FlexibleSearch: Complete Delete Process
FlexibleSearch is a potentially unwanted application (PUA) that can be categorized as both adware as well as browser hijacker. Once this nasty browser-based intruder successfully infiltrates the Mac computers, it starts running intrusive advertising campaigns and also alters settings of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Explorer or other browsers. It sets startup page, new tab URL and search engine to its own nasty domain. It also inserts various suspicious extensions, plug-ins, toolbars etc. on the browser to prevent the settings from being restored. The main motive of this adware is to redirect victims’ traffic to affiliated sites and generate quick online revenues.
FlexibleSearch Redirects To Suspicious Domains:
Similar to OperativeBitUnit, ExploreAnalog Adware and other Mac viruses, FlexibleSearch also seeks to gain monetary benefit by exploiting users’ browsing session quality. After getting infected with this PUP, victims’ browsers are contaminated with advertisements of multiple forms. These ads can even hide the background of genuine websites which makes the web surfing almost impossible. Additionally, these vicious ads could even redirect people to malware-laden, porn, gaming, gambling, hacked, or other dangerous pages. This can lead to multiple severe infections, sensitive data exposure and other hazardous issues.
FlexibleSearch hijack may seem harmless initially, as the front page is not cluttered with annoying ads. However, all the search results are redirected to legitimate engines like Google, Yahoo, or Bing. Still, the results might be not completely genuine. Users can notice ads and sponsored links everywhere, especially at the top of the page. Despite not being a dangerous computer infection like ransomware or trojan, its intrusive methods and multiple system changes may concern victims enough to call it a virus.
Another major functionality of FlexibleSearch is data tracking. This perilous hijacker injects several spying cookies on internet browsers and constantly monitors users’ online activities. It collects browsing-related information like entered search queries, IP addresses, geolocation, sites visited, data entered into them, pages viewed etc. These details are then sold to other parties for monetary purposes and are often utilized for the creation of personalized advertisements. In some cases, PUPs can also steal personal data such as passwords, credit card and banking info and expose it to cyber offenders. Your sensitive data can be then misused by the scammers for making fraudulent transactions or purchases that may result in huge financial loss. And hence, a quick FlexibleSearch removal is strongly required.
Penetration Of FlexibleSearch:
Typically, Mac viruses are distributed through deceptive ads that promote fake update alerts. These ads show messages asking to update the outdated Adobe Flash Player and also link to update the app. Nonetheless, as soon as the link is clicked, it leads to the download and installation of the malware onto the work-station. And thus, it is important to update any software using the tools/functions delivered by official providers only.
In addition to that, potentially unwanted programs are also spread through software bundling technique. It is added to a single installer together with regular software as ‘optional download’ tool and get installed without users’ notice when they choose Quick or Recommended installation settings. And hence, it is important to always select the Advanced or Custom options to install new software which allows you to opt-out the programs from the list that you don’t want to be installed. But at the moment, you must remove FlexibleSearch from the Mac as early as possible.
Perform System scan for malware or viruses on Mac [Automatic Method]
One of the best and easy methods to remove FlexibleSearch related malware from macOS devices is, to Perform System Scan for malware or viruses. This way, you can easily detect all types of malware or viruses in your computer and remove them permanently. In this case, you need to download and install some powerful antivirus software that offers this functionality. For example, ‘Combo Cleaner’ – powerful antimalware software is designed to perform various actions against threats, and helps to boost up the overall System performance.
“Combo Cleaner” is one of the best Third-Party security software that features adware or malware scanning, disk cleaner, smart scanning, external & internal hard drive scanning, duplicate files finder, privacy scanner, big files finder, App uninstaller, etc. This antimalware not only helps you to remove malware infections but also improves the System performance.
Combo Cleaner – antimalware software is user-friendly interface means there is no need technical knowledge to perform scan. It starts scanning your Mac device for malware or viruses by clicking ‘Start Scan Now’ button, and detects all malware infections in your device in very quick time. You will see the list the threats detected by this security tool, once scan is completed. Finally, you can remove them by clicking “Remove All Threats” button. Let’s take a look at features of ‘Combo Cleaner’.
