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Adware.SearchNew

Adware.SearchNew

Updated:
February 13, 2007
Risk Impact:
High
File Names:
Winupd.exe msapp.exe
Systems Affected:
Windows

Behavior


Adware.SeachNew is a program that changes your Internet Explorer home page and search page.

Symptoms


Your Symantec program detects Adware.SearchNew.

Behavior


This Adware program must be manually installed or installed as a component of another program.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version October 02, 2014 revision 022
  • Latest Rapid Release version February 01, 2015 revision 020
  • Initial Daily Certified version June 03, 2004
  • Latest Daily Certified version September 28, 2010 revision 036
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date June 09, 2004
Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

When Adware.SearchNew is executed, it performs the following actions:
  1. Drops the following files:

    • %System%msapp.exe
    • %System%winupd.exe

      Note: %System% is a variable. By default, this is C:\Windows\System (Windows 95/98/Me), C:\Winnt\System32 (Windows NT/2000), or C:\Windows\System32 (Windows XP).

  2. Adds the values:

    "winupd" = "%System%\winupd.exe"
    "WinApp32" = "msapp.exe"

    to the registry key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

    so that the Adware runs when every time Windows starts.

  3. Adds the following registry key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\yun

  4. Changes the Internet Explorer Home Page and Search Pages by changing the values in the following registry key:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchURL
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Default_Search_URL
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Search Bar
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Search Page
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Start Page
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search\CustomizeSearch
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search\SearchAssistant
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchURL
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Default_Search_URL
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Search Bar
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Search Page
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Start Page
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search\CustomizeSearch
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search\SearchAssistant
    HKEY_USER\<local_value>\Software\Microsoft\InternetExplorer\Search
    HKEY_USER\<local_value>\Software\Microsoft\InternetExplorer\SearchURL
    HKEY_USER\<local_value>\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Default_Search_URL
    HKEY_USER\<local_value>\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\Search Bar

    Note:
    <local_value> will consist of 39 alphanumeric characters and will be specific to your system.

  5. Adds "thenewsearch.com" to the Internet Explorer Favorites.

  6. Adds the following DNS entry to the Hosts file:
    69.50.173.250 auto.seach.msn.com

    Note:
    The location of the Hosts file may vary and some computers may not have this file. For example, if the file exists in Windows 98, it will usually be in C:\Windows, and it is located in the C:\WINNT\system32\drivers\etc folder in Windows 2000. There may also be multiple copies of this file in different locations.



The following instructions pertain to all Symantec antivirus products that support security risk detection.
  1. Update the definitions.
  2. Run a full system scan.
  3. Delete any values added to the registry.
For specific details on each of these steps, read the following instructions.

1. To update the definitions
To obtain the most recent definitions, start your Symantec program and run LiveUpdate.


2. To run the scan
  1. Start your Symantec antivirus program, and then run a full system scan.
  2. If any files are detected as Adware.SearchNew and depending on which software version you are using, you may see one or more of the following options:

    Note: This applies only to versions of Norton AntiVirus that support security risk detection. If you are running a version of Symantec AntiVirus Corporate Edition that supports security risk detection, and security risk detection has been enabled, you will only see a message box that gives the results of the scan. If you have questions in this situation, contact your network administrator.
    • Exclude (Not recommended): If you click this button, it will set the risk so that it is no longer detectable. That is, the antivirus program will keep the security risk on your computer and will no longer detect it to remove from your computer.

    • Ignore or Skip: This option tells the scanner to ignore the risk for this scan only. It will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

    • Cancel: This option is new to Norton Antivirus 2005. It is used when Norton Antivirus 2005 has determined that it cannot delete a security risk. This Cancel option tells the scanner to ignore the risk for this scan only, and thus, the risk will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

      To actually delete the security risk:
      • Click its file name (under the Filename column).
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

        If Windows reports that it cannot delete the file, this indicates that the file is in use. In this situation, complete the rest of the instructions on this page, restart the computer in Safe mode, and then delete the file using Windows Explorer. Restart the computer in Normal mode.

    • Delete: This option will attempt to delete the detected files. In some cases, the scanner will not be able to do this.
      • If you see a message, "Delete Failed" (or similar message), manually delete the file.
      • Click the file name of the risk that is under the Filename column.
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

        If Windows reports that it cannot delete the file, this indicates that the file is in use. In this situation, complete the rest of the instructions on this page, restart the computer in Safe mode, and then delete the file using Windows Explorer. Restart the computer in Normal mode.


3. To delete the value from the registry
Important: Symantec strongly recommends that you back up the registry before making any changes to it. Incorrect changes to the registry can result in permanent data loss or corrupted files. Modify the specified subkeys only. Read the document: How to make a backup of the Windows registry .
  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type regedit

    Then click OK.

