Search SweetIM Removal (Nov.2017 Update)

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.


This page aims to help you remove Search SweetIM. Our removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.

SweetIM is a browser hijacker, designed to redirect online users to certain sponsored web locations. This program often installs a new search engine or homepage to your Chrome, Firefox or Internet Explorer and starts to generate various pop-ups, banners, and ads on your screen while you are browsing the web. In fact, the new search engine is nothing more than a potentially unwanted component that is used to generate pay-per-click revenue. Oftentimes, the users who are exposed to the browser hijacker’s activity complain that this software creates chaos on their computer by changing the browser settings and starting to continually redirect their searches to various insecure domains. If you’ve already noticed redirection activity to some sites that you don’t know or don’t want to interact with, it’s a good idea to scan your computer with reliable antimalware software. On this page, you can find such software, or alternatively, you can try to manually detect and remove the browser hijacker with the help of the removal guide below. Fortunately, SweetIM is not as serious as a real virus (such as a Trojan horse, Ransomware or Spyware), so you do not have to be a genius to remove it from your system. All you need to do is to carefully follow the instructions in the next lines and run a deep scan with the professional removal tool.

Search SweetIM

Is it worth adding Search SweetIM to your browser?

As we have already mentioned above, many people, who face browser hijackers like SweetIM, find their activity quite annoying. The reason is such software can “occupy” Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Safari, and other browsers installed on your computer. Once it has become part of your system, the hijacker forces you to use an unreliable search engine that is known to provide users with incorrect search results and misleading text ads. The most unpleasant feature of this browser hijacker is the tendency to lead you to insecure pages or sketchy ads that prompt you to click on them and are usually very hard to remove. If you want to be safe, you should be very careful with any search result, provided by SweetIM, since you never know how safe it is and where it may lead you to.

Search SweetIM Removal

If you are a Windows user, continue with the guide below.

If you are a Mac user, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you are an Android user, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.


Step1

Some of the steps will likely require you to exit the page. Bookmark it for later reference.

Reboot in Safe Mode (use this guide if you don’t know how to do it).

Step2

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

We get asked this a lot, so we are putting it here: Removing parasite manually may take hours and damage your system in the process. 

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.

If for some reason it doesn't remove parasite, go to "Spyware HelpDesk" ----> "Select Problem Type" -----> "Unremoved Parasit.e"

Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC at the same time and go to the Processes Tab (the “Details” Tab on Win 8 and 10). Try to determine which processes are dangerous. 

malware-start-taskbar

Right click on each of them and select Open File Location. Then scan the files with our free online virus scanner:

Drag and Drop Files Here to Scan
Maximum file size: 128MB.

This scanner is free and will always remain free for our website's users. You can find its full-page version at: https://howtoremove.guide/online-virus-scanner/




Scan Results


Virus Scanner Result
ClamAV
AVG AV
Maldet

After you open their folder, end the processes that are infected, then delete their folders. 

Note: If you are sure something is part of the infection – delete it, even if the scanner doesn’t flag it. No anti-virus program can detect all infections. 

Step3

Hold together the Start Key and R. Type appwiz.cpl –> OK.

appwiz

You are now in the Control Panel. Look for suspicious entries. Uninstall it/them.

Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter. A window will pop-up:

msconfig_opt

Startup —> Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer or otherwise look suspicious.

Step4

Hold the Start Key and R –  copy + paste the following and click OK:

notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts

A new file will open. If you are hacked, there will be a bunch of other IPs connected to you at the bottom. Look at the image below:

hosts_opt (1)

If there are suspicious IPs below “Localhost” – write to us in the comments.

Open the start menu and search for Network Connections (On Windows 10 you just write it after clicking the Windows button), press enter.

  1. Right-click on the Network Adapter you are using —> Properties —> Internet Protocol Version 4 (ICP/IP), click  Properties.
  2. The DNS line should be set to Obtain DNS server automatically. If it is not, set it yourself.
  3. Click on Advanced —> the DNS tab. Remove everything here (if there is something) —> OK.

