- Hijacks homepage
- Changes default search engine
Searchby.net is a newly emerged search page that has caught our attention since it may appear in your browser in "mysterious" ways. In fact, this malware infection seems to only affect your Internet Explorer browser; however, its presence may indicate that there are other malicious programs as well as potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) on your system. This means that even if you never use this affected browser and do not bother to remove Searchby.net, you can be exposed to malicious third-party content other ways due to the possible presence of other malware threats. We have labeled this threat as a browser hijacker since it can change your browser settings to present to you its service as a search engine. Using this hijacker would be a mistake since you could end up on manipulated search results pages that might contain potentially harmful third-party ads and sponsored links due to the fact that this malware infection can only generate revenue for its creators through the search results. If you want to keep your computer clean and safe, we recommend that you remove Searchby.net as soon as possible along with all other threats that may be endangering your virtual security.
We have found that this browser hijacker usually appears uninvitedly. This means that if your browser is infected with this threat, you may have installed a free program like Ultimate Popup Killer, ultimatepopupkiller.com, lately. In other words, this infection is mostly promoted by free software. In some cases it may be even compulsory for you to agree to the installation of this hijacker because otherwise you cannot install your targeted free software. It is also important to mention that these free programs are usually hosted on suspicious and corrupt file-sharing pages (torrent and freeware), such as filewon.com, descargar.es, and malavida.es.
The real issue here is that using such shady pages to download any free file usually ends with dropping a malicious bundle of threats. Such a bundle may be packed with several malware infections (browser hijackers, adware apps, Trojans, and more) alongside the "main attraction," the free software, and possibly, PUPs. But even if you have never downloaded free software, cracks, or movies from suspicious torrent or freeware pages, it is possible that you have infected your computer by clicking on the wrong third-party content. You should avoid all those annoying and shady websites that fill your screen with advertising, such as banner ads and pop-up ads. One click can cost you dearly if it is over corrupt content. In order to make sure that your computer is clean, we recommend that after you delete Searchby.net, you check out your system by running a trustworthy malware scanner.
This is a very simple search page that does not really strike you as a modern and high-tech search engine. Above the main search field, you can find three links: Shop (amazon.com/?ie=UTF8&%2AVersion%2A=1&%2Aentries%2A=0), News (edition.cnn.com/), and Weather (accuweather.com). We do not advise you to click these links because even if they take you to reputable pages, this browser hijacker might inject third-party ads into them and thus make them potentially risky. As a matter of fact, this questionable search page does not even generate its own results but it uses startpage.com instead. Reliable as StartPage may be, claiming that it "combines the powerful search results of Google with the strong privacy features of Ixquick, the world's most private search engine," this hijacker might alter the results and inject affiliated content that may not be always reliable.
It should be clear now why it is risky to click on any content coming from this browser hijacker. Even if it uses a reliable third-party search engine that claims to be all about the user's privacy, not even collecting any personal data, etc., this malware infection can easily collect information about you that might be shared with third parties. If you click on questionable third-party ads and links on a possibly altered search results page, you could drop infections or open malicious pages in new tabs or windows. This is why we suggest that you remove Searchby.net from your computer.
Since this browser hijacker may not be the only threat in your browser, we advise you to reset Internet Explorer. If you are not familiar with the steps, please use our guide below this article. Of course, this alone will not necessarily make your virtual world an entirely secure place to be. Therefore, we recommend that you do not stop at this point. In fact, you should not stop until you are certain that there is not one single potentially harmful program on board. If you do not have the IT skills or experience to do this manually, we suggest that you download a reliable malware removal application like SpyHunter.
Remove Searchby.net from your browser