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How to uninstall InitialProgram adware from the operating system?

Also Known As: Ads by InitialProgram
Type: Mac Virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

How to remove InitialProgram adware from Mac?

What is InitialProgram?

InitialProgram is a piece of untrustworthy software. It is classified as adware and it also has browser hijacker qualities. Following successful infiltration, this application delivers intrusive advertisement campaigns (i.e. various ads) and makes changes to browser settings - in order to promote illegitimate search engines. Due to the questionable tactics employed in InitialProgram's distribution, it is categorized as a PUA (Potentially Unwanted Application) as well. Furthermore, most PUAs have data tracking abilities, which are used to spy on users' browsing habits. InitialProgram has been observed being proliferated via fake Adobe Flash Player updates. It is noteworthy that illegitimate software updaters spread not only PUAs, but also trojans, ransomware and other malware.

InitialProgram adware detections on VirusTotal

Adware enables the placement of third party graphical content - typically, on any visited website. The delivered content, e.g. pop-ups, banners, surveys, coupons and other intrusive advertisements - severely diminish the browsing quality. The adverts limit the browsing speed and site visibility (by overlaying webpage content). In addition, once clicked on, intrusive ads redirect to unreliable/malicious websites and some can even stealthily download/install software (e.g. PUAs).

Browser hijackers reassign browsers' homepage, default search engine and new tab/window URLs - to the addresses of illegitimate web searchers. This affects browsing thusly: every single new browser tab/window opened and search query typed into the URL bar - redirect to the promoted address. Fake search engines are seldom able to provide search results, so they redirect to (or cause redirection chains ending with) Google, Yahoo, Bing and other legitimate ones. Browser hijackers ensure persistence by undoing any changes users attempt to make to their browsers and/or restrict/deny access to the browser settings outright. Therefore, recovering a hijacked browser is impossible - without eliminating the software affecting it.

Most PUAs (adware-types and browser hijackers included) have data tracking abilities. They can record browsing activity (visited URLs, viewed pages, searched queries, etc.) and collect personal information extracted from it (IP addresses, geolocations and other details). The gathered data is then monetized by being shared with and/or sold to third parties (potentially, cyber criminals). In summary, presence of unwanted apps on devices can lead to system infections, serious privacy issues, financial losses and even identity theft. To protect device integrity and user privacy, all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins - must be immediately removed.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by InitialProgram
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:Agent-MT [Trj]), BitDefender (Adware.MAC.Generic.19924), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of OSX/TrojanDownloader.Adload.AE), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Cimpli.m), Full List (VirusTotal)
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.

ElementaryTypeActivityElementOperativeDockLogarithmicBalance - are a few examples of other adware-type apps. They appear ordinary and offer a broad range of "handy" functionalities. However, the features rarely operate as promised and in most cases - they are utterly nonoperational. This is true of practically all PUAs. Functionality and user safety are irrelevant, since the only goal of unwanted software is to generate profit for the developers. Therefore, instead of delivering on any promises, PUAs can run intrusive advertisement campaigns, cause redirects, hijack browsers and gather private information.

How did InitialProgram install on my computer?

PUAs are distributed via download/installation setups of other products. This false marketing method of pre-packing regular software with unwanted or malicious additions - is called "bundling". Rushed downloads/installations (e.g. ignored terms, used "Quick/Express" settings, etc.) increase the risk of inadvertently allowing dubious/bundled content into the system. Intrusive ads proliferate PUAs as well; once clicked on, they can execute scripts to download/install software without user consent. These applications may also have "official" promotional sites, from which they can be downloaded.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is advised to research products before download/installation and/or purchase. All downloads should only be done from official and verified sources. Since untrustworthy download channels, e.g. unofficial and free file-hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks and other third party downloaders - often offer harmful and/or bundled content. When downloading/installing, it is recommended to read terms, study all possible options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings and opt-out from supplementary apps, tools, functions and other additions. Intrusive adverts appear legitimate, however they redirect to unreliable and questionable webpages (e.g. pornography, adult-dating, gambling, etc.). Should users encounter ads and/or redirects of this type, they must check their devices and immediately remove all suspect applications and browser extensions/plug-ins detected. If your computer is already infected with InitialProgram, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed when InitialProgram adware is installed:

InitialProgram adware warning pop-up

Text presented in this pop-up:

"InitialProgramd" will damage your computer.

This file was downloaded on an unknown date.

 

OK

Show in Finder

Delusive application installer (fake Flash Player updater) promoting InitialProgram adware:

Step 1:

Delusive installer used to promote InitialProgram adware (step 1)

Step 2:

Delusive installer used to promote InitialProgram adware (step 2)

Files related to the InitialProgram adware that need to be removed:

  • ~/Library/Application Support/.[random_string]/Services/com.InitialProgram.service.app
  • ~/Library/LaunchAgents/com.InitialProgram.service.plist
  • /Library/Application Support/.[random_string]/System/com.InitialProgram.system
  • /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.InitialProgram.system.plist

IMPORTANT NOTE! In some cases malicious applications like OriginalModule alter system proxy settings, thereby causing unwanted redirects to a variety of questionable websites.

The redirects are likely to remain even after removing the application itself. Thus, you'll have to restore them manually.

Step 1: Click on the gear icon in the Dock to navigate to the system settings. If the icon is not present in the Dock, you can find it in the Launchpad.

Changing proxy settings - navigate to the system settings

Step 2: Navigate to the Network settings.

Changing proxy settings - navigate to the network settings

Step 3: Select the connected network and click "Advanced...".

Changing proxy settings - select the connected network and click Advanced...

Step 4: Click on the "Proxies" tab and untick all the protocols. You should also set the settings of each protocol to default - "*.local, 169.254/16".

Changing proxy settings - untick all the options and set their settings to default

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 InitialProgram adware using Combo Cleaner:

InitialProgram adware removal:

Remove InitialProgram-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 initialprogram 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 InitialProgram removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove ads by initialprogram 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 initialprogram 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 initialprogram 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.

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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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Removal Instructions in other languages
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 InitialProgram 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 InitialProgram on your mobile device.
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