Gamers Buddy browser hijacker removal instructions
What is Gamers Buddy?
Gamers Buddy is a rogue application, advertised as a tool for quick access to various online games, gaming platforms, game retailers and more. Instead this app operates as a browser hijacker - modifies browsers and promotes a fake search engine (search.gamersbuddyapptab.com). Additionally, Gamers Buddy spies on users' browsing activity. Since most users install it unintentionally, it is also deemed to be a PUA (Potentially Unwanted Application). Gamers Buddy is often distributed alongside another PUA called - Hide My Searches.
Popular browsers like Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox are common browser hijacker targets. Following successful infiltration, these applications assign the addresses of their fake web searchers as browsers default search engine, homepage and new tab/widow URLs. These changes may sound minor, however they severely diminish the browsing experience. To elaborate how Gamers Buddy app affects browsers, then every new tab/widow opened and every single search query typed into the URL bar - redirect to search.gamersbuddyapptab.com. Most illegitimate search engines cannot actually generate search results, so they redirect to (or cause redirection chains ending with) a genuine one. Search.gamersbuddyapptab.com is not an exception, it redirects to search.yahoo.com. This makes fraudulent web search engines utterly useless. Furthermore, unless the browser hijacker is removed - recovering the affected browser is impossible. As with it present, access to the settings can be restricted or denied, and any permitted changes made - automatically reset. As mentioned, Gamers Buddy has data tracking abilities, which are employed to monitor browsing activity (URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, etc.) and collect users' personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and real-life details). It is highly likely that this sensitive data will then be shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals), seeking to misuse it for profit. To summarize, presence of data-tracking software on systems can lead to financial losses, severe privacy issues and even identity theft. To ensure device and user safety - all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins must be removed without delay.
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:Adware-gen [Adw]), GData (Win32.Trojan.Agent.04S4T2), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/WinWrapper.V Potentially), Fortinet (Riskware/WinWrapper), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Browser Extension(s)||Gamers Buddy|
|Supposed Functionality||It supposedly provides easy access to games and game-related content.|
|Serving IP Address (search.gamersbuddyapptab.com)||184.108.40.206|
|Affected Browser Settings||Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine|
|Symptoms||Manipulated Internet browser settings (homepage, default Internet search engine, new tab settings). Users are forced to visit the hijacker's website and search the Internet using their search engines.|
|Additional Information||Gamers Buddy is distributed with another browser hijacker called Hide My Searches.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers.|
|Damage||Internet browser tracking (potential privacy issues), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious websites.|
To eliminate search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
Online TV Streams, Maps & Driving Directions and Search Plus are a couple examples of browser hijackers identical to Gamers Buddy. The apps usually appear legitimate and tempt users into installation with offers of "useful" features. In fact this applies to all PUAs. However, functionality is irrelevant where unwanted content is concerned. The abilities PUAs advertise are typically nonoperational and even if they do work - then not as promised, as the only goal is to generate revenue for their developers at users' expense. These applications are designed to hijack browsers, force-open untrustworthy and malicious sites, deliver intrusive advertisement campaigns and gather private data.
How did Gamers Buddy install on my computer?
