How to remove Belle-Search

Belle-Search is a type of adware that is capable of executing unwanted changes to internet browser settings. First on its objective is to appoint Belle-search.com as the new default for homepage and search provider. Its entry on the computer and internet browser program is often without the consent of computer users and because of this invasive trait, Belle-Search is listed under the category of potentially unwanted application (PUA).

How Belle-Search Spreads?

It is worth to mention that Belle-Search is part of a browser hijacker family where Aura SearchBeam Search, and Bouncesearch also belongs. This recent threat has assumed the same spread techniques where the installer file is embedded to various freeware and shareware. There are also cases that computer users can accidentally acquire Belle-Search through aggressive pop-up advertisements that prompt for the immediate download of software update. This pop-up message pretends to be a system warning, which detects obsolete version of a program. To avoid any issues and conflicts on the computer, it suggests downloading and installing the software update that is actually Belle-Search installer file.

Whatever the source is, the effect of Belle-Search towards the target browser application can be moderate to severe. It aims to carry out unnecessary changes to prominent internet software including Google Chrome, Safari, or Mozilla Firefox.

Belle-Search

Belle-Search Adware Risks Factors

The modifications made on internet browser application are not only to push for the utilization of Belle-search.com as the new search engine. Code injected on browser program also meant to generate online revenue by displaying different kinds of advertisements including banners, pop-ups, and push notifications. Another source of profit that Belle-Search authors are eyeing is traffic referral scheme. For this reason, web user may encounter aggressive browser redirects that deliberately land the browser pages to unwanted websites.

The mentioned hostile actions by Belle-Search could be catastrophic to computer system especially if browser program is diverted to online pages that employ drive-by-download techniques, which automates the downloading and installation of malware to visitor’s computer. As such, it is important to remove Belle-Search as soon as it was spotted on the browser. Complete guide to get rid of the threat is outlined on the next section together with free malware and virus removal utility applications.

Procedures to Remove Belle-Search from Mac

This section contains comprehensive guide for Mac users. It will help you remove malicious browser hijacker from internet application.

Procedures on this page are written in a manner that can be easily understand and execute by Mac users.

Quick Fix - Scan the System with Combo Cleaner

Combo Cleaner is a trusted Mac utility application with complete antivirus and optimization features. It is useful in dealing with adware, malware, and PUP's. Moreover, it can get rid of malicious browser hijacker like Belle-Search. You may need to purchase full version if you require to maximize its premium features.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

2. Double-click the downloaded file and proceed with the installation.

3. In the opened window, drag and drop the Combo Cleaner icon onto your Applications folder icon.

4. Open your Launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon.

5. Wait until antivirus downloads it's latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing Belle-Search.

Combo Cleaner Scanner

6. Free features of Combo Cleaner include Disk Cleaner, Big Files finder, Duplicate files finder, and Uninstaller. To use antivirus and privacy scanner, users have to upgrade to a premium version.

Proceed with the rest of the removal steps if you are comfortable in manually removing malicious objects associated with the threat.

Step 1 : Delete Belle-Search from Mac Applications

1. Go to Finder.

2. On the menu, click Go and then, select Applications from the list to open Applications Folder.

3. Find Belle-Search or any unwanted program.

Delete Unwanted App

4. Drag Belle-Search to Trash Bin to delete the application from Mac.

5. Right-click on Trash icon and click on Empty Trash.

Step 2 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to Belle-Search

1. Locate the add-on or extension that is relevant to the hijacker. To do this, please follow the following depending on affected browser.

Safari - Choose Preferences from the Safari menu, then click the Extensions icon. This will open a window showing all installed extensions.

Chrome - Select Preferences from the Chrome menu, and then click the Extensions link found on the left pane.

Firefox - Choose Add-ons from the Menu. Look at both the Extensions and Plug-ins lists when it opens a new window.

