Safari Redirect Virus (Mac)

Also Known As: Safari redirect malware
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

How to remove Safari Redirect Virus browser hijacker from Mac?

What is Safari Redirect Virus?

Rogue applications that are categorized as browser hijackers and modify Safari browser settings have a generic name: "Safari Redirect Virus". When installed, browser-hijacking apps change settings of the affected browser and record various information (usually browsing-related). Typically, people install these apps inadvertently.

Safari Redirect Virus browser hijacker on a Mac computer

Browser hijackers are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs). When installed, they modify browser settings such as default search engine, homepage, and new tab URL. They assign a specific URL to these settings, overwriting any previous values. Once these changes are made, users are redirected to the new URL or to visit a particular website when a browser window or new tab is opened, or a search query is entered into the URL bar. As the name suggests ("Safari Redirect Virus"), these browser hijackers target Safari browsers, however, PUAs of this type also target other popular browsers such as Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. Most affect browsers installed on Windows Operating Systems. Changes made by browser hijackers may seem insignificant, however, it is impossible to undo them as long PUAs are installed. They prevent users from reverting the settings and change them back when attempts are made.

Another downside of having unwanted apps of this type installed is that they usually gather browsing-related (and other) data. Browser hijackers collect IP (Internet Protocol) addresses, geo-locations, search queries, URLs of visited websites, pages viewed, and so on. PUAs might also record sensitive/personal information. Developers use the data to generate revenue by sharing or selling it to third parties (potentially, cyber criminals). These people misuse private data to generate revenue. Thus, having data tracking apps such as browser hijackers installed might cause problems relating to privacy, browsing safety, and identity theft. You are advised to remove all PUAs immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name Safari redirect malware
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.
Removal

To eliminate Safari redirect malware 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.

Most PUAs of this type (browser hijackers) are virtually identical: developers promote them by promising 'useful' features and tools, however, these are merely attempts to trick people into downloading/installing them. Once installed, they provide none of the functionality promised. On the contrary, they cause unwanted redirects, change browser settings, and gather data. They are designed only to generate revenue for their developers. Some examples of browser hijackers that target Safari include homesweeklies.com, weknow.ac, and playsearchnow.com.

How did Safari Redirect Virus install on my computer?

In some cases, PUAs can be downloaded from their (supposedly official) websites, however, users often download/install them unintentionally through intrusive ads that, once clicked, execute scripts designed to download and install PUAs, or when software developers use a deceptive marketing method called "bundling". Bundling is used to trick people to install potentially unwanted apps together with other, regular software. Developers hide bundled apps in "Custom", "Advanced" (and other similar settings) of the installation (or download) set-ups. Most users cause inadvertent installations (or downloads) by skipping installation/download procedures without checking available settings and leaving them unchanged. In other cases, they cause infiltration by clicking untrustworthy, deceptive advertisements.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Download software from official sources and using direct links only. Avoid using third party software downloaders (and installers), since these are usually monetized by promoting potentially unwanted apps. Avoid using peer-to-peer networks (such as torrent clients, eMule, and so on) or various unofficial, dubious websites. Install software with care - do not skip installation or download steps and analyze each step by checking all available settings/options such as "Custom", "Advanced", and other similar parts. Bear in mind that most malicious (or other untrustworthy) advertisements often seem legitimate, however, by clicking them, many users are redirected to adult dating, gambling, pornography, or other untrustworthy websites. If you experience unwanted redirects, it is possible that PUAs are installed on the browser or computer. Check the list of installed apps, such as extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins on the browser and remove all suspicious, unwanted entries immediately. Also apply this to programs installed on your computer. If your computer is already infected with browser hijackers, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.

Instant automatic removal of Safari redirect malware: 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 Safari redirect 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. 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 adware and browser hijackers from a Mac computer:

Safari Redirect Virus redirect removal:

Remove Safari Redirect Virus related potentially unwanted applications from your "Applications" folder:

mac browser hijacker 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 safari redirect malware 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.

Safari redirect malware homepage and default Internet search engine removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove safari redirect malware 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.

Change your homepage:

changing homepage in safari browser

In the "Preferences" window, select the "General" tab. To set your homepage, type the preferred website URL (for example: www.google.com) in the Homepage field. You can also click the “Set to Current Page” button if you wish to set your homepage to the website you are currently visiting.

Change your default search engine:

changing the default Internet search engine in Safari browser

In the "Preferences" window, select the "Search" tab. Here you will find a drop-down menu labelled "Search engine:" Simply select your preferred search engine from the drop-down list.

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

firefox browser iconRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Remove safari redirect malware 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.

Change your homepage:

changing mozilla firefox homepage

To change your homepage, click the "Open Menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Preferences" from the drop-down menu. To set your homepage, type the preferred website URL (for example: www.google.com) in the Homepage Page.

Change default search engine:

mozilla firefox about config

In the URL address bar, type "about:config" and click the "I'll be careful, I promise!" button.

changing mozilla firefox default Internet search engine

In the "Search:" field, type the name of the browser hijacker. Right click on each of the found preferences and click "Reset" from the drop-down menu.

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

chrome-browser-iconRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Remove safari redirect malware 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.

Change your homepage:

changing Google Chrome homepage

Click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Settings". In the "On Startup" section, click the "Set pages" link near to the "Open a specific page or set of pages" option. Remove the URL of the browser hijacker (for example trovi.com) and enter your preferred URL (for example, google.com).

Change default search engine:

changing the default Internet search engine in Google Chrome

Click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button and choose "Settings". In the "Search" section, click the "Manage search engines..." button. In the opened window, remove the unwanted Internet search engine by clicking the "X" button next to it. Select your preferred Internet search engine from the list and click the "Make default" button next to it.

  • 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
Safari redirect malware 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 Safari redirect malware 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.