Critical Security Warning! Scam (Mac)

Also Known As: Critical Security Warning! virus
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove Critical Security Warning! from Mac?

What is Critical Security Warning!?

"Critical Security Warning!" is a fake error displayed by a malicious website. Users are redirected to this website by potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) that infiltrate systems without consent ("bundling" method). As well as causing redirects, potentially unwanted programs also deliver intrusive online advertisements and continually record various information relating to Internet browsing activity.

Critical Security Warning! adware

"Critical Security Warning!" targets only users of Mac OS. This error states that suspicious connection activity has been detected and, therefore, personal information (logins/passwords, banking details, etc.) is at risk and that this problem must be resolved immediately. Users re encouraged to contact 'certified technicians' via a telephone number ("+1-888-225-6662") provided. They then supposedly receive help in solving the problem, however, as mentioned above, "Critical Security Warning!" is a fake error message and a scam. Cyber criminals attempt to generate revenue by tricking victims into calling and paying for technical support that is not required. You can remove this error simply by closing the web browser. Be aware that web browsing activity is tracked, since potentially unwanted programs continually gather various data (for example, IP addresses, URLs visited, search queries, etc.) that might contain personal details. Criminals share these details with cooperating third parties who misuse private information to generate revenue. Thus, data tracking might result in serious privacy issues or even identity theft. Another downside is display of intrusive online advertisements. PUPs employ a "virtual layer" to generate pop-up, banner, coupon, and other similar advertisements. This enables placement of third party graphical content on any site. The ads often conceal underlying content, thereby significantly diminishing the web browsing experience. In addition, they often redirect to malicious websites and, thus, even accidental clicks can result in a high risk computer infections. Potentially unwanted programs should be uninstalled immediately.

"Critical Security Warning!" is similar to YOUR APPLE COMPUTER HAS BEEN LOCKED, Immediately Call Apple Support, Mac Malware Warning Alert !, and many other fake error messages. All claim that the computer is damaged in some way, however, as with "Critical Security Warning!", these errors are designed only to generate revenue for the developers. They should never be trusted. Potentially unwanted programs often have an identical purpose. By offering various 'useful features', they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy, however, rather than providing any significant value for regular users, PUPs cause unwanted redirects, collect personal data, and deliver intrusive online advertisements.

How did Critical Security Warning! install on my computer?

As mentioned above, PUPs are distributed using a deceptive marketing method called "bundling" - stealth installation of third party software with regular applications. Developers hide bundled programs within the "Custom/Advanced" settings of the download or installation processes. Rushing these procedures and skipping steps often leads to installation of rogue apps.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

There are two simple steps you should take to prevent this situation. Firstly, never rush when downloading and installing software. Select the "Custom/Advanced" settings and closely observe each step. Secondly, decline offers to download/install additional applications. The key to computer safety is caution.

Text presented within Critical Security Warning! pop-up:

****SYSTEM SECURITY AT RISK****

Error Code HT201169


Critical Security Warning!
A serious attack has been detected.
It seems your IP address is being accessed from different locations. A suspicious network is trying to access your logins, Banking details & tracking your internet activity.

Contact Apple certified technicians immediately
at +1-888-225-6662 (TollFree)

Instant automatic Mac malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of Mac malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Combo Cleaner for Mac By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. Limited three days free trial available.

Quick menu:

Video showing how to remove adware and browser hijackers from a Mac computer:

Adware removal:

Remove Critical Security Warning!-related potentially unwanted applications from your "Applications" folder:

mac adware removal from applications folder

Click the Finder icon. In the Finder window, select “Applications”. In the applications folder, look for “MPlayerX”,“NicePlayer”, or other suspicious applications and drag them to the Trash. After removing the potentially unwanted application(s) that cause online ads, scan your Mac for any remaining unwanted components.

Remove critical security warning! virus related files and folders:

Finder go to folder command

Click the Finder icon, from the menu bar. Choose Go, and click Go to Folder...

step1Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from launch agents folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from launch agents folder step 2
In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step2Check for adware generated files in the /Library/Application Support folder:

removing adware from application support folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/Application Support

removing adware from application support folder step 2
In the “Application Support” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious folders. For example, “MplayerX” or “NicePlayer”, and move these folders to the Trash.

step3Check for adware-generated files in the ~/Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 1


In the Go to Folder bar, type: ~/Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 2

In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step4Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchDaemons folder:

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 1
In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchDaemons

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 2
In the “LaunchDaemons” folder, look for recently-added suspicious files. For example “com.aoudad.net-preferences.plist”, “com.myppes.net-preferences.plist”, "com.kuklorest.net-preferences.plist”, “com.avickUpd.plist”, etc., and move them to the Trash.

step 5 Scan your Mac with Combo Cleaner:

If you have followed all the steps in the correct order you Mac should be clean of infections. To be sure your system is not infected run a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus. Download it HERE. After downloading the file double click combocleaner.dmg installer, in the opened window drag and drop Combo Cleaner icon on top of the Applications icon. Now open your launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon. Wait until Combo Cleaner updates it's virus definition database and click "Start Combo Scan" button.

scan-with-combo-cleaner-1

Combo Cleaner will scan your Mac for malware infections. If the antivirus scan displays "no threats found" - this means that you can continue with the removal guide, otherwise it's recommended to remove any found infections before continuing.

scan-with-combo-cleaner-2

After removing files and folders generated by the adware, continue to remove rogue extensions from your Internet browsers.

Critical Security Warning! virus removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove critical security warning! virus related Safari extensions:

safari browser preferences

Open Safari browser, from the menu bar, select "Safari" and click "Preferences...".

safari extensions window

In the preferences window, select "Extensions" and look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions. When located, click the "Uninstall" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Safari browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Safari.

firefox browser iconRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Remove critical security warning! virus related Mozilla Firefox add-ons:

accessing mozilla firefox add-ons

Open your Mozilla Firefox browser. At the top right corner of the screen, click the "Open Menu" (three horizontal lines) button. From the opened menu, choose "Add-ons".

removing malicious add-ons from mozilla firefox

Choose the "Extensions" tab and look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Remove" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Mozilla Firefox browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Mozilla Firefox.

chrome-browser-iconRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Remove critical security warning! virus related Google Chrome add-ons:

removing malicious google chrome extensions step 1

Open Google Chrome and click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button located in the top-right corner of the browser window. From the drop-down menu, choose "More Tools" and select "Extensions".

removing malicious Google Chrome extensions step 2

In the "Extensions" window, look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Trash" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Google Chrome browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Google Chrome.

About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Removal Instructions in other languages
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
Critical Security Warning! virus QR code
A QR code (Quick Response Code) is a machine-readable code which stores URLs and other information. This code can be read using a camera on a smartphone or a tablet. Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of Critical Security Warning! virus on your mobile device.
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Platform: macOS

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