‘Search Assist’ is believed to be an adware that can do much more than just displaying pop-up ads on the Internet browser. Once this adware sets onto your computer, it actually tries to get your attention by posting huge annoying pop-ups, and constant redirection to various web sites. Moreover, this adware will make keywords on page as hyperlinks, tying to gain clicks from viewers. Once you click on ‘Search Assist’ hyperlink, browser will get redirected to an advertisement web site.
Computer security experts had warned us many times that adware like ‘Search Assist’ only brings problem instead of benefit. The mere fact that no one authorize ‘Search Assist’ to be installed on the computer is an invasive thing that can only be noticed on virus and malware attack.
Attackers usually put 'Search Assist' as bundled software to certain freeware and shareware. That way, it can be pass-on to as many computer users that wanted free software. What many victims find most objectionable about 'Search Assist' is the rerouting effect that leads them to unwanted web sites promoting various products. And most of all, users can't conceive to the non-stop pop-up ads shown by 'Search Assist'.
Should I remove it from the PC?
Absolutely, because 'Search Assist' is not a safe item for your PC and its presence will bring nothing but annoyances. Furthermore, malicious program such as this is capable of monitoring your web activities. It gathers data and other information from your PC that is not for public viewing. Your confidential details are at risk with the existence of 'Search Assist'.
We highly suggest removing 'Search Assist' as soon as you detect it. You have to know that this program is the sole liable in spreading potentially unwanted program and other malicious software to countless computer systems.
To stop any changes made by 'Search Assist' and bring back your PC to its original clean state, what you have to do is to delete any unwanted add-on or extension from browser.
Is there a way to effectively remove 'Search Assist'?
To effectively remove 'Search Assist' and other harmful files on the computer, we highly suggest following this guide and scan your computer with recommended tools. Scanners provided here are free to use.
Follow these Procedures to Remove 'Search Assist'
Procedure 1: Uninstall 'Search Assist' from Windows Control Panel
1. Begin the removal process by uninstalling the adware program from Windows. To do this, we need to open Control Panel. Please ensure that you are logon with the Administrative privilege to access this function.
Accessing Windows 10 Control Panel
- Click on the Windows Start button at lower left corner of the screen.
- Type Control Panel on the search box, and click on its icon on the search result.
- Alternatively, you can just press Windows + X on the keyboard to display Quick Access Menu. Then, click Control Panel.
How to access Control Panel in Windows 8
- The easiest way to access Control Panel on Windows 8 is through the Search function.
- Simply press Windows Key + Q on your keyboard to display the Charms Bar. Alternatively, you can drag mouse pointer to lower-right portion of desktop until the Charms Bar slide-out.
- Click on the Magnifying Glass icon and search for 'Control Panel'. Click the item on the result to access this feature.
How to access Control Panel in Windows XP, Windows Vista/ 7
- Click on Start button that can be found on bottom left corner of the screen.
- From the list, choose Control Panel to access settings of Windows and make the needed changes.
2. Under Programs, click on Uninstall a program. It will open a program and features window where-in you can uninstall, change, or repair installed software.
3. Look for adware title or any suspicious name that was installed recently. To do this, you need to arrange the items chronologically. Click on 'Installed On' to display the latest program that looks unfamiliar.
As observed, this pop-up is also linked to known malware. You may also look for and delete the following names that were identified with 'Search Assist': SearchAssist, Sendori
4. Click on Uninstall button to remove the program automatically.
5. If it prompts for confirmation, please click OK to proceed.
Procedure 2: Scan Computer in Safe Mode Using Installed Anti-virus Program
1. In troubleshooting a PC, one common step is to boot operating system into Safe Mode with Networking. The same approach will be used in the removal of 'Search Assist'. Please execute instructions based on your Windows OS version.
Start Windows 8 / Windows 10 in Safe Mode with Networking
- Please restart the computer and as soon as it begins to start, please press Shift + F8 keys.
- Instead of seeing Advance Boot Options, latest version of Windows will display Recovery Mode. Continue with the given steps until you reach Safe Mode function.
- Click on 'See advanced repair options'.
- Then, click on Troubleshoot.
- Next, please select Advanced options.
- On the next window, please choose Windows Startup Settings.
- Lastly, click on Restart button. Windows 8 / Windows 10 will now restart and boot into Advanced Boot Option wherein you can run the system in Safe Mode with Networking.
