Google searches are being redirected

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Google searches are being redirected slambo511 3/22/09 4:38 PM
3 out of 4 times when I click on a link after performing a search with google I am redirected to various nefarious sites. The browser say in the bottom left as I am redirected. Having tried to search for this website and having had no joy, I used the host file to redirect so get page not found blah blah. I use kaspersky internet security, Ad-aware and Spyware doctor but they detect nothing. Please help thanks
Re: Google searches are being redirected Mitch123 3/22/09 7:29 PM
I also have this problem, except I get redirected to, then to a site completely unrelated. Here are some screenshots of what happens:

I've recently been infected with some trojans, but I removed them with AVG. I noticed a "custom" search option which has never been there before... so what's going on?

Re: Google searches are being redirected Mitch123 3/22/09 7:37 PM
Also, I think my proxy settings have changed...

HTTP Proxy: localhost Port: 7171
No proxy for: localhost,
Re: Google searches are being redirected mooredc54 3/23/09 1:49 AM
You have a virus, please take appropriate virus removal steps.
Re: Google searches are being redirected slambo511 3/23/09 2:49 AM
Thanks all very helpful, not. Which virus? I figured that something like that was the case, but have scanned my pc with numerous programs and still can find nothing. I would appreciate any advice you can give me.
Re: Google searches are being redirected mooredc54 3/23/09 5:25 AM
Which Virus???  Several mutations of a virus that causes this type of search result behavior have been reported, yours is one of hundreds.  Take appropriate steps to remove the virus  The virus mutates quickly you may need the help of a forum that specializes in virus removal if your own AV software can not fix the problem.
Re: Google searches are being redirected Mitch123 3/23/09 6:20 AM

Following the advice of these and a bit of googling solved the issue for me. I think ZoneAlarm is a good idea, and spyware blaster is pretty cool.
Re: Google searches are being redirected slambo511 3/23/09 12:50 PM
Dont worry guys, I found the answer, it was a virus residing in firefox. Had to unistall firefox, delete the associated folder in c:\windows\program files\mozilla, run a registry clean to remove left over keys and then reinstall firefox along with NOScript and WOT (web of trust) addons to prevent future problems. I really hope this helps anyone else with similar symptoms. Why my AV and various AntiSpyware programs did not rectify this is a mystery. @mooredc54 I appreciate your opinion about using a specialist forum but these are not always the easiest thing to use for novices and seeing as how this virus only affected google, I assumed that this was the correct forum in which to ask for assistance.
Re: Google searches are being redirected Kaleh 3/23/09 1:49 PM
slambo511 .. many forms of malware are specifically coded to affect one, some or all popular search engines.  Kind of tricky of them to isolate it to one search engine so it throws you off track ... isn't it?  Most people do assume that it is a Google problem even when it isn't.  Even more frustrating is that there are so many types of malware that there is not one single product that will do the job for everybody.  It's generally a trial and error process and really isn't so mysterious when the various programs you try don't fix things for you.

Coming here to get confirmation as to whether an issue is a Google problem, or potentially something else is a big part of what goes on here.  However, we do sometimes have to suggest that people go to a malware removal forum if their AV or supplementary anti-malware products and / or other research doesn't provide a solution for them.  Of course, there is always the chance that enough people drop by to share experiences that you might actually find the specific solution you need.

Your solution is interesting, as I have not before heard of such a problem being specifically related to Firefox in such a way as to require uninstalling and reinstalling.  There have been situations I recall where add-ons to various browsers were linked to the undesireable behavior.  Thanks for coming back to share!

Re: Google searches are being redirected Cobra2411 3/24/09 12:39 PM
+1 Slambo511....

I had the same problem. Occasionally I would get redirected when searching. No AV or Spyware found. I started by blocking sites in my firewall as they came up till I could fix it. Tried uninstalling and reinstalling Firefox, but it didn't fix it. I uninstalled it, removed the directory, cleaned the registry and reinstalled.

So far so good... Thanks!
Re: Google searches are being redirected slambo511 3/24/09 3:32 PM
@cobra2411 Glad to be of help, just hope that the AV companies pick up on it soon and incorporate it in their programs soon as it seems to be a common problem.
Re: Google searches are being redirected sufernsucatash 3/25/09 12:35 PM
I've been having the same problem.  My results are being redireced but it appears to be happening in both IE and Firefox.  On top of that, my AVG was disabled and so was Webroot Spysweeper.  They start back up manually but are no longer part of the start-up.  Neither of the programs has found the problem.  Nor did Malwarebyte's anti-malware or spyware blaster.  AVG seems to loose its connection to the server when I try to update it. (I'm assuming this is genuis, prevent the anti-virus program from downloading updates to prevent a new virus from being fought).

