser Hijacker
TheSmartSearch.net is a browser hijacker, which often comes together with some other popular “ad-supported” freeware programs in a suspicious software bundle, which is set use silent or stealth installation and to make some system changes, forcing the browser to reset its search scope to TheSmartSearch.net if changed, making the recovery of the system even harder. Our malware researchers also warned is, that when the browser starts using TheSmartSearch.net, all the web traffic will be monitored and various browsing data will be collected, including some private information, which later will be either shared or sold to some 3rd party companies, which will use it for their own marketing purposes. That’s why our security experts are recommending to remove TheSmartSearch.net browser hijacker as soon as possible and to run a full system malware scan, using some reputable and reliable anti-malware product.
Usually, TheSmartSearch.net comes packed with some other free software and is being installed by default when the user accepts the EULA while performing an express/recommended installation. The possible distribution of the TheSmartSearch.net hijacker varies but is not limited to – installing third-party toolbars, free software products, downloading e-mail attachments, clicking on ads or banners etc..
TheSmartSearch.net would fill up your screen with questionable and unwanted ads, that could lead to other malware infections. The browser hijacker would monitor your online activity and will collect various private data, including browsing history, session ids, cookies, post addresses, financial information – credit card number, account credentials like usernames and password information etc. The collected data will later be used by some third-party companies for their own marketing purposes. That’s why this malware infection should not be left unattended, and it needs to be terminated immediately, as it is a serious threat to your online identity.
!!! Please note that these infections could potentially bring up other malware to your computer and even cause a loss of data. Please do not underestimate such threats.
How to remove TheSmartSearch.net Browser Hijacker:
There are two ways to remove this infection. It is totally up to you to decide which way you want to go:
1. Automatic Removal Method (recommended for All users including novice) using a Professional Malware Removal Software.
2. Manual Removal Method (recommended ONLY for PC Experts or Enthusiasts).
Remove TheSmartSearch.net Browser Hijacker Automatically:
We recommend using SpyHunter Malware Security Suite.
You can download and install SpyHunter to detect TheSmartSearch.net and remove it, by clicking the button below. Once installed, SpyHunter will automatically scan and detect all threats present on your system, but in order to use it as a removal tool, you need to purchase a subscription.
SpyHunter will automatically scan and detect all threats present on your system.
Learn more about SpyHunter (EULA). You can find Install Instructions here: (LINK) SpyHunter`s free diagnosis offers free scans and detection. You can remove the detected files, processes and registry entries manually, by yourself, or purchase the full version to perform an automatic removal and also to receive free professional help with any malware related queries by their technical support department.
Remove TheSmartSearch.net Browser Hijacker Manually:
!!! Please note: You can remove TheSmartSearch.net hijacker manually, however, you should proceed at your own risk, as any of the interventions might render your system inoperable. Therefore this manual removal method is highly recommended for PC Experts or Enthusiasts. For regular users, MalwareKillers.com recommends using SpyHunter.
1. Remove TheSmartSearch.net Uninstall Entry:
First, you can try to go to Control panel and click on Programs and Features (Windows Vista/7/8/10) or Add/Remove Programs (Windows XP) and check the Uninstall Programs` List for any entry related to TheSmartSearch.net, iLivid, Torch, TheSmartSearch.net for Internet Explorer, TheSmartSearch.net for Firefox, TheSmartSearch.net for Chrome, BrowserProtect, Search-Results Toolbar, Youtube Downloader HD or any third-party add-ons, extensions and toolbars. If you find such, double-click on it and try to remove it. Although, please mind that this is an actual infection and you might not be able to remove it directly from the list.
*(Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features or Add/Remove Programs) or “Win + R” keys to open “Run” and type in “control”, then hit enter.
2. Remove TheSmartSearch.net from your browser:
Go to Tools -> Internet options -> Advanced Tab and click the Reset button (make sure to select the Delete Personal Settings checkbox).
*please note that in order to save your favorites, you need to export them before resetting the browser as you will lose all personal settings.
After IE completes the operation, click the close button and then close IE in order for the changes to take effect.
Go to the following path (you can copy-paste it) and delete the entire folder “Chrome” with all the folders and files that are in it.
For Windows XP: %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\
For Windows Vista/7/8/10: %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Google\
Alternatively, you can navigate to these folders by following these steps:
For Windows XP:
1. Click on “Start” in the lower-left portion of the screen.
2. Choose “Run“.
3. Type %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\ and hit Enter.
For Windows Vista/7/8/10:
1. Click on the Windows logo in the lower-left portion of the screen.
2. Type %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Google\ and hit Enter.
1. At the top of the Firefox window (upper-left corner), click the Firefox button, go over to the Help sub-menu and select Troubleshooting Information.
2. Click the Reset Firefox button in the top-right corner of the Troubleshooting Information page.
3. To continue, click Reset Firefox in the confirmation window that opens.
4. Firefox will close and be reset. When it’s done, a window will list the information that was imported. Click Finish and Firefox will reopen.
3. Check for arguments added by TheSmartSearch.net in any Browser shortcuts or links to web pages:
TheSmartSearch.net might also hijack your web browser shortcuts in order to force-load its home page. This causes the TheSmartSearch.net`s web page to open up when you launch a hijacked shortcut.
The argument that TheSmartSearch.net uses in order to hijack shortcuts looks like or is similar to the one below:
You can remove it manually by editing the shortcut`s target line.
4. Delete any folders related to TheSmartSearch.net by checking the following locations:
Look for a folder named TheSmartSearch.net in: