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Danger level 7
Type: Browser Hijackers
Common infection symptoms:
  • Hijacks homepage
  • Changes default search engine


Have ever heard of yamdex.net? If not, then we want to make you aware that it is an infection that we have classified as a browser hijacker. In a nutshell, it modifies your browser’s settings, so you have to remove it if you want to rollback the changes it has made. The problem is, however, that this browser hijacker prevents you from getting rid of it by modifying the browser’s Target line settings. Unfortunately, the purpose of doing so is to force you to use this search engine so that its developers could make easy money. So if your computer has been infected with yamdex.net, then you might want to continue reading.

It is easy to see that this browser hijacker is intended for the Russian-speaking audience. Therefore, it is unlikely to be distributed on American or Western Europe-based freeware websites. At any rate, yamdex.net is prone to be bundled with potentially unwanted programs and malware and put up for download on shady Russia-based freeware websites. As far as we know, this hijacker’s bundled installer injects it into the browser secretly. Therefore, you cannot prevent the infection if you do not have a malware detection program.

Once your computer becomes infected yamdex.net, it will change the homepage of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Internet Explorer. However, its modifications go far beyond simply changing the homepage. It modifies the registry keys of the aforementioned web browsers, and they should be fixed.

yamdex.net does not come with a dedicated program or browser extension as the browser hijacking is performed by the malicious bundle installer. Thus, it does not drop any malicious files that have to be manually deleted. However, as mentioned earlier, this hijacker modifies the browser’s Target line. Modifying the Target line is a very easy way to force users to continue using a particular website. The installer adds this hijacker’s address to this line, and it sets the browser to launch with this address as the default homepage. Any attempt to change the browser’s homepage via its settings will prove ineffective as you have to fix the Target line before you can try doing that.

Of course, it hijacks and prevents you from using another homepage for a reason. This hijacker redirects web traffic to its address to subject you to the various links featured on its main page. The links can redirect you to various Russian websites of unknown origin. So it is clear that the links are there as promotions, and yamdex.net’s owners get paid for featuring them. Also, this hijacker’s search engine redirects the search queries to Go.mail.ru which is a real search engine, but it may feature unreliable ads supplied by the browser hijacker.

We think that you will agree with our conclusion that yamdex.net does not improve the browsing experience, but obstructs it with its promoted search engine and ads featured on it. So it is not surprising that it comes bundled with malicious installers that secretly inject it into the browser. This is a clear indication of this hijacker’s developer’s attitude towards the users — they only want you to click the ads and make them money. Moreover, they have no regard for your computer’s security as they have the authority to promote malicious content, and we believe that it is likely that they do.

So, all things considered, yamdex.net is a very unreliable search engine whose only purpose is to generate advertising revenue for its owners. Therefore, we are going to show you how you can remove it without additional software. As mentioned earlier, it does not have any files and all of its modifications are performed on the Windows Registry level. So please refer to our guide if you want to delete this infection.

Fix the modifications to the browser’s Target line

  1. Right-click on the browser’s shortcut and select Properties.
  2. Open the Shortcut tab.
  3. Delete the URL from the Target line.
  4. Click OK.

Reset your browsers’ setting to default

Microsoft Internet Explorer

  1. Simultaneously the Alt+T keys and open Internet Options.
  2. Open the Advanced tab and click Reset and mark the checkbox.
  3. Click Reset and then click Close.

Mozilla Firefox

  1. Simultaneously Press the Alt+H keys.
  2. Select Troubleshooting Information and select Refresh Firefox.
  3. Click Refresh Firefox again in the dialog box and click Finish.

Google Chrome

  1. Press Alt+F and open Settings.
  2. Select Show advanced settings.
  3. Click Reset settings and click Reset again.

Delete registry keys (alternative method)

  1. Simultaneously press the Windows+R keys and type regedit.
  2. Click OK.
  3. Find HKLM\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node{only on 64-bit systems}\Policies\Google\Chrome\RestoreOnStartupURLs/
  4. Edit the value with name "1" and data associated with yamdex.net and enter a new address.
  5. HKLM\Wow6432Node{only on 64-bit systems}\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\MAIN.
  6. Edit value data of "Default_Search_URL" and "Start Page" and enter a new address.
  7. HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main.
  8. Edit value data of "Default_Search_URL" and "Start Page" and enter a new address.

Fix the modification made to Firefox's prefs.js file

  1. Simultaneously press the Windows+E keys.
  2. Enter %appdata%\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles in the address bar.
  3. Find the file prefs.js and open it with Notepad.
  4. Search for user_pref("browser.newtab.url", "yamdex.net"); and user_pref("browser.startup.homepage", "yamdex.net");.
  5. Replace the URL to your preferred address.
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