This is at home.  I'm at work now.  Just before I left, I restored to a week ago, and it seems to have cut the problem out.  But I have a feeling the bugger is just hiding somewhere and I really want to find it and zap it.
Re: Google searches are being redirected Kaleh 3/25/09 12:49 PM

You may be fine with the restore, but you will want to also make sure that your OS and browsers are fully updated, as well as any other applications on your system. 

Outdated Java versions still being on your computer (older versions were not always removed when updates were installed), media players that are not current and Adobe software for reading PDF files are sometimes the weak link that allows this stuff to get on your computer in the first place.
Re: Google searches are being redirected mooredc54 3/25/09 3:15 PM

Several mutations of a virus that cause this type of search result behavior have been reported, yours is one of hundreds of complaints [as I stated previously and can be found in this very forum].  Take all the normal appropriate steps to remove the virus  The virus mutates quickly and you may need the help of a forum that specializes in virus removal if your own AV software can not fix the problem.

Several of the more sophisticated viruses will disable both Windows Update and Anti-Virus updates.  There is an especially interesting "April Fools Day Virus" that actually updates itself to counter the Anti-Virus vendors moves against it.

You might be lucky and find a simple virus that is easily removed, but please do not delude yourselves to assume similar symptoms mean you have the exact same virus ... that is just not true.

This is the Google Search Help forum and although there are a lot of very smart people here their specialties are not necessarily virus removal [there may be some exceptions if you are lucky], the purpose of this forum is to help people with Google Search and iGoogle issues.  Your complaints are symptoms of a virus and not the direct result of Google Search or iGoogle.  You might have better results going to a forum that specializes in virus removal.  Kaleh ... I know you are aware of this and you are especially good with Anti-Virus topics, but even you recommend specialized help in removing virus when the standard AV procedures do not help.

Re: Google searches are being redirected The Doctor 3/27/09 11:52 AM
I found that my proxy settings were changed in both IE and FireFox.  I turned them off and no more redirection.  But I'm still in safe mode at the moment and will see what happens when I reboot.
Re: Google searches are being redirected mooredc54 3/27/09 3:49 PM

The bigger question is how did your proxy settings get changed?  You may have taken an aspirin to reduce the fever but you might still have the Flu.
Re: Google searches are being redirected ImFlavaFlav 3/28/09 2:43 PM
"Windows could not start the Security Center service on Local Computer.
Error 1079: The account specified for this service is different from the account specified for other services running in the same process."

I also could not start Security Center from Services.msc menu, and was getting URLs hijacked from Google via

I also could successfully complete a System Restore in Vista because of "unspecified error".

Today - I resolved my issue.  Below are the steps I took:
  1. Download Malware Remover:
  2. Restart into Safe Mode (hit F8 continually when booting up)
  3. Run Malware Remover (it identified HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\kt_bho.KettleBho (Trojan.BHO))
  4. Do a System Restore for a date before issues were identified
    1. This only worked in Safe Mode, as mentioned above there was an "unspecified error" when not in Safe Mode and it failed
  5. After which, no more URL hijacking and I was able to start Security Center

Best of luck, hope this helps.

Re: Google searches are being redirected KidCharlemagne 3/30/09 4:43 AM
The solution is, as previously stated, a clean reinstall of Firefox, having removed all user data and registry information from the previous install.  No antivirus or malware software I've found correctly identifies this virus, and frankly, I've had limited success with anyone ever actually commenting on my "hijackthis" logs.

It's not hard to back up firefox extensions and profile info and reinstall.

Mooredc5, shut it.  You're not being helpful, just an insufferable know-it-all with little to offer.
Re: Google searches are being redirected Kaleh 3/30/09 5:53 PM

From the posting guidelines:

Be nice to each other. This is a community of people who care about Google Web Search, and we want to keep things friendly. Personal attacks and name-calling are not permitted. This behavior may result in a warning or removal from the community.
Re: Google searches are being redirected rimerector 3/31/09 8:36 AM
I also had the same problem for several days.  It drove me nuts.  Well, I found this post and it got rid of my problem. 

"To help all of you with that problem that I had with

use GooredFix.exe, from jpshortstuff

Close all Firefox instance and launch GooredFix.exe
use option #1, look at the result, and if it look OK, use option #2 and say yes (y). It will backup the corrupt file in a folder on the Desktop and clean your Firefox

it's really nice"

Re: Google searches are being redirected riverboy 4/8/09 5:28 AM
I reinstalled Firefox,
I have tested the search redirection, it happened in yahoo also, and the browsers!!!
Firefox, Chrome, IE, Opera, Safari, chameleon... they are all affected.
I ran a legit updated version of NOD32, can't update any anti spyware.
Removed all the BHO Files from HJT.
Can't do much more :(