  3. Navigate to the subkey:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

  4. In the right pane, delete any value that refers to the file detected as the Adware.

  5. Navigate to the key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\yun

  6. In the right pane, delete the value:

    "winupd" = "%System%\winupd.exe"
    "WinApp32" = "msapp.exe"

  7. Exit the Registry Editor.

4. To delete the Web sites added to the Internet Explorer Favorites menu

a. Start Microsoft Internet Explorer
b. Click Favorites > Organize Favorites
c. Delete the Favorites added by the threat

5. To reset the Internet Explorer home page 6. To reset the Internet Explorer Search page
    Follow the instructions for your version of Windows.

    Windows 98/Me/2000
    1. Start Microsoft Internet Explorer.
    2. Click the Search button on the toolbar.
    3. In the Search pane, click Customize.
    4. Click Reset.
    5. Click Autosearch Settings.
    6. Select a search site from the drop-down list, and then click OK.
    7. Click OK.

    Windows XP
    Because Windows XP is set by default to use animated characters in the search, how you do this can vary. Read all the instructions before you start.
    1. Start Microsoft Internet Explorer.
    2. Click the Search button on the toolbar.
    3. Do one of the following:
      • If the pane that opens looks similar to the following picture, click the word Customize and proceed to step h:




      • If the pane that opens has the words "Search Companion" at the top, and the center looks similar to the following picture, click the Change preferences link and proceed with step d.




    4. Click the Change Internet search behavior link.
    5. Under "Internet Search Behavior," click With Classic Internet Search.
    6. Click OK. Then close Internet Explorer. (Close the program for the change to take effect.)
    7. Start Internet Explorer. When the search pane opens, it should look similar to the following picture:





      Click the word Customize, and then proceed with the next step.

    8. In the Search pane, click Customize.
    9. Click Reset.
    10. Click Autosearch Settings.
    11. Select a search site from the drop-down list, and then click OK.
    12. Click OK.
    13. Do one of the following:
      • If you were using (or want to continue using) the "Classic Internet Search" panel, stop here (or proceed with the next section).
      • If you want to go back to the "Search Companion" search (it usually has an animated character at the button), proceed with step n.

    14. Click the word Customize again.
    15. In the "Customize Search Settings" window, click Use Search Companion > OK.
    16. Close Internet Explorer. The next time you open it, it will again use the Search Companion.

7. Removing entries from the Hosts file
    If this threat has modified the Windows Hosts file, there are two ways to remove these entries:
    • Install and run the current version of LiveUpdate. This will remove only the entries that refer to Symantec domains.
    • Manually edit the Hosts file and remove all the entries that the threat added.

    To run the current version of LiveUpdate
    1. Click download LiveUpdate.

      Note:
      If you are not reading this Web page on the computer that is getting the error notice, the address for downloading the file is:

      ftp://ftp.symantec.com/public/english_us_canada/liveupdate/lusetup.exe

      If necessary, you can type this address into the address bar of the problem computer. Changes to the Hosts file will not stop you from getting to this site.

    2. Save the file to the Windows desktop.
    3. Double-click the lusetup.exe icon on the desktop to install LiveUpdate.
    4. Run LiveUpdate.
    5. Did you see the message "LU1860: LiveUpdate has detected a potential security compromise on your computer"?
      • If you did, let LiveUpdate "Remove these entries from the hosts files" (Recommended).
        This should allow LiveUpdate to run.
      • If you did not, that was not the cause of the problem. Return to the Removal section.


    To manually edit the Hosts file and remove all the entries that the Adware.SeachNew added

    Note: The location of the Hosts file may vary and some computers may not have this file. For example, if the file exists in Windows 98, it will usually be in C:\Windows; and it is located in the C:\WINNT\system32\drivers\etc folder in Windows 2000. There may also be multiple copies of this file in different locations.


    Follow the instructions for your operating system:
    • Windows 95/98/Me/NT/2000
      1. Click Start, point to Find or Search, and then click Files or Folders.
      2. Make sure that "Look in" is set to (C:) and that "Include subfolders" is checked.
      3. In the "Named" or "Search for..." box, type:

        hosts

      4. Click Find Now or Search Now.
      5. For each Hosts file that you find, right-click the file, and then click Open With.
      6. Deselect the "Always use this program to open this program" check box.
      7. Scroll through the list of programs and double-click Notepad.
      8. When the file opens, delete all the entries in Step 6 of the "Technical Details" section.
      9. Close Notepad and save your changes when prompted.

    • Windows XP
      1. Click Start > Search.
      2. Click All files and folders.
      3. In the "All or part of the file name" box, type:

        hosts

      4. Verify that "Look in" is set to "Local Hard Drives" or to (C:).
      5. Click More advanced options.
      6. Check Search system folders.
      7. Check Search subfolders.
      8. Click Search.
      9. Click Find Now or Search Now.
      10. For each Hosts file that you find, right-click the file, and then click Open With.
      11. Deselect the Always use this program to open this program check box.
      12. Scroll through the list of programs and double-click Notepad.
      13. When the file opens, delete all the entries in Step 6 of the "Technical Details" section.
      14. Close Notepad and save your changes when prompted.