How to uninstall UpgradeIdeas adware from the Mac operating system

Also Known As: Ads by UpgradeIdeas
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove UpgradeIdeas from Mac computers

What is UpgradeIdeas?

UpgradeIdeas is an adware-type application, which is endorsed as capable of improving the browsing experience by providing fast searches, accurate search results and so on. In fact, UpgradeIdeas diminishes the browsing experience by running intrusive advertisement campaigns. Additionally, most apps categorized as adware have data tracking capabilities, which are employed to gather information relating to users' browsing activity. Due to its dubious proliferation methods, UpgradeIdeas is also classified as a Potentially Unwanted Application (PUA).

UpgradeIdeas adware

Adware delivers a wide variety of intrusive ads such as pop-ups, surveys, banners, coupons and many other types. These ads are a nuisance and a threat. They affect browsing by limiting browsing speed and website visibility (i.e., they overlay web pages), however, they also have several harmful capabilities. When clicked, intrusive ads redirect to sale-based, untrusted, rogue, compromised, deceptive/scam and malicious sites. They can also be triggered (when clicked) to execute scripts designed to stealthy download/install rogue software. PUAs commonly infiltrate systems in this manner. They range of unwanted applications varies considerably, and is not just adware. Some can force-open similarly dangerous web pages and even hijack browsers. The latter are classified as browser hijackers, since they modify browsers, restrict/deny access to settings to promote fake search engines. Regardless of their specific capabilities, PUAs can track data. They can monitor browsing activity (URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, etc.) and collect users' personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and other details). This data might contain vulnerable information and is shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) seeking to misuse it for financial gain. To summarize, PUAs can cause browser and system infiltration/infections, lead to serious privacy issues and even identity theft. To ensure device integrity and user safety, you are advised to remove all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins immediately upon detection.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by UpgradeIdeas
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus.
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:Adload-AB [Trj]), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Adload.g), 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 three days free trial available.

UtilityParse, ContentBenefits, ThreadProperty, SystemSpot are some examples of other adware-type apps. They may seem legitimate and often tempt people into downloading/installing with offers of "useful" functions. In fact, these features do not work as promised, if at all. This extends to all unwanted applications. The only purpose of this software is to generate profit for the developers at users' expense. They are useless to regular users and can also cause serious issues. PUAs deliver intrusive ad campaigns, force-open untrusted and malicious web pages, hijack browsers and track sensitive data.

How did UpgradeIdeas install on my computer?

PUAs proliferate via the download/installation set-ups of other applications. This deceptive marketing technique of pre-packing regular products with unwanted or malicious software is called "bundling". Rushing download/installation processes (e.g. skipping steps and sections, etc.) endangers devices with potential infiltration of unwanted or high-risk content. Some PUAs have "official" download web pages. When clicked, intrusive ads can execute scripts to download/install PUAs without users' permission.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

You are advised to research all products before download/installation. Use only official and verified download channels. Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, eMule, Gnutella, etc.), free file-hosting sites and other third party downloaders are untrusted and offer likewise suspicious content. When downloading/installing, read the terms, explore all available options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings and opt-out of supplementary apps, tools, features, etc. Intrusive ads typically seem normal and innocuous, however, they can redirect to dubious web pages (e.g. gambling, adult-dating, pornography and so on). If you encounter these advertisements/redirects, inspect the system and remove all dubious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins without delay. If your computer is already infected with UpgradeIdeas, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed once UpgradeIdeas installation is complete:

pop-up displayed once UpgradeIdeas installation is done

Screenshot of UpgradeIdeas adware installation folder:

UpgradeIdeas adware installation folder

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 UpgradeIdeas adware using Combo Cleaner:

UpgradeIdeas adware removal:

Remove UpgradeIdeas-related 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 ads by upgradeideas 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.

Ads by UpgradeIdeas removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove ads by upgradeideas 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 ads by upgradeideas 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 ads by upgradeideas 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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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
Ads by UpgradeIdeas 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 Ads by UpgradeIdeas on your mobile device.
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