How to remove DuckDuckGo (Windows and Mac)

What is DuckDuckGo?

If webpage has become browser’s default search engine without your consent, well then you picked up malware. At first glance, there’s nothing suspicious about it, because it looks like other search engines like Google or Bing. Nevertheless, the presence of DuckDuckGo greatly reduces browsing experience as well as computer performance. Actually, developers of this program make money only through advertising. This program displays only altered search results leading to sponsored and mostly insecure websites that can contain malicious infections. Be aware that just one click is enough to be infected with the virus. Because of the high risk of infection, you are advised to remove DuckDuckGo as soon as possible. The full removal of DuckDuckGo is quite a difficult task for inexperienced users due to its ability to leave its leftovers to further restore. The best solution to this problem is to download an automated removal tool – it will completely remove DuckDuckGo pop-up ads from your computer, thus free you from all annoying ads in your web browser.


How to remove DuckDuckGo from your computer?

The best and easiest way to remove DuckDuckGo from your computer is to use a special anti-malware program that has this threat in its database. The program is fully automated, all you need to do is to download and install it. Once you’ve installed an anti-malware application, it will scan your system and remove all the threats.

It can completely remove DuckDuckGo from your Mac in just a few clicks. Simple, effective and user-friendly.
Download CleanMyMac mac compatible

If you are Windows user, we advise you to use Norton Antivirus.

How to remove DuckDuckGo manually

Step 1: Remove DuckDuckGo from Applications/Control Panel

In order to get rid of DuckDuckGo, the first thing you need to do is to uninstall a malicious program from your computer. When removing DuckDuckGo, try to find suspicious recently installed programs and delete them too, as it’s pretty common that any malware comes with some other unwanted programs.

Mac OSX:

  1. Launch Finder
  2. Select Applications in the Finder sidebar.
  3. If you see Uninstall DuckDuckGo or DuckDuckGo Uninstaller, double-click it and follow instructions
  4. Drag unwanted application from the Applications folder to the Trash (located on the right side of the Dock)

Windows XP:

  1. Select Start.
  2. Control Panel.
  3. Then choose Add or Remove Programs.
  4. Search for DuckDuckGo.
  5. Click Uninstall.

Windows 7/Windows Vista:

  1. Select Start.
  2. Then Control Panel.
  3. Choose Uninstall a Program.
  4. Find DuckDuckGo and choose Uninstall.

Windows 8/Windows 8.1:

  1. Open the Menu.
  2. Select Search.
  3. After that choose Apps.
  4. Next Control Panel.
  5. Then as in Windows 7, click Uninstall a Program under Programs.
  6. Find DuckDuckGo, select it and choose Uninstall.

Windows 10:

  1. Click on the Start button (or press the Windows key) to open the Start menu, then select Settings at the top.
  2. Choose App & features on the left menu.
  3. On the right side, find DuckDuckGo and select it, then click on the Uninstall button.
  4. Click on Uninstall to confirm.

Note: If you can’t find a required program, sort programs by date and search for suspicious recently installed programs. If you still can’t locate any suspicious program or not sure what some application is for, we advise you to use Removal tool in order to track down what malicious program is infecting your system.

Step 2: Remove DuckDuckGo from browsers

Once you’ve uninstalled the application, remove DuckDuckGo from your web browser. You need to search for recently installed suspicious add-ons and extensions.


  1. Click Preferences from Safari menu
  2. Select Extensions.
  3. Find DuckDuckGo or other extensions that look suspicious.
  4. Click Uninstall button to remove it.

Google Chrome:

  1. Open Google Chrome
  2. Click on 3-dots icon in the top right corner.
  3. Choose Tools from drop-down menu.
  4. Select Extensions.
  5. Search for DuckDuckGo.
  6. Select the trash can icon to remove it.

Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Firefox.
  2. Push Shift + Ctrl + A.
  3. Select DuckDuckGo.
  4. Choose Disable or Remove option.

Step 3: Resetting your browser search and homepage settings

To be sure that there is nothing left behind, we recommend you reset your browser. It will restore your browser settings to default.

Reset browser settings in Safari:

  1. Launch Safari
  2. Click Preferences from Safari menu
  3. Click Reset Safari.
  4. In the menu that appears, highlight all options .
  5. Click the Reset button.

Reset browser settings in Google Chrome:

  1. Click the Chrome menu (3 bar button) in the top right corner.
  2. Choose Settings.
  3. Click Show advanced settings.
  4. Go to Reset browser settings section.
  5. Click Reset browser settings.
  6. In the dialog that appears, click Reset.

Reset browser settings in Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox.
  2. Go to Help.
  3. Go to Troubleshooting information.
  4. Click Reset Firefox… button.

Reset browser settings in Internet Explorer:

  1. Open Internet Explorer.
  2. Click on the cogwheel in the right upper corner.
  3. Click Internet options.
  4. Got to Advanced tab.
  5. Click Reset button.
  6. Put a tick near Delete personal settings checkbox.
  7. Click Reset button.

Step 4: Remove DuckDuckGo from Profiles (only for macOS devices)

Sometimes malware might have its entries in Group Policy that helps browser hijacker overrides search engine every time you reset browser settings.

  1. Open System Preferences
  2. Go to Profiles at the bottom of window.
  3. Choose unknown and unsigned profiles, click “-“ icon and enter password.


Step 5: Removing malicious link from your browser shortcuts (only for Windows devices)

Sometimes even removing malicious programs from your computer and web browser can’t help. If you are still facing an unknown webpage when you open your web browser, then you might have your browser shortcut changed. It’s a pretty common trick that performs most browser hijackers. They change your browser shortcut so that every time you open it you’ll see not your homepage, but some advertisement webpage. But this issue is quite simple to fix. The instruction stated below matches most of the browsers.

  1. Right-click on your browser shortcut, choose Properties.
  2. If you see a link to some website after .exe in the Target field, read on.
  3. Usually you are not able to delete a link from Target field, that’s why you need to click on the Open File Location button in this window.
  4. Once you’ve opened file location, select chrome.exe/firefox.exe/iexplore.exe.
  5. Right-click on this file and choose Sent to option, then Desktop (create shortcut).
  6. New shortcut will have no additional redirection links.
  7. Delete old infected shortcut. If you got one in your taskbar, delete it from there too.
  8. Now you have new and clear shortcut without redirection to unknown websites.


There are all the manual instructions that will help you to find DuckDuckGo on your Mac computer and remove it. The most effective method to get rid of DuckDuckGo is to perform the manual removal instructions and then use antimalware tool like Combo Cleaner for macOS devices or Norton 360 for Windows devices. The manual method will weaken the malicious program and the program will remove it. Thank you for your attention!

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