Avoid downloading a fake updater from operateuberrefinedprogram.icu

Also Known As: operateuberrefinedprogram.icu pop-up
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu?

operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu is a deceptive website designed to trick visitors into downloading/installing a fake Flash Player updater. Rogue software updaters are typically used to spread a variety of untrustworthy and malicious content.

Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUAs) and malware (e.g. trojans, ransomware) are prime examples of software proliferated via fake updaters. Typically, visitors to operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu access it unintentionally - they are redirected by intrusive ads or PUAs already present within the system.

operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu scam

Visitors to operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu are presented with a pop-up window, which implies (but does not directly state) that their Flash Player is outdated. The pop-up informs users that the aforementioned browser plug-in is essential and serves a multitude of purposes.

Flash Player enables users to view media ranging from video and animation to playing online games. It supports such data formats as AMF, SWF, XML, JSON and multimedia files (.MP3, .FLV, .JPEG, .GIF, .PNG, .RTMP) and others.

This plug-in is necessary to accelerate graphics rendering, multi-thread video decoding and webcam support, however, note that downloading these updates will not update Flash Player, but rather allow dubious/malicious content onto the system. You are strongly advised not to trust websites claiming that software is out-of-date and/or the device is infected.

By downloading/installing and/or purchasing products promoted through deceptive web pages users can unintentionally endanger and their devices.

As well as causing redirects to deceptive/scam sites, PUAs can also force-open sale-oriented, untrustworthy/rogue, compromised and malicious web pages. These applications can have various dangerous capabilities/purposes, and yet their goal is identical - to generate revenue for the developers.

These apps often seem legitimate and tempt users to install with "useful" features, which are usually nonfunctional. For example, fake system cleaners/optimizers require to be activated (i.e., purchase) to perform the functions promised. Following activation, however, they remain nonoperational.

Adware-type applications operate by running intrusive advertisement campaigns - they deliver harmful ads that diminish the browsing experience. Browser hijackers are also PUAs that make unauthorized changes to browsers and promote fake search engines. Most PUAs have data tracking capabilities.

They record browsing activity (URLs visited, web pages viewed, search queries typed, etc.) and gather users' personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and other details).

This private data can then be shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) seeking to misuse it for profit. To summarize, PUAs can lead to various browser/system infiltration and infections, financial loss, serious privacy issues and even identity theft. Therefore, it is important to remove all suspect applications and browser extensions/plug-ins immediately upon detection.

Threat Summary:
Name operateuberrefinedprogram.icu pop-up
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Mac malware, Mac virus.
Fake Claim The site implies that visitors' Flash Players are outdated.
Detection Names (operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu)
Forcepoint ThreatSeeker (Suspicious), Full List (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address
Promoted Unwanted Application Site promotes fake Flash Player updates.
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)

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mainspotupdatesfreenew.infofineplaceupgradefree.info, and yourfine2upgradesfree.best are some examples of other websites endorsing fake software updaters, however, this is just one scam model amongst many. For example, deceptive web pages can warn visitors that their devices are infected, claim that they have won "amazing" prizes, make incredible offers, and so on.

The intent can be to encourage users to download/install and/or purchase untrustworthy and malicious content, reveal their personal information (e.g. banking account and/or credit card credentials), make monetary transactions, etc. Therefore, exercise caution when browsing.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

PUAs infiltrate devices via the download/install set-ups of other products. This deceptive marketing tactic of packing normal software with unwanted or malicious content is called "bundling". By rushing through download and installation processes (e.g. ignoring terms, skipping steps and sections, etc.), many users risk inadvertently allowing bundled applications onto their systems and putting them at risk of potential infiltration and infections. Certain apps in this category also have "official" download web pages (which are often promoted by scam sites). Intrusive ads also proliferate PUAs. Once clicked, they can execute scripts designed to download/install unwanted applications without users' permission.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

You are advised to research all content, before downloading/installing. Use only official and verified download sources. Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, Gnutella, eMule, etc.), free file-hosting sites and other third party downloaders are untrusted and should not be used.

Treat download and installation processes with caution. Read the terms, explore all available options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings, and opt-out of additional apps, tools, functions and so on.

Intrusive advertisements often seem legitimate and harmless, however, when clicked, they can redirect to all manner of dubious web pages (e.g. pornography, adult-dating, gambling and others).

If you experience ads/redirects of this type, inspect the device and immediately eliminate all dubious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins. 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 pop-up window:

Software Update
Flash Player Update
Download new version
Update now

Flash Player is an essential plugin for your browser that allows you to view everything from video to games and animation on the web.
Flash Player supports several data formats AMF, SWF, XML and JSON. The multimedia formats which are supported by Flash Player include .MP3, .FLV, .JPEG, .GIF, .PNG and .RTMP.
Other supported features include accelerated graphics rendering, multi-thread video decoding and webcam support.

Later Install

Appearance of operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu scam (GIF):

Appearance of operateuberrefinedprogram[.]icu scam (GIF)

Screenshot of fake Flash Player update installation steps:

fake updater install instructions

Screenshot of the fake Flash Player update installation set-up:

fake updater install setup

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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