How do I remove Adware / Malware from my Mac?


What is adware?

Adware is software that automatically displays or downloads advertising material (often unwanted) when a user is online. It usually is installed during installation process or after installing, on the screen or on the browser by installing a browser plugin. It can change your homepage, redirect your search results, change your toolbar or even add malware to your computer.

Malware and adware can effectively lock up browsers and significantly compromise computer performance. Malware commonly present in a pop up window while using a browser offering to "speed up your system performance" or "enhance your shopping experience". We believe in some cases malware and adware are downloading after staff do an image search in Google or another search engine, and then click on an image that has the malware/adware attached to it. In these cases there is not any further action that staff need to take for the malware/adware to install - no messages to click or misleading warnings.

Please be cautious about any websites you visit or images you click on, especially when offsite as security on non-district networks is not as robust as when in-district. Malware/adware will often present itself as a "helper" application to make your browser or shopping experiences more "user friendly". They will then set (hijack) your browser home page to a new website and/or change your search engine to something other than Google for all your browsers. 

NEVER attempt to install any product on your district computer to stop viruses or other malware (or to make your system run faster).

How to remove Adware from Google Chrome

  1. Launch Google Chrome and click on the option Customize and Control Google Chrome it is represented by a 3-Dots icon located at the top-right corner of the browser.
  2. Select the option More Tools, then, click on Extensions. It opens a window showing all the installed Extensions and plugins of Google Chrome. Locate adware or potentially unwanted extensions. Then click the Trash icon to delete the malicious extension.
  3. Click on the 3-Dots icon and click the Settings option. Scroll to the On startup section with the option Open a specific page or set of pages and click on Set pages.
  4. Click on the X button to remove the unwanted or hijacked start page from Google Chrome. If there is only one startup page and the default start page is removed, you should create a new preferred web address by clicking Add a new page and type http://www.google.com to set Google as your default startup page.
  5. Next scroll to the Appearance section.
  6. Put a Checkmark on Show Home Button and click Change.
  7. Select the Use the New Tab Page option. This will disable the new tab option from opening to adware. Click OK to save the current settings.
  8. Next, you need to restore the default search engine. Scroll to the Search Engine section and click on the option Manage search engines.
  9. Select your preferred search settings, and you can remove the unwanted search engines by clicking the X button.
  10. Clear Browsers Cache:  If the browser is frozen, Force Quit the application with the following key command:  Command-Option-Escape
  11. Launch Chrome
  12. Click on the 3-Dots icons in the upper right corner side of window.
  13. Click on History in the sidebar.
  14. Click on the Clear Browsing Data button. In the clear browsing data window that opens, change the dropdown for Obliterate the following items from: to the beginning of timeSelect the checkboxes for Cookies and other site and plugin data and Cached images and files. You can select other items as desired.
  15. Click on the Clear browsing data button.
  16. Quit Chrome and re-launch.

How to remove Adware from Firefox

  1. Launch Firefox
  2. Settings button (three horizontal bars in the top-right corner) and then select Add-Ons.
  3. Extensions Tab You need to removal all of the extensions created by the adware installer. If you don’t know what an extension is or what it does, disable it.
  4. Settings button (three horizontal bars in the top-right corner) and then select Preferences.
  5. General Tab Remove any start up pages that show Adware pages. Reset your Homepage.
  6. Search Tab Check your search engine, make sure the default search engine is one you want. Remove any search engines that direct you to adware.
  7. Clear Browsers CacheIf the browser is frozen, Force Quit the application with the following key command: Command-Option-Escape
  8. Launch Firefox. In the Menu Bar, click on Firefox -> Preferences.
  9. Advanced Tab (The tab may be along the top of the Preferences window, or in a sidebar along the left side.)
  10. Network Tab In the Cached Web Content section, click on the Clear Now button.
  11. Quit Firefox and re-launch.

How to remove Adware from Safari

  1. Launch Safari, you can hold the Shift key down when you start to keep it from reopening any windows, including the pop-up.
  2. Safari Preferences. Menubar -> Safari -> Preferences
  3. General Tab Check Homepage and make sure it has not been changed from any search or adware site. Change Homepage if needed.
  4. Search Tab Check your search engine, make sure the default search engine there is one you want.
  5. Extensions Tab Check your extensions to make sure they’re all things you’ve installed. If you don’t know what an extension is or what it does, disable it.
  6. Advance Tab at the bottom of the screen, check the checkbox next to Show Develop menu in menubar.
  7. Close Safari Preferences
  8. Clear Browsers Cache:  If the browser is frozen, Force Quit the application with the following key command:  Command-Option-Escape
  9. Click on Developer (menubar) and then Empty Caches from the drop down menu.
  10. Close Safari and reopen.

Malware removal from Mac

  1. Open up the Utilities (Applications -> Utilities)
  2. Locate the Activity Monitor and double-click on it
  3. Under Activity Monitor, find the entry for the troublemaking app, select it and click Quit Process.
  4. A dialog should pop up, asking if you are sure you would like to quit the executable. Select the Force Quit option
  5. Now go to Apple Menu and pick the System Preferences option
  6. Select User & Groups and click the Login Items tab. Mac OS will come up with the list of the items that launch when the box is started up. Locate the malware object there and click on the delete button
  7. Drag all Downloads to the trash. Empty trash
  8. Remove Malware from your library folders

          Users  (HD > Users > Home > Library >Application Support)

           Users (HD -> Home -> Library -> Preferences   Trash all .plists for malware/adware from Preferences

      9. Empty TRASH and Restart Computer

 

 

 



Article ID: 707
Created On: Wed, Mar 29, 2017 at 9:04 AM
Last Updated On: Tue, Jan 2, 2018 at 1:51 PM
Authored by: Renee Deboodt

Online URL: https://kb.nsd.org/article-707.html