2. Once you have located Belle-Search or any suspicious items, click on Remove or Uninstall, to get rid of it.

3. Close the browser and proceed to the next steps.

Step 3 : Delete Malicious Files that have installed Belle-Search

1. Select and copy the string below to your Clipboard by pressing Command + C on your keyboard.

~/Library/LaunchAgents

2. Go to your Finder. From the menu bar please select Go > Go to Folder...

3. Press Command + V on your keyboard to paste the copied string. Press Return to go to the said folder.

Command + V

4. You will now see a folder named LaunchAgents. Take note of the following files inside the folder:

  • unknown.download.plist
  • unknown.ltvbit.plist
  • unknown.update.plist
  • com.unknown

The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. It is normally an unfamiliar file name such as the following:

- Belle-Search.com, Browse-now, Cbsearch

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing Belle-Search to be present on your Mac. Arranging all items to see the most latest ones may also help you identify recently installed unfamiliar files. Please press Option + Command + 4 on your keyboard to arrange the application list in chronological order.

Option + Command + 4

Important: Take note of all the suspicious files as you may also delete the same item on another folder as we go on.

5. Drag all suspicious files that you may find to Trash.

6. Please restart the computer.

7. Open another folder using the same method as above. Copy and Paste the following string to easily locate the folder.

~/Library/Application Support

8. Look for any suspicious items that are similar to the ones in Step 4. Drag them to the Trash.

9. Repeat the process on the following non-hidden folders (without ~):

/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons
/Library/Application Support
/Library/Preferences

Optional : For locked files that cannot be removed, do the following:

1. Go to Launchpad, Utilities folder, open Activity Monitor.

2. Select the process you want to quit.

Force Quit Locked Files

3. Click on Force Quit button.

4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to Belle-Search homepage hijacker.

Step 4 : Double-check with MBAM Tool for Mac

1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac from the link below.

2. Run Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac. It will check for updates and download if most recent version is available. This is necessary in finding recent malware threats including Belle-Search.

3. If it prompts to close all running web browser, please do so. Thus, we advise you to PRINT this guide for your reference before going offline.

4. Once it opens the user interface, please click on Scan button to start scanning your Mac computer.

Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac

5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, Belle-Search is surely part of it. Be sure to select all items in the list. Then, click Remove button to clean the computer.

Step 5 : Remove Belle-Search from Homepage and Search

Safari

- Open your Safari browser.
- Go to Safari Menu located on upper left hand corner, and then select Preferences.
- Under General tab, navigate to Default Search Engine section and select Google or any valid search engine.
- Next, be sure that "New Windows Open With" field is set to Homepage.
- Lastly, remove Belle-Search from the Homepage field. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.

Google Chrome

- Open Chrome browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and press Enter on keyboard : chrome://settings/
- Look for 'On Startup' area.
- Select 'Open a specific page or set of pages'.
- Click on More Actions and select Edit.
- Enter the desired web address as your home page, replacing Belle-Search. Click Save.
- To set default search engine, go to Search Engine area.
- Click on 'Manage search engines...' button.
- Go to questionable Search Engine. Click on More Actions and Click 'Remove from list'.
- Go back to Search Engine area and choose valid entry from Search engine used in the address bar.

Mozilla Firefox

- Run Mozilla Firefox browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and hit Enter on keyboard : about:preferences
- On Startup area, select 'Show your home page' under 'When Firefox starts' field.
- Under Home Page field, type the desired URL to replace Belle-Search settings.
- To configure default search engine, select Search on left sidebar to display settings.
- Under Default Search Engine list, please select one.
- On the same page, you have an option to Remove unwanted search engine.

Step 6 : Delete Belle-Search Login Items

Some browser hijacker may also install login item into compromised account under System Preferences. This object automatically runs Belle-Search during user log in.

1. Go to Apple menu and choose System Preferences.

2. Select Users & Groups from the preferences window.

3. You may need to Unlock this area in order to make changes. Click on the Lock icon on lower left corner of the window.

4. Next, select user account that runs Belle-Search.

5. Click on Login Items tab.

6. Select Belle-Search or any suspicious entries from the list and click on the minus [-] button and confirm your actions. Please see image below for reference.

