What is HistCleaner browser hijacker?
HistCleaner changes some of the web browser's settings to histclean.com - it hijacks a browser to promote a fake search engine. Users rarely download and install browser hijackers knowingly. For this reason, HistCleaner and similar apps are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs).
HistCleaner browser hijacker in detail
HistCleaner changes the homepage, default search engine, and new tab page to histclean.com - a fake search engine that can show results generated by Bing (bing.com), Google, or possibly other search engines (it depends on the user's geolocation). Histclean.com could promote untrustworthy websites or show results generated by shady search engines.
Usually, users cannot remove a fake search engine while a browser hijacker that promotes it is present. Another reason to get rid of any browser hijacker is that an app of this type could be collecting browsing data or personal information (for example, passwords).
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Supposed Functionality||Browsing history cleaner|
|Detection Names (histclean.com)||N/A (VirusTotal)|
|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
The primary goal of browser hijackers is to promote fake search engines. Pretty often, apps of this type can access and collect various information about users as well. Either way, browser hijackers and fake search engines cannot be trusted. A couple more examples of apps of this type are Key Omni, GameSearchTech, and IncognitoSearchWeb.
How did HistCleaner install on my computer?
Browser hijackers are get downloaded or installed together with other programs. It is common for apps of this type to be distributed through downloaders and installers that have "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual", or similar settings. Users agree to download or install browser hijackers (or other PUAs) when they leave those settings unchanged.
Sometimes, users download or install apps of this type through fake installers or advertisements designed to execute certain scripts. Users encounter those advertisements and fake installers on untrustworthy (usually, deceptive) web pages.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is advisable to download programs and files from official pages and not through or from other sources. Downloaded programs should not be installed until unwanted offers are declined. Usually, unwanted apps can be deselected using settings that downloaders or installers used to distribute PUAs have.
It is also recommended not to trust (click) advertisements that appear on shady websites or come from installed PUAs. If your computer is already infected with HistCleaner, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Histclean.com redirects to bing.com (GIF):
Browser notification informing about HistCleaner browser hijacker:
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 HistCleaner?
- STEP 1. Uninstall HistCleaner application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove HistCleaner browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove histclean.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove histclean.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
HistCleaner 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, "HistCleaner"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the histclean.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
HistCleaner 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 "HistCleaner" 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 "HistCleaner", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.histclean.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 "histclean.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 histclean.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 "HistCleaner", 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 "HistCleaner", remove hxxp://histclean.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 histclean.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 histclean.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 histclean.com website?
The amount of revenue that individuals behind histclean.com generate directly depends on the count of the website's visitors.
Is visiting histclean.com a threat to my privacy?
Histclean.com and similar pages (fake search engines) can be designed to collect various information about the visitor. The could collect browsing data and more personal details.
How did a browser hijacker infiltrate my computer?
A big part of browser hijackers are distributed using social engineering tactics like browser notifications, intrusive advertisements. Also, they are distributed through downloaders or installers for other programs.
Will Combo Cleaner help me remove HistCleaner browser hijacker?
Yes, Combo Cleaner will scan your computer and get rid of HistCleaner or other existing browser-hijacking applications. It is advisable to use specialized programs while trying to remove unwanted apps. When multiple browser hijackers are present, and they reinstall one another. Moreover, it could not be possible to change certain settings while a browser hijacker is present. For this reason, all of them have to be removed at once.