Start in Safe Mode with Networking (Windows XP/Vista/7 Instruction)
- Please restart the computer and just before Windows start, press F8 on your keyboard repeatedly. You will be presented with Advanced Options Menu.
- From the selections, choose Safe Mode with Networking. Please use keyboard's arrow up/down to navigate between selections and press Enter to proceed.
2. Once your Windows is running in Safe Mode, open your installed anti-virus programs and update it to the most recent version by automatically downloading necessary updates.
3. Thoroughly scan the computer and remove all identified threats. Do not restart or turn off the computer after the scan process. You still need to run another scan. Please follow the next procedure.
Procedure 3: Scan and remove 'Search Assist' files with MalwareBytes Anti-Malware
To remove 'Search Assist', download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware. This tool is effective in getting rid of Trojans, viruses and malware.
1. After downloading, please install the program using the default settings.
2. At the end of the installation, please make sure that it will download necessary updates.
3. Once update has completed. The tool will launch.
4. Thoroughly scan the computer and remove all threats detected by this anti-malware program.
Procedure 4: Reset Affected Internet Browser
Reset browser settings of Google Chrome:
1. Open Google Chrome browser
2. Type this in the address bar chrome://settings/
3. Navigate at the end of the page and click on Show advanced settings
4. At the bottom of the page, click on Reset settings to remove all changes made by 'Search Assist'
Reset Internet Explorer Settings:
1. Open Internet Explorer software
2. Navigate to top menu and click Tools > Internet Options
3. On Internet Options window, select Advanced tab
4. In order to reverse modifications caused by 'Search Assist', click on Reset button to bring back Internet Explorer's settings to their default condition.
Reset Firefox to its default state:
1. Open Mozilla Firefox program
2. Navigate to top menu and Open Help Menu. Then, select on Troubleshooting Information
3. Click on Refresh Firefox button to erase the effect of 'Search Assist'
Procedure 5: Run Qualys Online Browser Check
Qualys Browser Check performs a security examination on your browser including installed plug-ins and add-ons. At the end of the scan, this tool will recommend on what to remove and give you steps to resolve any vulnerabilities found on the browser.
1. Open Internet browser application that is affected by 'Search Assist'.
2. Click Here to visit Qualys Browser Check web site.
3. Next, click on "Scan without installing lugin" link.
4. Click on Scan Now button to check and remove 'Search Assist' and any other malicious add-ons and extensions. You must read and accept "Service User Agreement" to continue.
5. After the scan, you will be presented with Browser Check Summary. Fix any issues and follow the recommendation on the result.
Protect your PC from 'Search Assist' or Similar Attack
Turn On Safe Browsing Features
Internet Explorer - Activate SmartScreen Filter
Internet Explorer versions 8 and 9 has this feature called SmartScreen Filter. It helps detect phishing web sites and protect you from downloading malicious files online. To turn on SmartScreen Filter, follow these steps:
1. Please open Internet Explorer.
2. On top menu, select Tools (IE 9). For IE 8, please look for Safety menu.
3. Select SmartScreen Filter from the drop-down list and click on Turn on SmartScreen Filter.
4. Please restart Internet Explorer.
Google Chrome's Enable Phishing and Malware Protection
With Google Chrome's Phishing and Malware Detection feature, you will have lesser risks browsing the web. It will display a warning when the site you are trying to visit is suspicious. To enable Phishing and Malware Protection, please do these steps:
1. Open Google Chrome.
2. Click on the Customize and control Google Chrome (3-Bars Icon) located on top right corner of the browser.
3. Select Settings from the drop-down list.
4. Once on the settings page, click on Show advanced settings... at the bottom of the page to see the rest of the Chrome setup.
5. Locate Privacy section and mark 'Enable phishing and malware protection'.
6. Please restart Google Chrome. New settings keep your browser safe while surfing the web.
Mozilla Firefox - Block Attack Sites and Web Forgeries
Phishing and Malware Protection is a built-in feature on Firefox version 3 or later. It warns you when a page you are trying to visit contains phishing content or an attack site designed to drop threats on the computer. To help you keep safe while browsing the Internet using Firefox, please follow this guide:
1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
2. On top menu, click on Open Menu. Then select Options from the list.
3. Select Security and put a check mark on the following items:
- Warn me when sites try to install add-ons
- Block reported attack sites
- Block reported web forgeries