Apologies For Interruption! POP-UP Scam (Mac)
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on (updated)
What is Apologies For Interruption!?
"Apologies For Interruption!" is a fake error message similar to Phishing/Spyware Were Found On Your Mac, Critical System Error: x679Qs5m, and many others.
This pop-up is delivered by various rogue websites. Most users visit these sites inadvertently - they are redirected by intrusive advertisements or potentially unwanted programs (PUPs), which typically infiltrate systems without users’ permission. In addition to redirects, PUPs gather sensitive information and deliver intrusive advertisements.
This error states that a number of system issues have detected and must be eliminated immediately. To achieve this, users must contact 'technicians' via a telephone number provided. These people then supposedly guide victims through the malware removal process. This is a scam - the "Apologies For Interruption!" error is fake.
Cyber criminals generate revenue by tricking unsuspecting users into calling and paying for 'tech support' that is not required. Your computer is probably safe and virus free. We strongly recommend that you ignore "Apologies For Interruption!" and never attempt to call the aforementioned telephone number.
You can remove the message simply by closing the malicious site, however, some sites use scripts that prevent users from closing browsing tabs/windows. In these cases, close the browser using Task Manager or reboot the system, however, it is important not to restore the previous session the next time the browser is opened, since this will reopen the malicious sites.
Potentially unwanted applications are known to gather various information relating to web browsing activity. Collected data (IP addresses, website URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, geo-locations, keystrokes, and so on) typically includes personal details that developers share with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals).
These people misuse private data to generate revenue. Therefore, the presence of a data-tracking apps can lead to serious privacy issues. In addition, PUPs deliver intrusive advertisements, such as pop-ups, coupons, banners, and so on. These are delivered using tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site.
Therefore, most overlay visited website content, thereby diminishing the browsing experience. Furthermore important is that these ads conceal underlying website content, thereby significantly diminishing web browsing experience. Intrusive ads might redirect to malicious websites or even execute scripts that download/install malware.
Therefore, even a single click might lead to high-risk computer infections. For these reasons, you are advised to eliminate all PUPs immediately.
|Name||"Apologies For Interruption!" virus|
|Threat Type||Mac malware, Mac virus|
|Symptoms||Your Mac became slower than normal, you see unwanted pop-up ads, you get redirected to shady websites.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers, torrent file downloads.|
|Damage||Internet browsing tracking (potential privacy issues), displaying of unwanted ads, redirects to shady websites, loss of private information.|
|Malware Removal (Mac)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your Mac with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
As mentioned, Apologies For Interruption! shares many similarities with dozens of other fake errors. All claim that system is damaged, however, these false claims are merely attempts to extort money from gullible users. PUPs also share many similarities.
By offering a wide range of "useful features", they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy, however, these programs are designed only to generate revenue for the developers.
Rather than giving any real value for regular users, PUPs cause unwanted redirects, gather sensitive information, and deliver intrusive ads, thereby posing a direct threat to your privacy and Internet browsing safety.
How did potentially unwanted programs install on my computer?
Some PUPs have official download websites, however, due to the lack of knowledge and careless behavior of many users, PUPs often infiltrate systems without permission. Developers proliferate PUPs using the aforementioned intrusive ads and a deceptive marketing method called "bundling".
Developers hide "bundled" apps within "Custom/Advanced" settings (or other sections) of the download/installation processes. Furthermore, many users are likely to rush these procedures and skip steps. In addition, users often click various advertisements and skip steps.
This behavior often leads to inadvertent installation of PUPs - users expose their systems to risk of various infections and compromise their privacy.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
Caution is the key to computer safety. Therefore, pay close attention when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing software. Bear in mind that developers invest many resources into intrusive ad design, thereby making them seem legitimate. Once clicked, however, they redirect to dubious websites, such as gambling, adult dating, pornography, and so on.
If you see these ads, immediately check the list of installed programs/browser plug-ins and eliminate any suspicious entries. Furthermore, select "Custom/Advanced" settings and carefully analyze each window of the download/installation dialogs. During the process, opt-out of third party software and cancel offers to download/install it.
