How To Uninstall Safe Finder and remove safefinder.com Hijacker?

Safe Finder or safefinder.com is a fake search engine that annoys Mac users. Often users don’t remember installing this search program however, it is likely to be installed without user’s consent. As it comes along with freeware downloads from unofficial sites, fake extensions, adware, promotional ads or fake redirect pages that asks users to update their Adobe Flash player. Such activities may inadvertently install Safe Finder search extension on the safari or Chrome browser. Once installed, it appears as a homepage and new tab and search engine address is replaced with search.safefinderformac.com.

Read this post to know all about this persistent Mac virus and its best removal solution.

Safe Finder Overview

Name Safe Finder
Type Mac Fake Redirect, browser hijacker, Adware, Search Redirect
Risk level High
Description Safe Finder is a potentially unwanted program that modify browser settings to search.safefinderformac.com. 
Occurrence Adware-type program like extension or fake tools already present in the Mac, Visiting suspicious websites causes browser redirect to questionable websites.
Possible Symptoms Search redirects to unknown pages, installation of adware programs, Change of browser settings and displaying intrusive advertisements.
Detection Tool

Download the Detection toolTo confirm attack of Safe Finder virus on your computer.

How Safe Finder Affects The Mac?

If you have Safe Finder extension installed, you may notice the following changes:

  • The default homepage/new tab is replaced by “Safe Finder New Tab”.
  • The search engine address is substituted with search.safefinderformac.com or safefinder.com. 
  • All the search queries are automatically redirected to search.safefinderformac.com. 
  • The browsing activities are controlled by Safe Finder extension.

Being a browser hijacker, users may find it hard to remove as it won’t allow them to do so. Because it cleverly changes various system sittings and grant permissions for itself to auto launch itself again and again.

Safe Finder or safefinder.com Redirect Mac

Safe Finder or safefinder.com Redirect Mac

Similar to Searchmine.net or Lkysearchds1503-a.akamaihd.net persistent search redirects, Safe Finder also redirects the searches to yahoo custom search to present the end result. However, Yahoo is a legitimate search engine, but adware manipulates the searches to drop their sponsored links and third-party recommended websites within the results. This is mainly done to make users click on the results that redirects to sponsored sites and generate traffic for them.

This encourages the download of unwanted programs, causes fake redirects or restricts the browsing. Any unwanted things on our system bothers us and so as the Safe Finder. As it not only restricts the surfing, but also silently gathers user’s browsing data other sensitive details that can be misused badly. Thus, users should avoid using this fake search engine and seek for quick removal.

How to Remove Safe Finder From Mac?

Worst thing about Safe Finder is that it does not go away easily as they do various changes to the system settings which is nearly impossible to detect and remove. Thus, even if you reset your browser or uninstall any unknown program, it can still appear again and again. Presence of such Adware can risks the privacy as they aim to collect individual’s data related to browsing, system information and so on. Thus, you need to opt for powerful removal tool to drive away Safe Finder and its associated programs from your Mac.

Combo Cleaners LogoCombo Cleaner DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where the Combo Cleaner will download)
“Safe Finder” may reinstall itself multiple times if you don’t delete its core files. We recommend downloading Combo Cleaner to scan for malicious programs. This may save your precious time and effort. Combo Cleaner scans the infected PC for free but you need to purchase its full version for complete removal. More information on Combo Cleaner.
Mac OS: Use Anti-Malware To Scan And Remove Safe Finder (Recommended)

Combo Cleaner is a complete security suite for Mac OS that is developed by “RCS LT” company. This program is featured with anti-virus scanner and system optimization tools like disk cleaner, duplicate files finder, application uninstaller, privacy scanner, and 24*7 customer support service.

Rather than being just a traditional anti-virus or a system optimizer, this single program takes a different approach that eases the user from using a different application to keep their MAC OS protected and optimized.

It is very important to have a reliable anti-virus solution for the computer system. Combo cleaner is one of the best options for MAC users as detects and eliminates all sorts of threats like adware, browser hijacker, Trojans, and other malware. It is a light-themed, easy-to-use interface and keeps updating its threat database hourly to instant detect and remove any sort of malware. Thus ensuring not any malicious stuff is behind within the system.

How to Install and Scan with Combo Cleaner

Combo Cleaners LogoCombo Cleaner DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where the Combo Cleaner will download)
  • 1. Click the above button to Download the “Combo Cleaner”;

  • 2. Once the download completes, double-click on the downloaded file;

  • 3. After the window opens, drag the Combo Cleaner program icon and drop it into your “Applications folder” icon.

