Search.websafefinder.com Redirect (Mac)

Also Known As: websafefinder.com browser hijacker
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove search.websafefinder.com browser hijacker from Mac?

What is search.websafefinder.com?

search.websafefinder.com is presented as a high-quality Internet search engine that supposedly enhances the browsing experience by generating improved results. Judging on appearance alone, search.websafefinder.com may seem legitimate and useful - its design barely differs from Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other legitimate search engines, however, criminals promote this site using deceptive downloaders/installers that modify browser options without permission. Furthermore, search.websafefinder.com continually records various information relating to users' Internet browsing activity.

search.websafefinder.com browser hijacker on a Mac computer

Following infiltration, rogue set-ups hijack Safari, Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome, stealthily assigning the default search engine, new tab URL, and homepage options to search.websafefinder.com. These changes may not seem significant, however, users are unable to revert them. Research shows that set-ups also install a number of "helper objects" (potentially unwanted programs [PUPs] and/or browser plug-ins) that continue to reassign browser options when attempts are made to change them. Therefore, users are unable to return browser options to their previous states and are automatically redirected to search.websafefinder.com when they open a new browser tab or search via the URL bar. This significantly diminishes the web browsing experience. Furthermore, search.websafefinder.com and helper objects gather information that might contain personal details. The collected data (IP addresses, websites visited, pages viewed, queries entered into search engines, mouse/keyboard activity, etc.) is later sold to third parties. Therefore, data-tracking apps pose a direct threat to your privacy. In addition, some PUPs and browser plug-ins misuse system resources to stealthily perform various background tasks. In doing so, PUPs/add-ons significantly diminish overall system performance. If you encounter redirects to search.websafefinder.com, uninstall all suspicious applications/browser extensions and never visit this site again.

search.websafefinder.com is identical to search.safewebfinder.com, search.linkeymac.com, search.webfinderresults.com, and many others. In fact, all fake search engines are very similar. All claim to enhance the browsing experience, however, these claims are simply attempts to give the impression of legitimacy. Few fake search engines provide the features promised. Most are useless for regular users. These sites cause unwanted redirects and gather various information. Research shows that some also generate fake search results and/or malicious advertisements (such as coupons, banners, etc.) The generated results/ads can lead to malicious websites. For these reasons, using a fake Internet search engine puts you privacy and Internet browsing safety at risk.

How did search.websafefinder.com install on my computer?

As mentioned above, search.websafefinder.com is promoted using browser-hijacking download/installation set-ups. This deceptive marketing method is called "bundling". Developers know that users often rush the download/installation processes. Aware of this, developers hide details of browser modifications within the "Custom/Advanced" options or other sections of the download/installation processes. Skipping download/installation steps grants set-ups permission to modify various options. In addition, it exposes systems to risk of various infections and compromises users' privacy.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

The main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and careless behavior. Potentially unwanted programs are distributed using the aforementioned malicious ads, and the "bundling" method. Therefore, be careful when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing software. Criminals invest many resources into ad design. Most appear legitimate and it is difficult to determine if they originate from the visited websites, however, malicious ads usually lead to survey, gambling, pornography, adult dating, and other dubious websites. If you are presented with such ads, uninstall all suspicious apps and browser add-ons. Download your software from official sources only using a direct download link (third party download/installation tools commonly "bundle" PUPs). In addition, select the "Custom/Advanced" settings, carefully analyze each step, and opt-out of all additionally-included programs. The key to computer safety is caution.

Website promoting search.websafefinder.com:

Dubious website used to promote search.websafefinder.com

Quick menu:

Video showing how to remove adware and browser hijackers from a Mac computer:

search.websafefinder.com redirect removal:

Remove search.websafefinder.com-related potentially unwanted applications from your "Applications" folder:

mac browser hijacker removal from applications folder

Click the Finder icon. In the Finder window, select “Applications”. In the applications folder, look for “MPlayerX”,“NicePlayer”, or other suspicious applications and drag them to the Trash. After removing the potentially unwanted application(s) that cause online ads, scan your Mac for any remaining unwanted components.


