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How to remove Any Search Manager malware from Mac (Safari, Chrome, Firefox)

This article provides easy-to-follow steps to remove AnySearchManager virus from Mac and stop constant browser redirects to

Update: May 2020

Threat Profile
Name Any Search ( browser hijacker
Category Mac adware, browser hijacker, redirect virus
Detection Avast: Other:Malware-gen [Trj], AVG: Other:Malware-gen [Trj], Avira: ADWARE/OSX.Bundlore.fgowa, BitDefender: Adware.MAC.Bundlore.DJO, F-Secure: Adware.ADWARE/OSX.Bundlore, GData: Adware.MAC.Bundlore.997
Related Domains,,
Symptoms Redirects web browser to third-party websites such as, adds sponsored content to search results, causes system slowdown, resists regular removal
Distribution Techniques Fake Adobe Flash Player update popups, booby-trapped app bundles, spam
Severity Level Medium
Damage Unwanted changes of custom browsing settings, privacy issues due to Internet activity tracking, search redirects, redundant ads
Removal Scan your Mac with Combo Cleaner to detect all files related to the browser hijacker. Use the tool to remove the infection if found.

AnySearchManager/Any Search Manager, or simply Any Search, is a Mac app claiming to deliver handy features but ultimately showing that the supposed online experience improvements are wishful thinking rather than reality. One of the things that strike the eye from the start is that, according to the official web page of this solution, it was created by a vendor called SafeFinder. That’s quite a giveaway right there, because the latter gained notoriety a while ago for unethical Internet marketing through browser hijack practices. AnySearchManager, obviously, inherits these hallmarks to the fullest. Just like the average potentially unwanted application (PUA) out there, it purports to be the best thing since sliced bread, allowing users to look up information online directly from their desktop. This sure sounds like a good deal, but negative user feedback proves it wrong.

Browser redirected to

A trait that allows categorizing this tool as an unwelcome entity manifests itself on the installation stage. Mac users normally don’t install AnySearchManager in a way they would get regular software on board. Specifically, rather than go to the homepage of the app and start from there, people unknowingly sanction the setup while going through installation steps for another program. This trickery is known as bundling. That’s a technique where something malicious slithers its way inside a machine concurrently with some benign freeware. What makes this tactic cybercriminals’ favorite is that, technically, users opt for their malware while accepting the general terms in a setup client. It is noteworthy that many people fall victim to this infection when updating Adobe Flash Player. This gives a clue about an ongoing distribution campaign that involves said popular utility. Crack tools, or so-called keygen applications, are another point of entry for Any Search Manager. To begin with, these utilities per se aren’t legitimate because they are designed to circumvent official license registration and thereby violate software copyright. To top it off, they can be riddled with adware such as the culprit under scrutiny.

AnySearchManager homepage

Let’s move on to the symptoms. After AnySearchManager infects a Mac computer, it instantly modifies browser defaults in Safari, Chrome and Firefox. The victim will notice this as their search provider and most likely the preferred homepage will start resolving URL instead of the right value they defined. In the aftermath of these changes, the user will be forced to hit the rogue website whenever they do a search online and open the affected browser. The site is a starting point that leads to another service (mostly Yahoo custom search results) whenever a query is entered. En route to the landing page, though, the intercepted web navigation hits a few ad networks that only show up in the browser’s status bar fleetingly and hence aren’t really conspicuous.

One more concern is that the sponsored information shown on the resulting landing page corresponds to the victim’s interests. This accuracy means that AnySearchManager tracks down the infected Mac user’s browsing history, including sensitive information such as recent searches and visited sites. The app is also known to collect data about the host system’s configuration, for instance, the IP address, macOS version, and installed applications. Some extra evidence of the foul play is unambiguously manifested in the description of this unwanted extension once it has cropped up in a browser. According to the notice, the add-on can read and modify content from all web pages. The message elaborates further on the types of this information: it spans, among other things, passwords, credit card details, and phone numbers. This activity poses a serious privacy risk and should be terminated without delay.

The landing page itself, titled Any Search, looks more than primitive. It’s got nothing but a search bar and a few standard links down at the bottom pointing to the developer’s contact information, Privacy Policy, EULA, and uninstall instructions. This simplicity is understandable, given that the page has no search functionality of its own. It simply forwards all queries to Yahoo, with the SERPs (search engine results pages) being labeled SafeFinder. While it all appears to be an overly complicated scheme, the idea is most likely to intercept the traffic of as many users as possible in order to display ads and engage other forms of monetization. All in all, AnySearchManager acts defiantly by changing browser defaults without permission and preventing victims from getting things back to normal the regular way. This is why the fix boils down to a specially crafted procedure that will result in removing the virus and rectifying the altered settings.

