Avoid scam sites such as apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz

Also Known As: apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz from Mac?

What is apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz?

apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz is a deceptive website designed to trick people into downloading and installing a rogue application called Cleanup My Mac. This software supposedly removes fake viruses that this scam website has detected. Note that apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz is not the only web page of this type - these sites, and apps advertised on, them cannot be trusted. Furthermore, people often visit these web pages unintentionally.

apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz scam

When opened, apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz displays a fake notification about a virus that this website has supposedly detected. The pop-up window states that this page has detected a trojan called "e.tre456_worm_osx", which should be removed from the operating system immediately. The text in the background, however, indicates that apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz has detected more than one threat: two malware-type programs and one phishing/spyware-type program. To avoid further system damage, data loss, and/or having personal and banking details stolen, visitors are encouraged to scan their systems for viruses by clicking the "Scan Now" button. When clicked, this starts a fake scanner that 'detects' high-risk viruses called Tapsnake, CronDNS, and Dubfishicv. Visitors supposedly remove these by clicking the "REMOVE VIRUSES NOW" button. When clicked, this downloads an installation file for the Cleanup My Mac application. Do not install this app or other apps promoted through deceptive websites.

As mentioned, most people arrive at these websites unintentionally. Typically, they are opened by potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) that are installed on the user's computer or web browser. In addition to unwanted redirects, PUAs gather information and display intrusive ads. They collect details such as users' geolocations, addresses of visited websites, entered search queries, IP addresses, and other user-system information. People who create these apps often share the data with third parties who misuse it to generate revenue. Furthermore, installed PUAs can feed users with unwanted ads. Typically, people who click ads displayed by PUAs are redirected to untrustworthy websites, or this allows the ads to run scripts that download (or even install) further unwanted, potentially malicious applications.

Threat Summary:
Name apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up
Threat Type Mac malware, Mac virus
Fake Claim This scam page claims that it has detected a virus and encourages visitors to remove it immediately.
Promoted Unwanted Application Cleanup My Mac
Detection Names Forcepoint ThreatSeeker (Suspicious), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address 94.237.56.155
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.
Removal

To eliminate apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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.

More examples of deceptive websites similar to apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz include apple.com-mac-optimizer[.]icu, apple.com-shield-guard[.]live, and apple.com-scan-mac[.]live. These pages often trick visitors into installing a dubious app that supposedly removes 'detected viruses'. Scams such as these display fake virus notifications - never trust these scams or apps advertised on them. People unintentionally download and install PUAs, which are then responsible for redirects to websites of this type. Even if PUAs are advertised as useful and legitimate, they are often useless and designed only to generate revenue for the developers.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Unwanted downloads/installations take place when people click deceptive advertisements or software developers use the "bundling" method. They use this method to trick people into downloading and/or installing PUAs through the set-ups other, regular software. To trick them into these unwanted downloads/installations, developers hide information about additional software in "Custom", "Advanced", and other similar settings. Furthermore, many people fail to check these settings and leave them unchanged - in this way, agree by default to additional, unwanted downloads/installations. If clicked, deceptive ads can also cause unwanted downloads and installations, however, this only applies to ads that run specific scripts.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

To prevent unwanted downloads and installations, do not download software from untrustworthy, unofficial web pages, using third party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks such as torrent clients, eMule, and so on. The safest way to download is to use direct download links and official web pages. Furthermore, if a download/installation setup contains "Custom", "Advanced", or other similar settings, check them carefully and decline offers to download or install PUAs. Do not click intrusive ads, especially when they are displayed on dubious sites. These ads can redirect to dubious, potentially malicious websites or cause unwanted downloads and installations. If ads or unwanted redirects occur often, remove all suspicious and unwanted extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins that are installed on the browser and programs installed on the operating system - then check if the problem persists. 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 apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz pop-up window and background:

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED
We have detected a trojan virus (e.tre456_worm_osx) on your Mac.
Press OK to begin the repair process.

 

Your system is infected with 3 viruses! Wednesday, September 4, 2019 10:47 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 31 seconds remaining before damage is permanent.

 

Scan Now

 Screenshot of the second page:

apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz second page

Text in this page:

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

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

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

Appearance of apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz scam (GIF):

Appearance of apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz scam (GIF)

Cleanup My Mac application:

Cleanup My Mac unwanted application

Instant automatic removal of apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up: 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 apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up. 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 potentially unwanted applications promoted via apple.com-mac-optimization[.]xyz scam website using Combo Cleaner:

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 apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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.

apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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 apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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 apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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 virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up 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 apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up on your mobile device.
We Recommend:

Get rid of apple.com-mac-optimization.xyz pop-up today:

▼ REMOVE IT NOW with Combo Cleaner for Mac

Platform: macOS

Editors' Rating for Combo Cleaner:
Editors ratingOutstanding!

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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.