What kind of application is Photon Search?
While assessing the Photon Search browser extension, we observed its intention to promote a fake search engine by manipulating web browser settings, a behavior often known as browser hijacking. It is essential to note that browser hijackers like Photon Search are typically advertised through dubious methods.
Photon Search browser hijacker overview
Photon Search seizes control of the default search engine, homepage, and new tab page settings, substituting them with photonsearch.one. Consequently, when users initiate searches using their browser's search bar or try to open a new tab or homepage, they are automatically redirected to photonsearch.one.
Photonsearch.one is classified as a counterfeit search engine primarily due to its misleading actions, which include routing users to google.com. When a user initiates a search on photonsearch.one, the search results are not actually produced by photonsearch.one. Instead, users are promptly redirected to google.com, a reputable search engine operated by Google.
Search engines such as photonsearch.one are not trustworthy for various reasons. They often masquerade as legitimate and fully functional search tools, misleading users into believing they offer unique features and services. However, their primary function is to redirect user searches to well-established search engines like Bing, Google, or Yahoo, providing no additional value or functionality.
Furthermore, these search engines frequently generate income through dubious methods, including the collection and sale of user data, as well as the promotion of specific websites and products. This unethical conduct, along with the potential threats it poses to user privacy and security, underscores the untrustworthiness of search engines like photonsearch.one.
Users are advised to be cautious when interacting with such search engines due to the associated privacy and security risks.
|Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab
|Improved browsing experience
|Detection Names (photonsearch.one)
|Serving IP Address (photonsearch.one)
|Affected Browser Settings
|Homepage, new tab URL, default search engine
|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.
|Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers.
|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 hijacking involves altering web browser settings without clear user consent, often through unwanted programs and deceptive browser extensions. This practice disrupts the user's browsing experience, diverts web traffic to questionable websites, and raises concerns about data privacy and online security.
How did Photon Search install on my computer?
Users often unintentionally install or add browser hijackers through a method known as software bundling, where these hijackers are included in installers as additional offers. Users may inadvertently agree to install or add these additional components when they fail to scrutinize the settings provided by software installers.
Deceptive ads, pop-ups, and fake system update notifications serve as other means by which browser hijackers are spread, tricking users into downloading and installing or adding them.
How to avoid installation of browser hijackers?
Exercise caution when downloading software. Thoroughly examine installation prompts and uncheck any extra, unwanted components bundled with the software. Steer clear of compromised or malicious websites that may auto-download browser hijackers. Regularly inspect and manage your browser extensions to ensure there are no unwelcome or suspicious additions.
Avoid clicking on ads, pop-ups, and similar content when visiting potentially untrustworthy websites. Utilize official websites and reputable app stores when downloading applications. If your computer is already infected with Photon Search, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Photonsearch.one redirects to google (GIF):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT 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 Photon Search?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Photon Search application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove Photon Search browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove photonsearch.one homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove photonsearch.one redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Photon Search 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, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the photonsearch.one website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Photon Search 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 "Extensions" and click "Manage Extensions". Locate "Photon Search" and other 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 "Photon Search", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.photonsearch.one) 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 "photonsearch.one", 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 photonsearch.one 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 extensions 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 "Photon Search", as well as 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 "Photon Search", remove hxxp://photonsearch.one 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 photonsearch.one 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 photonsearch.one 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 photonsearch.one website?
Forcing users to access the photonsearch.one website primarily aims to drive traffic to the site, potentially boosting its visibility and advertising revenue.
Is visiting photonsearch.one a threat to my privacy?
Visiting photonsearch.one can pose potential privacy risks. Fake search engines like photonsearch.one can collect various types of information about visitors, such as IP addresses, browsing habits, and device information. The extent of these data collection practices and how the collected data is used may vary from one fake search engine to another.
How did a browser hijacker infiltrate my computer?
Typically, browser hijackers are promoted and (or) distributed through bundled installation packages, various online scams, free file-hosting sites, P2P networks, notifications from shady pages, unreliable ads, etc.
Will Combo Cleaner help me remove Photon Search browser hijacker?
Manual removal is not always ideal, especially with multiple hijackers reinstalling each other. In such cases, users have to perform simultaneous removal. Combo Cleaner scans computers and eliminates all browser-hijacking applications at once.