How to Remove Search Engage

What Is Search Engage?

How to stop searchengage.com redirects

If your browser start page and default search were set to searchengage.com and you cannot change them, Search Engage browser hijacker got installed on your PC. It likely happened when you installed some video player or other free software from the web. Search Engage is distributed by bundling with such freeware: when you install the program, Search Engage is offered as an extra app and is installed by default if you don’t decline. Search Engage is notoriously hard to delete, as it changes the system’s group policies to become an “Enterprise Installed Extension”. If you’d like to uninstall Search Engage from Google Chrome, please read the instructions below.

Is Search Engage Safe?

Search Engage doesn’t seem to be dangerous, mostly just annoying as it forces you to go to searchengage.com; still, no legitimate program should display this kind of behavior and make itself so hard to delete. Another downside: Search Engage can uninstall your other extensions.

How to Remove Search Engage

The simplest method to uninstall Search Engage is to run an anti-malware program capable of detecting browser hijackers in general and Search Engage in particular. Norton Security is one of such tools; it finds and removes all files, folders and registry entries left by Search Engage.

Download Norton

Other software that may be able to get rid of Search Engage:

Spyhunter (Windows & macOS)

You can also try to remove Search Engage by hand using the following instructions.

Remove Search Engage From Browsers

To get rid of Search Engage, either reset browser settings or delete Search Engage from browsers and set new tab page and default search provider.

Before that, however, you’ll need to reset group policies on your PC that don’t allow you to delete or disable Search Engage. The quickest way to do this is to download and run Chrome Policy Remover. Now, launching script files from untrusted sources is not wise, so you can scan it first on virustotal.com to make sure it is not malicious. Then right-click on the downloaded file delete_chrome_policies and select Run as administrator.

Reset Google Chrome Settings:

Note: This will disable your extensions and themes, clear cookies and site data, as well as change content settings, start page, new tab page and search engine to default.

  1. Open a new tab.
  2. Copy and paste into the address bar: chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings
  3. Press Enter.
  4. In the dialog box click Reset.
Alternative Way to Get Rid of Searchengage.com in Google Chrome:
  1. Click menu button Menu button.
  2. Select More toolsExtensions.
  3. To remove an extension, click on a trashcan to the right of it.
  4. Click Remove in the dialog box.
  5. Right-click the address bar and select Edit search engines….
  6. Select the search provider you want and click Make default next to it.
  7. Click an x button next to hijacker search engine to remove it from the list.
  8. Click Done.
  9. Under On startup section select Open the New Tab page.
  10. Under Appearance section put checkmark into Show Home button checkbox.
  11. Click Change below.
  12. Clear the textfield of the existing address. Put the one you want or select Use the New Tab page.
  13. Click OK.

Reset Mozilla Firefox Settings:

Note: Your extensions and themes, among other things, will get deleted.

  1. Click on menu button Menu button.
  2. Click on help button Help button and select Troubleshooting Information.
  3. Click Refresh Firefox… in the top-right corner.
  4. In the dialog box click Refresh Firefox.
Alternative Way to Get Rid of Search Engage in Mozilla Firefox:
  1. Click on menu button Menu button and select Add-ons.
  2. Go to Extensions tab.
  3. To uninstall an add-on, click on Remove button next to it.
  4. Note: If the extension is impossible to delete, click on Menu button => Help button => Restart with Add-ons Disabled…. In dialog boxes click Restart => Start in Safe Mode. Repeat steps 1-3. Restart Firefox in normal mode after you are finished.

  5. Click on the search icon in the search bar and click Change Search Settings.
  6. Select search engine you want from the drop-down menu.
  7. Highlight the hijacker search engine in the table below and click Remove.
  8. Go to General tab.
  9. Under Startup section click Restore to Default button.

Reset Internet Explorer Settings:

Note: This will remove most of your saved browser data, including extensions, passwords and the majority of browser settings.

  1. Click Tools button Tools button in the top-right corner.
  2. Select Internet options.
  3. Go to Advanced tab.
  4. Click Reset… button.
  5. Put checkmark in Delete personal settings checkbox.
  6. Click Reset.
Alternative Way to Get Rid of Search Engage in Internet Explorer:
  1. Click Tools button Tools button in the top-right corner.
  2. Select Manage add-ons.
  3. In the drop-down menu under Show: select All add-ons.
  4. To delete an add-on, double-click it; in the new window click Remove.
  5. Go to Search Providers tab.
  6. Right-click the search engine you want and click Set as default.
  7. Right-click the hijacker search engine and click Remove.
  8. Click Close.
  9. Click Tools button Tools button.
  10. Select Internet options.
  11. Under Home page section click Use new tab or enter the URL you want.
  12. Click OK.

