What is IncognitoSearching browser hijacker?
IncognitoSearching is a browser hijacker designed to promote the incognitosearching.com address, which is a fake search engine. It promotes that address by changing the web browser's settings. A big part of browser hijackers is promoted and distributed using questionable methods. Thus, users often download and install them unknowingly.
IncognitoSearching browser hijacker in detail
IncognitoSearching sets incognitosearching.com as the default search engine, homepage, and new tab URL. Incognitosearching.com can show results generated by Yahoo, searchlee.com, and other search engines (it depends on the user's geolocation). Searchlee.com is not a trustworthy search engine. It can generate misleading results.
Fake search engines can be used to promote untrustworthy websites, for example, various scams designed to trick visitors into providing personal information, downloading, and installing potentially unwanted applications (PUAs). To eliminate incognitosearching.com, users need to uninstall IncognitoSearching.
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Supposed Functionality||Improved web browsing experience|
|Serving IP Address (incognitosearching.com)||18.104.22.168|
|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
Browser hijackers promote fake search engines by changing the settings of the affected browsers. They can also collect browsing-related and other information. Since users rarely download and install them intentionally, they are categorized as PUAs. More examples of browser hijackers are ProSportSearch, MovieSearchOnline, and Nuthab.
How did IncognitoSearching install on my computer?
Users download and install most browser hijackers together with other programs - when browser hijackers are optional in downloaders or installers for other programs, and users do not deselect them before downloading or installing those programs. These apps can be deselected in "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual, or other settings
In other cases, users download or install browser hijackers by clicking untrustworthy advertisements or through fake installers. It is important to know that those ads and fake installers can be malicious.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
Downloaders and installers with settings like "Custom", "Advanced" should be examined and any unwanted offers should be declined before finishing downloads or installations. Advertisements that shady pages have on them should not be clicked - they can cause unwanted downloads, installations.
Files and applications should be downloaded from official websites. It is not safe to use other sources (like unofficial sites, third-party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks). If your computer is already infected with IncognitoSearching, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Incognitosearching.com redirects to searchlee.com (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 IncognitoSearching?
- STEP 1. Uninstall IncognitoSearching application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove IncognitoSearching browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove incognitosearching.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove incognitosearching.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
IncognitoSearching 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, "IncognitoSearching"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the incognitosearching.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
IncognitoSearching 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 "IncognitoSearching" 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 "IncognitoSearching", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.incognitosearching.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 "incognitosearching.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 incognitosearching.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 "IncognitoSearching", 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 "IncognitoSearching", remove hxxp://incognitosearching.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 incognitosearching.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 incognitosearching.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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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is the purpose of forcing users visit incognitosearching.com website?
Individuals behind incognitosearching profit from website visits.
Is visiting incognitosearching.com a threat to my privacy?
To a certain extent, yes. Pages like incognitosearching.com often are designed to gather information about their visitors.
How did a browser hijacker infiltrate my computer?
Browser hijackers are often distributed using social engineering tactics, such as browser notifications, intrusive advertisements, etc. Also, they are distributed through downloaders or installers for other programs and deceptive websites.
Will Combo Cleaner help me eliminate IncognitoSearching browser hijacker?
Yes, Combo Cleaner will scan your computer and remove existing browser hijackers. Manual removal is not always the best way to get rid of browser hijackers, since there are cases when users have multiple browser hijackers installed and they reinstall each another. Also, they can be designed to prevent users from modifying the affected settings. Therefore, all of them have to be eliminated at once.