UniversalWebSearch is a potentially unwanted program (PUP) that belongs to the category of Adware. What is Adware & Is it actually malicious? Adware is form of programs designed to inject advertising into your Net browsing or even desktop experience. Adware can be made to alter your start page, search engine, search results, or even add toolbars to your browser. The UniversalWebSearch adware run in the background when you’re online, and adware can slow down your MAC system and affect its performance.
Even worse, the UniversalWebSearch adware has the ability to gather and transmit confidential information without your knowledge. It can track information about web-pages visited, web-browser and system information, and your computer IP address.
|UniversalWebSearch, Universal Web Search 1.0 app
|adware software, PUP (potentially unwanted program), pop up virus, pop-up advertisements, pop-ups
|UniversalWebSearch removal guide
How does the UniversalWebSearch adware get on your Apple Mac
We recommend you to remove adware and clean your MAC from UniversalWebSearch advertisements as quickly as possible, until the presence of the adware software has not led to even worse consequences. You need to follow the instructions below that will help you to completely remove adware using only the built-in Microsoft Windows features and several free malicious software removal utilities of well-known antivirus software companies.
How to Remove UniversalWebSearch adware software
There are several steps to removing the UniversalWebSearch adware, because it installs itself so deeply into Microsoft Windows. You need to remove all suspicious and unknown applications, then remove harmful plugins from the Firefox, Safari and Chrome and other web browsers you have installed. Finally, you need to reset your browser settings to get rid of any changes the adware has made, and then scan your machine with MalwareBytes AntiMalware (MBAM) to ensure the adware is fully removed. It will take a while.
To remove UniversalWebSearch, use the following steps:
- How to get rid of UniversalWebSearch adware without any software
- Automatic Removal of UniversalWebSearch adware software
- How to stay safe online
- To sum up
How to get rid of UniversalWebSearch adware without any software
In this section of the post, we have posted the steps that will allow to remove UniversalWebSearch adware software manually. Although compared to removal utilities, this way loses in time, but you don’t need to install anything on your computer. It will be enough for you to follow the detailed guidance with pictures. We tried to describe each step in detail, but if you realized that you might not be able to figure it out, or simply do not want to change the MS Windows and web-browser settings, then it’s better for you to use utilities from trusted developers, which are listed below.
Remove adware through the Finder
Check out the Finder (Applications section) to see all installed apps. If you see any unknown and questionable applications, they are the ones you need to uninstall.
Open Finder and click “Applications” as on the image below.
You will see a list of programs installed on your machine. We recommend to pay maximum attention to the program you installed last. Most likely, it is the UniversalWebSearch adware software. If you’re in doubt, you can always check the program by doing a search for her name in Google, Yahoo or Bing. Once the program which you need to uninstall is found, simply right click on its name, and choose “Move to Trash”.
Don’t forget, choose Finder, then “Empty Trash”.
Remove UniversalWebSearch from Safari
The Safari reset is great if your browser is hijacked or you have unwanted addo-ons or toolbars on your browser, that installed by an malware.
Click Safari menu and select “Preferences”.
It will open the Safari Preferences window. Next, click the “Extensions” tab. Look for unknown and suspicious plugins on left panel, select it, then click the “Uninstall” button. Most important to remove all unknown addons from Safari.
Once complete, click “General” tab. Change the “Default Search Engine” to Google.
Find the “Homepage” and type into textfield “https://www.google.com”.
Remove UniversalWebSearch from Chrome
If your Google Chrome web browser is affected by UniversalWebSearch, it may be necessary to completely reset your internet browser program to its default settings.
First open the Google Chrome. Next, click the button in the form of three horizontal dots ().
It will show the Google Chrome menu. Select More Tools, then click Extensions. Carefully browse through the list of installed plugins. If the list has the extension signed with “Installed by enterprise policy” or “Installed by your administrator”, then complete the following steps: Remove Google Chrome extensions installed by enterprise policy.
Open the Chrome menu once again. Further, press the option called “Settings”.
