Apple Support Alert POP-UP Scam (Mac)

Also Known As: "Apple Support Alert" virus
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

How to remove "Apple Support Alert" from Mac?

What is "Apple Support Alert"?

Identical to "VIRUS ALERT FROM APPLE", "Apple Support Alert" is a fake error message delivered by deceptive websites. Research shows that many users arrive at these sites inadvertently - they are redirected by potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) or intrusive advertisements displayed on other rogue sites. PUAs usually infiltrate systems without permission and, as well as causing directs, gather information and deliver intrusive ads.

Apple Support Alert scam

The "Apple Support Alert" error essentially states that the system is blocked for the following reasons: the computer is proliferating viruses; pirated software is being used; The Mac registration key is illegal, or; the computer is hacked or being used from an "undefined" location. The pop-up is followed by a message encouraging users to contact Apple 'tech support' (via the "+86672265620" telephone number) to resolve all issues. In addition, the rogue site continually downloads a single file called "This is a VIRUS.You computer is blocked", which itself is harmless and can be deleted without any consequences. Be aware, however, that "Apple Support Alert" is fake and Apple is certainly not involved in this scam. In fact, cyber criminals attempt to trick gullible users into calling and paying for services (tech support) that are not required - the system is often safe and virus free. Therefore, you should ignore the "Apple Support Alert" error and certainly do not call the aforementioned telephone number. You can remove this error simply by leaving the website. In some cases, rogue sites use scripts that disable closing of browsing tabs/windows. In these cases, terminate the browser using Activity Monitor or reboot the system. Do not restore the previous session, since you will end up re-opening the malicious websites.

Potentially unwanted applications continually gather information relating to browsing activity. Recorded data (IP addresses, search queries, keystrokes, pages viewed, URLs visited, and so on) usually includes personal details that are shared with third parties and misused to generate revenue. Therefore, information tracking can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. Potentially unwanted applications are also notorious for display of intrusive advertisements. Ads are deployed using tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site. They often conceal underlying content, significantly diminishing the browsing experience. They might also redirect to malicious websites and execute scripts designed to download and install malware. Therefore, even a single accidental click can lead to system infections. Uninstall all potentially unwanted applications immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name"Apple Support Alert" virus
Threat TypeMac malware, Mac virus
SymptomsYour Mac became slower than normal, you see unwanted pop-up ads, you get redirected to shady websites.
Distribution methodsDeceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers, torrent file downloads.
DamageInternet browsing tracking (potential privacy issues), displaying of unwanted ads, redirects to shady websites, loss of private information.
Removal

To eliminate Apple Support Alert virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Combo Cleaner.
▼ Download Combo Cleaner
Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Combo Cleaner.

The internet is full of fake error messages similar to "Apple Support Alert" including "Your Registration Key Is Blocked", "Your Computer Is Permanently Blocked", and "Your Mac Might Be Infected!" - these are just some examples from many. All claim that the system is damaged, however, these are merely attempts to extort money from unsuspecting users. Unwanted apps also share many similarities. By offering 'useful features', they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy, however, their only purpose is to generate revenue for the developers. Rather than enabling any features, unwanted apps pose a direct threat to your privacy and browsing safety.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Some unwanted applications have official download websites, however, due to the lack of knowledge and careless behavior of many users, unwanted apps often infiltrate systems without permission, since developers proliferate them using intrusive advertising and "bundling" methods. "Bundling" is stealth installation of unwanted apps with regular software. "Bundled" apps are concealed within various sections of the download/installation processes. In addition, many users often rush these procedures, skip steps, and click various advertisements without understanding the possible consequences. This behavior often leads to inadvertent installation of rogue applications.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

To prevent this situation, be very cautious when browsing the internet and downloading/installing software. Study each step of the download/installation processes using the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings. Cancel offers to download or install additional software and deselect those already included. We recommend that you avoid using unofficial downloaders/installers, since most "bundle" unwanted apps. Download software from official sources only, using direct download links. Remember that intrusive advertisements usually seem legitimate, since developers invest time and money into their design, however, most redirect to dubious websites, such as gambling, adult dating, pornography, and similar. If you encounter these redirects, immediately check the list of installed programs/browser plug-ins and eliminate any suspicious entries. The key to computer safety is caution. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.

Text presented in "Apple Support Alert" scam:

VIRUS ALERT FROM APPLE
This computer is BLOCKED
Do not close this window and restart your computer
Your computer's registration key is Blocked.
Why we blocked your computer?
The mac's registration key is illegal.
This mac is using pirated software.
This mac is sending virus over the internet.
This mac is hacked or used from undefined location.
We block this computer for your security.
Contact apple helpline to reactivate your computer.

BLOCKED

Apple Support Alert
Your System Detected Some unusual Activity
It might harm your computer data and track your financial activities.
Please report this activity to +86672265620

Appearance of "Apple Support Alert" scam (GIF):

Appearance of Apple Support Alert scam (GIF)

"This is a VIRUS.You computer is blocked" file downloaded by rogue websites that display "Apple Support Alert" scam:

This is a VIRUS.You computer is blocked file

Another variant of "Apple Support Alert" pop-up scam (uses +1-888-441-0333 phone number):

Apple Support Alert popup scam (sample 2)

Text presented in the pop-up:

VIRUS ALERT FROM APPLE
This Mac computer is BLOCKED
Do not close this warning or restart your Mac
Your Mac's registration key is Blocked
Why we blocked your Mac Computer?
The Mac's registration key is illegal.
This Mac is using pirated software.
This Mac is sending virus over the internet.
This Mac is hacked or used from undefined location.
We block this Mac for your security.
Contact Apple helpline to reactivate your Mac.

Appearance of this website (GIF):

Appearance of Apple Support Alert pop-up scam (sample 2)

Instant automatic removal of Apple Support Alert virus: 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 Apple Support Alert virus. 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. Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Combo Cleaner.

Quick menu:

Video showing how to remove rogue applications that display the "VIRUS ALERT FROM APPLE" pop-up (which is identical to "Apple Support Alert") using Combo Cleaner:

Potentially unwanted applications removal:

Remove 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 "apple support alert" 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.

"Apple Support Alert" virus removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove "apple support alert" 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 "apple support alert" 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 "apple support alert" 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 virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

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

QR Code
Apple Support Alert 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 "Apple Support Alert" virus on your mobile device.
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Platform: macOS

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Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Combo Cleaner.