AnySearchManager virus manual removal for Mac

The steps listed below will walk you through the removal of this malicious application. Be sure to follow the instructions in the specified order.

  1. Expand the Go menu in your Mac’s Finder bar and select Utilities as shown below.

    Go to Utilities

  2. Locate the Activity Monitor icon on the Utilities screen and double-click on it.

    Select the Activity Monitor

  3. In the Activity Monitor app, look for Any Search Manager or another process that appears suspicious. To narrow down your search, focus on unfamiliar resource-intensive entries on the list. Keep in mind that its name isn’t necessarily related to the way the threat is manifesting itself, so you’ll need to trust your own judgement. If you pinpoint the culprit, select it and click on the Stop icon in the upper left-hand corner of the screen.

    Stop malicious process

  4. When a follow-up dialog pops up asking if you are sure you want to quit the troublemaking process, select the Force Quit option.

    Select the Force Quit option

  5. Click on the Go menu icon in the Finder again and select Go to Folder. You can as well use the Command-Shift-G keyboard shortcut.

    Use the Go to Folder feature

  6. Type /Library/LaunchAgents in the folder search dialog and click on the Go button.

    Open /Library/LaunchAgents folder

  7. Examine the contents of the LaunchAgents folder for dubious-looking items. Be advised that the names of files spawned by malware may give no clear clues that they are malicious, so you should look for recently added entities that appear to deviate from the norm.

    As an illustration, here are several examples of LaunchAgents related to mainstream Mac infections: com.pcv.hlpramc.plist, com.updater.mcy.plist, com.avickUpd.plist, and com.msp.agent.plist. If you spot files that don’t belong on the list, go ahead and drag them to the Trash.

    Root-level LaunchAgents folder contents

  8. Use the Go to Folder lookup feature again to navigate to the folder named ~/Library/Application Support (note the tilde symbol prepended to the path).

    Open ~/Library/Application Support folder

  9. When the Application Support directory is opened, identify recently generated suspicious folders in it and send them to the Trash. A quick tip is to look for items whose names have nothing to do with Apple products or apps you knowingly installed. A few examples of known-malicious folder names are IdeaShared, ForwardOpen and ExtraBrowser.

    Application Support folder contents

  10. Enter ~/Library/LaunchAgents string (don’t forget to include the tilde character) in the Go to Folder search area.

    Open ~/Library/LaunchAgents directory

  11. The system will display LaunchAgents residing in the current user’s Home directory. Look for dodgy items related to Any Search Manager virus (see logic highlighted in subsections above) and drag the suspects to the Trash.

    Contents of LaunchAgents folder in user’s home directory

  12. Type /Library/LaunchDaemons in the Go to Folder search field.

    Go to /Library/LaunchDaemons

  13. In the LaunchDaemons path, try to pinpoint the files the malware is using for persistence. Several examples of such items cropped by Mac infections are com.pplauncher.plist, com.startup.plist, and com.ExpertModuleSearchDaemon.plist. Delete the sketchy files immediately.

    LaunchDaemons folder contents

  14. Click on the Go menu icon in your Mac’s Finder and select Applications on the list.

    Go to Applications screen on Mac

  15. Find the entry for Any Search Manager or another app that clearly doesn’t belong there and move it to the Trash. If this action requires your admin password for confirmation, go ahead and enter it.

    Drag malicious app to the Trash

  16. Expand the Apple menu and select System Preferences.

    Select System Preferences

    Open System Preferences

  17. Proceed to Users & Groups and click on the Login Items tab.

    Proceed to Users & Groups

    The system will display the list of items launched when the computer is starting up. Locate the potentially unwanted app there and click on the “-” (minus) button.

    Delete unwanted login item

  18. Now select Profiles under System Preferences. Look for a malicious item in the left-hand sidebar. Several examples of configuration profiles created by Mac adware include TechSignalSearch, MainSearchPlatform, AdminPrefs, and Chrome Settings. Select the offending entity and click on the minus sign at the bottom to eliminate it.

