How to Remove DirectSportSearch

Eliminating browser hijacker caller DirectSportSearch is the sole purpose for publishing this article. For this reason, the page includes sections for Removal Guide for PC, Mac Removal Steps, and ways to Clean the browser settings.

DirectSportSearch is a browser hijacker or also classed as potentially unwanted program (PUP) that is mysteriously installed on the computer after downloading free software from dubious website. Once installed, DirectSportSearch modifies the web browser settings and replaces the existing home page, new tab page, and search engine. Consequently, DirectSportSearch will try hard to display ads on the browser as many as possible. Ads will appear in different forms such as pop-up ads, banners, promotional surveys, or coupons.

DirectSportSearch gets dangerous when the web user clicks on the advertisements it offers. Ads from DirectSportSearch are usually introducing links of questionable sites, unwanted programs, or fake software updates and downloads. Apart from that, clicking ads can possibly redirect the web user into compromised sites that may pose more risks and infections. Because of these reasons, it is not recommended to click any ads when the browser is infected with DirectSportSearch. Such action can result in computer infections that can lead to installation of similar browser threats like ProSearchStreams, SportSearchly, and DigitalIncognitoSearch.

Screenshot of DirectSportSearch

Effects of DirectSportSearch

Moreover, the malicious operations on the browser can cause to diminish the web user’s browsing experience. When search the web, the hijacked browser cannot be able to generate precise results. Instead, it will present the web user into unreliable sources providing irrelevant search outcome. The main point is, DirectSportSearch will never bring any advantage to the web user. The presence of DirectSportSearch on the computer can only bring risks and issues. In order to prevent further implications from this adware, web user must remove it permanently.

As mentioned earlier, DirectSportSearch comes installed along with freeware. Therefore, web user should be cautious about choosing programs to download. Make sure that the program is not incorporating any malicious software like DirectSportSearch. Web user should check closely while downloading and installing software. In addition, there is Custom or Advanced options that can be chosen to filter out unwanted programs during the installation process.

DirectSportSearch Removal Procedure for PC

Below is a systematic instruction that is very useful in getting rid of the potentially unwanted program (PUP) from compromised Windows computer. Aside from removing the malicious browser extension, this guide is also helpful in deleting internet hijacker and pop-ups.

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

Step 1 : Delete DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch.

Remove DirectSportSearch Extension from Google Chrome

1. Open Google Chrome browser.

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

Chrome URL

3. Find DirectSportSearch or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome browser.

Uninstall DirectSportSearch Extension from Mozilla Firefox

1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.

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

Firefox URL

3. Choose Extensions on sidebar menu.

4. Look for object that is pertaining to DirectSportSearch and remove it from the browser.

After deleting the malicious browser extension, it is expected that the hijacker is also gone from the homepage.

Remove DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch from Toolbars and Extension. Additionally, delete unwanted URL from Search Providers section.

4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.

If DirectSportSearch is still present on the IE browser and there are still hijacker, redirects, and pop-ups, 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 Malware

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

Step 2 : Scan the computer with Sophos Antivirus

1. Download Sophos Virus Removal Tool from the link below. Save the file on your computer where you can easily access it.

2. Once the download completes, browse the location of the file. Double-click to run the program and begin the install process.

Screnshot of Sophos Installer

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. If Windows prompts for User Account Control, please click Yes to proceed.

Screenshot of Sophos EULA Page

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 DirectSportSearch.

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 DirectSportSearch and other suspicious entities. Be sure to remove all identified threats.

Screenshot of Sophos Virus Scan

The above procedures should have totally eliminated the DirectSportSearch browser hijacker. However, if you found that there are still remnants of the threat, please proceed to manual removal of associated objects as outlined below.

Step 3 : 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 DirectSportSearch on the browser that was not deleted during the preceding steps. This tool will scan the computer and check for presence of malicious applications as well as invalid browser entries that produces hijacking, redirects, and pop-ups.

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 DirectSportSearch.

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 DirectSportSearch. It will also check for suspicious entries on browser settings that is associated with the hijacker.

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.

In addition to the procedures above, resetting the affected browser program and clearing the cache are extra methods to completely eliminate DirectSportSearch. You can execute the guide on resetting internet browser below.

Procedures to Remove DirectSportSearch from Mac

This section contains comprehensive guide for Mac users. It will help you remove the subject malicious browser extension from internet software. In the same manner, the procedure is helpful in stopping redirects, pop-ups, and browser hijacking activities.

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 extension like DirectSportSearch that is responsible for displaying unknown homepage and pop-ups. 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.

