MetaCrawler.com redirect

Also Known As: MetaCrawler Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: <strong>Medium</strong>

MetaCrawler.com and Infospace.com - how to remove redirect to these websites?

What is MetaCrawler.com?

MetaCrawler is a search engine that combines search results from major search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. MetaCrawler might appear as a legitimate project, but in fact the company behind it employs some dubious methods in order to promote their websites (MetaCrawler and Infospace). Recently, we received many complaints from users reporting that they were being redirected to these websites. Furthermore, computer users should express great caution whilst using the search services provided by MetaCrawler and Infospace - although the organic search results are legitimate (they originate from reputable search engines), the sponsored results are generated by MetaCrawler and often lead to dubious software installation methods or misleading websites.

If you fail to pay close attention to where you click, you might inadvertently install unwanted toolbars or scam software on your PC. The latest complaints indicate that computer users are being redirected to fantastigames.metacrawler.com, one of the sub-domains of MetaCrawler.com If you notice that your Internet browsers redirect to this website, this means your PC is infected with redirect malware. In this case, you are advised to scan your computer with legitimate antivirus and anti-spyware programs.

metacrawler redirect page

Commonly, these 'redirect infections' infiltrate computers when users visit malicious websites. To protect your computer from such incidents, always use legitimate antivirus and antispyware programs and keep your installed programs and operating system up-to-date. If your computer is already infected with MetaCrawler redirect virus, use the removal information provided to help you eliminate it from your PC.

Quick menu: Quick solution to remove MetaCrawler Virus

MetaCrawler redirect removal:

Check if you have installed any software related to Metacrawler or Infospace.

Windows 7 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 7

Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.

Windows XP users:

Accessing Add or Remove Programs in Windows XP

Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.

Windows 8 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 8

Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.

Mac OSX users:

Uninstall app in OSX (Mac)

Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.

MetaCrawler.com browser hijacker uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window, look for MetaCrawler or Infospace-related entries, select them and click " Uninstall" or "Remove"

After uninstalling MetaCrawler and Infospace-related software (toolbars etc.), it is recommended to scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use a recommended anti-spyware program. Remove all entries that this software detects to ensure your PC is clean from any possible spyware and malware infections.

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Check your Internet browsers for any possibly left MetaCrawler extensions:

Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:

Internet Explorer Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Safari

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Click on the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer) select "Manage Add-ons". Look for MetaCrawler-related entries (Infospace, fantastigames, etc.) and disable them.

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the metacrawler.com , reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.

Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows XP

Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 7

Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.

Reseting Internet Explorer settings to default in Windows 8 - accessing

In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - Internet options advanced tab

Click the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - click the Reset button in the Internet options advanced tab

Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - confirm settings reset to default by clicking the reset button

Internet Explorer Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Safari

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome options icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) select "Tools" and click on "Extensions".  Locate any MetaCrawler-related entries, select them and click on the trash can icon.

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the metacrawler.com , reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome options icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Tools. From the opened menu, select Extensions. In the opened window, select Settings (at the left corner of the screen). Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Show advanced settings… link.

Resetting Google Chrome setting to default - accessing settings

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset browser settings button.

Resetting Google Chrome settings to default - advanced settings

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Google Chrome settings to default - confirm that you want to reset Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button

Internet Explorer Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Safari

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:

Click on the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window) select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and disable MetaCrawler-related entries

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with metacrawler.com removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.

Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, firefox menu icon in the opened menu, click the Open Help Menu icon, firefox help menu

Resettings Mozilla Firefox settings to default - accessing settings window

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - accessing

In the opened window, click the Reset Firefox button.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - clicking the

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - confirming settings reset

Internet Explorer Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Safari

safari browser logoRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Removing browser hijackers from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click Safari menu, then select Preferences...

removing browser hijacker from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the preferences window select the Extensions tab. Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions and uninstall them.

Removing browser hijackers from safari step 3 - changing homepage

In the preferences window select General tab and make sure that your homepage is set to a preferred URL, if its altered by a browser hijacker - change it.

removing browser hijackers from safari step 4 - changing the default Internet search engine

In the preferences window select Search tab and make sure that your preferred Internet search engine is selected.

Optional method:

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...

resetting safari step 1

In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.

resetting safari step 2

Manual Metacrawler removal:

If you were unable to remove MetaCrawler using the steps above, you can use this manual removal instruction. Use it at your own risk, since if you do not have strong computer knowledge, you could harm your operating system. Be careful and use it only if you are an experienced computer user. (Instructions on how to end processes, remove registry entries...)

Remove these Metacrawler files:

%UserProfile%\Desktop\Fantastigames Toolbar.lnk
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\Programs\Fantastigames Toolbar\
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\Programs\Fantastigames Toolbar\Uninstall Fantastigames Toolbar.lnk
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\Programs\Fantastigames Toolbar\Fantastigames Toolbar.lnk

Summary:
declining installation of browser hijackers while downloading free software sample 1A browser hijacker is a type of adware that alters user's Internet browser settings by changing one's homepage and default Internet search engine to some unwanted website. Most commonly this type of adware infiltrates user's operating system through free software downloads. While browser redirects might seem as a low risk security infection, computer users should know that the websites to which they are being redirected to commonly contain deceptive online advertisements and the Internet search engine that is presented in such websites might return shady Internet search results. Using such websites for one's daily Internet searches might easily end up in privacy issues, identity theft or malware infections.

A computer that is affected by a browser hijacker is exposed to high risk security infections. To prevent further privacydeclining installation of browser hijackers while downloading free software sample 2 and security issues it's recommended removing any Internet browser settings altering adware as soon as possible. To avoid installation of metacrawler virus be very attentive when downloading and installing free software.

If your download is managed by a download client be sure to opt out of installing advertised toolbars or applications that seek to change your homepage and default Internet search engine. Some of the mentioned free software download clients don't allow downloading the chosen free program if user decides to decline installation of it's offered toolbars, in such cases it's recommended to cancel the installation and look for an alternative download source.

Symptoms indicating that your Internet browsers are affected by a browser hijacker: your homepage and/or default Internet search engine is changed, appearance of new toolbars, slow performance of Internet browsers, new Bookmarks or Favorites added, you can't change your homepage or default search engine, you see online ads on your screen that are not served by the website, you get redirected to pages you never intended to visit.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove metacrawler virus from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware removal forum.

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About the author:

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Google+ to stay informed about the latest online security threats.

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