Reset Opera Settings:

Note: This will delete all saved data including bookmarks and passwords and return the browser to freshly installed state.

  1. Exit Opera browser.
  2. Open File Explorer.
  3. Go to C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Opera\Opera, where username is the name of your Windows account.
  4. Find and delete Operapref.ini file.
Alternative Way to Get Rid of Search Engage in Opera:
  1. Press Ctrl +Shift + E keys to open extensions manager.
  2. To remove an add-on, click on the x button next to it.
  3. Click OK when asked to confirm.
  4. Click on the top-left corner, select Settings.
  5. In the Search section select one of the search engines from the list.
  6. In the On startup section select Open the start page.
  7. Click OK.

Remove Searchengage.com URL From Browser Shortcuts

  1. Right-click Internet Explorer shortcut on Desktop.
  2. Select Properties.
  3. Target text field under Shortcut tab should only contain the path to .exe file, put in quotes (example: “C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe”). If there’s a URL after the closing quotation mark, delete the URL.
  4. Click OK.
  5. Repeat the steps with Internet Explorer shortcuts on the taskbar at the bottom of the screen (for this one you may have to right-click on the shortcut, then right-click on Internet Explorer and then click on Properties) and in Start Menu.
  6. Repeat the same with shortcuts of all other browsers.

Remove Search Engage From Programs and Features

If the previous steps didn’t help and Search Engage reappeared again shortly after, go to Programs and Features, uninstall suspicious programs, programs you don’t remember installing, or programs you installed just before Search Engage appeared on your computer. If you are not sure if a program is safe, look for the answer on the Internet.

Windows XP:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Settings => Control Panel.
  3. Find and click Add or Remove Programs.
  4. Hightlight the app.
  5. Click Remove.

Windows Vista:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Control Panel.
  3. Find and click Uninstall a program.
  4. Hightlight the app.
  5. Click Uninstall.

Windows 7:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Control Panel.
  3. Find and select Programs and Features or Uninstall a program.
  4. Hightlight the app.
  5. i>

  6. Click Uninstall.

Windows 8 / Windows 8.1:

  1. Press and hold Windows key Windows key and hit X key.
  2. Select Programs and Features from the menu.
  3. Hightlight the app.
  4. Click Uninstall.

Windows 10:

  1. Press and hold Windows key Windows key and hit X key.
  2. Select Programs and Features from the menu.
  3. Hightlight the app.
  4. Click Uninstall.

How to Protect Your PC From Search Engage and Other Browser Hijackers

  • Get a powerful anti-malware software, capable of detecting and eliminating PUPs. Having several on-demand scanners would be a good idea too.
  • Keep Windows firewall enabled or get a third-party one.
  • Keep your OS, browsers and security utilities updated. Malware creators find new browser and OS vulnerabilities to exploit all the time. Software writers, in turn, release patches and updates to get rid of the known vulnerabilities and lesser the chance of malware penetration. Antivirus program’s signature databases get updated every day and even more often to include new virus signatures.
  • Adjust your browsers’ settings to block pop-ups and to load plug-ins only when clicked.
  • Download and use Adblock, Adblock Plus, uBlock or one of the similar trustworthy extensions for blocking third-party advertisements on web-sites.
  • Don’t just click on any link you see while browsing the web. That applies particularly to links in comments, on forums, or in instant messengers. Pretty often these are spam links. Sometimes they are used for increasing the traffic to websites, but often enough they will land you on pages that will try to execute a malicious code and infect your computer. Links from your friends are suspect too: the person who shares a cute video might not know that the page contains threatening script.
  • Don’t download software from unverified web-sites. You can easily download a trojan (malware that pretends to be a useful application); or some unwanted programs could get installed along with the app.
  • When installing freeware or shareware, be sensible and don’t rush through the process. Choose Custom or Advanced installation mode, look for checkboxes that ask for your permission to install third-party apps and uncheck them, read End User Licence Agreement to make sure nothing else is going to get installed. You can make exceptions for the apps you know and trust, of course. If declining from installing unwanted programs is not possible, we advise you to cancel the installation completely.

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