Remove unwanted pop-ups or site redirects on Mac

Mac OS X is vulnerable to potentially unwanted programs or Adware, browser hijackers. These types of programs or toolbars generate web traffic and collect sales leads for other dubious sites. They may also display advertisements and sponsored links within your web browser.

Such toolbars are usually bundled with certain free programs that you normally download and install. These bundles include a licensing agreement that you must accept to download and install the software. The agreement applies to all the software in the bundle including the unwanted toolbars. Because a licensing agreement was agreed to, Norton does not detect them as malicious even though the toolbar behaves suspiciously.

If your Mac is infected with malware, you may experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Advertising banners appear on webpages that you are visiting.

  • When you go to a website, you are randomly redirected to another website that you do not intend to visit.

  • Browser popups appear and recommend fake updates or other software.

  • Other unwanted adware programs may be installed without your knowledge.

Few of the known unwanted programs or toolbars are VSearch, Conduit, Genieo, GoPhoto, Jollywallet, Savekeep, MacShop, Yontoo, Shopper Helper Pro, Slick Savings, PallMall, Awesome Screenshot.

Remove the malicious apps from your Mac

  1. On the Apple menu bar, click Go and then select Computer.

  2. In the top-right corner of the Finder window, in the search box, type the name of the unwanted program and press return.

  3. To modify the search attributes and look for unwanted programs in system files, click the Add (+) icon.

  4. From the toolbar that appears under Search: This Mac, click Kind and then from the drop-down menu, select Other.

  5. In the Select a search attribute dialog box, scroll-down and check the box next to System files, and then click OK.

  6. When the search criteria is set to System files, from the drop-down menu, select are included.

    Search results are modified and system files with the keyword being searched is displayed.

  7. Select all files from the search results, and then move them to Trash.

    To remove all the malicious files from your Mac, right-click the Trash icon and click Empty Trash.

Adware generally installs a new toolbar in the Internet browser and changes the default search engine setting to a third-party search engine. You need to remove the extensions and reset the browser settings to completely remove the unwanted toolbars and search engines.

Depending on your browser, select one of the following.

Reset Safari

  1. Start the Safari browser.

  2. On the Apple menu bar, select History > Clear history > All History > Clear History.

    When you clear the browsing history in Safari, it also clears the website data (such as saved passwords and other entries).

  3. On the Apple menu bar, select Safari > Preferences > Extensions > Uninstall.

Reset Google Chrome

  1. Start the Chrome browser.

  2. On the Apple menu bar, click Chrome and then select Preferences.

  3. In the left-pane of the Settings page, do the following:

    • Select Extensions. If you find any suspicious extension in the list, click the Trash icon to remove it.

    • Select Settings. Scroll down and click Show advanced settings. From the list of advanced settings, to restore the default settings of Chrome, click Reset browser settings.

      In the dialog box that appears, click Reset.

Reset Firefox

  1. Start the Firefox browser.

  2. On the Apple menu bar, do one of the following:

    • Click Tools and then select Add-ons. In the Add-ons Manager page, in the left-pane, click Extensions. If you find any suspicious extension in the list, click the Remove button next to it.

    • Click Help and then select Troubleshooting Information. In the Troubleshooting Information page, under Reset Firefox to its default state, click Reset Firefox.

      Click Reset Firefox.

    When you reset Firefox to its default settings, it also removes all the installed Add-ons or Extensions.

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DOCID: v102043536
Operating System: Mac
Last modified: 06/19/2024