Install Combo Cleaner

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

5. Wait until antivirus downloads its latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing DirectSportSearch.

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. The following guides are also vital in deleting malicious items from the browser configuration.

Step 1 : Delete DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch or any unwanted program.

Delete Unwanted App

4. Drag DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch

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 DirectSportSearch or any relevant item, 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 DirectSportSearch

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:

- Direct Sport Search

On some occassions, the malware is represented by a domain name that is closely related to the subject. Like in this case, it can be DirectSportSearch with associated .com, .net, .org, and so on .

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing DirectSportSearch 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 and open Activity Monitor (Under Utilities or Other Folder).

2. Select the process you want to quit.

Force Quit Apps

3. Click on Force Quit button.

4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to DirectSportSearch browser extension or 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 the DirectSportSearch malware and browser hijacker and pop-up provider.

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.

MBAM for Mac

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

Step 5 : Delete DirectSportSearch Login Items

Some browser hijacker may also install login item into compromised account under System Preferences. This object automatically runs DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch.

5. Click on Login Items tab.

6. Select DirectSportSearch, , 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 DirectSportSearch. 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 , DirectSportSearch 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 DirectSportSearch.

There's More... Reset Internet Browser Apps (PC and Mac)

Cleaning your internet browser from clutter and unwanted add-on/extension is a must when dealing with DirectSportSearch. The procedure below discuss on resetting various browsers to its default state.

Restore Google Chrome to Default Settings

Resetting Google Chrome to default settings is helpful in deleting hard-to-remove extension such as from DirectSportSearch. This method is highly advisable to perform if you have difficulty in removing unwanted extension.

1. Open Google Chrome Internet browser.
2. On the address bar, type chrome://settings/reset and press Enter key.
3. Under Reset and clean up section, choose Restore settings to their original defaults.
4. Click Reset settings button to clear all entries of DirectSportSearch.
5. Close the existing tab and restart Google Chrome. That should have removed DirectSportSearch extension and associated objects.

Reset Mozilla Firefox to Default

This section describes how to remove unwanted extension from Firefox that may be related to DirectSportSearch. This process can fix many browser issues by restoring Firefox to factory settings without affecting your essential information (bookmarks, browsing history, passwords, and Internet cookies) on the browser. If you desire to remove only specific extension, please see manual removal of add-on from Firefox.

1. Input the string about:support on Firefox web address and press Enter on keyboard.
2. You will now see the Troubleshooting Information page of Mozilla Firefox.
3. You will notice a section on upper-right corner of the screen stating Give Firefox a tune up. Click the Refresh Firefox button.
4. If confirmation window appears, click Refresh Firefox to continue.
5. Firefox browser will close and start the resetting process. When done, it will display a list of restored data. DirectSportSearch should be gone by now. Click Finish to open a fresh version of Firefox.

Restore Internet Explorer to Default Settings

1. Open Internet Explorer and navigate to top menu. Click Tools, and then Internet Options.
2. Select Advanced tab on Internet Options window.
3. On lower part of the window, under Reset Internet Explorer Settings area, click the Reset button. Please see image for reference. Your data like favorites, bookmark, and history will remain in the browser. However, this process may delete add-ons by DirectSportSearch and other unknown objects. If you prefer to carry out the procedure manually, please add-on removal from Internet Explorer.

Clear the Safari Internet Browser (Mac)

1. Open your Safari browser application.
2. In the Safari menu, click on Preferences from the drop-down list.
3. On Preferences window, please select the Privacy tab.
4. Click on Manage Website Data button.
5. Select unwanted entry like DirectSportSearch and click the Remove button. If you choose to Remove All, you may be logout from most visited websites and online services. Therefore, we advise to remove suspicious item one at a time to prevent changing behavior towards your favorite websites.
6. If it prompts, please confirm your actions.

7. Next, we will need to clear the Cache. Back at the Safari Preferences window, choose Advanced tab.
8. Navigate to the bottom and activate Show Develop menu in menu bar.
9. Go to Safari menu, choose on Develop from the drop down list and click on on Empty Caches.
10. Next thing to do is to restore the Homepage to your preference and remove the one from DirectSportSearch.
11. Back at the Safari Preferences window, click on General tab.
12. Under Homepage section, type your desired URL to be the default start-up page.
13. Lastly, make sure to have the right Search Engine.
14. Go back to Safari Preferences window and click on Search tab.
15. Select your desired Search tool under the Search engine section.
16. You may not restart Safari browser.

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