TheSearchGuard is an unwanted Google Chrome extension that may invade the browser by strange file downloads. This type of ad-supported application is normally spread over the internet with the use of shareware or freeware. Installation of TheSearchGuard is without user’s full authorization in most instances. This is because freeware are using stealthy techniques to load the unwanted program.
Once installed, TheSearchGuard makes immediate adjustment on settings of Google Chrome. It replaces the default search tool with own code. Thus, all search queries are diverted to srch_s.thesearchguard.com before revealing the actual results on Yahoo Search. The redirects carried out by TheSearchGuard are in suspicion of data gathering and collecting keywords and vital online information. Attackers can misuse gathered data, either sell or utilize it to improve advertising presence on victim’s computer.
TheSearchGuard is endorsed as browser extension that makes ones online search more private. However, the way we see it, makers of this program are exploiting naïve online users for their own profitable deeds. Thus, it is advice to remove TheSearchGuard as soon as possible using the guide on this page. Never entrust your online privacy and security to nameless service provider such as TheSearchGuard.
To avoid same attack, refrain from downloading free programs from dubious sources. As much as possible, obtain programs only from official websites. Also, never click on pop-up ads and suspicious links, as they are the common sources of homepage hijacker like TheSearchGuard.
TheSearchGuard Removal Procedure
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 browser hijacker and pop-ups.
In order to totally eliminate the threat, it is vital to follow the process in exact manner.
Step 1 : Delete TheSearchGuard 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 TheSearchGuard.
Remove TheSearchGuard Extension from Google Chrome
1. Open Google Chrome browser.
2. Type chrome://extensions/ in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.
3. Find TheSearchGuard or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome browser.
Uninstall TheSearchGuard Extension from Mozilla 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 TheSearchGuard and remove it from the browser.
After deleting the malicious browser extension, it is expected that TheSearchGuard is also gone from the homepage.
Remove TheSearchGuard 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.
3. Look for and Remove or Disable entries of TheSearchGuard from Toolbars and Extension. Additionally, delete unwanted entry from Search Providers section.
4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.
If TheSearchGuard is still present on the IE browser and there are still unwanted homepage 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.
7. Select TheSearchGuard or recently installed unwanted entry. Then, click on Uninstall to remove it from Windows system.
Step 2 : Scan the computer with Sophos Antivirus
To remove TheSearchGuard automatically, scanning the computer with this powerful anti-virus tool is recommended. This scanner does not just uncover known threats like viruses or malware, it is also effective in discovering browser hijacker like TheSearchGuard that slows down online browsing activities.
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.
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.
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 TheSearchGuard.
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 TheSearchGuard and other suspicious entities. Be sure to remove all identified threats.
The above procedures should have totally eliminated the TheSearchGuard 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 TheSearchGuard 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 TheSearchGuard.
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 TheSearchGuard. 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.
Check if your internet browser application is no longer being bothered by TheSearchGuard. If the browser hijacker still persists, please continue with the steps below to reset internet programs to default settings.
Optional : Reset Internet Browser Program
Cleaning your internet browser from clutter and unwanted add-on/extension is a must when dealing with TheSearchGuard. 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 TheSearchGuard. 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 TheSearchGuard.
5. Close the existing tab and restart Google Chrome. That should have removed TheSearchGuard extension and associated objects.
Reset Mozilla Firefox to Default
This section describes how to remove unwanted extension from Firefox that may be related to TheSearchGuard. 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. TheSearchGuard 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 TheSearchGuard and other unknown objects. If you prefer to carry out the procedure manually, please add-on removal from Internet Explorer.