Main Features of ‘Combo Cleaner’ – antivirus software
Disk Cleaner: ‘Combo Cleaner’ security software identifies all the unnecessary apps caches, downloads, app logs, and also offers you to emptying the ‘Trash’ folder with just one click. It evaluates the contents of your hard drives and recommends on the amount of memory that is safe to delete.
Duplicate Files Finder: This security software features ‘Duplicate Files Finder’ that helps you to find identical copies or similar matches of same file particularly relevant images, audios and videos files which are often download repeatedly.
Big files Finder: ‘Combo Cleaner’ – powerful security software also offers ‘Big Files Finder’ option. This way, you can easily find the files in your local and external storage device that take up must disk scarce and may no longer on your macOS. By default, this tool looks for files larger than 100MB means all files larger than this size will be shown in front of you. However, you are also allowed to customize this parameter by indicating a smaller value.
Antivirus: This is one of the fundamental components of ‘Combo Cleaner’ that is required to detect and remove malware infections. This feature allows you to scan your Mac computer for malware or viruses. After scanning process is completed, you will see the list of malware or threats detected by this tool. Note that this security software is capable of detecting all types of malware including adware, browser hijackers, PUAs and PUPs, Trojan horse virus, worms or others.
Privacy Cleaner: ‘Combo Cleaner’ also features ‘Privacy Scanner’ or ‘Privacy Cleaner’ focuses on analyzing the installed web browsers and email clients for ‘BreadCrumbs’ that may steal or disclose your personal data, and thus pose risk to your identity. This security software protects your System against sneaky threats, protects your personal data as well as improves your browsing experience by removing junks from your browsers.
How to download and install ‘Combo Cleaner’ – antimalware software?
Step 1: At first, you need to visit ‘Combo Cleaner Official website’ and download the ‘Combo Cleaner’ antimalware. Or you can also download ‘Combo Cleaner’ security software by clicking ‘Download’ button below, and save the ‘setup file’ in your computer hard disk.
Step 2: Now, locate the “Setup file” or “Installer file” in your computer and drag it to “Applications” folder, and follow on-screen instructions to finish the installation.
Scan the PC for malware or viruses using ‘Combo Cleaner’
Step 1: Open ‘Combo Cleaner’ – security software
Step 2: Click on “Antivirus” tab in left pane
Step 3: Click on “Start Scan Now” button to start the scan for malware
Step 4: This will show the scan results on screen. If it shows “No Threats Found”, this means you can continue with this ‘Malware removal guide’ further. If it shows the list of threats detected by this security software, then click “Remove All Threats” button to remove them.
Remove FlexibleSearch and related malware from macOS [Manual Method]
The above methods are all about automatic method of malware removal which offers you to delete FlexibleSearch and related infections from your Mac computer with just few clicks. However, if don’t want to remove malware automatically, then you can try manual methods. This method will help you to detect malware or viruses in your device yourself and then remove them manually. You will be able to find problematic programs or files stored in your computer that are causing System problems.
“Manual Method of malware removal” requires a lot of technical knowledge to implements the necessary steps. It is time consuming and lengthy process so you can try ‘Automatic Method of Malware removal’, which will allow you to remove all threats with just one click. Anyway, if you want to try manual method, then you can read & follow our instructions below. Let’s go for solution.
Remove FlexibleSearch and related processes from ‘Activity Monitor’
Step 1: At first, you need to close the app and then root it out from the System process. Open ‘LaunchPad’ in your Mac
Step 2: Type “Activity Monitor” in search box and open “Activity Monitor”
Step 3: Locate the problematic app in the ‘Processes’
Step 4: Use “Cross” or “X” to ‘Quit’ the process
Uninstall FlexibleSearch and similar applications from ‘Applications’ folder
Step 1: Click on “Finder” icon in your Mac and select “Applications” to open “Applications” folder
Step 2: In the opened “Applications” folder, locate FlexibleSearch and related applications in the list
Step 3: Select them one-by-one and drag all malicious one to “Trash” folder
Eliminate FlexibleSearch from ‘LaunchAgents’, ‘Application Support’, ‘LaunchDaemons’ folder
Step 1: Click on “Finder” icon and select “Go > Go to Folder”. Or you can press “COMMAND + SHIFT + G” keys together from keyboard to open “Go To Folder”
Step 2: Navigate to following folder by typing them one-by-one in ‘Go To Folder’, and then hit “Go” button
/Library /Application Support
Step 3: Find malicious files or folders related to FlexibleSearch in the list
Step 4: Select the malicious one and drag it to “Trash” folder
How to remove FlexibleSearch related extensions, add-ons or plug-ins from web browsers?
