How to remove apps that open addresses like dheje.xyz?

Also Known As: dheje.xyz pop-up
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

How to remove apps designed to promote sites like dheje[.]xyz from Mac?

What is dheje[.]xyz?

Dheje[.]xyz is one of the many deceptive websites designed to trick users into downloading and installing a potentially unwanted application (PUA). Like most pages of this type dheje[.]xyz claims that the device is infected with viruses and encourages users to remove them with a certain application (at the time of the research one of the dheje[.]xyz variants promoted a download page for Protect Master x Express VPN app). As a rule, users do not visit deceptive pages like this one on purpose, it is common that such pages get opened through other shady websites, untrustworthy ads or by some PUA that is already installed on a browser and/or device.

dheje[.]xyz scam

One of the dheje[.]xyz variants claims that visitor's iPhone is infected with 3 viruses and its battery is infected, and damaged. Another variant claims that visitor's iPhone is severely damaged by with 13 Trojan-type viruses that can cause damage to the Facebook account, WhatsApp messages, photos and installed applications. Both variants offer to remove detected viruses with the app that can be downloaded through them. As mentioned in the introduction, one at the time of the research one of the dheje[.]xyz variants promoted a download page for the Protect Master x Express VPN application. It is strongly recommended not to download any software from or through pages like dheje[.]xyz. It should be downloaded directly from official pages. If a browser opens untrustworthy pages frequently, then it is is very likely that it does that because some PUA is already installed on it (or the operating system).

It is worthwhile to mention that PUAs can be designed to serve advertisements and/or collect information related to user's browsing habits. Some examples of ads that PUAs can be designed to serve are coupons, surveys, banners, pop-ups and other type of advertisements. When clicked, those ads can open untrustworthy pages, sometimes they may cause unwanted downloads and/or installations by executing certain scripts. Another issue with PUAs is that they collect details like IP addresses, geolocations, addresses of visited pages, entered search queries, etc., and can be designed to collect sensitive details as well. What is worse, their developers could sell gathered information to third parties (potentially cyber criminals) or misuse it to generate revenue in different ways.

Threat Summary:
Name dheje.xyz pop-up
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Mac malware, Mac virus
Fake Claim iPhone is infected with viruses
Detection Names Forcepoint ThreatSeeker (Suspicious), Full List (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address 104.24.125.53
Promoted Unwanted Application Protect Master x Express VPN
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.

A couple of examples of other deceptive pages like dheje[.]xyz are suprotok[.]xyz, ivpnconfig[.]com and paluns[.]xyz. Typically, their main purpose is to trick users into believing that their device is infected with viruses so they would download and install some PUA that supposed to remove them. However, if such pages get opened often, then some PUA may be already installed on a device and/or browser. As a rule, users download and install apps of this kind unknowingly.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

It is common for potentially unwanted applications to be distributed by integrating them in download and/or installation setups of other programs. As a rule, offers to download and/or install additionally included apps (PUAs) can be declined in "Advanced", "Custom" or other settings of setups. PUAs get a permission to be downloaded and/or installed together with the desired programs when users finish downloads and/or installations without changing the aforementioned settings. This distribution method is known as "bundling". Also, unintentional downloads and/or installations can be caused by clicking deceptive advertisements that are designed to execute certain scripts.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Unofficial, shady pages, Peer-to-Peer networks (like eMule. torrent clients), third party downloaders, installers, etc., can be (and often are) used to distribute unwanted, potentially malicious apps. Therefore, files and programs should be downloaded only from official websites and through direct download links. Download and installation setups that have settings like "Custom", "Advanced" should be checked for offers to download and/or install unwanted apps. Intrusive advertisements that appear on shady pages can open untrustworthy websites or cause downloads and/or installations of unwanted apps. Therefore, such ads should not be clicked as well. Any unwanted, suspicious extensions, add-ons and plug-ins that are installed on a browser should be removed. Software of this kind that is installed on the operating system should be uninstalled too. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate them.

Text in the pop-up of the main dheje[.]xyz variant:

Apple Security Monday
7 September 2020 Friday


YOUR IPHONE HAS BEEN COMPROMISED
Immediate Action Is Required!
OK

Screenshot of the background page of the main dheje[.]xyz variant:

dheje.xyz scam main backrgound page

Text in this page:

WARNING! Your Apple iPhone is severely damaged by 13 viruses!


We have detected that your Browser is (62%) DAMAGED by BROWSER TROJAN VIRUSES picked up while surfing recent corrupted sites.
Immediate action is required to prevent it from spreading and infecting sensitive data like your Facebook account, Whatsapp messages photos and private applications.

 

Here is how you can solve this in just a few seconds (Step by Step)

 

Step 1: Tap REMOVE VIRUS to install VPN from the App Store.

 

Step 2: Open the app to activate the latest update and remove any older (Infected) versions.

1 minutes and 15 seconds
Remove Virus
Detected By Apple.

Screenshot of another variant of dheje[.]xyz:

dheje.xyz scam another variant pop-up

Text in this pop-up:

Apple Security Monday
7 September 2020 Friday

 

(1) SYSTEM NOTIFICATION
Please Read Important Notification Regarding Your iOS Device.
OK

Screenshot of the background page of this dheje[.]xyz variant:

dheje.xyz scam another variant backrgound page

Text in this page:

(3) Viruses has been detected on your iPhone and battery has been infected and damaged.

 

If you do not remove this malware now, it may cause more damage to your device. How to fix this:

 

Step 1: Tap the button below & install the recommended virus protection tool for free from the AppStore.

 

Step 2: Run the app to remove all malware to repair your phone to 100%
1 minutes and 45 seconds
Download and Install
Detected By Apple.

Screenshot of the download page for Protect Master x Express VPN:

download page for Protect Master x Express VPN

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

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 dheje.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.

dheje.xyz pop-up removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove dheje.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 dheje.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 dheje.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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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
dheje.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 dheje.xyz pop-up on your mobile device.
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