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My search engine is set to Google and has been for years. I do dozens of searches from the omnibox a day (IT Manager). About a week ago, I noticed that occasionally I would get a Yahoo search result page. It probably happens once or twice a day. If I immediately do the search again, I get the expected Google results.

Does anyone have ANY idea what would be causing this?

My only thought would be an extension. I've disabled the only one I installed recently, but is there any way to confirm or troubleshoot this issue?

Edit: This is happening on two PCs. Must be an extension.

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  • Does the URL in the omnibox show search.yahoo.com or google.com when the Yahoo search results are displayed?
    – gnubeard
    Apr 3, 2020 at 17:09
  • Just happened again. URL is search.yahoo.com Apr 4, 2020 at 21:25
  • Just realized I'm on my desktop. I posted from my laptop. So it's happening on multiple machines. Must be an extension. The extension I recently installed which is the most likely suspect, was disabled a couple days ago. Apr 4, 2020 at 21:52
  • Just happened again. 81.0.4044.92 Apr 10, 2020 at 13:03
  • Please update if you find an answer; this has recently started happening to me too. Apr 11, 2020 at 22:17

3 Answers 3

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+100

I tracked this problem down to the Chrome extension "Ratings Preview for YouTube" (extension has been removed from the Chrome and Firefox add-ons store), as I was having the same problem and it was driving me nuts. I used the LinkResearchTools extension on Chrome to log redirects and found my Google redirects were going to:

https://searchingcafe.com/?a=gsp_dventures_00_00&q={original query}

Which then were redirected to:

https://search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?hspart=dcola&hsimp=yhs-001&type=gsp_dventures_00_00&param1=1&param2=cat%3Dweb%26sesid%3D3147d16554fc40d80a8319989e89c2b7%26ip%3D98.206.52.10%26b%3DChrome%26bv%3D80.0.3987.149%26os%3DWindows-10%26os_ver%3D10.0%26pa%3Dgencoll12%26sid%3Dd5630a969f5ff68effba73db31a6971d%26abid%3D%26abg%3D%26a%3Dgsp_dventures_00_00%26sdk_ver%3D%26cd%3D%26cr%3D%26f%3D%26uref%3D&p={original query}

I was able to use this to find a recent Reddit post describing how "Ratings Preview for YouTube" had started doing these redirects for other people in Firefox; I was using this extension on Chrome so I disabled it, haven't had the problem since, and am now using the extension Thumbnail Ratings Bar for YouTube.

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  • 2
    Amazing! I think I love you! Apr 13, 2020 at 1:05
  • 1
    Do you mean the "Link Redirect Trace" extension which is made by LinkResearchTools? The main extension seems to be all about SEO.
    – davidgro
    May 4, 2020 at 17:41
  • 2
    Yeah it looks like the first result that you get when querying Link Research Tools points to some SEO toolbar. That's obviously not what I'm talking about. Go to the extension store and search for "Link Redirect Trace" as @davidgro mentioned. It's great for showing you what's causing your browser to redirect, even the random redirects that seem to come from nowhere.
    – Tim Dawg
    May 7, 2020 at 21:24
  • Thank you! Since it was happening so randomly, turning Chrome extensions off was not helpful in troubleshooting it, making it impossible to pinpoint the extension. May 11, 2020 at 16:11
  • @Devil'sAdvocate I am using this extension for a year or two, but I've never had this problem. That's probably because for this extension I have a Site access option set to On specific sites with the only site allowed being *://www.youtube.com/*. So make sure to always check permissions each extension asks and restrict its access to only those sites it's supposed to work with.
    – EvgenKo423
    Feb 7, 2021 at 8:08
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This has been happening to me as well. Randomly some of my searches redirect me through yahoo search instead of google, specifically through the website "searchingcafe". It could very well be one of my extensions but I'm not sure. I ran a full scan with malwarebytes and nothing came up. Have you found a solution?

Edit: I may have solved it. I removed the YouTube Likes Bar extension, and the YouTube Subscription Organizer extension, and it hasn't happened since. Unless I am just getting lucky and it is not popping up anymore. I believe your assumption of it being an extension was probably correct though. If you could please respond with your current situation I would appreciate it.

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  1. Try chrome://flags/ and search for 'suggestions' or other redirects. This article seemed related.

https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/google/chrome-bug-causing-address-bar-to-show-searches-over-site-history/

  1. Clear all browsing data: Ctrl+Shift+Delete and select everything, then restart.

  2. Run Spybot Search & Destroy followed by Malwarebytes to remove malwares.

  3. Install Chromium and see if it persist. Consider using Tor or Firefox while waiting for Google to fix bug.

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  • Saw tons of flags for "suggestions" but nothing looked relevant. I always run Malwarebytes and Bitdefender on this machine, but I'm doing full scans just in case. I'll report back when/if I determine anything. Apr 3, 2020 at 20:43

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