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Danger level 3
Type: Potentially Unwanted Application

Vudu Search

Vudu Search is a Google Chrome browser extension that caught our attention since it may pose a potential threat to your virtual security. For this reason, we have labeled this threat as a potentially unwanted program (PUP). This means that this extension does not necessarily put your computer at risk directly; however, it may still be able to expose you to questionable third-party advertisements and modified search results that could be potentially unreliable and end with further infections on board or online scams. This tool offers you the capability to “change your browser’s search engine just in 2 clicks” that could actually be done in one single click if you bookmark your preferred search engines and display your bookmarks bar. If you want to keep your system clean, we suggest that you remove Vudu Search as soon as possible.

This questionable browser extension is available from two official sources. You can find it in the Chrome web store at chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/vudu-search/fhkpigdkphcbdaeiklohppggcnhdbojh and on its promotional webpage at install.vudusearch.com/?pid=11111. This official webpage is rather limited; it is indeed one single page with a red panel labeled “Recommended Extension” with an Install button. We need to mention that before you install a browser extension, you will always see a pop-up window at the top that informs you about the browser setting changes and permissions. It is important that you always read these not to be surprised when such a tool changes certain settings and you would believe these have taken place without your knowledge or permission. Although this extension claims that you can change your search engine with two clicks, it actually changes your default search engine for Google Chrome without a click, i.e., once you click “Add extension” on this pop-up.

The real problem is that this extension can also be found spreading in questionable ways. For example, it is possible to install it by clicking on unreliable third-party pop-up advertisements. You may be offered a driver update or a software download in a pop-up that may claim that it is important for you to download. However, instead of an official updater or installer, you would install this PUP and possibly other, even more serious threats as well. You could be offered such pop-ups by suspicious websites or malware infections (e.g., adware programs) hiding on your PC. You can also install this extension when you are installing a freeware bundle. This is probably the worst case scenario, as in this case, you would probably let a number of malware threats on board, too. Such a bundle can contain adware programs, Trojans, fake alerts, browser hijackers, and, of course, PUPs as well. You can download an infection software package when being careless with your clicks and click on shady third-party ads or links, which could be presented to you by suspicious websites (e.g., online gambling, gaming, torrent, and freeware page) or by malware on board. In any case, we suggest that you run a reliable online malware scanner on your system to find all possible threat sources that may need your immediate attention after you remove Vudu Search.

This PUP offers you something that is totally useless indeed as you can easily reach any search engine by one single click instead of two, if you bookmark them using the built-in bookmarking function of your browsers. And, this extension only seems to work in Google Chrome right now. The real issue with this PUP is that it sets feed.vudusearch.com as your default search engine. This means that it does not matter which main search provider you choose by clicking on the “V” icon in the top-right corner, because all the search queries will go through this questionable default search engine and you will end up on a modified search results page either on Google, Yahoo, or Bing, whichever you choose. Unfortunately, this results page can contain potentially unreliable third-party advertisements and sponsored links promoting affiliates who may not always be trustworthy. Thus, you may end up on malicious websites or downloading further threats by engaging with content coming from this extension. All in all, we suggest that you remove Vudu Search right away from your affected browser.

In order to put an end to this PUP, you can use our instructions below, but you may also use your Google Chrome browser menu to remove this undesirable extension. Please keep in mind that this potential threat source could only be one of several hiding on your system. Thus, it is vital that you take care of them all as soon as possible if you do not want to be exposed to questionable third-party content. If manual removal is out of the question for you, we recommend that you install a trustworthy anti-malware program, such as SpyHunter and protect your PC automatically against all future malware attacks.

How to remove Vudu Search from your browser

Google Chrome

  1. Close your browser window.
  2. Press Win+E.
  3. Locate the “%Localappdata%\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Storage” folder.
  4. Delete these files:
  5. Empty your Recycle Bin.
  6. Launch your browser.
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