What is Start Movie DS?
Start Movie DS is a browser hijacker designed to change a browser's settings to search.movieapp.net (to promote a fake search engine). Browser hijackers are called potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) - users rarely download and install them knowingly, intentionally.
Start Movie DS browser hijacker in detail
Most browser hijackers promote fake search engines (their addresses) by changing settings such as the address of a default search engine, homepage, and new tab. The Start Movie DS application changes the aforementioned settings to search.movieapp.net.
Search.movieapp.net is a fake search engine that shows results generated by Yahoo or Bing - this address redirects users to search.yahoo.com or bing.com (via search-checker.com). It depends on the geolocation of a visitor.
It is important to mention that search.movieapp.net could show results generated by questionable search engines as well. Quite often, fake search engines promote dubious pages by including links to them in their results.
Usually, the address of a fake search engine cannot be changed to any other address or removed from settings unless a browser hijacker that promotes it is no longer installed. In this case, users can remove search.movieapp.net from settings once Start Movie DS is uninstalled.
It is common for browser hijackers to be designed to gather browsing-related data, for example, Internet Protocol addresses, entered search queries, geolocations, addresses of visited websites. In some cases, they collect passwords, credit card details, and other data that could be misused to steal identities, online accounts, make unauthorized purchases, or sold to third parties (potentially cybercriminals) as well.
|Name||Start Movie DS|
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Browser Extension(s)||Start Movie DS|
|Supposed Functionality||Improved browsing experience|
|Serving IP Address (search.movieapp.net)||126.96.36.199|
|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 Combo Cleaner.
Browser hijackers in general
Most browser hijackers have the same purpose - to promote fake search engines that generate their results or show results generated by other search engines. In one way or another, it is not recommended to trust fake search engines or have any browser hijacker installed on a browser or the operating system. More examples of browser hijackers are TopPDFConverterSearch, SuperMovieSearch, and GoToMovieSearch.
How did Start Movie DS install on my computer?
Browser hijackers are often included in downloaders and installers for other programs as additional offers (they are distributed using a method called "bundling"). Thus, users download or install browser hijackers (or other PUAs) when they finish downloads or installation without deselecting those apps.
Typically, users can decline unwanted offers using "Advanced", "Custom", "Manual", or other options that downloaders, installers used to distribute PUAs have. It is worth mentioning that PUAs are bundled mostly with free programs.
In other cases, PUAs are distributed through advertisements. Users cause unwanted downloads, installations by clicking advertisements that are designed to run certain scripts. Typically, such ads appear on questionable pages.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is recommended to check downloaders and installers with "Advanced", "Custom" or other settings (or ticked checkboxes) for unwanted offers before finishing downloads and installations. It is common that downloaders, installers that have those settings are used to distribute potentially unwanted applications.
Also, it is advisable not to trust third-party downloaders, unofficial sites, Peer-to-Peer networks like torrent clients, eMule, etc., or third-party installers - they can be used to distribute malicious, potentially unwanted apps. Apps and files should be downloaded from official pages and via direct download links.
Advertisements on questionable pages (e.g., on pages related to gambling, adult dating) should not be trusted as well - it is common for those ads to be used to promote untrustworthy websites or designed to cause unexpected downloads or installations.
Any unwanted, unknown, or suspicious extensions, add-ons, or plug-ins installed on a browser should be removed. Programs of this kind installed on the operating should be uninstalled too. If your computer is already infected with Start Movie DS, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Search.movieapp.net redirects to search.yahoo.com (GIF)
Search.movieapp.net redirects to bing.com (GIF):
Website promoting Start Movie DS browser hijacker:
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT 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 Start Movie DS?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Start Movie DS application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove Start Movie DS browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove search.movieapp.net homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove search.movieapp.net redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
- STEP 6. Remove search.movieapp.net redirect from Internet Explorer.
Start Movie DS browser hijacker 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 (for example, "Start Movie DS"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the search.movieapp.net website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Start Movie DS 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 "Start Movie DS" 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 "Start Movie DS", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.search.movieapp.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 "search.movieapp.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 search.movieapp.net 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 "Start Movie DS", 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 "Start Movie DS", remove hxxp://search.movieapp.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 search.movieapp.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, 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 search.movieapp.net 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://search.movieapp.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 "Start Movie DS".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the search.movieapp.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.
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.
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