Browser programs exhibiting annoying advertisements and unstoppable pop-up ads possibly indicate that there is something wrong on the computer. It might be because of the unwanted program that hijacks the browser. One example of browser hijacker is called Search Streams. The presence of this adware on the computer makes it impossible for online users to browse the internet normally. Search Streams extremely affects online search and browser operations in general.
Search Streams browser hijacker is a potentially unwanted program (PUP) that can install itself on the computers. It is installed as browser extension even without user’s permission. Search Streams is usually included on certain software bundles that users may downloaded from unsafe websites. Freeware constitutes unwanted programs like Search Streams. Installation of certain free program can bring the hijacker on the process. The installers will load Search Streams while disregarding user’s authority. Because of this intrusive method, some people deemed Search Streams as computer virus.
Browsers like Google Chrome, Firefox, or Safari are the main target of Search Streams after its successful penetration. It initiates changes on browser settings. Modifications affects the home page, new tab page, and default search engine. The adware will designate Portal.searchstreams.com as the new setting instead of the usual browser setup. The alterations take place without online user’s approval. The tricky part is that the changes are not easy to overturn. Search Streams sets the security settings in order to prevent online users from reversing back to the common preference. Computer professionals highly suggest that it is much better to focus on removing the browser hijacker causing the problems than to waste time reverting manually.
Search Streams can cause the browser to exhibit advertisements in varied formats apart from transforming the settings. It might be in the form of pop-ups ads, surveys, campaign banners, or discount coupons. Pressing such adverts can cause injections of unwanted program or malware on the computer. Some ads contain code to install malicious software once clicked. Browser hijackers like Search Streams can make the computer vulnerable to malware attacks.
Search Streams Removal Procedure
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.
Stage 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 Search Streams.
Remove Search Streams Extension from Google Chrome
1. Open Google Chrome browser.
2. Type chrome://extensions/ in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.
3. Find Search Streams or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome.
Uninstall Search Streams Extension from Firefox
1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
2. Type about:addons in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.
3. Choose Extensions on sidebar menu.
4. Look for object that is pertaining to Search Streams and remove it from the browser.
Remove Search Streams Add-ons from Internet Explorer
1. Open Internet Explorer program.
2. Go to top Menu and click Tools. Then, select Manage Add-ons from the drop-down list.
3. Look for and Remove or Disable entries of Search Streams from Toolbars and Extension and Search Providers section.
4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.
If Search Streams 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.
7. Select Search Streams or recently installed unwanted entry. Then, click on Uninstall to remove it from Windows system.
Stage 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 Search Streams 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.
Click here to download AdwCleaner (this will open a new window)
2. When the download has completed, please close all running programs on the computer especially browsers affected by Search Streams.
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.
4. AdwCleaner searches the computer for malicious programs, extensions, plug-ins, adware, and any items that may be associated to Search Streams.
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.
Stage 3: Scan the Computer with Sophos Virus Removal Tool
Lastly, we will scan the computer with a multi-function security program. This will inspect the computer for possible presence of virus, malware, rootkit, adware as well as unwanted homepage like Search Streams.
1. Download Sophos Virus Removal Tool from the link below. Save the file on your computer where you can easily access it.
Sophos Virus Removal Tool Download Link (this will open a new window)
2. Once the download completes, browse the location of the file. Double-click to run the program and begin the install process. If Windows prompts for User Account Control, please click Yes to proceed.
3. On first windows of installation wizard, click Next to continue. Then, it will display the program’s License Agreement. You need to Accept the terms in order to proceed.
4. On succeeding windows, click Next or Continue to carry on with the installation. After completing the installation process, Launch Sophos Virus Removal Tool.
5. Internet connection is required when running this scanner in order to download important updates. Make sure that everything is up-to-date to effectively remove malicious program like Search Streams.
6. Click the button to carry out the Scan. This will check the system for presence of malicious objects, malware, and viruses. The tool reveals items that were found linked to Search Streams and other suspicious entities. Be sure to remove all identified threats.
Option: Alternative Method to Clean Up Internet Browser from Search Streams
Not all adware and PUP’s are the same. Some cannot be removed by deleting relevant extensions and codes. On this instances, resetting the browser to default configuration is the only best solution. If Search Streams is still bothering you after completing all the steps above, please execute the procedures below to reset the settings of affected browser program.
Use Chrome Clean Up Tool to Delete Search Streams
1. Open Google Chrome application.
2. Type this strings in the address box: chrome://settings/ and then, press Enter on keyboard.
3. Scroll down and expand Advanced settings area.
4. Scroll to the bottom of the page until you see Reset and Cleanup section.
5. Click on Clean Up Computer. On next page, please click FIND to proceed.
This feature of Google Chrome aims to find harmful software and remove it instantly. If unable to delete Search Streams, the other option is to Reset Google Chrome settings to its original defaults. Just go back to previous page (Clean Up Computer) and reset the settings. See more details on this page.
Reset Mozilla Firefox to Default
If Mozilla Firefox is affected by Search Streams and procedures above were not helpful, we suggest that you carry out these steps. This process can fix the issue by restoring Firefox browser to default factory state. Most browser data will be affected but not bookmarks, browsing history, passwords, and internet cookies. Extensions and other installed plug-ins maybe deleted by this function. Therefore, if you wish to remove specific extension only, please see manual add-on removal from this link.
1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and type the following in the address bar: about:support
2. Browser will be directed to a page of Troubleshooting Information. You will notice a section on upper-right corner of the screen stating ‘Give Firefox a Tune Up‘. Click the Refresh Firefox button.
3. Confirmation window will pop-up, click Refresh Firefox to continue.
4. The reset process will automatically close the browser and proceed with the restoration. Next, it will display a list of restored data. Search Streams should be gone by now. Click Finish to close the current window and open a fresh window of Mozilla Firefox.
Reset Safari Browser to Normal Settings
1. Open Safari browser.
2. Click on the Safari Settings icon located on upper right corner of the browser window.
3. Select Reset Safari from the drop-down list.
4. Pop-up window will appear. You may select all boxes for total reset or follow the options below if you only want to remove Search Streams from Safari browser.
5. Please restart Safari browser for changes to take effect.