Select PUAs (e.g. Gamers Buddy) have "official" promotional webpages, from which they can be downloaded often for free. These applications can also be downloaded/installed together with other programs. "Bundling" is the term used to describe this deceptive marketing method of pre-packing regular content with unwanted or malicious software. When downloading/installing, ignoring terms, skipping steps and sections, using pre-set options - increases the risk of unintentionally allowing bundled apps onto the system. Once an intrusive advert is clicked, it can execute scripts to stealthily download/install PUAs.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is recommended to research products to verify their legitimacy, prior to download/installation. Only official and verified download channels should be used. Untrustworthy download sources like: free file-hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, Gnutella, eMule, etc.) and other third party downloaders - can offer deceptive and/or bundled content. Download and installation processes should be treated with care; therefore, it is important to read terms, explore all available options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings and opt-out from all supplementary apps, tools, functions and so on. Intrusive ads rarely appear suspicious, they tend to look ordinary and harmless, however they redirect to questionable pages (e.g. gambling, adult-dating, pornography, etc.). In case of encounters with advertisements/redirects of this kind, users should check the device and immediately remove all dubious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with Gamers Buddy, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Gamers Buddy browser hijacker installer set-up:
Gamers Buddy browser hijacker asking for various permissions:
Website promoting Gamers Buddy browser hijacker;
IMPORTANT NOTE! This deceptive site asks to enable web browser notifications:
Therefore, before commencing, perform these steps:
Google Chrome (PC):
- Click the Menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the screen
- Select "Settings", scroll down to the bottom and click "Advanced"
- Scroll down to the "Privacy and security" section, select "Content settings" and then "Notifications"
- Click three dots on the right hand side of each suspicious URL and click "Block" or "Remove" (if you click "Remove" and visit the malicious site once more, it will ask to enable notifications again)
Google Chrome (Android):
- Click on the Menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the screen and click "Settings"
- Scroll down, click on "Site settings" and then "Notifications"
- In the opened window, locate all suspicious URLs and click on them one-by-one
- Select "Notifications" in the "Permissions" section and set the toggle button to "OFF"
- Click the Menu button (three bars) on the right upper corner of the screen
- Select "Options" and click on "Privacy & Security" in the toolbar on the left hand side of the screen
- Scroll down to the "Permissions" section and click the "Settings" button next to "Notifications"
- In the opened window, locate all suspicious URLs, click the drop-down menu and select "Block"
- Click the Gear button on the right upper corner of the IE window
- Select "Internet options"
- Select the "Privacy" tab and click "Settings" under "Pop-up Blocker" section
- Select suspicious URLs under and remove them one by one by clicking the "Remove" button
- Click the menu button (three dots) on the right upper corner of the Edge window
- Scroll down, find and click "Settings"
- Scroll down again and click "View advanced settings"
- Click "Manage" under "Website permissions"
- Click the switch under each suspicious website
- Click "Safari" button on the left upper corner of the screen and select "Preferences..."
- Select the "Websites" tab and then select "Notifications" section on the left pane
- Check for suspicious URLs and apply the "Deny" option for each
Instant automatic removal of search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is Gamers Buddy?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Gamers Buddy application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove Gamers Buddy browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove search.gamersbuddyapptab.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Gamers Buddy browser hijacker removal:
Windows 7 users:
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:
Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.
Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:
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:
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.
In the uninstall programs window: look for any recently installed suspicious applications (for example, "Gamers Buddy"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the search.gamersbuddyapptab.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Gamers Buddy browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove browser redirects:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" 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:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove hxxp://search.gamersbuddyapptab.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:
Click the "gear" 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 "Gamers Buddy".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.gamersbuddyapptab.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.
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.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.
In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.
Click the Reset button.
Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate "Gamers Buddy" and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons (e.g., "Hide My Searches"), and remove them.
Change your homepage:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, disable "Gamers Buddy" or "Hide My Searches", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://search.gamersbuddyapptab.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:
To change your default search engine in Google Chrome: Click the 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.gamersbuddyapptab.com" and "hxxp://hidemysearches.com, when located click the three vertical dots near this URL and select "Remove from list".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the 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.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove "Gamers Buddy", as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins (e.g., "Hide My Searches").
Change your homepage:
To reset your homepage, click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), then select "Options", in the opened window disable "Gamers Buddy" or "Hide My Searches", remove hxxp://search.gamersbuddyapptab.com or hxxp://hidemysearches.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you start Mozilla Firefox.
Change your 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: "extensionControlled"
Set both results to "false" by either double-clicking each entry or clicking the button.
Computer users who have problems with search.gamersbuddyapptab.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, in the opened menu, click Help.
Select Troubleshooting Information.
In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.
Remove malicious extensions from Safari:
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click Safari menu, then select Preferences...
In the preferences window select the Extensions tab. Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions and uninstall them.
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.
In the preferences window select Search tab and make sure that your preferred Internet search engine is selected.
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...
In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.
Remove malicious add-ons from Microsoft Edge:
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions, right click your mouse on these entries and click "Uninstall".
Change your homepage:
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Settings", in the opened tab, click the "+ Add new page" link, after entering your preferred URL, remove the link of browser hijackers by clicking the "X" button next to the associated URL.
Change your default search engine:
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Settings". Click the "View advanced settings" button and select "Change search engine". In the opened tab, select your preferred Internet search engine and click "Set as default".
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), and select Settings.
In the opened tab, click the "Choose what to clear" button.
Click Show more and select everything, and then click the "Clear" button.
- If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.
A 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.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove search.gamersbuddyapptab.com redirect from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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