GoWebSearch Mac


GoWebSearch is an unwanted browser-hijacking app for Mac computers that installs in the system’s main browser without the user’s knowledge. GoWebSearch causes the browser to suddenly open certain promoted sites and to spam the screen with obstructive pop-ups.

GoWebSearch Mac

GoWebSearch on Mac

Typically, most representatives of the browser hijacker family are compatible with Windows computer and Android devices. However, in recent years there has been a huge increase in the number of hijacker apps for Macs and iPhones. Currently, it is just as likely to get a hijacker installed on a Mac as it is to get it on a Windows PC. That is why Mac users, too, need to have a firm understanding of the characteristics of this kind of software.

The first hijacker symptoms users notice are the changes in the homepage, the toolbar, and the search engine of their Chrome, Firefox, or Safari browsers. The page redirects caused by apps like GoWebSearch are another very commonly reported browser hijacker red flag that many people complain about. Also, it is likely that a hijacker would cause the generation of big numbers of online ads while you are on the Internet.

GoWebSearch for Mac

GoWebSearch for Mac is a marketing tool used for making money through paid ads that installs in the main browser and begins to control it. GoWebSearch for Mac tinkers with the settings of the browser and then causes it to show ads and trigger page redirects.

The main problem Mac users tend to face when they get such an app installed on their computer is that the presence of the hijacker makes browsing the Internet very frustrating and difficult. This, however, is not the biggest issue with the hijacker apps. What’s even worse is the increased risk of landing on unsafe sites that may expose your system to danger and harm (such as malicious Trojans, Ransomware viruses, Spyware, and more).

What is GoWebSearch?

GoWebSearch is a rogue app designed for the generation of paid advertisements that takes control of the main browser in the computer. GoWebSearch determines what search engine the browser uses as its default and what ads get displayed in its tabs.

In order to make its advertisements more appealing to the user and increase the chances of the latter clicking on them, the unwanted app will look into the browsing history and determine what sites and products the user is likely to be interested in. Then, GoWebSearch will show ads with similar content (even if what’s behind the advert doesn’t match what’s advertised by it).

The Go Web Search app

The Go Web Search app is an aggressive advertising app that targets Mac browsers and takes control over their settings without asking for the user’s permission. The Go Web Search app can cause the browser to suddenly open new sites and it can fill the screen with obstructive ads.

In addition to the irritation caused by the ads and the redirects, all of this may increase the chances of getting your Mac attacked by malicious viruses the likes of Ransomware, Worms, Trojans, and more. It is, therefore, in your best interest to uninstall the hijacker. With the removal instructions for GoWebSearch that you will find right below, uninstalling this app should be an easy job, so we encourage you to have a look at the guide. 


Name GoWebSearch
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms Typically, the hijacker changes the homepage of the browser and uses it for ad-generation.
Distribution Method A hijacker app can be distributed with the help of file bundles, spam emails and social media letters, torrent sites, and more. Some hijackers have official sites from where one can download them.
Detection Tool

Remove GoWebSearch from Mac

For a quick way to remove GoWebSearch try to do this inside your Mac browser:

  1. Open your Mac browser.
  2. Go to Preferences.
  3. Now navigate to the extensions sub-menu.
  4. Look for any unfamiliar entries, including GoWebSearch.
  5. Remove GoWebSearch from your Mac as well as any other suspicious-looking items by clicking on the trash bin icon.

If this does not help then continue reading this article for more detailed instructions on how to get rid of GoWebSearch!

GoWebSearch Mac

The first thing you need to do is to Quit Safari (if it is opened). If you have trouble closing it normally, you may need to Force Quit Safari:

You can choose the Apple menu and click on Force Quit.

Alternatively, you can simultaneously press (the Command key situated next to the space bar), Option (the key right next to it) and Escape (the key located at the upper left corner of your keyboard).

If you have done it right a dialog box titled Force Quit Applications will open up.

In this new dialog window select Safari, then press the Force Quit button, then confirm with Force Quit again.

Close the dialog box/window.

GoWebSearch Mac


Start Activity Monitor by opening up Finder, then proceed to GoWebSearch Mac

Once there, look at all the processes: if you believe any of them are hijacking your results, or are part of the problem, highlight the process with your mouse, then click the “i” button at the top. This will open up the following box:

GoWebSearch Mac

Now click on Sample at the bottom:

GoWebSearch Mac

Do this for all processes you believe are part of the threat, and run any suspicious files in our online virus scanner, then delete the malicious files:

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GoWebSearch Mac
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    GoWebSearch Mac

    The next step is to safely launch Safari again. Press and hold the Shift key while relaunching Safari. This will prevent Safari’s previously opened pages from loading again. Once Safari is opened up, you can release the Shift key.

    On the off chance that you are still having trouble with scripts interrupting the closing of unwanted pages in Safari, you may need to take some additional measures.

    First, Force Quit Safari again.

    Now if you are using a Wi-Fi connection turn it off by selecting Wi-Fi off in you Mac’s Menu. If you are using a cable internet (Ethernet connection), disconnect the Ethernet cable.

    GoWebSearch Mac

    Re-Launch Safari but don’t forget to press and hold the Shift button while doing it, so no previous pages can be opened up. Now, Click on Preferences in the Safari menu,

    GoWebSearch Mac

    and then again on the Extensions tab,

    GoWebSearch Mac

    Select and Uninstall any extensions that you don’t recognize by clicking on the Uninstall button. If you are not sure and don’t want to take any risks you can safely uninstall all extensions, none are required for normal system operation.
    GoWebSearch Mac

    The threat has likely infected all of your browsers. The instructions below need to be applied for all browsers you are using.

    Again select Preferences in the Safari Menu, but this time click on the Privacy tab,
    GoWebSearch Mac

    Now click on Remove All Website Data, confirm with Remove Now. Keep in mind that after you do this all stored website data will be deleted. You will need to sign-in again for all websites that require any form of authentication.

    Still in the Preferences menu, hit the General tab

    GoWebSearch Mac

    Check if your Homepage is the one you have selected, if not change it to whatever you prefer.
    GoWebSearch Mac

    Select the History menu this time, and click on Clear History. This way you will prevent accidentally opening a problematic web page again.

    GoWebSearch Mac How to Remove GoWebSearch From Firefox in OSX:

    Open Firefoxclick on GoWebSearch Mac (top right) ——-> Add-onsHit Extensions next.

    GoWebSearch Mac

    The problem should be lurking somewhere around here –  Remove it. Then Refresh Your Firefox Settings.

    GoWebSearch MacHow to Remove GoWebSearch From Chrome in OSX:

     Start Chrome, click GoWebSearch Mac —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There,  find the malware and  select  GoWebSearch Mac.

    GoWebSearch Mac

     Click GoWebSearch Mac again, and proceed to Settings —> Search, the fourth tab, select Manage Search Engines.  Delete everything but the search engines you normally use. After that Reset Your Chrome Settings.

    If the guide doesn’t help, download the anti-virus program we recommended or try our free online virus scanner. Also, you can always ask us in the comments for help!


    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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