Remove Search.stosgame.com (Mac OS)

By | Posted on May 27, 2018 | Updated on August 8, 2018

Homepage hijacker with URL Search.stosgame.com is primarily targeting Macintosh-bases internet programs like Safari, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox. This unwelcome search engine can be integrated into the browser through the extension named Stosgame. However, this is not always the case because adware may mislead user by using alternative extension names.

Performing online search on homepage and address bar of Search.stosgame.com may illegally obtain information from users. It is observed that it diverts the query to own server before releasing the actual search outcome on Yahoo Search. This is common to nearly all homepage hijackers particularly on Adware group where Search.stosgame.com is a member. Search inquiries, keywords, and other online data are extracted from user’s browsing activities only to be misuse by attacker. Collected data can be sold to third-party ad provider or can be used by attacker to learn the interest of victims in order for them to serve much targeted advertisements.

As stated, Search.stosgame.com is not only a homepage redirect adware. It also frustrates computer users by displaying pop-ups and redirect advertisements on affected browser programs. Instead of enhancing users search experience as stated on its official website, Search.stosgame.com is a plain distraction to online browsing. As long as it is part of the browser program, expect other adware to enter the computer while it constantly redirects to a number of malicious web pages.

Search.stosgame.com

If there is a need to remove Search.stosgame.com, we have a simple yet effective solution below. Follow the guide in exact order to ensure complete removal of the adware. Also, thoroughly scan the system with suggested virus and malware removal tool to locate and delete malicious objects relevant to Search.stosgame.com.

Online Security Scanner Report for search.stosgame.com:

Norton SafeWeb Not yet tested Community Rating: 0.0 Updated: May 27, 2018
Transparency Report Currently safe Feedback: No Data Updated: May 27, 2018

Procedures to Remove Search.stosgame.com from Mac

This section contains comprehensive guide to help you remove threats from the affected computer.

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

QuickFix: Instant Removal

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 adware that causes annoyances. You may need to purchase full version if you require to maximize its premium features.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

Click here to Download Combo Cleaner (this will open a new window)

2. Double-click the downloaded file.

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“.

Start Combo Scan

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: Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to Search.stosgame.com

1. Locate the add-on or extension that is relevant to the adware. 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.stosgame.com, click on Remove or Uninstall, to get rid of it.

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

Step 2: Delete Malicious Files that have installed Search.stosgame.com

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

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

– Stosgame, InstallMac, Manroling, Genieo, Inkeeper, Software Updater

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing the Search.stosgame.com 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.

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 Search.stosgame.com.

Step 3: Scan the System with Adware Removal Tool for Mac

1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac from this link:

Click here to download MBAM for Mac (this will open a new window)

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.stosgame.com.

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, Search.stosgame.com is surely part of it. Be sure to select all items in the list. Then, click Remove button to clean the computer.

Step 4: Remove Search.stosgame.com from Safari Home Page and Search

1. Open Apple menu and select Force Quit. You can also press Command + Option + Esc on the keyboard to access this feature.

2. From the list of applications, select Safari, and then click on Force Quit button. Wait for Safari browser to close.

Force Quit Safari

3. Now, hold down Shift key and launch Safari. Do this to avoid opening any unwanted window from Search.stosgame.com.

4. Go to Safari Menu and then select Preferences from the list.

5. On Default search engine section, select the desired search engine from the list to override Search.stosgame.com custom search engine.

Default Safari Homepage

6. Next, make sure that “New windows open with” is set to Homepage. Adware may alter this and set it to open to unwanted webpage.

7. Then, on Homepage field, type the URL of your desired Homepage.

Optional: Reset Safari Browser

If the above procedures did not help in eliminating Search.stosgame.com on your Safari browser, resetting it to default value may be the best solution. Be aware that there is no way to reverse this process once executed.

1. Go to Safari Menu. Select Reset Safari from the list. This will open a window showing applicable items.

2. It is better to maintain the pre-selected items.

Reset Safari Browser

3. Click on Reset button to totally clear all the configurations made by Search.stosgame.com. Please restart Safari browser.

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