You are advised to download programs from official sources only via direct download links, since third party downloaders/installers "bundle" PUPs, and thus should never be used. If your computer is already infected with PUPs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.
Text presented in "Apologies For Interruption!" pop-up:
APOLOGIES FOR INTERRUPTION!
PLEASE CALL: +1(888)815-0333
CASE ID: SA556908
Chrome Browser Pops Issue may have been found!
Dear Att Internet Services user - You may have excessive POPUPS or SECURITY ISSUES on your Mac!
It could be because of a possible MALWARE or SPYWARE in your Chrome browser too. Did you install anything suspicious on your MAC Device?
Are you located near Livermore?
Please Call +1(888) 815-0333 immediately and get connected to a Level 2 technician for Mac device.
Please note your Reference number or Case ID is: SA556908
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED SUPPORT CALL
PLEASE CLICK HERE TO PROCEED FURTHER
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:
- What is "Apologies For Interruption!" virus?
- How to identify a pop-up scam?
- How do pop-up scams work?
- How to remove fake pop-ups?
- How to prevent fake pop-ups?
- What to do if you fell for a pop-up scam?
How to identify a pop-up scam?
Pop-up windows with various fake messages are a common type of lures cybercriminals use. They collect sensitive personal data, trick Internet users into calling fake tech support numbers, subscribe to useless online services, invest in shady cryptocurrency schemes, etc.
While in the majority of cases these pop-ups don't infect users' devices with malware, they can cause direct monetary loss or could result in identity theft.
Cybercriminals strive to create their rogue pop-up windows to look trustworthy, however, scams typically have the following characteristics:
- Spelling mistakes and non-professional images - Closely inspect the information displayed in a pop-up. Spelling mistakes and unprofessional images could be a sign of a scam.
- Sense of urgency - Countdown timer with a couple of minutes on it, asking you to enter your personal information or subscribe to some online service.
- Statements that you won something - If you haven't participated in a lottery, online competition, etc., and you see a pop-up window stating that you won.
- Computer or mobile device scan - A pop-up window that scans your device and informs of detected issues - is undoubtedly a scam; webpages cannot perform such actions.
- Exclusivity - Pop-up windows stating that only you are given secret access to a financial scheme that can quickly make you rich.
Example of a pop-up scam:
How do pop-up scams work?
Cybercriminals and deceptive marketers usually use various advertising networks, search engine poisoning techniques, and shady websites to generate traffic to their pop-ups. Users land on their online lures after clicking on fake download buttons, using a torrent website, or simply clicking on an Internet search engine result.
Based on users' location and device information, they are presented with a scam pop-up. Lures presented in such pop-ups range from get-rich-quick schemes to fake virus scans.
How to remove fake pop-ups?
In most cases, pop-up scams do not infect users' devices with malware. If you encountered a scam pop-up, simply closing it should be enough. In some cases scam, pop-ups may be hard to close; in such cases - close your Internet browser and restart it.
In extremely rare cases, you might need to reset your Internet browser. For this, use our instructions explaining how to reset Internet browser settings.
How to prevent fake pop-ups?
To prevent seeing pop-up scams, you should visit only reputable websites. Torrent, Crack, free online movie streaming, YouTube video download, and other websites of similar reputation commonly redirect Internet users to pop-up scams.
To minimize the risk of encountering pop-up scams, you should keep your Internet browsers up-to-date and use reputable anti-malware application. For this purpose, we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS.
What to do if you fell for a pop-up scam?
This depends on the type of scam that you fell for. Most commonly, pop-up scams try to trick users into sending money, giving away personal information, or giving access to one's device.
- If you sent money to scammers: You should contact your financial institution and explain that you were scammed. If informed promptly, there's a chance to get your money back.
- If you gave away your personal information: You should change your passwords and enable two-factor authentication in all online services that you use. Visit Federal Trade Commission to report identity theft and get personalized recovery steps.
- If you let scammers connect to your device: You should scan your computer with reputable anti-malware (we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS) - cyber criminals could have planted trojans, keyloggers, and other malware, don't use your computer until removing possible threats.
- Help other Internet users: report Internet scams to Federal Trade Commission.
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