Re: Google searches are being redirected slambo511 4/8/09 10:51 AM
@riverboy  Sounds like a variant of what I was afflicted with,as for me reinstalling firefox worked, have you tried operating in safe mode? (F8 at windows startup). I would recommend super anti spyware, its free and quite reliable. Let me know how it works out.
Re: Google searches are being redirected riverboy 4/8/09 12:59 PM
Well yeah, last summer i work for a shop in St-Sauveur, and i was cleaning Virus, and Spyware, Borring, but i learned à lot.
I tryed the safe mode, Super anti Spyware, HJT, Norman, AdAware, Spybot, SDFIX. As we speak the computer is still in scan. Ill try to reconnect the web after that and let you know.
I came here in hope someone had exactly that, and could say, its been removed by X.
Thanx a lots guys
Re: Google searches are being redirected riverboy 4/9/09 9:03 AM
here is some more news :

What to do if your computer is infected with Conficker

Conficker has a feature that prevents a user on an infected machine from accessing a security site to get a fix tool. To get around that, Symantec recommends doing the following:

Go to Command Prompt and type "net stop dnscache," which disables the DNS cache. You will get a message that the DNS client service is stopped. You can now proceed to access the security website or download the fix tool.

Re: Google searches are being redirected Gray Fox the Elder 4/11/09 1:53 AM
Help, I have a web page "" as of this evening I can't get on.  I don't have FireFox.  Again every time I try to get on I end up with an alternate web page.  What is going on.  I use CA for my security and Spy Bot to check it out, but no results. HELP
Gray Fox the Elder
Re: Google searches are being redirected Kaleh 4/11/09 4:36 AM
@Gray Fox the Elder

If this is the only site you are having problems accessing without being redirected to another site, it is quite possible that your site or server has been hacked.  It is also possible that third party content or ads on your site are the source of the problem.  You would need to post in the "Malware and Hacked" sites section of the Webmaster Help Forum for assistance with your site.  It will be important to note whether the redirect occurs when you directly access the site by entering the URL (I didn't try it, for fear that it could cause a problem on my computer) or only when you try to access the site from Google and other search engines.

Google Webmaster Help Forum:

If you are experiencing the same problems with other sites you search for, in addition to your site, that is a sign of your local computer being infected.  In that case, it is a trial and error process to find the right security product to identify and remove the problem.  There are many reputable anti-malware programs you can use, in addition to Spybot, to supplement your antivirus program.  A few others are listed in the following article.

Suspicious Results and Strange Behavior: Strange pop-ups, toolbars, redirects, or results  (anti-malware product list)

Re: Google searches are being redirected CyberMight 4/14/09 12:14 AM
Guys, anyone actually getting headache over the senseless waste of screenspace in that post?
Here is what you do:
Search and delete the file wdmaud.sys. Restart.
Search redirect problem solved. Moving on....
Re: Google searches are being redirected Kaleh 4/14/09 3:14 AM
As a word of caution to other readers considering the wdmaud.sys issue, this file can be a legitimate file.  When it is located in the incorrect directory, it *can* be the cause of redirects.  However, all redirects are not caused by this isolated issue. 

As we watched the progression of changes associated with the wdmaud.sys issue (it was originally sysaudio.sys) that surfaced in a big way around Christmas and has diminished since that time, there were instances where the malware authors began using random file names.  There is no "one size fits all" for everybody, which is why we suggest malware removal forums when things become unusually challenging.

If you are interested in looking into the possibility of this particular cause of redirects, I suggest researching carefully before deleting files that may be legitimate files.

The following article is written by an individual who was one of the first to identify and provide solutions for this particular issue.

Re: Google searches are being redirected Warren807 4/29/09 9:08 PM
Just doing a search on this subject as I too caught this "Virus"...
I elminated it very easily..
I use Windows XP SP3 with Internet Explorer 7....
Programs I used to elminate the problem were Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, Windows Defender, and C Cleaner...Did the trick in the following steps...
Step 1: Disable Local Area Connection or any Wireless Connections you may have...Most likely you cannot get to any webpages anyhow...
Step 2: If you can, get on another computer, use a USB storage stick, download and install Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, update it...
Step 3: Run the Anti-Malware program from the USB stick, Full Scan....Not Quick Scan...
Step 4: Fix all problems...
Step 5: Go into IE, or whatever you may use....Change your Local Area Network settings in your browser to Automatically Detect your Connection and uncheck the Proxy settings that the virus may have changed (ie. localhost on Port 7171)...Also I reset my Security settings to Default under the Security tanb..."Reset all zones to default level"...
Step 6: I than ran Windows Defender, and one last scan using the Anti-Malware program...Either found anything....
Step 7: Cleaned the Registry with C Cleaner, of course backing up the Registry first as the program asked...
Step 8: I restarted Windows, enabled my connection...And I'm back online and my Firewall isn't getting shut off every 5 minutes by the browser... 
I have had no problems since this happened to me a couple days ago, and never needed to reinstall anything or erase any files that could possible endanger my system....
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