Login Items

Optional : If unable to change browser settings, execute these steps:

Some user complains that there is no way to change browser settings because it is grayed out by Belle-Search. In such situation, it is important to check if there is unwanted profile. Please do the following:

1. Quit any running applications and launch System Preferences from your Dock.

2. Under System Preferences, click Profiles.

3. Select , Belle-Search or any relevant profile from the left pane. See image below.

Remove Profile

4. At the bottom of this window, click minus [-] button to delete the account. Please refer to image above.

5. Close the Profiles window and open the affected browser to change all settings associated with Belle-Search.

Belle-Search Removal Procedure for PC

Below is a systematic instruction that is very useful in getting rid of the potentially unwanted program (PUP) from compromised computer.

In order to totally eliminate the threat, it is vital to follow the process in exact manner.

Quick Fix - Scan the computer with Anti-malware Program

To remove Belle-Search automatically, scanning the computer with this powerful anti-malware tool is recommended. This scanner does not just uncover known threats like viruses or malware, it is also effective in discovering browser hijacker like Belle-Search that slows down online browsing activities.

1. Download the free anti-malware scanner called MalwareBytes Anti-Malware.

2. After downloading, install the program. It may run automatically or you have to double-click on the downloaded file MBSetup.exe.

3. Proceed with the installation using only the default setup. If you need the complete setup procedure, it is available on the download page.

4. After the installation process, click Get Started to run the program.

5. Continue with the prompts until the main program opens.

6. On Malwarebytes Anti-malware console, click on Scan to run the most comprehensive detection method and find any hidden items linked to Belle-Search.

7. Wait for the anti-malware to finish scanning the computer.

MBAM Scan

8. When scanning is done, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware will display the list of identified threats. Remove all identified threats including Belle-Search and restart the computer to finalized the scan process.

The above procedures should have totally eliminated the browser hijacker. However, if you still find that there are still remnants of Belle-Search on internet application, please proceed to manual removal of associated objects as outlined below.

Step 1 : Delete Browser Extension

Most adware and unwanted programs are using a program called browser extension to be able to take over the settings of internet applications. Therefore, we highly recommend to check and remove the extension that is closely related to Belle-Search.

Remove Belle-Search Extension from Google Chrome

1. Open Google Chrome browser.

2. Type chrome://extensions/ in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.

Chrome Extensions

3. Find Belle-Search or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome.

Uninstall Belle-Search Extension from Firefox

1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.

2. Type about:addons in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.

Firefox Extensions

3. Choose Extensions on sidebar menu.

4. Look for object that is pertaining to Belle-Search and remove it from the browser.

Remove Belle-Search Add-ons from Internet Explorer and Edge Browser

1. Open Internet Explorer program.

2. Go to top Menu and click Tools. Then, select Manage Add-ons from the drop-down list.

Internet Explorer Add-ons

3. Look for and Remove or Disable entries of Belle-Search from Toolbars and Extension and Search Providers section.

4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.

If Belle-Search is still present on the IE browser, another option is to remove the adware from Windows Control Panel.

5. Press Windows Key + R and then, type appwiz.cpl command.

6. Program and Features window will open. Arrange the list in chronological manner with recently installed applications on top. To do this, click on 'Installed On' column.

Add-Remove Adware

7. Select Belle-Search or recently installed unwanted entry. Then, click on Uninstall to remove it from Windows system.

Step 2 : Scan and Delete Adware with AdwCleaner

In addition to the procedure, we suggest scanning the computer with AdwCleaner tool. Possibly, there are some traces of Belle-Search on the browser that was not deleted during the preceding steps. This tool will scan the computer and check for presence of malicious applications.

1. Follow the link below to download the tool called AdwCleaner.

2. When the download has completed, please close all running programs on the computer especially browsers affected by Belle-Search.

3. Browse the location of the downloaded file and double-click on adwcleaner_Ver.exe to start running the tool. Then, click on Scan button.

AdwCleaner

4. AdwCleaner searches the computer for malicious programs, extensions, plug-ins, adware, and any items that may be associated to Belle-Search.

5. Clean or Remove all suspicious and harmful items identified after the thorough scan.

6. After the cleanup procedure, rebooting the computer is required to finalize the removal of detected threats.

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