What is WebSearch?
The WebSearch toolbar browser hijacker infiltrates computers via free software downloads. After successful infiltration, this browser hijacker modifies Internet browsers (Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox) homepage and default search engine settings by assigning them to the websearch.com website.
Commonly, users install this potentially unwanted application inadvertently without their consent together with free software downloaded from the Internet. Today, most free software download websites employ 'download clients' to manage the process of freeware downloading.
Download clients are used to monetize the free software download process by offering installation of advertised browser add-ons and toolbars. These promoted browser extensions often cause unwanted ads and browser redirect issues.
As well as causing unwanted redirects, the WebSearch toolbar also tracks users' Internet browsing activity by recording Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, browser types, browser languages, search terms, domain names, and dates/times of each page viewed. This behavior may lead to identity theft or malware infections.
Some download clients adopt deceptive methods to promote browser plug-ins, such as hiding the 'decline' button, which can otherwise be used to opt-out of installation of advertised browser add-ons.
While search results provided by the websearch.com website might seem legitimate, the site can be redirected to other malicious sites at any time, and therefore, you are advised to eliminate this browser hijacker from your Internet browsers.
The WebSearch toolbar adds no significant value for the Internet users, and since it is promoted using deceptive freeware download clients, it is deemed untrustworthy. Websearch.com browser redirect issues are related to the installation of potentially unwanted applications.
Common sources of this adware are free software download websites. The Websearch.com website is similar to other sites, which employ deceptive marketing methods to attract their visitors. Examples include allmyweb.com, v9.com, and eazel.com To avoid installation of browser hijackers, be attentive when downloading free software.
If your download is managed by a download client, opt-out of installation of promoted browser plugins by clicking the 'decline' button.
When installing freeware, choose the 'Custom' or 'Advanced' installation options, rather than 'Quick' or 'Typical' - this will reveal installation of any bundled software. If your Internet browsers redirect you to the websearch.com website, use this removal guide to eliminate the WebSearch toolbar from your computer.
Free software installers promoting WebSearch toolbar (and other adware):
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 WebSearch?
- STEP 1. Uninstall WebSearch toolbar using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove WebSearch.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove WebSearch.com browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove Websearch.com from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove WebSearch.com extension from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
WebSearch toolbar 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 "WebSearch Toolbar", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
At time of research, the WebSearch toolbar installed together with the following potentially unwanted applications: Online Vault, PC Power Speed, 24x7 Help, AppGraffiti, RebateInformer, and SiteRanker. You are advised to uninstall these programs.
After uninstalling potentially unwanted programs (which cause browser redirects to the websearch.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
WebSearch toolbar removal from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove browser redirects:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Remove WebSearch toolbar from Internet Explorer extensions:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for "WebSearch Toolbar" (two entries), select these entries and click "Remove". Users should also remove "AppGraffiti", "SiteRank.dll", and "RebateI.dll".
Change your homepage:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove hxxp://www.websearch.com and enter your preferred domain, which will open each time you launch Internet Explorer. You can also enter about: blank to open a blank page when you start Internet Explorer.
Change your default search engine:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". In the opened window, select "Search Providers", set "Google", "Bing", or any other preferred search engine as your default and then remove "WebSearch Search".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the websearch toolbar, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.
Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.
In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.
Click the Reset button.
Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Remove WebSearch toolbar from Google Chrome extensions:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Tools" and click on "Extensions". Locate: "Websearch Toolbar", select this entry and click the trash can icon.
Change your homepage:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Settings". In the "On startup" section, click "set pages", hover your mouse over hxxp://www.websearch.com and click the x symbol. Now, you can add your preferred website as your homepage.
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" section click "Manage Search Engines...", remove "WebSearch" and add or select your preferred domain.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the websearch toolbar, 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:
Remove WebSearch toolbar related Mozilla Firefox extensions:
Click on the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and remove "AppGraffiti", "Rebate Informer Firefox", "SiteRanker", and "Websearch Toolbar".
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 remove hxxp://www.websearch.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: "websearch"
Right-click on the found preferences and select "Reset" to restore default values.
Computer users who have problems with websearch toolbar 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 websearch toolbar, 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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