How to uninstall Cold Search from a browser?
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on (updated)
What is Cold Search?
Cold Search is a browser hijacker which supposed to promote a legitimate Internet search engine like other legitimate Internet search engines such as Google or Bing. However, it promotes the coldsearch.com address (fake search engine) by modifying web browser settings.
Additionally, it is designed to collect certain data. It is common that users download and install browser hijackers unintentionally, for this reason they are called potentially unwanted applications (PUAs)
Browser hijackers hijack browsers like Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox browsers by changing the default search engine, homepage, and new tab URL browser settings to a certain address. Cold Search changes them to coldsearch.com.
As a rule, apps of this type are designed to prevent users from rolling back these changes - when users attempt to change the settings, they automatically reassign them. Coldsearch.com is a fake search engine because it provides results generated by Yahoo (it redirects users to search.yahoo.com).
In addition, Cold Search collects various browsing-related information like IP addresses, website URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, and so on. Its developers may share recorded data with third parties (sell it to them) or misuse those details to generate revenue in other ways.
It is possible that this browser hijacker may be designed to collect sensitive, personal information as well. Data tracking can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. For these reasons neither Cold Search or any other apps that function like this app should be downloaded and installed.
|Threat Type||Browser Hijacker, Redirect, Search Hijacker, Toolbar, Unwanted New Tab|
|Browser Extension(s)||Cold Search|
|Supposed Functionality||Improved browsing experience|
|Serving IP Address (coldsearch.com)||220.127.116.11|
|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.
There are tens of dubious websites very similar to Cold Search, including MyConverterSearch, Easy Finder, OurConverterSearch - just some examples from a long list. All claim to be legitimate, however, their purpose is to generate revenue for the developers.
Rather than providing the functionality promised, they often are designed to track personally identifiable information and promote fake search engines. In other words, they are useless to their users and can cause various problems.
How did Cold Search install on my computer?
This potentially unwanted application is promoted using a deceptive software marketing method called 'bundling'. Developers hide information about installation of rogue apps or modification of browser settings within the 'Custom/Advanced' settings. Many users rush the download and installation processes, and skip many the steps (including the aforementioned section).
This behavior often leads to inadvertent installation of potentially unwanted programs - users expose their systems to risk of infection and put their privacy at risk. In some cases unwanted downloads, installations can be caused by clicking deceptive advertisements that are designed to execute certain scripts.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
It is advised to closely analyze each step of the download and/or installation setup and see if it has "Custom", "Advanced" (or other) settings and decline all offers to download or install additional software. If your computer is already infected with Cold Search, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate this browser hijacker.
Also, it is recommended to download programs and files from official pages and through direct download links. Other sources, tools like torrent clients, eMule (and other Peer-to-Peer networks), third party downloaders, unofficial websites, etc., should not be used. It is common that they are used as tools to distribute unwanted apps.
Third party installers should not be used too. Additionally, it is advised not to click advertisements that are shown on various questionable websites - those ads can be designed to open untrustworthy sites, or even cause unwanted downloads, installations.
Unwanted, suspicious applications (extensions, add-ons or plug-ins) that are installed on a web browser should be removed. The same applies to software of this kind that is installed on the operating system.
Coldsearch.com redirects to search.yahoo.com (GIF):
Notification saying that Cold Search can read and change certain data:
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 Cold Search?
- STEP 1. Uninstall Cold Search application using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove Cold Search browser hijacker from Google Chrome.
- STEP 3. Remove coldsearch.com homepage and default search engine from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 4. Remove coldsearch.com redirect from Safari.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
- STEP 6. Remove coldsearch.com redirect from Internet Explorer.
Cold 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 (for example, "Cold Search"), select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted applications (which cause browser redirects to the coldsearch.com website), scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Cold 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 "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate "Cold Search" 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 "Cold Search", look for a browser hijacker URL (hxxp://www.coldsearch.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 "coldsearch.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 coldsearch.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 "Cold Search", 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 "Cold Search", remove hxxp://coldsearch.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 coldsearch.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 coldsearch.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.
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
Change your homepage:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Internet Options", in the opened window remove hxxp://coldsearch.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 "Cold Search".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the coldsearch.com redirect, 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.
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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