What is GetGameSearch browser hijacker?
GetGameSearch is a browser hijacker designed to promote the getgamesearch.com address, a fake search engine. GetGameSearch promotes getgamesearch.com by modifying the browser's settings. Most users download and install browser hijackers accidentally. For this reason, they are called potentially unwanted applications (PUAs).
GetGameSearch in detail
Typically, browser hijackers change these browser's settings: the address of a default search engine, homepage, and a new tab. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, GetGameSearch changes those addresses/settings to getgamesearch.com. Most browser hijackers are designed to keep their settings irreversible until they are uninstalled.
It is known that getgamesearch.com shows results generated by nearbyme.io and Yahoo (search.yahoo.com) and possibly other search engines - this fake search engine shows results generated by a questionable and legitimate search engine. It is strongly recommended not to trust fake search engines.
The main reasons why fake search engines like getgamesearch.com cannot be trusted are that they may show misleading results (e.g., promote untrustworthy pages) and display dubious advertisements in their results. In order to remove getgamesearch.com from settings, it is necessary to uninstall GetGameSearch first.
It is common for browser hijackers to be designed to collect browsing data, for example, geolocations, entered search queries, visited websites. In some cases, apps of this type gather personal information. Furthermore, individuals behind browser hijackers may sell collected data to third parties or misuse it in other ways.
Users who have a browser hijacked by an app like GetGameSearch may encounter issues related to online privacy, browsing safety, become victims of identity theft, or experience other problems. Therefore, it is not safe to have a browser hijacker installed on a browser (or the operating system).
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Supposed Functionality||Improved browsing experience|
|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
In conclusion, browser hijackers are PUAs designed to promote fake search engines and collect information about their users. More examples of apps that are browser hijackers too are MyIncognitoSearch, SportsSearchDirect, and Safe2Search. As mentioned before, users rarely download and install apps of this type knowingly.
How did GetGameSearch install on my computer?
In some cases, users download and install potentially unwanted applications by clicking advertisements designed to run certain scripts. Usually, advertisements that are designed to distribute PUAs appear on questionable pages. In other cases, users download and install potentially unwanted apps together with other programs.
It is common for PUAs to be included in downloaders and installers for other programs as extra offers. This distribution method is known as bundling. Users allow for PUAs to be downloaded and installed together with other programs when they download, install those programs without changing "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual" or other settings.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
Downloads and installations of programs bundled with PUAs should not be finished without changing "Advanced", "Manual" or other settings, or unticking ticked checkboxes (without declining optional offers). Programs and files should be downloaded from official, legitimate websites and via direct links.
Other sources like third-party downloaders (or tools like third-party installers), Peer-to-Peer networks, unofficial sites, freeware download pages, etc., could be used to distribute potentially unwanted or malicious applications. Therefore, it is advisable not to use them to download or install files or programs.
Advertisements on questionable pages could be used to distribute PUAs too. Therefore, it is recommended not to trust/click those advertisements. Unwanted, suspicious extensions, add-ons, plug-ins installed on a browser should be removed. Programs of this kind installed on a computer should be removed too. If your computer is already infected with GetGameSearch, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Getgamesearch.com redirects to nearbyme.io (GIF):
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 GetGameSearch?
- STEP 1. Uninstall GetGameSearch application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove GetGameSearch browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove getgamesearch.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove getgamesearch.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
GetGameSearch 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, "GetGameSearch"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the getgamesearch.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
GetGameSearch 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 "GetGameSearch" 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 "GetGameSearch", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.getgamesearch.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 "getgamesearch.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 getgamesearch.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 "GetGameSearch", 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 "GetGameSearch", remove hxxp://getgamesearch.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 getgamesearch.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 getgamesearch.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.
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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