Stop Package Tracking App from controlling your browser

Also Known As: search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Package Tracking App browser hijacker removal instructions

What is Package Tracking App?

Package Tracking App is a rogue application, advertised as a package tracker and a web searching tool. It is supposedly capable of providing details on ordered packages (tracking their route and similar). In all actuality, Package Tracking App is both a browser hijacker and a PUA (potentially unwanted application). As the former, it changes browser settings, promotes its fake search engine (search.packagetrackingapptab.com) and monitors users' browsing activity. Its classification as the latter depends on the fact that most users download/install it unwillingly.

search.packagetrackingapptab.com browser hijacker

Usually, the most popular browsers (e.g. Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer and others) are the intended targets of browser hijackers. Once they take over a browser, they change certain settings within them. By altering the homepage, default search engine and new tab/window URL - they can promote their fake search engines. To elaborate, these changes affect browsers so: every new tab/window opened and every single search query typed into the URL bar - all redirect to their fraudulent web searching tools or cause a redirection chain, possibly ending in a legitimate search engine (e.g. Bing, Yahoo, Google and etc.). As search.packagetrackingapptab.com is unable to provide any search results, it redirects to search.yahoo.com. Attempting to use a hijacked browser is a vexing experience, if usage is at all possible. While the modifications these applications make may seem rather easy to undo, often that is not the case. Without removal of the hijacking app, access to certain settings can be limited and/or utterly denied, and any changes made are reset. It should also be known, that Package Tracking App is frequently distributed together with another PUA called Hide My Searches. Most browser hijackers have data tracking abilities, these abilities are possessed by Package Tracking App as well. By spying on users' browsing habits (search engine and browsing histories), they can gather personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and real-life personal details). The gathered intel is then shared with third parties (not unlikely, cyber criminals), intent on misemploying it to generate profit. Therefore, data tracking content present within devices can lead to severe privacy issues, even result in identity theft. To prevent various browser and system invasions/infections, as well as protect personal privacy, users must remove all PUAs without delay.

Threat Summary:
Name Package Tracking App
Threat Type Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab
Detection Names Avast (Win32:AdwareSig [Adw]), DrWeb (Adware.Spigot.145), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/WinWrapper.V Potentially Unwanted), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.Win32.WebSearch.gen), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Browser Extension(s) Package Tracking App, Packages
Supposed Functionality Package delivery tracking
Promoted URL search.packagetrackingapptab.com
Serving IP Address (search.packagetrackingapptab.com) 54.84.78.157
Affected Browser Settings Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine
Symptoms Manipulated Internet browser(s) settings (homepage, default Internet search engine, new tab settings). User's are forced to visit hijacker's website and search the Internet using their search engines.
Additional Information Package Tracking App is distributed alongside with another browser hijacker called Hide My Searches.
Distribution methods Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers.
Damage Internet browsing tracking (potential privacy issues), displaying of unwanted ads, redirects to shady websites.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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PUAs are innumerous, browser hijackers likewise released by the hundred. These applications share many common traits, some are absolutely identical. Browser hijackers analogous to Package Tracking App are: Transit SchedulesSimple Package TrackerMaps And Directions App and many others. Developers of PUAs invest a great deal of effort into making their product look legitimate and devise various "useful" features, to trick users into installing them. While these features may sound very tempting, it should be understood that they are rarely operational. PUAs serve but one purpose - to create profit for their designers. They do so by causing redirects to sale-based, untrustworthy and malicious websites, by deliver intrusive advertisement campaigns (e.g. pop-ups, banners, surveys, coupons, etc.) and also by gathering and selling sensitive intel.

How did Package Tracking App install on my computer?

PUAs can infiltrate devices without user knowledge, by being autonomously installed by invasive adverts (usually hosted by compromised websites). When clicked said ads can be triggered to execute scripts, designed to download/install unwanted content. Some PUAs (like Package Tracking App) have official download websites. PUAs are also furthered through install packs/bundles. "Bundling" is a false marketing technique, by which ordinary software is pre-packed with rogue applications. Rushed installation processes (ignored terms, skipped steps, pre-set options used, etc.) ensure the proliferation of PUAs.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is recommended to use only official and trustworthy sources for downloading software. Using third party downloaders is ill-advised, as their are more likely to offer programs bundled with PUAs. It is advised that users read installation terms and explore possible options. Additionally, they should use "Custom/Advanced" install settings and opt-out/decline additional apps/features. As users browse the Internet, they should be wary of accessing suspicious sites and avoid clicking random advertisements. Intrusive adverts often look absolutely legitimate and harmless, however the websites they redirect to tend to be otherwise (e.g. gambling, pornography, adult-dating and other types). Should users encounter such ads/redirects, they are encouraged to immediately check their systems and remove all dubious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with Package Tracking App, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.

