There seems to be no ending for browser hijacker makers from producing their craft and as the attack is prevalent, it appears that even Mac users are starting to realize that their system is not safe anymore from this cyber crime. The fact that browser hijackers for Mac are filing up in recent years, it is likely that attackers are eyeing a potential expansion for this community. Make no mistake that the adware My Watch List is for Mac system only, it also targets PC users as well.
Newest addition to this group of homepage-altering threat is Search.hmywatchlist.org. It is obvious that the design bears the pattern of previously circulated web surfing application nuisance like Searchfdampro.com and Searchdmp1.com. The disturbance is not confined within the modifications of user’s preferences on homepage and search settings, but it is able to flood the browser with impulsive advertisements forming on web pages as pop-ups, banners, or paid links.
In reserve of these disorders, user’s private data is critically defenseless from the corrupt internet cookies aggressively operating behind the harmless-looking search provider. Search.hmywatchlist.org and generally all threats in this category never disclose this data recording exercise on concerns of possible rejection if users recognize that information are collected from the browser.
Although Search.hmywatchlist.org is harmless and emerges as some kind of search tool, this does not legalize its sneaky entry onto Mac and PC computers while utilizing intrusive malware as carrier. Furthermore, Search.hmywatchlist.org is so dominant that it denies user any right to adjust the unsolicited browser setup. This adware-browser hijacker combo clearly violates ones online privacy and security. Leaving it on the browser is like allowing Search.hmywatchlist.org to hold loads of classified personal information. No computer users will concur on such unrestricted status of online browser. Therefore, it is a collective decision of Mac security experts to get rid of threat as Search.hmywatchlist.org. Complete procedures to eliminate the hijacker are what we are offering on the removal section.
Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org.
Remove Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org, My Wacth List, or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome.
Uninstall Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org or My Wacth List and remove it from the browser.
Delete Search.hmywatchlist.org Extension from Safari
1. Run Safari browser application.
2. Click on Safari Settings icon located on upper right corner of the window.
3. Choose Preferences from the drop-down list.
4. On Extension window, select Extensions tab.
5. Select Search.hmywatchlist.org, My Wacth List, or relevant entry and remove it from Safari.
6. Lastly, go to Safari Settings once again and select Downloads from the drop down list.
7. If Mywatchlist.safariextz is present, click on Clear button to remove the unwanted extension.
Remove Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org from Toolbars and Extension and Search Providers section.
4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.
If Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org,My Wacth List, 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.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org.
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.hmywatchlist.org.
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.hmywatchlist.org.
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.hmywatchlist.org.
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.hmywatchlist.org and other suspicious entities. Be sure to remove all identified threats.
Option: Alternative Method to Clean Up Internet Browser from Search.hmywatchlist.org
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.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org
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.hmywatchlist.org, 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.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org 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.hmywatchlist.org from Safari browser.
5. Please restart Safari browser for changes to take effect.
Restore Internet Explorer to Default Settings
1. Open Internet Explorer browser.
2. On top menu, click Tools, and then Internet Options. It will open a new window.
3. Select Advanced tab. See image below.
4. On Reset Internet Explorer Settings area, click the Reset button to start the restoration procedures.
This process will not affect browsing history, bookmarks, and favorites. Add-ons and other integrated codes will be deleted including those that are linked to Search.hmywatchlist.org. If you choose to perform the procedure manually, please view instructions here.
Procedures to Remove Search.hmywatchlist.org from Mac
This section contains comprehensive guide to 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.
Step 1 : 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org. 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org.
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 2 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to Search.hmywatchlist.org
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 Plugins lists when it opens a new window.
2. Once you have located Search.hmywatchlist.org or My Watch List, Polarity, 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org
1. Select and copy the string below to your Clipboard by pressing Command + C on your keyboard.
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.
4. You will now see a folder named LaunchAgents. Take note of the following files inside the folder:
The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. It is normally an unfamiliar file name such as the following:
- My Watch List, Polarity
If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing Search.hmywatchlist.org 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.
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.
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 ~):
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.
3. Click on Force Quit button.
4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to Search.hmywatchlist.org homepage hijacker.
Step 4 : Double-check with MBAM Tool for Mac
1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac from this link:
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 Search.hmywatchlist.org.
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.
5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, Search.hmywatchlist.org 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org from Homepage and Search
- 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org from the Homepage field. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.
- 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org. 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.
- 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org Login Items
Some browser hijacker may also install login item into compromised account under System Preferences. This object automatically runs Search.hmywatchlist.org 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 Search.hmywatchlist.org.
5. Click on Login Items tab.
6. Select Search.hmywatchlist.org, My Watch List, Polarity, or any suspicious entries from the list and click on the minus [-] button and confirm your actions. Please see image below for reference.
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 Search.hmywatchlist.org. 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 My Watch List, Polarity, Search.hmywatchlist.org or any relevant profile from the left pane. See image below.
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 Search.hmywatchlist.org.