Get in-depth insights into the issue of MyStartSearch.com grabbing nearly full control over the web browsing on a compromised computer. The article describes how this adware application spreads, what effect it has on the target system, and which countermeasures can be efficient for exterminating it from the machine.
The name of the MyStartSearch service speaks for itself as far as its goals are concerned: it was designed as some sort of a universal substitute for custom web browsing settings such as the homepage, the new tab page and search provider. Whereas users generally tend to pick different values for this whole configuration, the above-mentioned entity serves as an all-in-one resource accompanying browser-associated activities, which is but one of the its many shortcomings. Another issue is that user consent does not appear to be a touchstone for this app to enforce its services. It installs onto a computer in a mostly covert way and then straightforwardly replaces user-defined browsing defaults with its own URL, MyStartSearch.com, which is shown right below. Obviously, it’s made to function as a search provider, also giving quick access to some popular sites, including a few ones that the user can add on their own. This resemblance is not quite correct though, because all searches are eventually redirected to a totally different resource.
The distribution of this infection is, in essence, a bundling model, where the adware payload is tacked to other installs. Free applications like the Foxit PDF Reader, VLC Player and various device drivers have been reported to contain MyStartSearch inside their setup. Interestingly, it is an opt-out there, but judging from the current prevalence of this browser threat, not many people deselect that. By the way, this kind of technique is very widely used for promoting adware programs into PCs, both ones that insert ads in websites and hijackers that redirect user traffic.
MyStartSearch virus removal is not a one-click activity where you can just move the unwanted extension to trash. The add-on will either error you on such attempt or come back along with the next launching of Firefox, Chrome or IE. To get the issue properly resolved, you should counterattack the malware from several vectors including Control Panel, the infected browsers and the use of automated cleanup software.
Use automatic solution to remove MyStartSearch
The issue of MyStartSearch adware hijacking web browser settings can be effectively resolved if you use trusted security software. Along with the obvious ease of such removal, other benefits include thoroughness of virus detection and elimination from all system locations it might have affected. Please follow these steps:
1. Download and install MyStartSearch virus removal tool. Run the application and select Start Computer Scan option in order to have your computer checked for adware, viruses, Trojans, and other malicious objects.
2. When the scan is complete, it will return a list with results on what infections have been found. Go ahead and click Fix Threats to completely get rid of the detected items. The malware should now be gone from your PC.
Uninstall malicious program via Control Panel
• Go to Control Panel on the infected computer. On Windows XP / Windows 8, proceed to Add or Remove Programs. On Windows Vista / Windows 7, select Uninstall a program
• Examine the list of installed software for mystartsearch uninstall or other suspicious programs. Focus on the recently installed apps, in particular media and entertainment-related ones. Once the bad item is found, select it and click Uninstall/Change.
Manual removal of MyStartSearch.com virus from affected browsers
This part of the guide covers the procedure of preventing the MyStartSearch adware from messing up your web pages. According to our analysis of the infection, the method that proved to be most effective implies resetting the web browsers on your PC to their default configuration. While there is no doubt that the reset will address the problem of random ads showing up in major browsers, it’s worth noting that this way you will lose all personalized browsing information such as cookies, saved logins and passwords, bookmarks, etc. If you’re not willing to let this happen, you’re better off following this article’s automatic removal tips.
Reset Mozilla Firefox to its defaults
• In Firefox, go to Help menu and choose Troubleshooting Information from the respective list. The same is doable by typing about:support directly in the URL bar
• When the Troubleshooting Information interface opens, click on Reset Firefox button. Now you're done
Reset Internet Explorer's default configuration
• In Internet Explorer, go to Tools and click on the Internet Options menu item
• Proceed to the Advanced tab and click Reset as shown on the screenshot
• On the Reset Internet Explorer Settings window that popped up, make sure there's a checkmark next to Delete personal settings option. Go ahead and click Reset
Restore Google Chrome to its original defaults
• Click on the Chrome menu icon in the top right-hand part of the window, and select Settings
• Select the Show advanced settings functionality as shown below
• On the next screen that shows up, click Reset browser settings
• To avoid unintended removal of all personalized data, Chrome will show a warning. If you are certain that it's fine with you, click Reset button
Make sure the MyStartSearch virus has vanished
When it comes to persistent threats, double-checking never hurts. Therefore it’s highly recommended to complete the cleanup process with a final scan that will once again look for any potential bits and pieces of the infection.