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How to avoid becoming a victim of the fastsearchday scam

Also Known As: fastsearchday pop-up
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is "Fastsearchday"?

The Fastsearchday scam website is used to advertise the Smart Mac Booster application. This web page promotes the app using deception.

It displays a fake notification stating that the computer is infected with viruses, which can be removed with the aforementioned program. Generally, people do not visit websites of this kind intentionally. They are usually opened by potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) installed on the system.

Fastsearchday scam

Initially, this website displays a pop-up window stating that the user has visited a malicious website that has infected the Mac with a virus. When this pop-up is closed, this scam website displays details regarding the device (computer) and encourages visitors to scan it for viruses by clicking the "Scan Now" button".

A fake scan then starts and 'detects' a virus called "Bankworm". It also displays a "REMOVE VIRUS NOW" button that supposedly downloads the Advanced Mac Cleaner app. When clicked, however, it opens a web page used to promote Smart Mac Booster.

Do not trust the pop-up window or associated information, or apps promoted through dubious, deceptive websites. The best option is to ignore these websites and close them.

PUAs are often responsible for forcing browsers to open untrustworthy websites. They also display ads and collect user-system information. The ads include coupons, banners, surveys, pop-ups, and others - do not click them, since they can open untrustworthy websites or execute scripts that cause download/installation of PUAs.

Additionally, PUAs collect user-information such as IP addresses, geolocations, URLs of opened pages, entered search queries, and so on. Developers share this data with third parties who misuse it to generate revenue. Some of these third parties might be cyber criminals.

Threat Summary:
Name fastsearchday pop-up
Threat Type Mac malware, Mac virus
Fake Claim According to this scam, the Mac computer is infected with a virus.
Promoted Unwanted Application Smart Mac Booster
Related Domains apps1779.fastsearchday43[.]live
Serving IP Address (apps1779.fastsearchday43[.]live) 95.81.0.46
Detection Names (apps1779.fastsearchday43[.]live) Fortinet (Spam), Spamhaus (Spam), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms Your Mac becomes 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 browser 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.

The Internet is full of scam pages that are similar to this one, including, for example, apple.com-scan-mac[.]live, apple.com-shield[.]live, and apple.com-monitor[.]live. Typically, these sites trick people into believing that their computers are infected and can be fixed with a certain application.

PUAs are all very similar - they force people to visit dubious web pages, feed them with unwanted ads, and gather data.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Many users cause unwanted downloads and installations by clicking intrusive, deceptive ads, or when software developers 'bundle' unwanted apps into download/installation set-ups of other software. Bundling is used to trick people into downloading and installing PUAs with other, regular programs.

Generally, information about the inclusion of PUAs is hidden in "Custom", "Advanced", "Manual", and other settings of software set-ups. Unfortunately, not all people check them, and by leaving them unchanged, they allow PUAs to be downloaded and installed.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Software should be downloaded from official websites and via direct download links. Channels such as Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule and so on), unofficial websites, third party downloaders and other channels of this kind cannot be trusted. The same applies to third party installers.

All installations should be performed properly. Check all available setup settings ("Advanced", Custom", and so on) and deselect offers to download or install unwanted apps before completing the setup. Do not click intrusive advertisements displayed on unofficial pages.

They usually lead to potentially malicious websites. To prevent the default browser from opening dubious web pages or showing unwanted ads, uninstall all unknown extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins installed. Also remove any unwanted programs installed on 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.

Text presented in the first pop-up window (in screenshot above):

VIRUS FOUND

A website you visited today has infected your Mac with a virus.

Press OK to begin the repair process.

Screenshot of a second pop-up that encourages visitors to scan their systems:

fastsearchday scam second page

Text presented in this window:

VIRUS FOUND
A website you have visited today has infected your Mac with a virus. A full system scan is now required to find and remove harmful files or applications from your Mac OS X 10_14_3 device.
DEVICE INFORMATION
Brand: Apple
Device: Mac OS X 10_14_3
Browser: Safari 12.0.3
IP: 85.206.10.62
Provider: Telia Lietuva, AB
Location: - LT
Scan Now

Screenshot of fake scan results:

fastsearchday fake scan results

Text presented in this page:

DOWNLOAD REQUIRED
Please download the Advanced Mac Cleaner application to remove Bankworm from your Mac.
VIRUS INFORMATION
Virus Name: Bankworm
Risk: HIGH
Infected File: /os/apps/worm.icv
VIRUS REMOVAL
Application: Advanced Mac Cleaner
Rating: 9.9/10
Price: Free
REMOVE VIRUS NOW

Screenshot of a web page used to promote Smart Mac Booster:

smart mac booster download page

Text in this page:

3 Steps to make your Mojave Faster! apple
headerArrow
DOWNLOAD NOW btn_arroe
Click here to start free download Smart Mac Booster
Estimated Time:
About 10 Seconds Total downloads : 73,866,366

System Utility for MAC
in the World *
 download_arrow    Download and install    
Run system scan
Enjoy your clean Mac!
"Smart Mac Booster" combines powerful and intuitive tools to clean, secure and speed up your Mac!
    
Clean Your Mac
Safely remove massive junk files from your Mac . Find Spaces you didn't know exist before!
    
Optimize Your Mac
Manage start-ups to decrease boot time for your Mac. Lightening Boot-Time!

One Click Solutions
Power to perform variety of complicated task in once click. Power with Simplicity.
    
Secure Your Mac
Remove malware and prevent unauthorized access to your confidential files. Superior Experience!
    
Get Expert Assistance
Our tech experts are ready to assist you 24/7 with any queries about your Mac.
    
Enjoy Free Updates
All our updates are provided to all our customers without any additional cost.

Click here to start free download Smart Mac Booster
� 2019 tunesysbooster.xyz. All rights reserved. Mac and OS X are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Screenshot of Smart Mac Booster app:

Smart Mac Booster app

Appearance of "Fastsearchday" scam (GIF):

Appearance of Fastsearchday scam (GIF)

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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