What is installflash-upgrade[.]com?
InstallFlash-upgrade[.]com is a deceptive website running a fake Flash Player updater scam. Once accessed, the web page claims that visitors' Flash software might be outdated and recommends bogus updates.
Sites such as installFlash-upgrade[.]com are rarely accessed intentionally - most users are redirected to them by intrusive advertisements and/or PUAs already installed on the system.
Visitors to installFlash-upgrade[.]com first see several pop-up windows. The initial pop-up states that Flash Player might be out of date and asks them to update it to continue. The window in the background goes into more detail concerning Flash Player - i.e., that it is a plug-in, which encodes and/or decodes (i.e., plays) audio files in high quality.
There is no further information given. The pop-up repeats that Flash might be outdated and advises users to install the latest updates. If the "OK/Update" button is clicked, the fake updater is downloaded and the page displays installation instructions.
Trusting this scam will not update Flash Player - instead, users will unintentionally allow dubious and/or malicious content onto their systems. This in turn can cause serious issues. Due to risks posed by bogus updaters, use only functions/tools provided by official developers to update your software.
As well as force-opening deceptive/scam pages, PUAs cause redirects to sale-oriented, untrusted/rogue, compromised and malicious websites, however, these apps can have varied dangerous capabilities. They can deliver intrusive ads (e.g. pop-ups, banners, coupons, surveys, etc.).
Other types can modify browsers, and limit/deny access to settings to promote fake search engines. Furthermore, most PUAs can track data. They record browsing activities (URLs visited, search queries typed, etc.) and collect users' personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and other details).
This private data is then shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) intent on misusing it for financial gain. To summarize, PUAs can cause various browser/system infiltration and infections, lead to serious privacy issues and even identity theft. To ensure device and user safety, remove all suspect applications and browser extensions/plug-ins without delay.
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud.|
|Fake Claim||Scam claims visitors' Flash Player might be outdated.|
|Distributed Unwanted Apps||Scam promotes fake Flash Player updates.|
|Detection Names||Fortinet (Malware), CRDF (Malicious), Sophos AV (Malicious), Kaspersky (Malware), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Serving IP Address||220.127.116.11|
|Symptoms||Fake error messages, fake system warnings, pop-up errors, hoax computer scan.|
|Distribution methods||Compromised websites, rogue online pop-up ads, potentially unwanted applications.|
|Damage||Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft, possible malware infections.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Deceptive web pages are common and use social engineering and scare tactics to encourage users into performing specific actions. False claims that software is outdated is just one of many scam models.
Others include fake warnings regarding system being infected (e.g. "Activation Warning Alert", "Microsoft Protected Your Computer", etc.), "amazing" prize giveaways (e.g. "YOU ARE THE CHOSEN!", "International promotion of postal services", etc.), "incredible" offers (e.g. "Get the new iPhone 11 Pro", "Randomly selected to test the new iPhone", etc.), and so on.
These are used to trick people into the following: downloading/installing and/or purchasing nonoperational, untrusted or malicious content; calling expensive and fake technical support lines; revealing personal information (e.g. details relating to users' identities, finances, etc.); making monetary transactions, and others.
How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?
The use of fake updaters is just one way that PUAs can infiltrate devices. They also proliferate through download/installation set-ups of other software. This deceptive marketing tactic of pre-packing regular programs with unwanted or malicious applications is called "bundling".
Rushing download and installation processes increases the risk of unintentionally allowing bundled content onto systems. Certain PUAs have "official" download web pages, which are commonly promoted by deceptive/scam sites. When intrusive ads are clicked, they can execute scripts designed to download/install PUAs without users' permission.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications
All products should be researched prior to download/installation and/or purchase. Use only official and verified download sources. Avoid P2P sharing networks (BitTorrent, Gnutella, eMule, etc.), free file-hosting websites or other third party downloaders, since these channels are untrusted.
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, features and so on.
Intrusive advertisements may seem normal and harmless, however, they can cause redirects to dubious pages (e.g. adult-dating, pornography, gambling and others). If you experience ads/redirects of this kind, check the system and immediately remove 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 Windows to automatically eliminate them.
Text presented in the pop-up windows displayed by installflash-upgrade[.]com:
Your Flash Player might be out of date. Please install update to continue.
Latest version of Flash Player might be recommended to encode and/or decode (Play) audio files in high quality. -
Click here to update for latest version.
Flash Player might be out of date
It's recommended to download an updated version of Flash Player.
Screenshot of the installation instructions provided by installflash-upgrade[.]com:
Text presented in this page:
Click "Yes" when it appears
The appearance of installflash-upgrade[.]com pop-up (GIF):
Instant automatic 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 malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is "installflash-upgrade[.]com"?
- STEP 1. Uninstall deceptive applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove adware from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove rogue extensions from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove potentially unwanted plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue extensions from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Removal of potentially unwanted applications:
Windows 11 users:
Right-click on the Start icon, select Apps and Features. In the opened window search for the application you want to uninstall, after locating it, click on the three vertical dots and select Uninstall.
Windows 10 users:
Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.
Windows 7 users:
Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.
macOS (OSX) users:
Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.
In the uninstall programs window, look for any suspicious/recently-installed applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove rogue extensions from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently-installed suspicious browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the installflash-upgrade.com pop-up, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.
Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.
In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.
Click the Reset button.
Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and remove them.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the installflash-upgrade.com pop-up, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions", in the opened window remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.
Computer users who have problems with installflash-upgrade.com pop-up removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.
Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, in the opened menu, click Help.
Select Troubleshooting Information.
In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.
Remove malicious extensions from Safari:
Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....
In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...
In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.
Remove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:
Click the Edge menu icon (at the upper-right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and click "Remove" below their names.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the installflash-upgrade.com pop-up, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.
In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.
Select Restore settings to their default values. In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Microsoft Edge settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
- If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.
Commonly, adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate Internet browsers through free software downloads. Note that the safest source for downloading free software is via developers' websites only. To avoid installation of adware, be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing previously-downloaded free programs, choose the custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal any potentially unwanted applications listed for installation together with your chosen free program.
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