How to remove ProgressHandler from a computer and browser?

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

How to remove ProgressHandler from Mac?

What is ProgressHandler?

ProgressHandler is classified as adware because it serves various advertisements. However, it promotes addresses of some fake search engine by modifying certain browser settings as well. Therefore, it functions not only as adware but also as a browser hijacker. It is worthwhile to mention that is possible that ProgressHandler is designed to collect certain data. And, that in most cases users download and install adware, browser hijackers unknowingly. Therefore, such apps are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs).

ProgressHandler adware

Typically, apps like ProgressHandler are designed to serve banners, coupons, pop-ups, surveys and/or other types of ads. It is common that ads that are displayed by adware are designed to promote (open) questionable websites. In some cases they can cause downloads and/or installations of unwanted apps as well. Since ProgressHandler functions not only as adware, but also as a browser hijacker, it means this app promotes address of some fake search engine by changing browser settings. Typically, apps of this type do that by changing settings such as address of a homepage, new tab and/or default search engine to an address of a certain fake search engine. It is worthwhile to mention that changes made by a browser hijacker can be undone only when that app is no longer installed. One more issue with apps like ProgressHandler is that they can be designed to collect information like entered search queries, addresses of visited pages, geolocations, IP addresses, and/or other browsing-related details. In some cases they can designed to record personal, sensitive information. In such case its developers may misuse gathered data to generate revenue by selling it to third parties (potentially cyber criminals) or in some other ways.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by ProgressHandler
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus
Additional Information This application belongs to Adload malware family.
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.

To sum up, the main purpose of adware-type apps like ProgressHandler is to generate revenue for their developers by serving ads, collecting various data and/or promoting certain websites (e.g., addresses of fake search engines). In most cases they are useless to their users and can be the culprit of various problems. More examples of similar adware are ExpandedQuest, ProgressElemnt and AnalyzerSearch.

How did ProgressHandler install on my computer?

In some cases unwanted downloads, installations can be caused by clicking deceptive ads that are designed to execute certain scripts. Although, in most cases PUAs are distributed by using a marketing method called "bundling". To be more precise, by including apps of this type in setups of other programs as additional offers. As a rule, users can decline such offers in "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings of setups, or by unticking certain checkboxes. However, not all do that when they download and/or install programs that have unwanted apps included in their setups. In such cases they download and/install both wanted and unwanted apps.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is advised not to use Peer-to-Peer networks (eMule, torrent clients and so on), unofficial pages, various third party downloaders, installers, etc., as tools to download or install programs, files. They should be downloaded only from official websites and via direct links. If a download and/or installation setup has settings like "Advanced", "Manual, "Custom" (or includes checkboxes), then they should be checked for offers to download and/or install PUAs before completing download and/or installation. Advertisements that are shown on unreliable pages can be designed to open pages that are not trustworthy or execute scripts that cause downloads and/or installations of unwanted apps. Therefore, they should not be clicked as well. If there are some unwanted, suspicious or unknown extensions, add-ons or plug-ins installed on a browser, then it is recommended to remove them as soon as possible. Programs of this kind that are installed on the operating system should be uninstalled too. If your computer is already infected with ProgressHandler, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed once ProgressHandler installation is completed:

progresshandler adware pop-up displayed once installation is done

ProgressHandler's installation folder:

progresshandler adware contents 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 ProgressHandler adware using Combo Cleaner:

ProgressHandler adware removal:

Remove ProgressHandler-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 progresshandler 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 ProgressHandler removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove ads by progresshandler 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 progresshandler 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 progresshandler 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 ProgressHandler 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 ProgressHandler on your mobile device.
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