What is Spin Dark?
Spin Dark is a browser extension discovered by our research team while inspecting untrustworthy download webpages. This piece of software is advertised as a tool capable of enabling dark mode for simple design websites.
After analyzing Spin Dark, we determined that it behaves like a browser hijacker. It modifies browser settings and promotes the getsins.com fake search engine.
Spin Dark browser hijacker overview
Following successful installation onto our test machine, Spin Dark modified browser settings to cause redirects to the getsins.com website. The redirects occurred any time we opened a new browser tab/window or typed a search query into the URL bar.
Fake search engines typically lead users to genuine ones, as they cannot generate search results. We have observed getsins.com redirecting to Yahoo and websearches.club; however, the latter is an illegitimate search engine. While websearches.club can provide search results, they are inaccurate and may promote deceptive/malicious content.
It is worth mentioning that getsins.com might redirect elsewhere since it can depend on various factors (e.g., user geolocation, etc.).
Most browser hijackers can restrict access to browser settings and/or undo any user-made changes. Furthermore, Spin Dark spies on users' browsing activity. Browser-hijacking software usually collects browsing data (e.g., visited URLs, viewed pages, searched queries, etc.), personally identifiable details, usernames/passwords, credit card numbers, and so on. The gathered data is then monetized through sale to third-parties.
To summarize, the presence of browser hijackers like Spin Dark on browsers/systems - can result in serious privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Browser Extension(s)||Spin Dark|
|Supposed Functionality||Dark mode tool for simple websites|
|Detection Names (getsins.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 hijacker examples
We have analyzed thousands of browser hijackers; Film Links Now | Digital Content Online, Neptun Tab, and Key Web are just a few examples. This software appears ordinary and harmless. Users are enticed into installation with false promises of "handy" features. These functions seldom work as advertised, and in most cases - they do not work at all.
How did Spin Dark install on my computer?
We acquired Spin Dark from a dubious download page, which our researchers found while inspecting websites that use rogue advertising networks. In addition to the aforementioned sites, users can enter questionable software promoting webpages via mistyped URLs or redirects caused by intrusive advertisements, spam browser notifications, or installed adware.
Browser hijackers can also be bundled (packed together) with regular programs. Download from untrustworthy sources (e.g., unofficial and freeware sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, etc.) and rushed installations - increase the risk of allowing bundled content into the system.
Intrusive adverts proliferate browser-hijacking software as well. Once clicked on, some of these ads can execute scripts to make stealthy downloads/installations.
How to avoid installation of browser hijackers?
We strongly advise researching software and downloading it from official/verified channels. Additionally, when downloading, we recommend - reading terms, studying available options, using the "Custom/Advanced" settings, and opting-out of all supplements.
Another recommendation is exercising caution when browsing - since fraudulent and malicious content usually looks innocuous. For example, intrusive advertisements may appear legitimate yet redirect to highly questionable websites (e.g., gambling, pornography, adult-dating, etc.).
If you experience such ads/redirects, inspect the device and immediately remove all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with Spin Dark, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Website promoting Spin Dark browser hijacker:
Appearance of getsins.com redirecting to the websearches.club fake search engine (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 Spin Dark?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Spin Dark application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove Spin Dark browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove getsins.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove getsins.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Spin Dark 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, "Spin Dark"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the getsins.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Spin Dark 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 "Spin Dark" 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 "Spin Dark", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.getsins.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 "getsins.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 getsins.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 "Spin Dark", 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 "Spin Dark", remove hxxp://getsins.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 getsins.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 getsins.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 to visit getsins.com website?
Cyber criminals (i.e., developers of fake search engines and browser hijackers) generate revenue through redirects to sites like getsins.com.
Is visiting getsins.com a threat to my privacy?
Most likely, yes. Websites like getsins.com typically collect information about their visitors with the intent of selling it to third-parties.
How did a browser hijacker infiltrate my computer?
Browser hijackers are mainly spread via deceptive promotional webpages, software bundling, freeware and third-party download sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, fake updates, intrusive advertisements, spam browser notifications, and so forth.
Will Combo Cleaner help me remove Spin Dark browser hijacker?
Yes, Combo Cleaner is designed to scan systems and eliminate detected threats (including browser-hijacking applications). It is pertinent to mention that manual removal (unaided by security programs) might not be ideal when multiple browser hijackers are present on the system. In some instances, when one browser hijacker is removed - the others simply re-install it. Additionally, removal-related settings may be inaccessible with this software installed. Therefore, it is paramount to remove browser hijackers thoroughly and all at once.