Package Tracking App browser hijacker installer set-up:

Official Package Tracking App browser hijacker installation setup

Package Tracking App download page asks for various permissions:

Package Tracking App asking for permissions

Website promoting Package Tracking App browser hijacker:

Website used to promote Package Tracking App browser hijacker

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Quick menu:

Package Tracking App browser hijacker removal:

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 10 and 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.

search.packagetrackingapptab.com browser hijacker uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window: look for any recently installed suspicious applications (for example, "Package Tracking App"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the search.packagetrackingapptab.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Package Tracking App browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove browser redirects:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com related Internet Explorer extensions

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".

Change your homepage:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Internet Explorer homepage

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove hxxp://search.packagetrackingapptab.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you launch Internet Explorer. You can also enter about: blank to open a blank page when you start Internet Explorer.

Change your default search engine:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Internet Explorer default search engine

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". In the opened window, select "Search Providers", set "Google", "Bing", or any other preferred search engine as your default and then remove "Package Tracking App".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect, 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

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com related Google Chrome extensions

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate "Package Tracking App" and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons (e.g., "Hide My Searches"), and remove them.

Change your homepage:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Google Chrome homepage

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, disable "Package Tracking App" or "Hide My Searches", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://search.packagetrackingapptab.com or hxxps://hidemysearches.com) below the “Open a specific or set of pages” option. If present click on the three vertical dots icon and select “Remove”.

Change your default search engine:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Google Chrome default search engine

To change your default search engine in Google Chrome: Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings", in the "Search engine" section, click "Manage search engines...", in the opened list look for "hxxp://search.packagetrackingapptab.com" and "hxxp://hidemysearches.com", when located click the three vertical dots near this URL and select "Remove from list".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.

Google Chrome settings reset step 1

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 2

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

Google Chrome settings reset step 3

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com related Mozilla Firefox extensions

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove "Package Tracking App" (or simply "Packages"), as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins (e.g., "Hide My Searches").

Change your homepage:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Mozilla Firefox homepage

To reset your homepage, click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), then select "Options", in the opened window disable "Package Tracking App" (or simply "Packages") or "Hide My Searches", remove hxxp://search.packagetrackingapptab.com or hxxp://hidemysearches.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you start Mozilla Firefox.

Change your default search engine:

Removing search.packagetrackingapptab.com from Mozilla Firefox default search engine

In the URL address bar, type about:config and press Enter.
Click "I'll be careful, I promise!".
In the search filter at the top, type: "moz-extension"
Right-click on the found preferences and select "Reset" to restore default values.

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect 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 Help.

Accessing settings (Reset Firefox to default settings step 1)

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Accessing Troubleshooting Information (Reset Firefox to default settings step 2)

In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.

Clicking on Refresh Firefox button (Reset Firefox to default settings step 3)

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

Confirm your want to reset Firefox settings to default (Reset Firefox to default settings step 4)

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

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) logoRemove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate any recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, and remove them.

Change your homepage and new tab settings:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 2

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section look for the name of the browser hijacker and click "Disable".

Change your default Internet search engine:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 3

To change your default search engine in Microsoft Edge: Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Privacy and services", scroll to bottom of the page and select "Address bar". In the "Search engines used in address bar" section look for the name of the unwanted Internet search engine, when located click the "Disable" button near it. Alternatively you can click on "Manage search engines", in the opened menu look for unwanted Internet search engine. Click on the puzzle icon Microsoft Edge (Chromium) puzzle icon near it and select "Disable".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 1

In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 2

Select Restore settings to their default values. In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Microsoft Edge settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 3

  • If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.

Summary:

declining installation of browser hijackers while downloading free software sampleA browser hijacker is a type of adware infection that modifies Internet browser settings by assigning the homepage and default Internet search engine settings to some other (unwanted) website URL. Commonly, this type of adware infiltrates operating systems through free software downloads. If your download is managed by a download client, ensure that you decline offers to install advertised toolbars or applications that seek to change your homepage and default Internet search engine settings.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

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

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Software uninstall instructions
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect QR code
A QR code (Quick Response Code) is a machine-readable code which stores URLs and other information. This code can be read using a camera on a smartphone or a tablet. Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of search.packagetrackingapptab.com redirect on your mobile device.
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