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Bangserach is a fake search engine that hijacks Chrome, Edge, and other browsers, and is responsible for page-redirects to suspicious and low-quality sites, filled with advertising content. This hijacker is closely related to another rogue URL – – so it’s likely that some of the Bangsearch redirects land you on this site. The opposite can also happen, as reported on this Reddit thread.

According to affected users, Bangsearch attacks all browsers on the PC at once, suggesting that it’s likely not linked to any sketchy browser-specific extension. Some of the affected users report landing this hijacker after downloading cracked software, so it appears that pirated and low-quality software downloads are the main culprit here.

All this means that, to deal with this hijacker, you’ll need to perform a system-wide cleanup, finding and deleting anything potentially linked to the software that might have brought it into your PC.

The page.

What is Bangsearch?

Bangsearch is a rogue search engine that replaces the default one of your browser, aiming to promote different suspicious sites, generate ads, and earn ad revenue from your browsing. Its effects on the browser are not only obstructive, but can also potentially put your virtual privacy and security at risk, and expose you to scams and malware.

How to remove

To remove, it’s not enough to simply change back your default search engine to what it used to be before. The hijacker will either take over it again the next time you boot your PC, or it will outright not allow you to modify your browser settings.

Therefore, to permanently remove, it’s important to first identify the software that has allowed it to take over your browser and take care of it. If you’ve recently downloaded anything fishy on your PC, that’s probably the first thing you should delete.

However, note that deleting recently installed programs might not be enough: Some users affected by report deleting all suspicious apps from their systems and still having the hijacker attached to their browsers. In this case, it could help to check the processes in the Task Manager and look for anything unusual.

Some reports state that the processes “SearchOptimizer” and “SearchUI” are linked to the hijacker and that going to their file locations and deleting everything there solves it. We need to point out that “SearchUI” is normally a legitimate process so deleting its files is not recommended unless you are sure they are linked to the hijacker. Here, it is a good idea to check the creation date of the files, and it matches the date when you first encountered the hijacker, then you can probably delete those files.

Even after deleting any recently-installed suspicious programs and checking your Task Manager, the hijacker could still be there, messing with your browsers. For this reason, you should not ignore the steps provided in our guide below.

Bang Search Pro

As mentioned, the main distribution method for Bang Search Pro appears to be pirated content, and especially software downloaded from the infamous Steamunlocked site for cracked games. That said, there can absolutely be other ways to get your browser taken over by this hijacker.

Rogue extensions can obviously be used for the purpose of distributing Bang Search Pro and the same is true about disguised permission pop-ups generated by unsafe sites. It’s often enough to simply click on “Allow” when a prompt appears in your browser to suddenly get your Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge hijacked by a fake search engine. So, in addition to staying away from illegal and pirated content, you should also be vigilant for such random pop-ups or potentially unsafe browser extensions.

Bang Search Pro
A Reddit user reporting that they got the Bangsearch hijacker after downloading a game from Steamunlocked.

The Bang Search virus

The good news if you are currently dealing with this hijacker is that it’s not really a virus program, despite many users calling it the “Bang Search virus”. Hijackers like it are annoying, for sure, and they can even put your system and virtual privacy at risk through misleading ads and redirects, but they normally lack the ability to directly harm anything. For this reason, going for the nuclear option, wiping your hard drive and reinstalling Windows to delete the “Bang Search Virus” probably won’t be necessary here. We still recommend backing up your most important data for just in case, but if you complete all the steps from the next guide and/or use the recommended removal tool, we are confident that everything will be back to normal pretty soon.


NameBang Search Pro
TypeBrowser Hijacker
Detection Tool

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*Source of claim SH can remove it.


To try and remove Bang Search Pro quickly you can try this:

  1. Go to your browser’s settings and select More Tools (or Add-ons, depending on your browser).
  2. Then click on the Extensions tab.
  3. Look for the Bang Search Pro extension (as well as any other unfamiliar ones).
  4. Remove Bang Search Pro by clicking on the Trash Bin icon next to its name.
  5. Confirm and get rid of Bang Search Pro and any other suspicious items.

If this does not work as described please follow our more detailed Bang Search Pro removal guide below.

If you have a Windows virus, continue with the guide below.

If you have a Mac virus, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you have an Android virus, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.

If you have an iPhone virus, please use our iPhone Virus Removal guide.

Some of the steps may require you to exit the page. Bookmark it for later reference.
Next, Reboot in Safe Mode (use this guide if you don’t know how to do it).

Step1 Uninstall the Bang Search Pro app and kill its processes

The first thing you must try to do is look for any sketchy installs on your computer and uninstall anything you think may come from Bang Search Pro. After that, you’ll also need to get rid of any processes that may be related to the unwanted app by searching for them in the Task Manager.

Note that sometimes an app, especially a rogue one, may ask you to install something else or keep some of its data (such as settings files) on your PC – never agree to that when trying to delete a potentially rogue software. You need to make sure that everything is removed from your PC to get rid of the malware. Also, if you aren’t allowed to go through with the uninstallation, proceed with the guide, and try again after you’ve completed everything else.

  • Uninstalling the rogue app
  • Killing any rogue processes

Type Apps & Features in the Start Menu, open the first result, sort the list of apps by date, and look for suspicious recently installed entries.

Click on anything you think could be linked to Bang Search Pro, then select uninstall, and follow the prompts to delete the app.

delete suspicious Bang Search Pro apps

Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc, click More Details (if it’s not already clicked), and look for suspicious entries that may be linked to Bang Search Pro.

If you come across a questionable process, right-click it, click Open File Location, scan the files with the free online malware scanner shown below, and then delete anything that gets flagged as a threat.

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    Delete Bang Search Pro files and quit its processes.

    After that, if the rogue process is still visible in the Task Manager, right-click it again and select End Process.

    Step2 Undo Bang Search Pro changes made to different system settings

    It’s possible that Bang Search Pro has affected various parts of your system, making changes to their settings. This can enable the malware to stay on the computer or automatically reinstall itself after you’ve seemingly deleted it. Therefore, you need to check the following elements by going to the Start Menu, searching for the specific system elements that may have been affected, and pressing Enter to open them and see if anything has been changed there without your approval. Then you must undo any unwanted changes made to these settings in the way shown below:

    • DNS
    • Hosts
    • Startup
    • Task
    • Services
    • Registry

    Type in Start Menu: View network connections

    Right-click on your primary network, go to Properties, and do this:

    Undo DNS changes made by Bang Search Pro

    Type in Start Menu: C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts

    Delete Bang Search Pro IPs from Hosts

    Type in the Start Menu: Startup apps

    Disable Bang Search Pro startup apps

    Type in the Start Menu: Task Scheduler

    Delete Bang Search Pro scheduled tasks

    Type in the Start Menu: Services

    Disable Bang Search Pro services

    Type in the Start Menu: Registry Editor

    Press Ctrl + F to open the search window

    Clear the Registry from Bang Search Pro items

    Step3 Remove Bang Search Pro from your browsers

    • Delete Bang Search Pro from Chrome
    • Delete Bang Search Pro from Firefox
    • Delete Bang Search Pro from Edge
    1. Go to the Chrome menu > More tools > Extensions, and toggle off and Remove any unwanted extensions.
    2. Next, in the Chrome Menu, go to Settings > Privacy and security > Clear browsing data > Advanced. Tick everything except Passwords and click OK.
    3. Go to Privacy & Security > Site Settings > Notifications and delete any suspicious sites that are allowed to send you notifications. Do the same in Site Settings > Pop-ups and redirects.
    4. Go to Appearance and if there’s a suspicious URL in the Custom web address field, delete it.
    1. Firefox menu, go to Add-ons and themes > Extensions, toggle off any questionable extensions, click their three-dots menu, and click Remove.
    2. Open Settings from the Firefox menu, go to Privacy & Security > Clear Data, and click Clear.
    3. Scroll down to Permissions, click Settings on each permission, and delete from it any questionable sites.
    4. Go to the Home tab, see if there’s a suspicious URL in the Homepage and new windows field, and delete it.
    1. Open the browser menu, go to Extensions, click Manage Extensions, and Disable and Remove any rogue items.
    2. From the browser menu, click Settings > Privacy, searches, and services > Choose what to clear, check all boxes except Passwords, and click Clear now.
    3. Go to the Cookies and site permissions tab, check each type of permission for permitted rogue sites, and delete them.
    4. Open the Start, home, and new tabs section, and if there’s a rogue URL under Home button, delete it.

    About the author


    Brandon Skies

    Brandon is a researcher and content creator in the fields of cyber-security and virtual privacy. Years of experience enable him to provide readers with important information and adequate solutions for the latest software and malware problems.

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