    Combo Cleaner Install Step 2

    Combo Cleaner Install Step 2

  • 4. Now, open your “Launchpad” and click on the “Combo Cleaner” icon.

    Combo Cleaner Install Step 3

    Combo Cleaner Install Step 3

  • 5. This will start the combo cleaner installation and updates its latest virus definition. Once done, Combo cleaner will launch;

    Combo Cleaner Dashboard

    Combo Cleaner Dashboard

  • 6. Click on “Antivirus” tab and choose the scan options like Quick, Full, and custom. (Full is recommended for the first time)

    Combo Cleaner Antivirus Scan

    Combo Cleaner Antivirus Scan

  • 7. Let the scan be completed and it will list all the threats found. Now, click on “Remove All Threats”;

    Combo Cleaner Scan Results

    Combo Cleaner Scan Results

  • 8. after removing the threats, click on the “uninstaller” to find and remove any unwanted programs. Select the program from the list and its related files and then click on “Remove Selected Items“

    Combo Cleaner Uninstaller

    Combo Cleaner Uninstaller

Combo Cleaners LogoCombo Cleaner DOWNLOAD LINK
(The above link will open a new page from where the Combo Cleaner will download)
If you still have the second thought about this anti-malware, then you may want to check out our review article about Combo Cleaner.
Mac OS: Manually Find And Remove Safe Finder ( Not Recommended)
If you are going for the manual removal process, then we recommend you to print/download these instructions or open it from another uninfected computer or laptop and follow step-by-step manual removal instruction. Mac OS PDF Guide

Step 1. Ending Process Running Under The “Activity Monitor”

    • 1. Type “Activity Monitor” in the Launchpad to open it;
      Launchpad-1.1.1

      Launchpad-1.1.1

      Activity Minor - 1.1.2

      Activity Minor – 1.1.2

    • 2. Scroll through the list of running apps, look for the suspicious ones that appear unknown to you or taking huge CPU resources.
    • 3. Use the [x] button to quit the process.
      Force Stop -1.2 and 1.3

      Force Stop -1.2 and 1.3

Step 2. Remove Malicious Apps From Mac OS

      • 1. Open “Finder” by clicking on the Finder application on your dock.
        Finder - 2.1

        Finder – 2.1

      • 2. In the left pane of the Finder, click on “Applications“.
        Applications - 2.2

        Applications – 2.2

      • 3. Next, you need to locate the Adware/suspicious apps and remove them. The “Applications” window will display the list of all apps installed on your Mac OS.
        Step - 2.3

        Step – 2.3

      • 4. Now, you need to go through the list to find out the suspicious/malicious or infectious app, select it then right click and then select “Move to Trash”. (Repeat this step until you remove all such apps).
        Move to Trash - 2.4

        Move to Trash – 2.4

      • 5. Now you need to empty the trash as sometimes program can restore themselves from the trash. On your dock, right-click on the trash icon and then select “Empty Trash”.
        Step - 2.5.1

        Step – 2.5.1

        Step 2.5.2

        Step 2.5.2

if something looks suspicious to you but you are not sure of that, search the web to find out more about that app.

Step 3. Remove Apps From Auto-Startup

Generally, malicious programs, Adware and spyware add themselves to the boot process to launch automatically whenever the device boots. So, you need to find such apps and remove from the startups.

      • 1. Open Apple menu → System Preferences
        Step - 3.1

        Step – 3.1

      • 2. Now, choose “Users & Groups” section
        Step - 3.2

        Step – 3.2

      • 3. Select your username from the left pane;
        Step - 3.3

        Step – 3.3

      • 4. A list will appear showing login items; check the list and use “” sign to disable any suspicious or unwanted apps you see. Close the screen.
        Step - 3.4

        Step – 3.4

      • 5. Next step, from the top menu, choose GoGo to Folder, then type /Users/Shared/ within the search box. In the “Sharedfolder”, you need to delete the “Similar” files and folders.
        Step - 3.5.1

        Step – 3.5.1

        Step - 3.5.2

        Step – 3.5.2

        Step - 3.5.3

        Step – 3.5.3

      • 6. Now Restart your Mac to make the changes into effect.
        Step - 3.6

        Step – 3.6

Step 4. Remove Daemons And Agents From Mac’s Startup

      • 1. From top menu → Choose GoGo to Folder
        Step - 4.1

        Step – 4.1

      • 2. Type in “/Library/LaunchDaemons”, within this location you will see lots of files with .plist extension. Scroll through it and find the ones which appear to be suspicious and delete them.
        Step - 4.2.1

        Step – 4.2.1

        Step - 4.2.2

        Step – 4.2.2

      • 3. Do the same for other launching agents locations:
          1. /Library/LaunchAgents
          2. ~/Library/LaunchAgents

        For example: an adware named Vsearch, you may get launching agent as :
        /Library/LaunchAgents/com.vsearch.agent.plist
        ~/Library/LaunchAgents/com.vsearch.agent.plist
        Don’t forget to empty the trash and then restart the computer.