Uninstall all malicious extensions from ‘Safari’ browser
Step 1: Open “Safari’ browser and click on “Safari Menu” or “Gear icon”
Step 2: Select “Preferences > Extensions”
Step 3: Looks for malicious extensions, add-ons or plug-ins in the list
Step 4: Select the malicious one and then click “Uninstall” button to remove
Remove all extensions related to FlexibleSearch from ‘Mozilla Firefox’
Step 1: Open “Mozilla Firefox” browser and click on “Firefox menu” or “Gear icon”
Step 2: Select “Add-ons > Extensions”
Step 3: Locate malicious extensions in the list
Step 4: Select the malicious one and click on “Remove” button to remove them.
Uninstall all plug-ins or extensions from ‘Google Chrome’
Step 1: Open “Google Chrome” browser and click on “Chrome Menu” or “Gear icon”
Step 2: Select “More Tools > Extensions”
Step 3: Find the malicious extensions or plug-ins in the list
Step 4: Select the malicious one and click on “Remove” button
Step 1: Open “Safari” browser and click on “Safari Menu”
Step 2: Select “Preferences > Security”
How to remove Pop-up ads on Mac?
Block pop-up ads in ‘Safari’
Step 1: Open “Safari” browser and click on “Safari Menu”
Step 2: Select “Preferences > Security”
Step 3: Tick the “Block pop-up Windows”
Block pop-up ads in ‘Google Chrome’
Step 1: Open “Google Chrome” browser and click on “Chrome Menu”
Step 2: Select “Settings > Privacy and Security”
Step 3: Go to “Site Settings > Pop-ups and redirects”
Step 4: Locate the popups tab and block them from appearing
How to remove Mac Malware from your login Items?
Most malware or viruses tries to sneak inside the boot-up process. So, you can delete Mac Malware from your login items.
Step 1: Go to “Apple Menu” and select “System Preferences > Users & Groups”
Step 2: Make sure if your username is highlighted
Step 3: Now, open ‘login Items’ tab
Step 4: Disable all malicious apps like “Mac Defenders” by using ‘Minus’ or “-” sign.
Step 5: After that, restart your Mac to see the changes.
What if all else fails?
All the methods mentioned above including ‘Manual method’ and “Automatic method” of malware removal is enough to remove FlexibleSearch related infections from Mac completely. However, these steps didn’t helped to remove infections, and then you can try other possible solution i.e., perform factory reset macOS operation to not only remove malware, fix bugs but also improves overall performance.
Note that “Restore your Mac” or “Factory reset Mac” will erase your all personal files, apps, settings and other data, and install clean macOS in your device. So before performing this operation, you should make sure that you have strong backup of these data on some safe external storage or on cloud storage. If yes, then you can try resetting operation.
But “Factory reset macOS” operation requires a lot of technical knowledge to implement. In this case, you will need to install macOS in your device by contacting technical experts or Apple Support Team. However, you will have to purchase fresh macOS from Apple Support Official sources, if you don’t have the installation software. So you can try one of the best options to remove malware infections is, to ‘perform System scan for malware or viruses’ with powerful antivirus software like ‘Combo Cleaner’.
How to prevent Mac from malware or viruses attacks?
• Create backup or keep backup of your all personal files on some safe external storage or on cloud storage
• Keep up-to-date all software installed in your computer including Operating System, antivirus software and other legitimate software.
• Avoid visiting untrustworthy websites and stop clicking any hyperlinks, ads or popups appeared on such shady websites
• Avoid opening attachments or hyperlinks presented in spam or irrelevant emails
• Never share your personal details including login credentials of any accounts to unauthorized persons or sources