How to get rid of Mint Search unwanted app?

Also Known As: find.mintsearch.net redirect
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Mint Search browser hijacker removal instructions

What is Mint Search?

Mint Search is designed to promote the find.mintsearch.net address which is an address of a fake search engine. Also, this app adds the "Managed by your organization" feature to Google Chrome browsers. Since Mint Search is classified as a browser hijacker, it may be designed to collect browsing data as well. It is common that users download install browser hijackers unknowingly, therefore, apps of this type are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs). This particular app is distributed through a deceptive installer, a tool which supposed to illegally activate Adobe Photoshop.

find.mintsearch.net browser hijacker

As a rule, browser hijackers promote fake search engines by assigning their address as an address of a homepage, new tab and default search engine. In other words, apps of this type promote them by forcing users to a visit certain address when they open a browser, new tab and enter search queries into URL bar. That is how Mint Search promotes the find.mintsearch.net address. Quite often users who have their browsers hijacked by such apps cannot remove address of a fake search engine from browser's settings as long as those apps are installed on them and/or computers. Therefore, find.mintsearch.net can be stopped from being opened on the aforementioned occasions only when Mint Search is no longer installed. It is worthwhile to mention that find.mintsearch.net displays results generated by Google, it redirects users to google.com. Find.mintsearch.net does not generate individual results and that is the main reason why it is called a fake search engine. Although, there is another reason to uninstall Mint Search or any other installed browser hijacker - apps of this type can be and often are designed to gather various browsing data (e.g., IP addresses, entered search queries, addresses of visited pages, geolocations) and sometimes even sensitive, more personal details. Their developers could misuse collected data to generate revenue by selling it to third parties (potentially cyber criminals) or in other ways. It means that users who have apps like Mint Search installed on a browser and/or operating system may experience problems related to browsing safety, online privacy, become victims of identity theft, and/or encounter other issues.

Threat Summary:
Name Mint Search
Threat Type Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab
Browser Extension(s) Mint Search
Supposed Functionality This app supposed to improve browsing experience
Promoted URL find.mintsearch.net
Serving IP Address (find.mintsearch.net) 62.4.15.153
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.
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)

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A couple of examples of other apps like Mint Search are Mongo Search, Mazy Search and CapitaSearch. These apps are designed to promote address of some fake search engine by changing browser's settings and add the "Managed by your organization" to Chrome browsers. Also, it is common that browser hijackers are designed to operate as information tracking tools. To sum up, these apps are designed only to generate revenue to developers and do not deliver any value for to users.

How did Mint Search install on my computer?

Research shows that Mint Search is distributed through a software 'cracking' tool which supposed to activate Adobe Photoshop. It is worthwhile to mention that it is not legal to bypass activation of licensed software with programs of this type and they can be used to distribute not only PUAs but also ransomware, Trojans or other malware. Also, users often download and/or install potentially unwanted apps together with programs that have them included in their setups as additional offers. This distribution method is called "bundling". As a rule, offers to download and/or install additionally included apps can be declined through setup's "Advanced", "Custom", "Manual" or some other settings. Although, not all users check those settings. When they leave them unchanged, they allow for included PUAs to be downloaded and/or installed alongside with software that they downloaded and/or installed intentionally. In some cases such downloads and/or installations can be caused through deceptive ads. However, happens only when users click those ads and they are designed to execute certain scripts.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is not recommended to download (or install) software through third party downloaders (or installers), eMule, torrent clients and other Peer-to-Peer networks, unofficial websites, etc. Files and programs should be downloaded only from official, trustworthy websites and via direct links. When a download and/or installation setup contains settings like "Advanced", "Custom", then it should be checked for offers to download and/or install unwanted software. Advertisements that appear on untrustworthy pages should not be trusted - they often open other untrustworthy websites or sometimes even cause downloads, installations of unwanted apps. If some suspicious, unwanted, unknown extension, plug-in or add-on is installed on a web browser, then it should be uninstalled as soon as possible. The same applies to software of this kind that is installed on the operating system. If your computer is already infected with Mint Search, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.

Find.mintsearch.net redirects to google.com (GIF):

mint search browser hijacker displays results by google

Unofficial activation tool for Adobe Photoshop which is designed to install Mint Search:

mint search browser hijacker deceptive installer 

Notification saying that Mint Search can read and change certain data:

mint search browser hijacker asks for a permission to be installed

Screenshot of a Chrome browser managed by Mint Search:

mint search browser hijacker managed by your organization

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Quick menu:

Mint Search 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.

find.mintsearch.net browser hijacker uninstall via Control Panel

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

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

Mint Search browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove browser redirects:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net 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://find.mintsearch.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:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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 "Mint Search".

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net 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 "Mint Search" and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, and remove them.

Change your homepage:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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 "Mint Search", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.find.mintsearch.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:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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 "find.mintsearch.net", 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 find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net 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 "Mint Search", as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins.

Change your homepage:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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 "Mint Search", remove hxxp://find.mintsearch.net and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you start Mozilla Firefox.

Change your default search engine:

Removing find.mintsearch.net 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: "extensionControlled"
Set both results to "false" by either double-clicking each entry or clicking the Mozilla Firefox switch about:config entry button button.

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net redirect from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
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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.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
find.mintsearch.net 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 find.mintsearch.net redirect on your mobile device.
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