Fake Flash Player Update POP-UP Scam (Mac)

Also Known As: "Fake Flash Player Update" virus
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove "Fake Flash Player Update" from Mac?

What is "Fake Flash Player Update"?

"Fake Flash Player Update" is a scam used to trick people into downloading an unofficial (fake) Flash Player that is presented as the Adobe Flash Player (it uses a very similar logo). This scam is distributed through a deceptive and unofficial website. Generally, people arrive at websites of this type due to adware-type, potentially unwanted apps (PUAs) installed on their systems. These installations are often caused unintentionally. Once installed, PUAs deliver annoying, unwanted advertisements and collect user-system information.

Fake Flash Player Update scam

Scammers use this deceptive website to trick people into installing the latest Flash Player (supposedly, Adobe Flash Player). They attempt to make visitors believe that they do not have the latest version installed - having it installed will supposedly improve browsing performance. In fact, this site has nothing do to with the official Flash Player and will not update the current installed version. Generally, websites of this type trick people into downloading and installing unwanted applications (adware and so on). Therefore, unofficial websites should not be used to update or download software. People often arrive at these websites due to installed adware-type PUAs, which deliver advertisements that conceal underlying content of any visited website. They feed users with coupons, banners, surveys, pop-ups, and so on. If clicked, these ads open dubious, potentially malicious websites, or run scripts designed to cause other unwanted downloads/installations. Another downside of these PUAs is that they continually collect browsing-related, and other, data. They gather entered search queries, geo-locations, URLs of visited websites, IP addresses, and so on. They often target personal, sensitive data. Developers share recorded information with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who misuse private data to generate revenue. Therefore, data-tracking apps can cause privacy, browsing safety issues, or even identity theft. Any adware-type or other unwanted apps should be uninstalled immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name "Fake Flash Player Update" 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 three days free trial available.

"10 Critical Security Patches For Mac Flash Player", "APPLE.COM RECOMMENDS", and "Apple Support Alert" are other scams that are displayed on deceptive websites. These might be different in certain ways, however, the main purpose of these websites is to trick people into downloading and installing unwanted software that can later be used to generate revenue.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Most people are tricked into downloading or installing unwanted apps (adware-type programs and other similar apps) using the "bundling" method. Therefore, most users install/download PUAs together with some other software. Software developers successfully trick people into causing unwanted installations/downloads by hiding information regarding bundled apps in "Advanced", "Custom" and other similar settings. Furthermore, many users fail to check the available settings or simply skip set-up steps. These are the most common reasons for unintentional installation/download of unwanted apps.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Download software from official websites and using direct links. Do not use peer-to-Peer networks such as torrent clients, eMule, third party downloaders/installers, unofficial websites, and so on. All installations and downloads should be performed carefully. Check available settings when downloading or installing software, especially if it is freeware. Deselect all offers to install additional (potentially unwanted) apps and only then finish the process. Do not trust intrusive ads, especially if they are displayed on dubious websites. These often lead to untrustworthy websites such as gambling, pornography, adult dating, and so on. If you experience these ads or unwanted redirects, unwanted apps might be causing them. In this case, check installed extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins on the browser and programs on the operating system. Remove any unwanted apps immediately. 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 within this scam website:

Software update

Update your Flash Player
Install the latest Flash Player for better performance.


Update now
"Flash Player" is essential plugin for your browser that allows you to view everything from video to games and animation on the web. The version of "Flash Player" on your system might not include the latest security updates.

The version of this plug-in on your computer doesn't include the latest security updates. Flash cannot be used until you download an update.

 

Click "Download Flash Player"

Install updates and enjoy performances.

 

 

Flash Player Update
Install the latest version of Flash Player in order to continue watching.

Appearance of "Fake Flash Player Update" scam (GIF):

Appearance of Fake Flash Player Update scam (GIF)

Other variants of "Fake Flash Player Update" pop-up scam websites:

Example 1:

Fake Flash Player Update pop-up scam (sample 2)

Text presented within this site:

Flash Player update is available for your computer

 

Older versions of Flash Player are vulnerable to online threats, you'll want to make sure you're always using the most recent version. If you're not running the most recent version, you might see an error message instead of your content.

 

Flash Player supports several data formats, including XML, JSON, AMF, and SWF. Multimedia formats supported by the Flash Player include mp3, FLV, PNG, JPEG, GIF, and RTMP, among others.

 

Version Update: The newest version of Flash Player enables greater security and privacy controls with protected HTTPS Dynamic Streaming (HDS). Other features include webcam support, accelerated graphics rendering, multithread video decoding, and improved software for high-end performance.

Example 2:

Fake Flash Player Update pop-up scam (sample 3)

Text presented within this site:

Software Update

 

New update is available for your computer.

 

Your OS might need Flash Player for HD Support.
Please update your Flash Player to continue.

 

Install Name Version Size
V Media Player Mac OS X 0.6M

 

Note: The version of your player on your system downs not include the latest updates.
To continue, download an updated version.

 

Installing takes under a minute - No restart is required.

Example 3:

Fake Flash Player Update pop-up scam (sample 3)

Text presented within this site:

Your system is missing critical plugin updates.

 

If you will not update them you will encounter problems playing videos and flash content.


You need to:
Step 1: Push the download button and get the latest Flash Player version
Step 2: Run the file and finish the installation process.

Example 4:

Fake Flash Player Update pop-up scam (sample 4)

Text presented within this site:

Flash Player

Storage Multimedia Playback Updates Advanced
Your Adobe Flash Player is out of date
Downloading new updates...
Updating takes a few seconds and no restart is needed after installation.
Flash Player
Update Download Flash...
Updates
Flash Player can automatically check for updates to help protect your computer. Not updating may leave this computer vulnerable to security threats.

Adobe Flash Player Update RECOMMENDED
Install latest version of Adobe Flash Player for better performance.
Download

Examples of fake Adobe Flash Player installers:

fake Flash Player installer Fake Adobe Flash Player installer (sample 1) Fake Adobe Flash Player installer (sample 2) Fake Adobe Flash Player installer (sample 3)

Appearance of a fake Apple website promoting a fake Flash Player installer:

Fake Apple website (peatix.update-version.download) promoting a fake Flash Player installer

Another variant of a Flash Player-themed pop-up scam:

Fake Flash Player pop-up scam variant (2020-06-23)

Yet another variant of Flash Player-themed pop-up scam:

Fake Flash Player Update POP-UP Scam

Text presented within:

RECOMMENDED×
Flash Player Update
Install latest version of Flash Player for better performance.
Download

Software update
Update your Flash Player

The version of this plug-in on your computer might not include the latest security updates. Flash might not work until you download an update.

Update now
"Flash Player" is an essential plugin for your browser that allows you to view everything from video to games and animation on the web. The version of “Flash Player" on your system might not include the latest security updates and might be blocked.

The version of this plug-in on your computer might not include the latest security updates. Flash might not work until you download an update.
>
Click "Download Flash"

>
Install updates and enjoy performances.
Update Download Flash...

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:

Potentially unwanted applications removal:

Remove 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 "fake flash player update" 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.

"Fake Flash Player Update" virus removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove "fake flash player update" 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 "fake flash player update" 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 "fake flash player update" 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
Fake Flash Player Update 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 "Fake Flash Player Update" virus on your mobile device.
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