I was talking about Yontoo Layers Client yesterday, and today I need to say a few words on SweetIM Search. Call it an adware or a browser extension, or whichever way you prefer, the fact remains that SweetIM Search is a troublesome piece of software. I’m not saying that it is a computer virus, not by a long shot. But when you see that your home page is being changed to search.sweetim.com and you don’t remember having it done yourself, something is off, right? Well, that happens because SweetIM Search gets installed on your computer together with other freeware, and you probably don’t even notice when that happens.
We can clearly see that SweetIM Search is directly related to sweetpacks.com website, and my recommendation is to steer away from it. Yeah, it’s not packed with viruses or any of the sort, but when a browser plugin does not want to be removed easily? I’d say something’s fishy about it. Especially, as SweetIM Search kind of tries to conceal the fact that your Home page and the default search provider are being changed. Hmm… Suspicious, isn’t it?
Now, we have already established that SweetIM Search is not a virus, so it shouldn’t cause that much problem. I mean, it’s nothing but an annoying little nuisance that you might as well live with (as long as you don’t click on the advertisements that are displayed below the search bar at search.sweetim.com). So how come it would be better for you to remove SweetIM Search?
Answer – Redirections. The search engine can redirect your search results to third party websites that might as well host malware. SweetIM Search as well as SweetIM Toolbar invade your privacy and store data that could be used for malicious purposes in case it is hacked. And since stuff like SweetIM Search does not have the best security features ever, it would be a piece of cake for a hacker to crack it open. So, even though SweetIM Search is not exactly a great threat or anything like that, better be safe than sorry. You can remove it from your computer and your browsers manually:
Uninstall SweetIM Search from Windows
Windows Vista & Windows 7
- Go to Start Menu –> Control Panel –> Uninstall a program.
- Click on SweetIM Toolbar or any other program related to SweetIM and select to Uninstall it.
- Go to Start Menu –> Control Panel –> Add or Remove Programs.
- Click on SweetIM Toolbar or other program related to SweetIM and select to Uninstall it.
- Right-click the bottom left corner of your screen and click Control Panel from the context menu.
- Go to Uninstall Program.
- Click on SweetIM Toolbar and click “Uninstall”.
Uninstall SweetIM Search from your browsers
- Go to Tools –> Manage add-ons –> Toolbars and Extensions.
- Remove SweetIM Toolbar.
- Go to Tools –> Internet Options.
- Under General tab find Home page section.
- Delete search.sweetim.com, enter the domain name you prefer and click OK.
- Go to Tools –> Manage add-ons –> Search Providers.
- Remove search.sweetim.com from the list and save changes.
- Click Firefox button and go to Add-ons.
- Under Extensions tabs locate SweetIM Toolbar, disable and remove it.
- Click Firefox button and go to Options.
- Under General tab, locate the home page section and delete search.sweetim.com.
- Enter the home page address you prefer and save changes.
- Click the search engine icon at the top right corner of your browser, left to the search bar.
- Click Manage search engines…
- Click search.sweetim.com to remove it from the list and save changes.
- Click the three-bar icon at the far right of the address bar.
- Go to Tools –> Extensions and remove SweetIM Toolbar.
- Now click the three-bar icon again and go to Settings.
- Press Set pages under “On startup” section.
- Remove search.sweetim.com from the list and enter the URL address you prefer.
- Go back to Settings and click Manage search engines… under Search section.
- Remove search.sweetim.com from the list along with other search engines that look unfamiliar to you.
- Set a legitimate search engine as a default one and save changes.
Do not forget that you need to restart your browsers for the changes to take effect. Also, it is highly recommended to scan your computer with a powerful scanner, so that you could check whether there are any malicious files remaining. Who knows what kind of crooks could’ve used SweetIM Search while it was on. Making sure that your system is clean should your top priority!