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Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses! POP-UP Scam (Mac)

Also Known As: "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" virus
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!"?

"Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" is a fake virus alert message that is displayed for MacOS users who visit untrustworthy and deceptive websites. In most cases, users do not visit these websites intentionally - potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) cause these redirects.

PUAs are installed without direct permission, cause unwanted redirects, deliver intrusive ads, and record browsing-related and other data.

Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses! scam

The message in the "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" pop-up window states that the Mac operating system is infected with a trojan virus (e.tre456_worm_osx) and immediate action is required. According to the claims, the system is infected with three viruses: two malware and one spyware infection.

It goes on to state that if no action is taken, data such as apps, photos, and other files might be in danger and could be lost. The scammers behind this fake virus alert use it to promote software that, according to the message, will remove the viruses that were detected.

At time of research, scammers promoted the Mac Cleanup Pro software. This is typical behaviour of scammers who use various fake messages.

Generally, they claim to be 'technicians' (in this case, representatives of Apple) and either offer purchase of a product that will fix the problem (in this case, the virus infection) or attempt to trick people into paying for technical guidance or other services. Note that Apple has nothing to do with the "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" virus alert.

Do not download the software offered, and certainly do not pay for it. Ignore these fake alerts. Simply close the deceptive website and avoid returning to it in future. If it cannot be closed normally, use Activity Monitor and 'force quit' the entire browser. Do not restore the previous session.

PUAs mentioned in our introduction also deliver coupons, banners, and other similar intrusive ads. These are usually displayed via tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site. When displayed, they conceal underlying content of visited websites.

If clicked, they might redirect to untrustworthy websites or even execute scripts designed to download/install other unwanted apps. Another downside of PUAs is that they gather browsing-related and other data. Typically, these unwanted apps record IP addresses, keystrokes, search engines, URLs of visited websites and other similar data.

They also collect personal or sensitive data that PUA developers share with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who misuse it to generate revenue. Thus, PUAs can cause various problems relating to browsing safety, privacy, or even identity theft.

Threat Summary:
Name "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" 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.
▼ Download Combo Cleaner for Mac
To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. Limited seven days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

There are many fake virus, error, and other similar alert messages online, including Your OS High Sierra Is Infected With (3) Viruses!, Your Computer Was Locked, Mac OS Support Alert, and so on. Generally, scammers use these alerts to trick people into paying for services or products that will supposedly solve the 'problem'.

PUAs are promoted as 'useful tools', however, these are only attempts to trick people into downloading and installing rogue software. These apps provide none of the functionality promised and are designed only to generate revenue for their developers.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Some potentially unwanted applications can be found on their official websites and downloaded from there, however, in most cases PUAs are installed through intrusive ads, third party software downloaders/installers, or when software developers use a deceptive marketing method called "bundling".

Bundling is stealth installation of third party apps with regular (usually, free) software. Developers do not properly disclose information about the presence of bundled apps in installation set-ups - they hide them in "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings (options) of the download/installation processes.

Developers are aware that many users skip installation steps without checking these settings, and they use this behaviour to their advantage.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Do not use software downloaders, torrents or untrustworthy websites to download software. Use official websites or other sources, and direct links only. When installing, check all available "Advanced", "Custom" and other sections. Deselect unwanted offers (such as potentially unwanted programs) and only then finish the installation process.

Be cautious when browsing the web and avoid clicking on intrusive ads. Most malicious advertisements seem legitimate, since developers invest time and money into their design, however, if clicked, they often redirect to untrustworthy websites (gambling, pornography, adult dating, and other similar sites).

If you encounter these ads, or redirects caused by them, check for unwanted extensions, plug-ins, and add-ons installed on your browser, or unwanted programs installed on your computer. Remove any unwanted entries immediately. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.

Appearance of "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" scam (GIF):

Appearance of Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses! scam (GIF)

Text presented in "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" fake virus alert pop-up window:

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED

We have detected a trojan virus (e.tre456_worm_osx) on your Mac.

Press OK to begin the repair process.

Text presented in "Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave Is Infected With 3 Viruses!" fake virus alert website:

Your MacOS 10.14 Mojave is infected with 3 viruses!
Monday November 12, 2018 12:49 PM

Your Mac is infected with 3 viruses. Our security check found traces of 2 malware and 1 phishing/spyware. System damage: 28.1% - Immediate removal required!

The immediate removal of the viruses is required to prevent further system damage, loss of Apps, Photos or other files. Traces of 1 phishing/spyware were found on your Mac with OSX.

To avoid more damage click on 'Scan Now' immediately. Our deep scan will provide help immediately!

4 minute and 30 seconds remaining before damage is permanent.

Screenshot of the "Mac Cleanup Pro" app installer:

Mac Cleanup Pro app installer

Screenshot of the "Mac Cleanup Pro" app:

Mac Cleanup Pro potentially unwanted application

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 seven days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

Quick menu:

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:

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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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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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

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