    Select Profiles under System Preferences

    Remove malicious configuration profile from Mac

    If your Mac has been infiltrated by adware, the infection will most likely continue to hold sway over your default web browser even after you remove the underlying application along with its components sprinkled around the system. Use the browser cleanup instructions below to address the remaining consequences of this attack.

Prevent redirects in web browser on Mac

To begin with, the web browser settings taken over by Any Search Manager virus should be restored to their default values. Although this will clear most of your customizations, web surfing history, and all temporary data stored by websites, the malicious interference should be terminated likewise. The overview of the steps for completing this procedure is as follows:

  1. How do I remove AnySearchManager in Safari
    • Open the browser and go to Safari menu. Select Preferences in the drop-down list

      Go to Preferences in Safari

    • Once the Preferences screen appears, click on the Advanced tab and enable the option saying “Show Develop menu in menu bar”.

      Advanced tab under Safari Preferences

    • Now that the Develop entry has been added to the Safari menu, expand it and click on Empty Caches.

      Empty Caches in Safari

    • Now select History in the Safari menu and click on Clear History in the drop-down list.

      Clear history in Safari

    • Safari will display a dialog asking you to specify the period of time this action will apply to. Select all history to ensure a maximum effect. Click on the Clear History button to confirm and exit.

      Select all history to clear

    • Go back to the Safari Preferences and hit the Privacy tab at the top. Find the option that says Manage Website Data and click on it.

      Manage Website Data option under Privacy tab

    • The browser will display a follow-up screen listing the websites that have stored data about your Internet activities. This dialog additionally includes a brief description of what the removal does: you may be logged out of some services and encounter other changes of website behavior after the procedure. If you’re okay with that, go ahead and click on the Remove All button.

      Confirmation dialog

    • Restart Safari
  2. How to get rid of Any Search Manager in Chrome
    • Open Chrome, click the Customize and control Google Chrome (⁝) icon in the top right-hand part of the window, and select Settings in the drop-down

      Chrome Settings

    • When on the Settings pane, select Advanced
    • Scroll down to the Reset settings section.

      Reset settings in Chrome on Mac

    • Confirm the Chrome reset on a dialog that will pop up. When the procedure is completed, relaunch the browser and check it for malware activity.

      Here’s how to reset settings in Chrome on Mac

  3. How do I remove AnySearchManager in Mozilla Firefox
    • Open Firefox and go to Help – Troubleshooting Information (or type about:support in the URL bar and press Enter).

      Open Firefox and go to Help

      Select Troubleshooting Information

    • When on the Troubleshooting Information screen, click on the Refresh Firefox button.

      Refresh Firefox on Mac

    • Confirm the intended changes and restart Firefox.

Get rid of AnySearchManager malware using Combo Cleaner removal tool

The Mac maintenance and security app called Combo Cleaner is a one-stop tool to detect and remove AnySearchManager virus. This technique has substantial benefits over manual cleanup, because the utility gets hourly virus definition updates and can accurately spot even the newest Mac infections.

Furthermore, the automatic solution will find the core files of the malware deep down the system structure, which might otherwise be a challenge to locate. Here’s a walkthrough to sort out the AnySearchManager issue using Combo Cleaner:

  1. Download Combo Cleaner installer. When done, double-click the combocleaner.dmg file and follow the prompts to install the tool onto your Mac.

    Download Combo Cleaner

    By downloading any applications recommended on this website you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy. The free scanner checks whether your Mac is infected. To get rid of malware, you need to purchase the Premium version of Combo Cleaner.

  2. Open the app from your Launchpad and let it run an update of the malware signature database to make sure it can identify the latest threats.
  3. Click the Start Combo Scan button to check your Mac for malicious activity as well as performance issues.

    Combo Cleaner Mac scan progress

  4. Examine the scan results. If the report says “No Threats”, then you are on the right track with the manual cleaning and can safely proceed to tidy up the web browser that may continue to act up due to the after-effects of the malware attack (see instructions above).

    Combo Cleaner scan report – no threats found

  5. In case Combo Cleaner has detected malicious code, click the Remove Selected Items button and have the utility remove AnySearchManager threat along with any other viruses, PUPs (potentially unwanted programs), or junk files that don’t belong on your Mac.

    Combo Cleaner – threats found

  6. Once you have made doubly sure that the malicious app is uninstalled, the browser-level troubleshooting might still be on your to-do list. If your preferred browser is affected, resort to the previous section of this tutorial to revert to hassle-free web surfing.



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