Post and Search Browser Extension
A thorough analysis of the Post and Search browser extension has made it quite clear that it operates as a browser hijacker. The Post and Search extension performs unauthorized alterations to the settings of Web browsers, resulting in persistent redirects to the find.tnav-now.com website, which falls into the category of fake search engines.
This browser hijacker manipulates browser configurations without the user's consent, overriding default search engine preferences and redirecting searches to the dubious find.tnav-now.com search engine. However, this search engine does not provide genuine search results and is designed to deceive users by displaying misleading or irrelevant information.
Browser Hijackers and PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs) Often Perform Invasive Actions
Browser-hijacking software, including the Post and Search extension, employs tactics to promote specific websites by manipulating browser settings. This includes making them the default search engines, homepages and new page tabs. Once installed, the Post and Search extension alters these settings, causing the new tabs opened by users and any of their search queries initiated from the URL bar to be redirected to the find.tnav-now.com site.
Fake search engines, such as find.tnav-now.com, typically lack the capability to provide genuine search results on their own. As a result, they resort to redirects to other sources. Sometimes these can be legitimate search engines - find.tnav-now.com has been observed taking results from Bing (bing.com). However, it is crucial to understand that these redirections may vary, based on factors like user geolocation.
Additionally, the Post and Search extension is highly likely to have the ability to track and monitor users' browsing activities. This may include collecting data such as visited URLs, viewed pages, search queries, frequently visited websites, IP addresses (geolocations), account login credentials, personally identifiable information and even financial details. The purpose of collecting this data is often to monetize it by selling it to third parties.
Browser Hijackers and PUPs Often Hide Their Installation through Dubious Distribution Tactics
PUPs and browser hijackers employ various dubious distribution tactics to infiltrate users' devices. One common method is bundling. The intrusive applications are often bundled with legitimate software downloads or included as additional components during the installation process. Users may unknowingly agree to install these unwanted programs by overlooking the bundled offerings or not paying sufficient attention to the installation prompts.
Another distribution tactic is misleading advertisements and pop-ups. PUPs and browser hijackers may use deceptive advertising techniques to trick users into clicking on enticing advertisements or notifications that lead to the installation of unwanted software. These advertisements often appear on untrustworthy websites or in the form of fake system alerts, enticing users to take actions that ultimately may result in the installation of unwanted programs.
Social engineering techniques also may be employed by PUPs and browser hijackers. They may use persuasive tactics, such as fake system updates, misleading messages, or enticing offers, to manipulate users into downloading and installing their unsafe software. These tactics often rely on users' trust and lack of awareness to persuade them to take actions that benefit the attackers.
Exercising caution and being vigilant while downloading and installing software from the Internet can do wonders in avoiding problems. Reading software license agreements, being cautious of suspicious advertisements or pop-ups, keeping software and operating systems up to date, and using reliable security software can help prevent the inadvertent installation of PUPs and browser hijackers.