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Removal instructions for Safe2Search

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Content is republished with permission from Malwarebytes.

What is Safe2Search?

The Malwarebytes research team has determined that Safe2Search is a browser hijacker. These so-called "hijackers" manipulate your browser(s), for example to change your startpage or searchscopes, so that the affected browser visits their site or one of their choice.
This particular one changes your default search engine.

How do I know if my computer is affected by Safe2Search?

You may see this entry in your list of installed Chrome extensions:


and this changed setting:


You may have noticed these warnings during install:





How did Safe2Search get on my computer?

Browser hijackers use different methods for distributing themselves. This particular one was downloaded from the webstore:


after a redirect from their website:


How do I remove Safe2Search?

Our program Malwarebytes can detect and remove this search hijacker.
  • Please download Malwarebytes for Windows to your desktop.
  • Double-click MBSetup.exe and follow the prompts to install the program.
  • When your Malwarebytes for Windows installation completes, the program opens to the Welcome to Malwarebytes screen.
  • Click on the Get started button.
  • Click Scan to start a Threat Scan.
  • When the scan is finished click Quarantine to remove the found threats.
  • Reboot the system if prompted to complete the removal process.
Is there anything else I need to do to get rid of Safe2Search?
  • No, Malwarebytes removes Safe2Search completely.
How would the full version of Malwarebytes help protect me?

We hope our application and this guide have helped you eradicate this hijacker.

As you can see below Malwarebytes Browser Guard, and the full version of Malwarebytes would have protected you against the Safe2Search hijacker. It would have blocked their website, giving you a chance to stop it before it became too late.



Technical details for experts

Possible signs in FRST logs:

CHR HomePage: Default -> safe2search.com
CHR DefaultSearchURL: Default -> hxxps://search.safe2search.com/query/to?query={searchTerms}&qi=1&category=web&ext=1
CHR DefaultSearchKeyword: Default -> Safe2Search
CHR DefaultSuggestURL: Default -> hxxps://sug.safe2search.com/complete/search?q={searchTerms}&client=firefox&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&hl=en-US
CHR Extension: (Safe2Search) - C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj [2021-07-29]
Alterations made by the installer:

File system details [View: All details] (Selection)
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\0.3.0_0
       Adds the file index.html"="9/14/2020 5:45 PM, 228 bytes, A
       Adds the file manifest.json"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 1827 bytes, A
       Adds the file switch.html"="11/11/2020 3:39 PM, 2927 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\0.3.0_0\_metadata
       Adds the file computed_hashes.json"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 961 bytes, A
       Adds the file verified_contents.json"="4/8/2021 12:53 PM, 2605 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\0.3.0_0\assets\images
       Adds the file 128x128.png"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 5762 bytes, A
       Adds the file 16x16.png"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 697 bytes, A
       Adds the file 96x96.png"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 4405 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\0.3.0_0\assets\js
       Adds the file const.js"="4/8/2021 12:46 PM, 605 bytes, A
       Adds the file index.js"="9/23/2020 4:22 PM, 656 bytes, A
       Adds the file libs.js"="11/1/2020 3:47 PM, 4549 bytes, A
       Adds the file stats.js"="9/23/2020 4:08 PM, 292 bytes, A
       Adds the file switch.js"="11/11/2020 3:58 PM, 731 bytes, A
       Adds the file sync_data.js"="3/8/2021 2:47 PM, 2510 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj
       Adds the file 000003.log"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 300 bytes, A
       Adds the file CURRENT"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 16 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOCK"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 0 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOG"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 369 bytes, A
       Adds the file MANIFEST-000001"="7/29/2021 10:22 AM, 41 bytes, A

Registry details [View: All details] (Selection)
       "oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj"="REG_SZ", "1FC53F5E08FAE4FF4EFC4C0902EDF2B809FAF63767E887453712F54F7879AD03"
Malwarebytes log:


-Log Details-
Scan Date: 7/29/21
Scan Time: 10:34 AM
Log File: ce8a8ef2-f047-11eb-a309-080027235d76.json

-Software Information-
Components Version: 1.0.1387
Update Package Version: 1.0.43686
License: Premium

-System Information-
OS: Windows 7 Service Pack 1
CPU: x64
File System: NTFS
User: {username}-PC\{username}

-Scan Summary-
Scan Type: Threat Scan
Scan Initiated By: Manual
Result: Completed
Objects Scanned: 257853
Threats Detected: 11
Threats Quarantined: 11
Time Elapsed: 1 min, 51 sec

-Scan Options-
Memory: Enabled
Startup: Enabled
Filesystem: Enabled
Archives: Enabled
Rootkits: Disabled
Heuristics: Enabled
PUP: Detect
PUM: Detect

-Scan Details-
Process: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Module: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Key: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Value: 1
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, HKCU\SOFTWARE\GOOGLE\CHROME\PREFERENCEMACS\Default\extensions.settings|oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , , 

Registry Data: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Data Stream: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Folder: 2
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , , 

File: 8
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Secure Preferences, Replaced, 16855, 962593, , , , , E1244DA61CAC9F4FF124A0B2DB59F052, 03B67FFE84BB4CA5C5D238311905D0E3BB3F3214E12BBB899F60305EA305B427
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Preferences, Replaced, 16855, 962593, , , , , 08BDD5B2A1D5FE0B1EDDC90964100218, 40709629B71734BAB64B5BC6B40EA5224AD89EB7ADA52E3A30EC89FCABE218FB
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\000003.log, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , 8B094C7CFF360E98F8A3C324D87F531F, F544A56153BE79292E85582E897F87FBE93E511206AD4EEDDBB7AA3390292EAD
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\CURRENT, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , 46295CAC801E5D4857D09837238A6394, 0F1BAD70C7BD1E0A69562853EC529355462FCD0423263A3D39D6D0D70B780443
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\LOCK, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , , 
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\LOG, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , 08C852F1EF07A3DF0D809F4DB0B73FE6, 178AAF5404DEF3D0562BA08EDA8ECF9CC485E6969B699EFC7267CBD5D5C867E4
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\oipppoigngciofehichfgjdbacmmfipj\MANIFEST-000001, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, , , , , 5AF87DFD673BA2115E2FCF5CFDB727AB, F9D31B278E215EB0D0E9CD709EDFA037E828F36214AB7906F612160FEAD4B2B4
PUP.Optional.Safe2Search, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\DEFAULT\EXTENSIONS\OIPPPOIGNGCIOFEHICHFGJDBACMMFIPJ\0.3.0_0\MANIFEST.JSON, Quarantined, 16855, 962593, 1.0.43686, , ame, , 384130F5E9E40E17597CDD4B38625EA9, FC807291256768AA1D8780AAAAA2D487DDA016446D6C8956D7CE5CB87E85A205

Physical Sector: 0
(No malicious items detected)

WMI: 0
(No malicious items detected)

As mentioned before the full version of Malwarebytes could have protected your computer against this threat.
We use different ways of protecting your computer(s):
  • Dynamically Blocks Malware Sites & Servers
  • Malware Execution Prevention
Save yourself the hassle and get protected.
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