“Play Search Now”
In the article below we will explain what is typical of “Play Search Now”. You may have already suffered from its effects on your PC. Briefly, we can tell you that it is a browser hijacker program that could be able to change the settings of all your browsers, no matter whether you prefer Chrome, Firefox, Safari or Explorer, and cause the appearance of many advertisements (banners, new browser tabs, pop-ups), a completely different new homepage and search engine, as well as some quite unpleasant redirects to various online locations every time you try to use your browser.
Why does “Play Search Now” behave in this particular, rather annoying way?
You should remember that it has more harmless effects on your computer than it might have negative ones. The production of pop-ups, boxes, tabs and banners that might seem particularly disturbing to you actually does no real harm to your machine. It is true that depending on the resources your computer has, it might slow down its performance. However, this is only likely to happen to systems with less RAM and CPU. Another one of its normal activities that you could find alarming is the research it performs. Typically, such research represents a study of your personal tastes based on your recent search requests. In this way, as you might have already noticed, “Play Search Now” may only generate advertisements that fit what the research has concluded your preferences to be. The sudden change of your usual homepage and search engine may also be quite irritating. The most annoying part, though, might be the redirects to unfamiliar web pages that your browser may be suffering from. On certain rare occasions there is the danger of being led to places that contain dangerous software and viruses (even Ransomware). However, this does not mean that you are currently dealing with a virus.
After we have discussed all the potential negative consequences that may result from an infection with “Play Search Now”, we are going to explain the reasons for them. The generation of lots of pop-ups and banners, the possible redirects and the potential homepage changes are all related to the way browser hijackers could be programmed to act. Their typical behavior depends on what their developers want them to perform. At the same developers are being generously paid by various vendors and goods producers to advertise what they distribute in the most efficient way. That’s why these programmers set such big numbers of ads to be shown by their hijackers. Mostly because they believe the more ads a user is exposed to, the more goods they will be willing to spend their money on. Also, the new homepage and the places you might be redirected to are also subjects of advertising, as the programmers are also paid to show exactly these websites and to popularize them. It is all about the potential profit.
What is “Play Search Now” ?
The reasons for “Play Search Now”‘s typical activities are also connected to the way it is spread. Developers usually find a way to distribute these money-earning, ad-generating programs by mixing them with some other software. The aforementioned software mixtures are called program bundles and they are the typical means of transport for all types of ad-producing software, such as Adware and browser hijackers. However, we must mention here that you DON’T catch such an annoying infection simply by downloading bundles that contain “Play Search Now”. It is necessary that you knowingly or unknowingly install all the content of such a bundle in order to allow “Play Search Now” to start functioning. That is how most affected users get infected with this hijacker. The desire to use a program from a given bundle makes many people select the default or the quickest way of installing it. However, this means installing everything that might be hiding inside this software combo. The clever way of completing any installation process is by choosing the feature that will take longer, but in this way your system will be safer. Usually this is the advanced installation method and it will allow you to choose what exactly you want from a particular bundle to install on your PC and what you would prefer to leave behind.
Is the uninstallation of “Play Search Now” an easy task?
Whether you will manage to remove this hijacker fast and easily depends on your particular case. However, we have prepared an uninstallation set of instructions below (See “Removal Guide”) that is designed to help you no matter what your case is. You just need to follow all the given instructions with caution and that should be enough to delete “Play Search Now” from your machine.
|Name||“Play Search Now”|
|Danger Level||Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)|
|Symptoms||Annoying redirects, browser setting alterations (many ads and even a new home page).|
|Distribution Method||Just like any other ad-producing program – in bundles, torrents, infected websites.|
Some threats reinstall themselves if you don't delete their core files. We recommend downloading ComboCleaner to remove harmful programs for you. This may save you hours and ensure you don't harm your system by deleting the wrong files.
How to Uninstall “Play Search Now”
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.
WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!
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:
Now click on Sample at the bottom:
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:
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.
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,
and then again on the Extensions tab,
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.
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,
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
Check if your Homepage is the one you have selected, if not change it to whatever you prefer.
Select the History menu this time, and click on Clear History. This way you will prevent accidentally opening a problematic web page again.
How to Remove “Play Search Now” From Firefox in OSX:
Open Firefox, click on (top right) ——-> Add-ons. Hit Extensions next.
The problem should be lurking somewhere around here – Remove it. Then Refresh Your Firefox Settings.
How to Remove “Play Search Now” From Chrome in OSX:
Start Chrome, click —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There, find the malware and select .
Click 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!