Apple.com-repair.live POP-UP Scam (Mac)

Also Known As: "Apple.com-repair.live" virus
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is "apple.com-repair.live"?

apple.com-repair.live is a deceptive website that scammers use to trick people into believing that their Mac computers are infected and to encourage them to download a potentially unwanted app (PUA) called Mac-Tweak-Pro. Websites and apps that promote this PUA should be trusted.

Typically, users do not generally visit pages such as apple.com-repair.live intentionally - they are redirected by PUAs installed on their systems. Additionally, these apps display intrusive ads and record browsing-related details.

apple.com-repair.live scam

When visited, apple.com-repair.live displays a fake warning indicating that the Mac computer is infected with three viruses (two malware infections and one phishing/spyware infection). It also states that if these malicious programs are not removed within five minutes (a counter is displayed), they might cause more damage.

It goes on to state that these infections might cause data loss and put banking and other personal details at risk. This deceptive page urges visitors to start a 'deep scan' immediately by clicking the "Scan Now" button. When clicked, it begins to scan the system for viruses.

Once complete, it informs Mac users that their computers are "heavily damaged" (system damage is 33.2%) and encourages them to download the Advanced Mac Cleaner application to remove detected viruses (Tapsnake, CronDNS, and Dubfishicv).

To download this app, users are required to click the "REMOVE VIRUSES NOW" button, which then starts downloading another app mentioned in our introduction: Mac-Tweak-Pro. This app is presented as anti-virus software.

We advise against downloading apps from dubious or deceptive websites such as apple.com-repair.live. If downloaded and installed, they should be removed immediately.

PUAs that open websites such as apple.com-repair.live (and various other pages) cannot be trusted. They also feed users with ads such as coupons, banners, surveys, pop-ups, and other intrusive advertisements. If clicked, they often open dubious or even malicious websites (or run scripts that download and install unwanted apps).

Furthermore, they can be very annoying, since PUAs display them via tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site. Therefore, the ads conceal content of visited websites. Another issue with these apps is that they continually collect information relating to users' browsing habits.

This data usually includes entered search queries, URLs of visited websites, geo-locations, IP (Internet Protocol) addresses, and other details.

In many cases, PUAs record personal data. Furthermore, developers share all data with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals). These people misuse shared information to generate revenue. If you have PUAs installed on your browser or operating system, remove/uninstall them immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name "Apple.com-repair.live" virus
Threat Type Mac malware, Mac virus.
Symptoms Mac is running slower than normal, you see unwanted pop-up ads, you are redirected to dubious 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), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious 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.

apple.com-repair.live is just one of many websites designed to promote scam that trick people into downloading PUAs. Some other examples used for the same purpose are "Your Mac is heavily damaged! (33.2%)", "Mac OS X Is Infected (4) By Viruses", and "Apple.com-clean-os.live".

Unofficial, deceptive websites should never be trusted or used as a source to download any software. 

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Typically, people cause unwanted installations by clicking intrusive advertisements or when software developers bundle them into download/installation set-ups of other software. Bundling is a deceptive marketing method that developers use to trick people into downloading and installing unwanted apps with other programs.

They hide PUAs in download/installation settings such as "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual", and so on. Any information about the inclusion of PUAs (bundling) into these set-ups is not properly disclosed. Despite this, unintentional downloads and installations usually happen when people leave settings unchecked and unchanged.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Software should be downloaded from official websites and using direct links. Do not use channels such as Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule, and so on), unofficial websites, third party downloaders, or other similar sources that cannot be trusted. Various third party downloaders/installers are often monetized by promoting PUAs.

Furthermore, software installations should be handled carefully. Check all available setup options ("Advanced", Custom", and so on), and deselect suggestions to download or install additional software.

Only then finish the download or installation procedure. Intrusive advertisements that are displayed on unofficial (dubious) web pages should not be clicked, since they often open potentially malicious websites (such as pornography, adult dating, gambling, and other dubious websites).

If these redirects occur even without clicking ads or ads appear often, this may be due to PUAs that are already installed. We recommend that you check the list of installed browser apps (extensions, add-ons, plug-ins) and remove all unwanted apps immediately.

In addition, uninstall unwanted programs from the operating system. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.

Screenshot of apple.com-repair.live website urging to perform a fake scan:

Apple.com-repair.live website encouraging to perform a fake scan

Text presented in this page:

AppleCare Protection Plan
Your system is infected with 3 viruses! Wednesday, March 20, 2019 10:53 AM
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 MacOS 10.14 Mojave.
Personal and banking information is at risk.
To avoid more damage click on 'Scan Now' immediately. Our deep scan will provide help immediately!
4 minute and 22 seconds remaining before damage is permanent.

Screenshot of apple.com-repair.live website encouraging users to download Mac-Tweak-Pro application:

Apple.com-repair.live encouraging to download mac-tweak-pro unwanted application

Text presented in this page: 

Your Mac is heavily damaged! (33.2%)
Please download the Advanced Mac Cleaner application to remove 3 Viruses from your Mac.


Virus Name: Tapsnake; CronDNS; Dubfishicv
Risk: HIGH
Infected Files: /os/apps/hidden/os-component/X/snake.icv; /os/local/conf/keyboard/retype.icv...


Application: Advanced Mac Cleaner
Rating: 9.9/10
Price: Free

Screenshot of the Mac-Tweak-Pro app:

mac tweak pro potentially unwanted application

Instant automatic Mac malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT 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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