The internet browser will show the settings screen. Another solution to open the Chrome’s settings – type chrome://settings in the web browser adress bar and press Enter
Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the “Advanced” link. Now scroll down until the “Reset” section is visible, as displayed in the following example and click the “Reset settings to their original defaults” button.
The Chrome will show the confirmation dialog box like below.
You need to confirm your action, click the “Reset” button. The browser will launch the task of cleaning. After it’s complete, the internet browser’s settings including home page, new tab and search engine by default back to the values that have been when the Google Chrome was first installed on your MAC OS.
Remove UniversalWebSearch from Firefox by resetting browser settings
Resetting your Mozilla Firefox is basic troubleshooting step for any issues with your browser program, including the UniversalWebSearch ads. However, your saved passwords and bookmarks will not be changed, deleted or cleared.
Click the Menu button (looks like three horizontal lines), and press the blue Help icon located at the bottom of the drop down menu as shown on the screen below.
A small menu will appear, click the “Troubleshooting Information”. On this page, press “Refresh Firefox” button as displayed in the following example.
Follow the onscreen procedure to revert back your Mozilla Firefox web browser settings to their original state.
Automatic Removal of UniversalWebSearch adware software
The easiest method to get rid of UniversalWebSearch ads is to use an antimalware program capable of detecting adware. We recommend try MalwareBytes Anti-Malware (MBAM) or another free malicious software remover which listed below. It has excellent detection rate when it comes to adware software, hijacker infections and other PUPs.
Run MalwareBytes to get rid of UniversalWebSearch adware
We advise using the MalwareBytes Free. You can download and install MalwareBytes Anti Malware (MBAM) to scan for adware software and thereby get rid of UniversalWebSearch ads from your web-browsers. When installed and updated, this free malicious software remover automatically finds and deletes all threats exist on the Apple Mac.
- Please go to the link below to download MalwareBytes Free.
Malwarebytes Anti-malware (Mac)
Category: Security tools
Update: September 10, 2020
- After the download is done, please close all programs and open windows on your MAC OS. Run the downloaded file. Follow the prompts.
- The MalwareBytes Anti Malware will open and show the main window.
- Further, click the “Scan” button to scan for UniversalWebSearch adware software. Depending on your Apple Mac, the scan may take anywhere from a few minutes to close to an hour. While the utility is checking, you may see number of objects and files has already scanned.
- Once that process is finished, MalwareBytes will display a screen that contains a list of malicious software that has been detected.
- When you are ready, click the “Remove Selected Items” button.
- Close the AntiMalware and continue with the next step.
How to stay safe online
It is also critical to protect your browsers from malicious web sites and ads by using an ad-blocker program such as AdGuard. Security experts says that it will greatly reduce the risk of malicious software, and potentially save lots of money. Additionally, the AdGuard can also protect your privacy by blocking almost all trackers.
AdGuard can be downloaded from the following link.
Author: © Adguard
Category: Security tools
Update: January 17, 2018
After the download is complete, run the downloaded file. The “Setup Wizard” window will show up on the computer screen.
Follow the prompts. AdGuard will then be installed. A window will show up asking you to confirm that you want to see a quick guide. Click “Skip” button to close the window and use the default settings, or press “Get Started” to see an quick guide that will help you get to know AdGuard better.
Each time, when you run your MAC, AdGuard will launch automatically and stop unwanted pop ups, block malicious or misleading webpages.
To sum up
Once you’ve done the steps shown above, your MAC system should be clean from this adware software and other malware. The Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari will no longer display the UniversalWebSearch ads when you browse the Internet. Unfortunately, if the steps does not help you, then you have caught a new adware software, and then the best way – ask for help.
Please create a new question by using the “Ask Question” button in the Questions and Answers. Try to give us some details about your problems, so we can try to help you more accurately. Wait for one of our trained “Security Team” or Site Administrator to provide you with knowledgeable assistance tailored to your problem with the UniversalWebSearch adware.