DigitalIncognitoSearch browser hijacker removal instructions
What is DigitalIncognitoSearch?
DigitalIncognitoSearch hijacks browsers by changing some of their settings to digitalincognitosearch.com, the address of a fake search engine. It is important to mention that most browser hijackers collect information relating to browsing activities. Therefore, it is very likely that DigitalIncognitoSearch collects some data too. Apps like DigitalIncognitoSearch are called potentially unwanted applications (PUAs), it is because most users download and install such apps inadvertently.
A typical browser hijacker makes its address as the address of a default search engine, homepage, and new tab. DigitalIncognitoSearch changes these browser's settings (addresses) to digitalincognitosearch.com. It means that when users who have their browsers hijacked by DigitalIncognitoSearch open a browser, new tab or enter search queries into the URL bar, they end up on digitalincognitosearch.com which is designed to redirect users to search.yahoo.com or bing.com (via onlinebars.xyz). Digitalincognitosearch.com is called a fake search engine because it shows results generated by Bing or Yahoo (it depends on the geolocation of its users). In order to revert to their original settings (to replace digitalincognitosearch.com with another address), users have to uninstall DigitalIncognitoSearch. Otherwise, digitalincognitosearch.com will reappear in settings after every attempt to remove it.
Furthermore, it is common for browser hijackers to be monetized by designing them to collect some information, for example, entered search queries, geolocations, addresses of visited pages, Internet Protocol address, other browsing data. It is possible for an app of this type to be designed to read sensitive information such as credit card details, passwords, or other personal details. It is common that developers of browser hijackers monetize collected data by using if for marketing purposes, selling it to third parties (potentially cyber criminals) or in other ways. Either way, it is not safe to have apps like DigitalIncognitoSearch installed on a browser or the operating system.
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Supposed Functionality||Improved browsing experience|
|Serving IP Address (digitalincognitosearch.com)||22.214.171.124|
|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)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
More examples of apps like DigitalIncognitoSearch are IncognitoSearchTech, My Smartlink, and Santa APP, although there are many more examples. What most browser hijackers have in common is the ability to change browser's settings and collect some information relating to browsing activities or even more personal details. As mentioned in the first paragraph, apps of this type are called PUAs because users do not download and install them knowingly.
How did DigitalIncognitoSearch install on my computer?
It is common for browser hijackers and other potentially unwanted applications to be distributed by bundling with other programs. In other words, PUAs can be found in certain downloaders, installers as additional offers. As a rule, those downloaders and installers have "Advanced", "Custom", and other similar settings or some checkboxes. Users can use them to decline unwanted offers before finishing downloads, installations. Unwanted apps are allowed to be downloaded or installed when users leave default settings of downloaders, installers that are used for their distribution unchanged. In some cases, users cause unwanted downloads, installations by clicking deceptive advertisements that are capable of running certain scripts.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is strongly advisable not to finish downloads and installations without checking if downloaders, installers have "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual" and other settings, or ticked checkboxes in them and if they could be used to dismiss unwanted offers. Also, it is recommended not to trust unreliable sources for downloading apps or files, such as unofficial, dubious pages, various torrent clients, eMule, or other Peer-to-Peer networks, third party downloaders, and so on. Third-party installers should never be trusted (used) as well. Apps should be downloaded from official pages and via direct links. One more way to avoid unwanted downloads, installations is not to click advertisements that appear on dubious pages. Those ads can be used to promote shady pages or download, install unwanted apps. Any suspicious extensions, plug-ins, or add-ons that are already installed on a browser should and programs of this kind that are installed on a computer should be removed. If your computer is already infected with DigitalIncognitoSearch, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Digitalincognitosearch.com redirects to search.yahoo.com (GIF):
Digitalincognitosearch.com redirects to bing.com via onlinebars.xyz (GIF):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is DigitalIncognitoSearch?
- STEP 1. Uninstall DigitalIncognitoSearch application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove DigitalIncognitoSearch browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove digitalincognitosearch.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove digitalincognitosearch.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
- STEP 6. Remove digitalincognitosearch.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
DigitalIncognitoSearch 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, "DigitalIncognitoSearch"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the digitalincognitosearch.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
DigitalIncognitoSearch browser hijacker removal from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove browser redirects:
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 "DigitalIncognitoSearch" and other recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, 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 "DigitalIncognitoSearch", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.digitalincognitosearch.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 "digitalincognitosearch.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 digitalincognitosearch.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 "DigitalIncognitoSearch", as well as all other recently installed browser plug-ins.
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 "DigitalIncognitoSearch", remove hxxp://digitalincognitosearch.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 digitalincognitosearch.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 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 digitalincognitosearch.com redirect, 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.
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://digitalincognitosearch.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 "DigitalIncognitoSearch".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the digitalincognitosearch.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.
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 digitalincognitosearch.com redirect from your Internet browsers, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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