If you’re experiencing browser search query redirects to the Mint Search engine, then your system has been attacked by a browser hijacker program. This type of attack can drive you crazy as you will not be able to acquire relevant results on your search queries. Your browser behaves strangely and redirects all of your searches to sites that contain malicious and explicit content.
Now, you’re probably reading this article to get a solution on how you can get rid of this issue. Fortunately, we have prepared a detailed guideline to walk through the removal process of this frustrating browser hijacker application.
What is Mint Search?
Before jumping on to the removal process, let’s first get a brief understanding of what is Mint Search and how it can infiltrate your system.
When your system is attacked by the Mint Search browser hijacker, all search engine queries will be redirected to find.mintsearch.net. This Potentially Unwanted Application/Program (PUA or PUA) utilizes a browser extension to perform its redirects. It also infiltrates the system further by planting its files deep down the system files to make it difficult for the victims to get rid of it.
Here are some signs that your system is infected by the Mint Search browser hijacker:
- It changes the homepage of the default browser. New queries are redirected to find.mintsearch.net.
- When this browser hijacker infiltrates the system, it installs its unique Chrome-based browser and then inserts a toolbar at the top of your desktop. It takes one to pay much attention to differentiate between its chrome-based browser and the normal Chrome browser.
- It tracks your online activities, records the logs, and sends them to third-party entities for monetary gains.
- The PUP inserts Chrome policies that make it hard for any average computer user to get rid of the program.
What Does Mint Search Do?
If Mint Search is installed in your system, you will start experiencing browser redirects. Since the end goal of this PUP is to make money through affiliates and advertisement, it will drive your traffic to its preferred pages. Unfortunately, most of its affiliate websites are unsafe and contain explicit and malicious content.
Mint Search is commonly distributed via the software bundling technique. This used to be a legitimate technique used by the marketing gurus when they wanted the market for a newly launched product. However, modern cybercriminals and ill-mannered companies abuse this technique and use it to distribute malicious content. Unofficial software distributing sites and torrents platforms are notorious for software bundling.
We advise users to always pay attention when installing new software on their system, especially if they acquired it through a third-party software distributor. Instead of selecting the Express or Recommended installation settings, opt for the Custom or Advanced installation process which will give the liberty of controlling what is being installed in the system.
How to Get Rid of Mint Search?
At times, it can feel hopeless if you don’t have the right guidance to remove Mint Search browser. Lucky for you, this article serves as an easy Mint Search browser removal guide. Although the process may appear overwhelming due to the number of steps that one must go through, we have organized it in a way that accommodates even the most basic-skilled computer users. Apply these fixes in their suggested order to achieve better results.
Solution #1: Get Rid of Mint Search from the Windows System
The solution involves checking if this PUP has been installed on your system. Usually, browser hijackers tend to plant their roots beyond the browser, docking its files in the system together with the uninstaller file.
- Press the Windows + I keys to access the Windows Settings app.
- Select Apps and click Apps and Features if it doesn’t open by default.
- Find any program related to Mint Search and uninstall it.
- Click to highlight the suspicious program, and then select Uninstall. Follow the on-screen prompts.
Solution #2: Use an Anti-malware Security Suite
This solution requires you to install a dedicated browser hijacker removal tool. There are plenty of them, but it is important to select a strong and trusted product to get the job done perfectly. A reliable anti-malware software utility should be able to detect and destroy any type of virus, malware, as well as potentially unwanted programs or applications.
- Download and install a trusted anti-malware program.
- Once done installing the security tool, double-click on the icon to run it.
- Now, select the full system scan option, and then follow the on-screen prompts.
- This should take a while since it will be the first time.
- When the scan is complete, the program will show you the detected malicious files and programs in your system. Quarantine or delete them.
- Restart the computer and in the next startup, proceed to the next solution.
Solution #3: Remove Mint Search from the Browser
Now that you have uprooted the files and its underlying data and scripts from the system, it’s time to get rid of it from the browser. Although browsers differ in setup, the following steps have been simplified to ensure users of different browsers can follow them. Note that the instructions follow Google Chrome’s setup.
- Click on the 3 dot menu icon at the top-right portion of the browser.
- Now, click on Settings from the emerging menu and select the Advanced link.
- Select Reset settings to their original defaults.
- Go ahead and Reset Settings.
Once you have completed these solutions, your computer will be back to its normal state with no browser redirects taking place. However, make sure you keep your anti-malware security software running in the background all the time to avoid future attacks. Also, stick to official sites when downloading new software to avoid installing malicious bundled apps. Online dangers will always be there, but they can be averted by observing preventative measures as well as arming your computer with the best security tools the industry has to offer.