Uninstall SafeSearch.net virus toolbar in Chrome, Firefox and IE

Security analysis of SafeSearch toolbar, the aftermath of its emersion on a computer and instructions to remove it are the subject matters of this post.

Caution during web browsing is a great thing to turn into habit, but it isn’t enough to stay away from malicious sites that may get the PC compromised. Furthermore, habits are not foolproof and there’s always room for human error, which is why Internet security software is preferable to use. The developer of the utility called SafeSearch takes advantage of this logic while distributing a product which is known to be potentially unwanted. It is the SafeSearch Toolbar, and it’s purportedly intended to keep an eye on the web pages visited by a user and display site safety notifications. This generally sounds like a useful tool if it weren’t for certain effects accompanying the activity of said toolbar.

SafeSearch Toolbar

SafeSearch Toolbar

SafeSearch spreads with third-party applications, a few examples of which are MP3 Rocket and MaxPerforma Optimizer. These are free utilities whose marketing model implies the inclusion of other software in the setup structure. This way malicious code can get into computers without the users realizing it. Sometimes people don’t remark the respective installation notice about SafeSearch being dragged in, and sometimes they cannot possibly install the program of interest unless they opt into letting the bad app inside. Once the setup is complete, the toolbar takes a firm grip on the web browsers on the computer, no matter if it’s Internet Explorer, Firefox or Chrome. The add-on does display website security ratings, but it also changes such settings as homepage and default search without getting the user’s consent.

SafeSearch.net snapshot

SafeSearch.net snapshot

Consequently, the user starts noticing the browser act up and often has no idea why the SafeSearch.net site keeps popping up over and over again. All of this is pranks of the extension that was installed. The above-mentioned page is tailored like a search provider and it actually returns ‘safety score’ for every entry in the results. Apart from that, though, there are multiples ads above and below the results, which makes the use of this service pretty annoying, not to mention that the web preferences distortion took place as well. The next section of this tutorial covers the fundamentals of SafeSearch.net adware removal.

Automatic removal of SafeSearch.net virus

When it comes to handling infections like this one, using a reputable cleaning tool is the place to start. Sticking to this workflow ensures that every component of the adware gets found and eradicated from the affected computer.

1. Download and install the cleaning tool and click the Start Computer Scan button

Download SafeSearch.net removal tool

2. The wait is worth it. Once the scan completes, you will see a report listing all malicious or potentially unwanted objects detected on your PC. Go ahead and click the Fix Threats option in order to get SafeSearch Toolbar automatically uninstalled from your machine. This being done, you should be good to go. Just to make sure everything went smooth, consider going through the steps below real quick.

Uninstall SafeSearch through Control Panel

  • From your Windows menu, go to Control Panel. Select Add or Remove Programs (for Windows XP / Windows 8) or Uninstall a program (Windows Vista / Windows 7)Uninstall a program
  • Find SafeSearch item on the list, select it and click Uninstall/ChangeUninstall SafeSearch

Remove SafeSearch.net from web browsers manually

The workflow covered below is intended to undo all changes that SafeSearch virus made to Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer. Be advised there’s some collateral inconvenience you will encounter, namely the loss of all installed add-ons and personalized information (saved passwords, cached data, bookmarks and other content).

Reset Chrome

  • Open Google Chrome. Click the Chrome menu icon as shown on the image and select SettingsReset Chrome 1
  • Click Show advanced settingsReset Chrome 2
  • Hit the Reset browser settings buttonReset Chrome 3
  • On the warning that popped up, read everything you should know about the consequences of the reset. Click Reset if you want to complete the procedureReset Chrome 4
  • Restart Chrome for the changes to take effect

Reset Firefox

  • Open Firefox. Go to Help > Troubleshooting Information or type about:support in the URL fieldReset Firefox 1
  • Click Reset Firefox button to get the job doneReset Firefox 2
  • Restart Firefox for the changes to take effect

Reset Internet Explorer

  • Open IE. Go to Tools > Internet OptionsReset Internet Explorer 1
  • Hit the Advanced tab and click ResetReset Internet Explorer 2
  • Make sure the Delete personal settings option on the Reset Internet Explorer Settings dialog is ticked and click ResetReset Internet Explorer 3
  • Restart Internet Explorer for the changes to take effect

Did the problem go away? Check and see

Computer threats like SafeSearch.net can be stealthier than you can imagine, skillfully obfuscating their components inside a compromised computer to evade removal. Therefore by running an additional security scan you will dot the i’s and cross the t’s in terms of the cleanup.

Download SafeSearch scanner and remover

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