        Step - 4.3.1

        Step – 4.3.1

        Step - 4.3.2

        Step – 4.3.2

      • 4. After restart, again repeat step 1-2 and type in: /System/Library/Frameworks/ (look for the malicious file with .framework extension like /System/Library/Frameworks/VSearch.framework)
        Step 4.4.1

        Step 4.4.1

        Step - 4.4.2

        Step – 4.4.2

      • 5. Put the file to trash, if you find one with a malicious name.
      • 6. Similarly, do more searches within the location:
        • /Library/Application Support/
        • /Library/PrivilegedHelperTools/
          Step - 4.6.1

          Step – 4.6.1

          Step - 4.6.2

          Step – 4.6.2

          Step - 4.6.3

          Step – 4.6.3

          Step - 4.6.4

          Step – 4.6.4

      • 7. Put them to trash and again empty the trash and restart the computer.
        Step- 4.7.1

        Step- 4.7.1

        Step - 4.7.2

        Step – 4.7.2

        Step - 4.7.3

        Step – 4.7.3

Step 5. Uninstall Unwanted/Suspicious Extensions From Browsers

Reset Safari Browser Guide

Follow the steps to remove unwanted and suspicious extensions from the Safari browser:

      • 1. On the Safari browser, click the “Safari” menu then select “Preferences”.
        Reset Mac Chrome Step-1

        Reset Mac Safari Step-1

      • 2. On the General tab of the Safari preferences, check for any unknown URL added as the default homepage, Within the “Homepage” field enter your preferred URL as your default start-page of the browser.
        Reset Mac Chrome Step-2

        Reset Mac Safari Step-2

      • 3. Next, you need to check for malicious extensions, click on the “Extensions” tab on the same window.
      • 4.Extensions” screen will list all the extensions installed on your safari browser, you need to browse through the list and uninstall the ones which appear to be Adware. If you find a malicious extension select it and then click on “Uninstall”. Repeat the steps to remove all unwanted extensions.
        Reset Mac Safari Step-3

        Reset Mac Safari Step-3

      • 4. Close the Safari browser.
Reset Chrome Browser Guide

To check for unknown extensions installed:

      • 1. Click on Chrome Menu(three vertical dots at top-right corner) → Select “Settings” → Choose “Extensions”.
        Remove Chrome Extensions 1

        Remove Chrome Extensions 1

      • 2. Scroll through the list of extensions installed on the Chrome browser, if any one of them appears to malicious then click on the “trash” icon next to it. This will remove the extension.
        Remove Chrome Extensions 2

        Remove Chrome Extensions 2

      • 1. Repeat the step until you are sure of the ones you like to keep.

To Reset The Browser:

Next, you need to reset the default settings like search engines, startup, and new tabs. It is better to use the default reset feature of the Google Chrome which will reset all the unwanted modifications done by third-party programs. Don’t worry you will not lose your saved passwords and bookmarks. However, it will delete cookies, extensions, startups, URLs, homepage and new tabs preferences.

      • 1. Click on Chrome’s main menu then choose “Settings“.
        Reset Browser Chrome 1

        Reset Browser Chrome 1

      • 2. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “Advanced”.
        Reset Browser Chrome 2

        Reset Browser Chrome 2

      • 3. Under the Advanced page, go for “Reset and clean up” section, then click on “Reset settings to their original defaults”.
        Reset Browser Chrome 3

        Reset Browser Chrome 3

      • 4. Next, click on “Reset”, you will be prompted for a confirmation This will reset your startup page, a new tab page, search engine, and pinned tabs. It will also disable all extensions and clear temporary data like cookies. Your bookmarks, history, and saved passwords will not be cleared”
      • 5. Click on the “Reset Settings” button to confirm the procedure.
        Reset Browser Chrome 4

        Reset Browser Chrome 4

      • 6. After that, it may ask to restart your browser, click “Yes”.

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