How to remove Weknow

What is Weknow Search?

Weknow is a rogue site known for hijacking the settings of the user’s browser through unwanted software. The search engine and the homepage are the elements that are most likely to get modified by Weknow as it sets them to weknow.ac.

Weknow is a program that is characterized by its ability to integrate with your browser and alter some of its settings. Therefore, Weknow belongs to the category of software more commonly referred to as browser hijackers. This one in particular is known to target Mac users and can infiltrate some of the more popular browsing programs such as Safari, Chrome and Firefox.

 

The settings that software of this type typically affects have to do with the browser’s homepage and the default search engine. A piece of programming like Weknow will normally introduce its own search engine as your new default one and will probably set the same as your new homepage as well. This is done with the intention of promoting said page, as well as exposing users to a variety of sponsored web content. Hence, this is also why once a browser hijacker becomes incorporated into your system, you begin to see an unusually large quantity of online ads every time you browse the web.

How to remove Weknow

The Weknow.ac Virus is a rogue search engine which will redirect you every time when you try to search something in your browser, whether it is Chrome, Safari or any other browser.

When your system is infected with the Weknow Virus, your browser (let’s say Chrome), will start to redirect you to one of many possible websites. One of which is search.nariabox.com, see the picture below.

 

How to remove Weknow

Search.nariabox.com is a browser hijacker just like Weknow.ac. Their mission is to annoy you with all kinds of pop-ups and ads.

Weknow for Mac

Weknow for Mac is programmed to generate substantial amounts of popups, banners, box messages and other ads during your browsing sessions. Thus, Weknow for Mac is essentially an elaborate tool for advertising.

However, while it may seem relatively harmless at first, there are background processes that Weknow may be running that may make you want to remove it as quickly as possible. For one, the ad generating process does pull on your computer’s RAM and CPU, which can slow down your machine’s overall performance. Not to mention that it can even lead to frequent browser crashes, which is annoying in and of itself. But on top of that, browser hijackers like this one tend to track the browsing patterns of affected users for marketing purposes.

Despite being considered a potentially unwanted program, Weknow is not a virus. Weknow cannot cause any real harm or damage to your Mac computer. Unlike real malware such as ransomware and Trojans, a browser hijacker is only intended to generate revenue for its developers by promoting various products, services and websites.

This happens, most commonly, through such remuneration schemes like PPC (pay per click) and PPV (pay per view). So, the more often you view or click on the displayed ads, the better for the hijacker creators. However, keep in mind that the websites that you may be redirected to are not guaranteed to be safe to visit. It is very possible to land on unsecure or infected pages that could get you into serious trouble. So our advice is that you try to avoid clicking on any of the ads and remove Weknow from your system.

The Weknow AppYou likely installed the Weknow app alongside some other software without realizing it. Developers often use program bundles to distribute hijackers like the Weknow app. Never fear, though, as Weknow can be removed from your system following a few simple steps. And you can check those out in our free removal guide below.

SUMMARY:

Name Weknow.ac
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms Any kind of browsing disturbance related to browser changes and ads-generation can be attributed to the presence of a hijacker on your PC.
Distribution Method Different methods such as spam, malvertising, software bundling, torrents, and others are oftentimes used for the distribution of hijackers.
Detection Tool

How to Remove Weknow from Chrome/Mac

How to remove Weknow

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.

How to remove Weknow

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

Start Activity Monitor by opening up Finder, then proceed to How to remove Weknow

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:

How to remove Weknow

Now click on Sample at the bottom:

How to remove Weknow

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:

How to remove Weknow
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
How to remove WeknowClamAV
How to remove WeknowAVG AV
How to remove WeknowMaldet

How to remove Weknow

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.

How to remove Weknow

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,

How to remove Weknow

and then again on the Extensions tab,

How to remove Weknow

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.
How to remove Weknow

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,
How to remove Weknow

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

How to remove Weknow

Check if your Homepage is the one you have selected, if not change it to whatever you prefer.
How to remove Weknow

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 Weknow How to Remove Weknow.ac From Firefox in OSX:

Open Firefoxclick on How to remove Weknow (top right) ——-> Add-onsHit Extensions next.

How to remove Weknow

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


How to remove WeknowHow to Remove Weknow.ac From Chrome in OSX:

Start Chrome, click How to remove Weknow —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There,  find the malware and  select  How to remove Weknow.

How to remove Weknow

Click How to remove Weknow 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!

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About the author

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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.

4 Comments

  • I kept trying the steps here and everywhere I could find them and while I was certain that I had removed the local adware/malware my Chrome browser STILL would default to WeKnow and every time I opened Chrome it added another reference to WeKnow in my search engine list. One of which was always dark bold font and could not be removed or successfully edited.

    Ultimately, I found a reference (link below if you want to read the thread, but I’ve put the steps here to make it easy) to the fact that the malware makes changes to your Chrome policies (you can see them by typing chrome://policy into your chrome browser). You can fix the problem by doing the following:

    1) Open your Terminal application (easy way is type “Terminal” into your spotlight search and hit return, OR open your Applications folder, open the Utilities folder in that folder an double click the “Terminal” application in that folder.

    2) Copy and paste each of these lines into the terminal application window at the prompt one at a time hitting return after you paste the line in.

    3) Restart your computer and open Chrome.

    4) Smile and have a drink.

    • Use the command line to delete / modify the affected policies. You do this by opening up “Terminal” and copy and paste each of the following entries below. I did each one at a time. I copy and pasted the first line and then hit enter and then went to the next until I had finished all 6 below:

      defaults write com.google.Chrome HomepageIsNewTabPage -bool false
      defaults write com.google.Chrome NewTabPageLocation -string “https://www.google.com/”
      defaults write com.google.Chrome HomepageLocation -string “https://www.google.com/”
      defaults delete com.google.Chrome DefaultSearchProviderSearchURL
      defaults delete com.google.Chrome DefaultSearchProviderNewTabURL
      defaults delete com.google.Chrome DefaultSearchProviderName

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