DNS

Step5

  • After you complete this step, the threat will be gone from your browsers. Finish the next step as well or it may reappear on a system reboot.

Right click on the browser’s shortcut —> Properties.

NOTE: We are showing Google Chrome, but you can do this for Firefox and IE (or Edge).

browser-hijacker-taskbar-properties

Properties —–> Shortcut. In Target, remove everything after .exe.

ie9-10_512x512  Remove SweetIM from Internet Explorer:

Open IE, click  IE GEAR —–> Manage Add-ons.

pic 3

Find the threat —> Disable. Go to IE GEAR —–> Internet Options —> change the URL to whatever you use (if hijacked) —> Apply.

firefox-512 Remove SweetIM from Firefox:

Open Firefoxclick  mozilla menu  ——-> Add-ons —-> Extensions.

pic 6

Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove SweetIM from Chrome:

Close Chrome. Navigate to:

 C:/Users/!!!!USER NAME!!!!/AppData/Local/Google/Chrome/User Data. There is a Folder called “Default” inside:

Rename the Folder to Backup Default

Rename it to Backup Default. Restart Chrome.

Step6

WARNING!
To remove parasite, you may have to meddle with system files and registries. Making a mistake and deleting the wrong thing may damage your system.
Avoid this by using SpyHunter - a professional Parasite removal tool.

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware & virus scanner is free. To remove the infection, you'll need to purchase its full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.

Type Regedit in the windows search field and press Enter.

Inside, press CTRL and F together and type the threat’s Name. Right click and delete any entries you find with a similar name. If they don’t show up this way, go manually to these directories and delete/uninstall them:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random Directory. It could be any one of them – ask us if you can’t discern which ones are malicious.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—-Windows—CurrentVersion—Run– Random
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random

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!

Generally, browser hijackers are not considered malicious, since it does not contain harmful codes and its primary purpose is to advertise and bring profits through clicks. However, if you notice that your browser is redirecting you to gaming sites, aggressive sales offers, adult content, or other sketchy web locations, it is advisable to remove the hijacking software before you have unknowingly bumped into some well-camouflaged Trojan horse or Ransomware cryptovirus. This is the main reason why we recommend uninstalling SweetIM once you have found that this program has managed to take over your browser.

Finally, we also want to warn you of the tracking cookies that go along with this hijacker. The program usually installs some data-tracking components, which are typically used to track computer users and collect non-personal data, such as most commonly used search terms, most visited web pages, location, and other similar details. The developers may claim that this information is used for marketing purposes, however, you should consider the possibilities of this data being compromised and falling into the hands of some hackers. They can use it as and when they want and this will do no good for you.

Spreading browser hijackers on the internet

Potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) of this type are typically distributed using a bundling technique. This technique is normally used by the browser hijacker developers to hide unwanted applications as extra components in free software installers, different torrents, installation managers, automatic wizards, shareware platforms and free download links. Unfortunately, this method has proven to be quite effective. Its effectiveness consists in hiding the hijacker under “basic” installation mode. When installing new software, the majority of users do not pay attention to prearranged fields that allow the installation of optional software. So if you are currently dealing with SweetIM, you should know that it has probably infiltrated your system that way.

Fortunately, there is a very easy way to protect yourself from the installation of potentially unwanted programs. You basically have to choose User, Custom or Advanced settings and unmark the apps that have been suggested to you. In case you found these tips after installing the browser-hijacker on your system, below you will find a detailed removal guide with step-by-step instructions on who to uninstall SweetIM and remove all of its components from your browser. Additionally, the SweetIM removal tool can also check your operating system and detect other files, that may cause harm.

SUMMARY:

Name SweetIM
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms Generation of intrusive ads, redirects, changes in your browser’s homepage or search engine, installation of new toolbars
Distribution Method Software bundles, automatic installatin managers, torrents, freeware or shareware sites, free download links, spam.
Detection Tool We generally recommend SpyHunter or a similar anti-malware program that is updated daily.

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware detection tool is free. To remove the infection, you’ll need to purchase the full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.