How to uninstall unwanted apps that promote smashapps.net
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on (updated)
What is smashapps.net?
Smashapps.net is the address of a fake search engine. Generally, these search engines are promoted by various browser hijackers. Research shows that one of the apps that promotes smashapps.net is called Suls APP. Typically, browser hijackers promote fake search engines by making certain changes to browser settings.
Apps of this type are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUA), since users tend to download and install them inadvertently. As well as promoting fake search engines, browser hijackers often gather information relating to users' browsing habits.
Most browser hijackers promote fake search engines by modifying settings such as the address of the default search engine, homepage, and new tab. In this case, Suls APP (or other apps of this type) assigns them to smashapps.net and prevents removal of this address as long the app is installed.
Therefore, users are forced to visit smashapps.net when they open a hijacker browser, new tab, or enter search queries into the URL bar. This fake search engine does not generate unique results. When used, smashapps.net simply displays results generated by Yahoo (it redirects to search.yahoo.com).
To stop browsers from opening smashapps.net, Suls APP, and other installed browser hijackers that promote it, must be removed. PUAs should be removed, since the often collect browsing data. For example, IP addresses, geolocations, addresses of opened/visited pages, entered search queries, and so on.
Some browser hijackers can record personal, confidential information as well. Furthermore, developers sell the data to third parties who misuse it to generate revenue. The information might be shared with or sold to cyber criminals. Installed browser hijackers can be the reason behind problems such as identity theft, issues relating to online privacy, browsing safety, and so on.
Therefore, uninstall all browser hijackers immediately and avoid them in future. Note, Suls APP (and other apps that promote smashapps.net) can also be designed to promote other rogue addresses (such as biosc.xyz and smashappsearch.com).
|Name||smashapps.net browser hijacker|
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab.|
|Browser Extension(s)||Suls APP (could also be promoted by other rogue apps).|
|Supposed Functionality||Typically, browser hijackers are advertised as tools that improve the browsing experience.|
|Affected Browser Settings||Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine.|
|Serving IP Address||220.127.116.11|
|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.|
|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.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Free Driver Maps, AnonymoSearch and Maps N' Direction Hub are some of examples of other browser hijackers. Typically, PUAs of this type promote fake search engines and collect browsing-related (and other) information. Even if they are advertised as useful, legitimate applications, they often do not deliver any real value. On the contrary, PUAs can cause serious problems.
How did smashapps.net install on my computer?
Developers distribute PUAs by including them into the download/installation set-ups of other programs. This distribution method is called "bundling". In most cases, information about these additionally-included apps is not properly disclosed and can be found in "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings of the set-ups.
Many people fail to check and change these settings, thereby agreeing by default with offers to download and install PUAs with their required software. In some cases, PUAs are downloaded/installed by clicking deceptive ads that execute certain scripts.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications
You are strongly advised to download all software only from official, trustworthy websites and via direct links. Other channels such as third party downloaders (and installers), Peer-to-Peer networks (e.g., torrent clients, eMule), unofficial websites and other similar channels, tools are often designed to distribute unwanted, malicious apps.
Therefore, they should never be used. The same applies to third party installers - avoid them. Check "Advanced", "Custom" and other settings of the download and installation setup and decline offers to download or install unwanted software before completing the process.
Do not click intrusive ads that appear on dubious web pages, since these can open other, potentially malicious websites or even download/install unwanted apps. Remove any unwanted apps (extensions, add-ons, plug-ins) installed on the browser and/or software of this kind installed on the operating system.
If your computer is already infected with browser hijackers, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate it.
smashapps.net redirects to search.yahoo.com (GIF):
Website promoting a PUA designed to change browser settings to smashapps.net:
Notification stating that Suls APP can read and change certain data:
Screenshot of yet another Google Chrome extension (Osalo APP) promoting the smashapps.net website:
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is smashapps.net?
- STEP 1. Uninstall unwanted applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove smashapps.net redirect from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove smashapps.net browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove smashapps.net homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove smashapps.net redirect from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
smashapps.net redirect removal:
Windows 11 users:
Right-click on the Start icon, select Apps and Features. In the opened window search for the application you want to uninstall, after locating it, click on the three vertical dots and select Uninstall.
Windows 10 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.
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.
macOS (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 (e.g., "Suls APP"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications that cause browser redirects to the smashapps.net website, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
smashapps.net redirect 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 (e.g., "Suls APP"), 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://smashapps.net 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 "smashapps.net".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the smashapps.net browser hijacker, 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 all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons (e.g., "Suls APP") 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 "Suls APP" or other PUA, look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.smashapps.net) 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 "smashapps.net", 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 smashapps.net browser hijacker, 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 plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove all recently installed browser plug-ins (e.g., "Suls APP").
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 installed PUA (e.g., "Suls APP"), remove hxxp://smashapps.net 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 smashapps.net browser hijacker 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 extensions from Microsoft Edge:
Click the Edge 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:
Click the Edge 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:
To change your default search engine in Microsoft Edge: Click the Edge 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 near it and select "Disable".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the smashapps.net browser hijacker, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.
In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.
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.
- 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.
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