"Iforgot.apple.com" removal guide
What is "iforgot.apple.com"?
The "Iforgot.apple.com" scam is used by cyber criminals to steal logins and passwords (AppleID accounts). They send this email to many people hoping that at least some will click the link and provide the requested details. We strongly recommend that you ignore this email, since it has nothing to do with the Apple company.
The message informs recipients that their Apple ID was used to sign in on a new browser - potentially implying that another device was used to sign in with the ID. In any case, the scam states that the user's Apple ID has been temporarily disabled for security reasons. To re-enable it, people are encouraged to sign in to their Apple accounts using their Apple IDs and passwords via a deceptive website. Note that the email contains the iforgot.apple.com URL, which is a legitimate Apple website, however, this actually a hyperlink. Thus, "iforgot.apple.com" is simply text pointing to a URL of a fake Apple ID management website used to steal account credentials. People are urged to sign in within 24 hours, otherwise their accounts will be disabled permanently. These scammers pose as Apple Support team members. We strongly advise that you do not sign in through the presented website, since this is used to steal Apple ID accounts (and credentials). If they succeed, cyber criminals can use these accounts to access App Store (make purchases), iMessage (manage messages), iCloud (gain access to files stored on it), and so on. In summary, using this deceptive website to sign into Apple ID can result in privacy issues or even financial loss. This scam should not be trusted. We recommend that you delete this email and never trust any similar emails in future.
|Name||Disabled Apple ID scam|
|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.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
Spam campaigns that cause computer infections can do so only if the attachments and links that lead to them are opened. For example, if an attached file is an MS Office document, once opened, it will demand permission to enable macros commands. In effect, this is to disable "Protected View" mode, which protects users from installation of malware caused by malicious/infected documents. The same applies to other files. Whatever the file type, it must first be opened. The best way to avoid computer infections is to leave these files unopened.
How to avoid installation of malware?
To avoid computer infections and damage that can be done by them, handle emails that are received from unknown or suspicious addresses with care. Especially if these emails contain links or attachments. Most are presented as official and legitimate, however, they usually have no relevance to the recipients at all. Therefore, download software from official websites and using direct links. Do not use dubious software download channels such as Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule etc.), unofficial/dubious websites, third party downloaders, etc. to download software. Software should be updated using tools provided by official software developers only and not third party tools. Do not use software "cracking" tools to avoid paying for official software. Cracking tools are often used by cyber criminals to proliferate malware. Besides, it is illegal to use these tools. Additionally, have reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software installed and keep it enabled at all times. If you have already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the "iforgot.apple.com" email message:
Your Apple ID was used to sign in to a new web browser.
Date and Time:
Your Apple ID has been temporarily disabled for security reason. When you see this alerts, you can go to iforgot.apple.com to unlock your account with your existing password. Your account will permanently disabled if you not verify your account under 24 hours.
Screenshot of a fake Apple ID management website:
Another variant of iforgot.apple.com email scam:
Text presented within this email:
Subject: Apple Support
Apple ID Locked
Your Apple ID has been locked for security reasons. To unlock it, you must verify your identity.
Unlock Account >
If you don't unlock your account before 24 hours, your account password will change automatically. You can reset your password at iforgot.apple.com.
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 "iforgot.apple.com"?
- STEP 1. Manual removal of possible malware infections.
- STEP 2. Check if your computer is clean.
How to remove malware manually?
Manual malware removal is a complicated task - usually it is best to allow antivirus or anti-malware programs to do this automatically. To remove this malware we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS. If you wish to remove malware manually, the first step is to identify the name of the malware that you are trying to remove. Here is an example of a suspicious program running on a user's computer:
If you checked the list of programs running on your computer, for example, using task manager, and identified a program that looks suspicious, you should continue with these steps:
Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry, and file system locations:
Restart your computer into Safe Mode:
Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, and then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 8 users: Start Windows 8 is Safe Mode with Networking - Go to Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click Advanced startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window, select Advanced startup. Click the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into the "Advanced Startup options menu". Click the "Troubleshoot" button, and then click the "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen, click "Startup settings". Click the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press F5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button. In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Extract the downloaded archive and run the Autoruns.exe file.
In the Autoruns application, click "Options" at the top and uncheck the "Hide Empty Locations" and "Hide Windows Entries" options. After this procedure, click the "Refresh" icon.
Check the list provided by the Autoruns application and locate the malware file that you want to eliminate.
You should write down its full path and name. Note that some malware hides process names under legitimate Windows process names. At this stage, it is very important to avoid removing system files. After you locate the suspicious program you wish to remove, right click your mouse over its name and choose "Delete".
After removing the malware through the Autoruns application (this ensures that the malware will not run automatically on the next system startup), you should search for the malware name on your computer. Be sure to enable hidden files and folders before proceeding. If you find the filename of the malware, be sure to remove it.
Reboot your computer in normal mode. Following these steps should remove any malware from your computer. Note that manual threat removal requires advanced computer skills. If you do not have these skills, leave malware removal to antivirus and anti-malware programs. These steps might not work with advanced malware infections. As always it is best to prevent infection than try to remove malware later. To keep your computer safe, install the latest operating system updates and use antivirus software.
To be sure your computer is free of malware infections, we recommend scanning it with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS.