Fix: Search Failed Error While Chrome was Searching for Harmful Software

You may fail to perform the harmful software scan by Chrome due to an outdated Chrome browser or because of corrupt cookies/browser data or installation of the browser itself.

Search for Harmful Software Failed Google Chrome

When an affected user suspects his browser for infection with spyware/malware/adware and tries to perform the scan by Chrome, he encounters the error at hand.

Solution 1: Update Chrome to the Latest Build

Chrome browser is updated continuously to satiate the ever-evolving technological advancements and patch the known bugs. You may encounter the error at hand if you are using an outdated version of Chrome. In this case, updating Chrome to the latest build may solve the problem.

  1. Open Google Chrome and near the top right corner, click on vertical ellipsis (3 vertical dots) and then, in the menu shown, click on Settings.
    Open Chrome Settings
  2. Then, in the left pane of the window, scroll down till the end and click on About Chrome.
    Open About Chrome
  3. Now in the right pane of the window, check if there is an update available (Chrome will automatically install the update if there is one available).
    Chrome Updating Automatically
  4. After updating, click on the Relaunch button and then check if Chrome can perform a malware scan.
    Click on the Relaunch button After Updating Chrome

Solution 2: Clear Cookies and Data of the Chrome browser

Cookies are used by Chrome to store client/server communication. Also, Chrome uses a cache to boost up performance and improve user experience. You may encounter the error at hand if the cookies/cached data are corrupt due to any operational reason. In this context, clearing the cookies and data of the browser may solve the problem.

  1. Open Chrome browser and near the top right corner of the window, click on the vertical ellipsis, and in the menu shown, click on More Tools.
  2. Now, in the sub-menu, click on Clear Browsing Data.
    Open Clear Browsing Data in Chrome
  3. Then, in the Advanced tab, select Time Range of All Time and select the categories that you want to clear (it is recommended to select all the categories).
  4. Now click on the Clear Data button and when prompted, then confirm to clear the data.
    Clear Browsing Data of All Time
  5. Then relaunch your browser and check if it is clear of the error.
  6. If not, click on 3 vertical dots near the top right corner, and then, in the menu shown, click on Settings.
  7. Now, in the left pane of the window, expand Advanced and then click on Reset and Clean Up.
    Click on Reset and Clean-Up in Chrome
  8. Then, in the right pane of the window, click on Restore Settings to Their Original Defaults and then confirm to reset the settings.
    Restore Settings to Their Original Defaults
  9. Now, relaunch your browser and check if it can perform the malware scan.

Solution 3: Reinstall the Chrome browser

If nothing has helped you so far, then most probably, the installation itself of the browser would be corrupt and might be causing the issue under discussion. In this regard, reinstalling the Chrome browser may solve the problem.

  1. Exit Chrome and kill all of its running processes through the Task Manager (must).
  2. On the Taskbar of your system, click on the Windows Search box and type Control Panel. Then in the list of the results shown, click on Control Panel.
    Open Control Panel
  3. Now click on Uninstall a Program.
    Uninstall a Program
  4. Then in the list of installed programs, right-click on Google Chrome and then click on the Uninstall button and if asked, choose to remove the user data.
    Uninstall Google Chrome
  5. Now follow the prompts on your screen to uninstall the Chrome browser and then restart your system.
  6. Upon restart, open the File Explorer and navigate to the following folder:
    %LocalAppData%\Google\
  7. Then delete the Chrome folder and restart your system.
    Delete Chrome Folder
  8. Upon restart, download and reinstall the Chrome browser.
  9. After reinstalling, launch the browser and do not sign-in to the browser but perform the malware scan by Chrome.
Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

Expert Tip

Fix: Search Failed Error While Chrome was Searching for Harmful Software

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