FacebookTwitterLinkedIn

How to remove RunningUpdater adware

Also Known As: Ads by RunningUpdater
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is RunningUpdater?

Adware generates revenue for the developer by feeding users with advertisements. Note that RunningUpdater functions as adware and also as a browser hijacker: it serves ads and changes browser settings to promote a specific address.

Furthermore, it is likely that RunningUpdater can access (collect) information relating to users' browsing activities, and even more personal details. RunningUpdater and similar apps are classified as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs), since they are often downloaded and installed by users intentionally.

The installer for this app is disguised as the installer for Adobe Flash Player.

RunningUpdater adware

Usually, apps such as RunningUpdater display annoying advertisements that, if clicked, open various untrusted, potentially malicious pages. In some cases, clicking these ads allows them to execute scripts that download and install unwanted software. Typically, adware-type apps serve banners, coupons, pop-ups, surveys or other ads.

This particular app also changes browser settings such as the default search engine, homepage, and new tab to the address of a fake search engine. Fake search engines can generate misleading results, and display dubious ads among them, however, they often simply show results generated by other legitimate search engines (e.g., Google, Yahoo, Bing).

Typically, all the changes made by browser hijackers can be undone only after uninstallation. Therefore, users of the RunningUpdater can revert the browser settings to their previous states only after removal of this app.

RunningUpdater and other similar apps can also collect various data for the developer. For example, geolocations, IP addresses, entered search queries, addresses of visited websites (or other browsing-related information), and even credit card details, passwords, telephone numbers, and other sensitive information.

It is not safe to have applications such as RunningUpdater installed on the browser or operating system - the developers can use gathered details for marketing purposes, sell them to third parties (potentially cyber criminals), and monetize them in other ways.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by RunningUpdater
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:Agent-MT [Trj]), BitDefender (Adware.MAC.Generic.19970), 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 seven days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

RunningUpdater is similar to many other PUAs that function both as adware and browser hijackers. Some examples are AthenaSearch, ProtocolPort, and InitialSkill. Their main goals are to promote fake search engines (or other websites), generate advertisements, and collect various information.

You are strongly advised not to download or install apps of this type, this this could lead to problems such as identity theft, issues with online privacy, browsing safety and other problems. As mentioned, people often download and install these bogus apps (including RunningUpdater) inadvertently.

How did RunningUpdater install on my computer?

RunningUpdater is distributed using a deceptive tactic: by disguising its installer as the installer for Adobe Flash Player. Note that third-party, fake installers can be used to distribute malicious software. For example, ransomware, Trojans.

Users sometimes inadvertently download and install unwanted apps via deceptive advertisements - they click ads that cause unwanted download/installations by executing certain scripts.

Unwanted downloads and installations also occur during download/installation of other programs. I.e., when PUAs are included into the set-ups as 'extra offers'. This PUA distribution method of PUAs is called "bundling".

Typically, offers to download and install these additional apps can be declined via "Custom", "Advanced" or other settings, or by unticking certain checkboxes within the set-ups. When users download and install programs without making these checks and changes, they often allow PUAs to infiltrate.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

Download software and files from official websites and via direct links. It is not safe to use torrent clients, eMule (or other Peer-to-Peer networks), third party downloaders, unofficial websites or other sources of this kind.

Avoid third party installers. Check "Advanced", "Custom" and other settings, and decline offers to download or install unwanted software. Do not click ads that are displayed on dubious websites, since they can open other untrusted websites or even cause unwanted downloads and installations.

Remove any unwanted, suspicious applications (extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins) that are installed on the browser. The same should be applied to programs of this kind that are installed on the operating system.

Regularly scan your computer with reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software and keep this software up to date.

If your computer is already infected with RunningUpdater, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed when RunningUpdater adware is installed:

RunningUpdater adware warning pop-up

Text presented in this pop-up:

"RunningUpdaterd" will damage your computer.

This file was downloaded on an unknown date.

 

OK

Show in Finder

Fake installer used to distribute RunningUpdater adware (first installation step):

Delusive installer used to promote RunningUpdater adware step 1

Fake installer used to distribute RunningUpdater adware (second installation step):

Delusive installer used to promote RunningUpdater adware step 2

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

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

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

The redirects are likely to remain even after removing the application itself. Thus, you must 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 assign the settings of each protocol to the 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 seven days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

Quick menu:

Video showing how to remove RunningUpdater adware using Combo Cleaner:

RunningUpdater adware removal:

Remove RunningUpdater-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 runningupdater 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 RunningUpdater removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove ads by runningupdater 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 runningupdater 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 runningupdater 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.

Click to post a comment

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.

Our malware removal guides are free. However, if you want to support us you can send us a donation.

About PCrisk

PCrisk logo

PCrisk is a cyber security portal, informing Internet users about the latest digital threats. Our content is provided by security experts and professional malware researchers. Read more about us.

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 RunningUpdater QR code
Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of Ads by RunningUpdater on your mobile device.
We Recommend:

Get rid of Mac malware infections today:

▼ REMOVE IT NOW
Download Combo Cleaner for Mac

Platform: macOS

Editors' Rating for Combo Cleaner:
Editors ratingOutstanding!

[Back to Top]

To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. Limited seven days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.