Removal instructions for software generating redirects to magic-dark.xyz
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on
What is magic-dark.xyz?
Magic-dark.xyz is the URL of an illegitimate search engine. It cannot provide search results and redirects to a genuine Internet search site.
Fake search engines are commonly promoted by browser hijackers. This software modifies browser settings in order to cause redirects to the endorsed websites. Additionally, browser hijackers and illegitimate search engines usually collect sensitive data.
How do browser hijackers promote magic-dark.xyz?
Browser hijackers reassign browsers' homepages, default search engines, and new browser tab/window URLs to the addresses of promoted sites. Therefore with one endorsing magic-dark.xyz installed: new browser tabs/windows opened and Web searches performed via the URL bar – would result in redirects to this website.
Illegitimate search engines usually cannot provide search results, so they redirect to genuine Internet search sites. And even if they can generate results – they are inaccurate and may include sponsored, deceptive, and malicious content.
At the time of research, magic-dark.xyz redirected to the Bing search engine (bing.com). However, it could land elsewhere since factors like user geolocation may impact redirects.
Furthermore, browser-hijacking software often employs persistence-ensuring techniques to prevent users from recovering their browsers. This could include denying access to removal-related settings or undoing user-made changes.
What is more, illegitimate search engines and browser hijackers typically gather vulnerable data. Information of interest may include: searched queries, visited URLs, viewed pages, IP addresses, Internet cookies, account log-in credentials, personally identifiable details, finance-related data, etc. The collected information can then be sold to third-parties or otherwise abused for profit.
In summary, the presence of browser-hijacking software on devices can result in system infections, severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.
|Name||magic-dark.xyz browser hijacker|
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Affected Browser Settings||Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine|
|Detection Names||Forcepoint ThreatSeeker (Suspicious), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Serving IP Address||126.96.36.199|
|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).|
|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.
Fake search engine and browser hijacker examples
We have investigated countless fake search engines and browser hijackers; top-search.xyz, seekfreeonline.com, suggestonlineweb.com – are just a couple examples of the former, and Nature Extension, Architecture Tab, Abstract Art Tab – of the latter.
Websites and software within these classifications tend to appear legitimate and offer useful functionalities. However, these features seldom work as advertised, and in most cases – they are utterly nonoperational.
It must be stressed that even if a site or a piece of software works as indicated by its promotional material – that is not definitive proof of either legitimacy or safety.
How did magic-dark.xyz promoting software install on my computer?
"Bundling" – packing ordinary program installation setups with unwanted/malicious supplements – is used to proliferate browser hijackers.
The risk of allowing bundled content into the system is increased by downloading from untrustworthy sources (e.g., freeware and third-party websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, etc.) and by rushing through installation processes (e.g., ignoring terms, skipping steps, using "Easy/Quick" settings, etc.).
Additionally, browser-hijacking software can have "official" promotional pages, and it is endorsed by scam websites. Most visitors to such webpages enter them via redirects generated by sites using rogue advertising networks, mistyped URLs, spam browser notifications, intrusive ads, or installed adware.
Browser hijackers are also distributed by intrusive advertisements. Once clicked on, some of these adverts can execute scripts to perform stealthy downloads/installations.
How to avoid installation of browser hijackers?
We highly recommend researching software and downloading it only from official/verified channels. Another recommendation is to treat installation processes with caution, e.g., by reading terms, inspecting available options, using the "Custom/Advanced" settings, and opting out of all additional apps, extensions, tools, features, etc.
We also advise being careful while browsing since fake and dangerous online content usually appears legitimate and harmless. For example, intrusive advertisements may look innocuous – yet redirect to unreliable/questionable websites (e.g., pornography, gambling, adult dating, etc.).
In case of continuous encounters with such ads/redirects, inspect the system and immediately remove all dubious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with browser hijackers, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate them.
Appearance of magic-dark.xyz redirecting to the Bing 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 magic-dark.xyz?
- STEP 1. Uninstall unwanted applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove magic-dark.xyz browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove magic-dark.xyz homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove magic-dark.xyz redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Magic-dark.xyz redirect 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, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Magic-dark.xyz redirect 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 all recently-installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
Change your homepage:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, disable the malicious extension (if present), look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.magic-dark.xyz) 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 "magic-dark.xyz", when located click the three vertical dots near this URL and select "Delete".
- If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Google Chrome.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the magic-dark.xyz browser hijacker, 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 and themes". Click "Extensions", in the opened window locate all recently-installed suspicious extensions, click on the three dots and then click "Remove".
Change your homepage:
To reset your homepage, click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), then select "Settings", in the opened window disable malicious extension (if present), remove hxxp://magic-dark.xyz 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 "Accept the Risk and Continue".
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 magic-dark.xyz browser hijacker 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 magic-dark.xyz browser hijacker, 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 magic-dark.xyz website?
Redirects to sites like magic-dark.xyz are generated because cyber criminals (i.e., developers of fake search engines and browser hijackers) profit through them.
Is visiting magic-dark.xyz a threat to my privacy?
To a certain extent, yes. Websites like magic-dark.xyz usually collect visitor data. The gathered information is often monetized via sale to third-parties.
How did a browser hijacker infiltrate my computer?
The most commonly used distribution methods include: bundled installers, online scams, dubious download channels (e.g., freeware and free file-hosting websites, P2P sharing networks, etc.), spam browser notifications, and intrusive adverts.
Will Combo Cleaner help me remove browser hijackers?
Yes, Combo Cleaner will scan your computer and eliminate detected browser-hijacking applications. It must be mentioned that manual removal (unaided by security programs) might not be a perfect solution. In cases where multiple browser hijackers are present, after one is removed – the others may simply reinstall it. What is more, browser-hijacking software may be capable of restricting access to removal-related settings and/or undoing user-made changes. Therefore, browser hijackers must be removed thoroughly and all at once.
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