How to stop browsers causing redirects to safari-protection.com

Also Known As: safari-protection.com pop-up
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

How to avoid redirects to safari-protection[.]com

What is safari-protection[.]com?

safari-protection[.]com is the address of a deceptive website that should not be trusted. It encourages visitors to download the Net Shield application, which is designed to protect users from having personal data stolen through malicious ads. Do not download applications that are advertised through (or on) deceptive websites. Furthermore, people do not generally visit websites such as safari-protection[.]com intentionally - they are redirected to them by potentially unwanted apps (PUAs) installed on their browsers or operating systems.

safari-protection[.]com scam

Research shows that safari-protection[.]com targets mostly iPad and iPhone users, however, these pages are often opened on Mac computers. When opened, safari-protection[.]com informs visitors that they are required to download and install an app called Net Shield, otherwise personal data might be stolen through malicious ads designed by cyber criminals. It is mentioned that stolen personal details might include information relating to banking. Visitors are encouraged to install Net Shield immediately. The Net Shield app is available for download on an official App Store website. It is likely that Net Shield is a legitimate application, however, you are advised not to download software that is promoted through web pages such as safari-protection[.]com

Generally, browsers redirect users to websites such as safari-protection[.]com due to PUAs installed on them. Apps of this type usually gather data and/or display intrusive ads. In most cases, they collect details such as users' IP addresses, geolocations, addresses of visited websites, entered search queries and other details relating to browsing habits. People who develop PUAs share the details with other parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who misuse them to generate revenue. In many cases, installed PUAs feed users with deceptive ads (coupons, banners, surveys, pop-ups, etc.). If clicked, these lead them to untrustworthy, potentially malicious websites or run scripts that download and/or install PUAs.

Threat Summary:
Name safari-protection.com pop-up
Threat Type Mac malware, Mac virus.
Serving IP Address 159.89.44.166
Detection Names Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Promoted Application Net Shield.
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 three days free trial available.

safari-protection[.]com is similar to thevpnsafety[.]com, safetyvpn[.]netnumberonevpn[.]com and a number of other websites of this type. Typically, these deceptive web pages trick people into downloading and installing apps that supposedly protect systems, fix errors, or provide other features. Even if promoted apps are legitimate, do not trust deceptive web pages that are used to advertise them. PUAs that open these sites are all very similar: they are supposedly legitimate and useful, however, in most cases, they open dubious sites, gather various details, and/or display intrusive ads.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

People download and install PUAs inadvertently when they click deceptive ads that run scripts - these start the download/installation process of unwanted apps. In other cases, unwanted downloads/installations are caused through set-ups of software that people wish to download. In many cases, set-ups include offers to download or install additional apps. These offers are usually hidden in settings such as "Custom", "Advanced", and so on. People who leave them unchanged grant permission for PUAs to be downloaded and/or installed with other (usually free) software.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

Software should be downloaded through official websites and direct download links. Third party downloaders, installers, Peer-to-Peer networks (eMule, torrent clients), unofficial websites and other download or installation sources/tools of this kind should not be used. If a download or installation setup contains settings such as "Custom", "Advanced", and so on, they should be checked. Dismiss offers to install or download additional, unwanted programs. Do not click intrusive ads, especially if they are displayed on dubious websites. They can lead to other dubious web pages or cause unwanted downloads and installations. If these redirects happen without clicking ads or intrusive ads appear often, this might be due to installed PUAs. If this is the case, check the list of installed browser apps (extensions, add-ons, plug-ins) and remove all unwanted, suspicious entries. The same applies to programs installed on 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.

Other variants of pop-up messages displayed in the safari-protection[.]com website:

Safari-protection.com website second variant Safari-protection.com website third variant Safari-protection.com website fourth variant

To enable pop-up blocking, fraudulent website warnings, and remove web browsing data in mobile Apple devices, follow these steps:

First, go to "Settings", and then scroll down to find and tap "Safari".

remove pop-ups and clear cache step 1

Check if the "Block Pop-ups" and "Fraudulent Website Warning" toggles are enabled. If not, enable them immediately. Then, scroll down and tap "Advanced".

disable pop-ups and clear cache step 2

Tap "Website Data" and then "Remove All Website Data".

disable pop-ups and clear cache step 3

Video presenting safari-protection[.]com scam website and showing how to clean web browsing data:

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 safari-protection.com 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.

safari-protection.com pop-up removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove safari-protection.com 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 safari-protection.com 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 safari-protection.com 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 malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
safari-protection.com 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 safari-protection.com pop-up on your mobile device.
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