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Remove websafefinder.com browser hijacker related files and folders:

Finder go to folder command

Click the Finder icon, from the menu bar, choose Go, and click Go to Folder...

step1Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from launch agents folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from launch agents folder step 2
In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step2Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/Application Support folder:

removing adware from application support folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/Application Support

removing adware from application support folder step 2
In the “Application Support” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious folders. For example, “MplayerX” or “NicePlayer”, and move these folders to the Trash.

step3Check for adware-generated files in the ~/Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 1


In the Go to Folder bar, type: ~/Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 2

In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step4Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchDaemons folder:

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 1
In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchDaemons

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 2
In the “LaunchDaemons” folder, look for recently-added suspicious files. For example, “com.aoudad.net-preferences.plist”, “com.myppes.net-preferences.plist”, "com.kuklorest.net-preferences.plist”, “com.avickUpd.plist”, etc., and move them to the Trash.

After removing files and folders generated by the adware, continue to remove rogue extensions from your Internet browsers.

websafefinder.com browser hijacker homepage and default Internet search engine removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove websafefinder.com browser hijacker related Safari extensions:

safari browser preferences

Open Safari browser. From the menu bar, select "Safari" and click "Preferences...".

safari extensions window

In the preferences window, select "Extensions" and look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions. When located, click the "Uninstall" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Safari browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

Change your homepage:

changing homepage in safari browser

In the "Preferences" window, select the "General" tab. To set your homepage, type the preferred website URL (for example: www.google.com) in the Homepage field. You can also click the “Set to Current Page” button if you wish to set your homepage to the website you are currently visiting.

Change your default search engine:

changing the default Internet search engine in Safari browser

In the "Preferences" window, select the "Search" tab. Here you will find a drop-down menu labelled "Search engine:" Simply select your preferred search engine from the drop-down list.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Safari.

firefox browser iconRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Remove websafefinder.com browser hijacker related Mozilla Firefox add-ons:

accessing mozilla firefox add-ons

Open your Mozilla Firefox browser. At the top right corner of the screen, click the "Open Menu" (three horizontal lines) button. From the opened menu, choose "Add-ons".

removing malicious add-ons from mozilla firefox

Choose the "Extensions" tab and look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Remove" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Mozilla Firefox browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

Change your homepage:

changing mozilla firefox homepage

To change your homepage, click the "Open Menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Preferences" from the drop-down menu. To set your homepage, type the preferred website URL (for example: www.google.com) in the Homepage Page.

Change default search engine:

mozilla firefox about config

In the URL address bar, type "about:config" and click the "I'll be careful, I promise!" button.

changing mozilla firefox default Internet search engine

In the "Search:" field, type the name of the browser hijacker. Right click on each of the found preferences and click "Reset" from the drop-down menu.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Mozilla Firefox.

chrome-browser-iconRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Remove websafefinder.com browser hijacker related Google Chrome add-ons:

removing malicious google chrome extensions step 1

Open Google Chrome and click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button located in the top-right corner of the browser window. From the drop-down menu, choose "More Tools" and select "Extensions".

removing malicious Google Chrome extensions step 2

In the "Extensions" window, look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Trash" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Google Chrome browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

Change your homepage:

changing Google Chrome homepage

Click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Settings". In the "On Startup" section, click the "Set pages" link near to the "Open a specific page or set of pages" option. Remove the URL of the browser hijacker (for example trovi.com) and enter your preferred URL (for example, google.com).

Change default search engine:

changing the default Internet search engine in Google Chrome

Click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Settings". In the "Search" section, click the "Manage search engines..." button. In the opened window, remove the unwanted Internet search engine by clicking the "X" button next to it. Select your preferred Internet search engine from the list and click the "Make default" button next to it.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Google Chrome.