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Removing the ApproachWired adware from your operating system

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

What is ApproachWired?

ApproachWired is a rogue application that our researchers found while inspecting new submissions to VirusTotal. Our analysis of this piece of software revealed that it operates as adware and belongs to the AdLoad malware family.

ApproachWired adware

ApproachWired adware overview

Adware is designed to display advertisements on visited websites and/or different interfaces. The delivered ads endorse untrustworthy/harmful sites and software, online scams, and even malware. Some intrusive adverts are even capable of stealthily downloading/installing software - once clicked.

It is pertinent to mention that any legitimate products encountered via these advertisements are unlikely to be promoted by their actual developers. Instead, this promotion is undertaken by scammers abusing the products' affiliate programs to obtain illegitimate commissions.

It is noteworthy that advertising-supported software may require certain conditions (e.g., compatible browser/system specs or user geolocation, visits to particular websites, etc.) to run intrusive advertisement campaigns. However, whether ApproachWired (or other adware) displays ads or not is irrelevant, as its presence on a system endangers device/user safety regardless.

Furthermore, ApproachWired may have browser hijacker abilities since they are typical for AdLoad adware - although we did not observe any during our analysis.

Additionally, this application likely employs data tracking functionalities. Advertising-supported software usually targets browsing-related data, personally identifiable details, usernames/passwords, financial/banking information, etc. The gathered data can be monetized by being shared with and/or sold to third-parties.

To summarize, the presence of software like ApproachWired on devices can lead to system infections, severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by ApproachWired
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:AdAgent-AW [Adw]), Combo Cleaner (Adware.MAC.Generic.26510), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of OSX/Adware.Synataeb.G), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Searchprox), 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.

Adware examples

DigitalFile, OriginalScheduler, and OnlineClient are just a few examples of the adware-type apps that we inspected recently.

Advertising-supported software appears harmless and offers "useful" features. However, the promised functions seldom work as advertised, and in most cases - they do not work at all. Therefore, not only is adware useless, but it also endangers device integrity and user privacy.

How did ApproachWired install on my computer?

Adware can be bundled - packed together - with ordinary programs. Download from untrustworthy sources (e.g., freeware and third-party websites, P2P sharing networks, etc.) and rushed installations (e.g., ignored terms, used "Easy/Quick" settings, etc.) - increase the risk of allowing bundled content into the device. Additionally, Fake Adobe Flash Player updaters/installers are used in distribution.

Intrusive advertisements proliferate advertising-supported software as well. Upon being clicked, some of these ads can execute scripts to make downloads/installations without user permission.

Adware can also have "official" download webpages, and it is spread through scam sites. Most users enter such websites via redirects caused by sites using rogue advertising networks, spam browser notifications, mistyped URLs, intrusive adverts, or installed adware (with browser force-opening capabilities).

How to avoid installation of adware?

We strongly advise researching software and only downloading from official/verified channels. Additionally, when installing, it is important to read terms, study possible options, use the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings, and opt-out of all supplements.

We recommend exercising caution when browsing - since illegitimate and malicious content typically looks innocuous. For example, intrusive advertisements appear legitimate and harmless - however, they redirect to questionable webpages (e.g., gambling, adult-dating, pornography, etc.).

If you experience such adverts/redirects, inspect the system and immediately remove all dubious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with ApproachWired, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed once ApproachWired adware's installation is over:

Pop-up displayed once ApproachWired installation is complete

ApproachWired adware's installation folder:

ApproachWired adware install 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 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 ApproachWired adware using Combo Cleaner:

ApproachWired adware removal:

Remove ApproachWired-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 adware-related files and folders

Mac Go To Folder step

Click the Finder icon, from the menu bar. Choose Go, and click Go to Folder...

Mac removing related files and folders - step 1Check for adware generated files in the /Library/LaunchAgents/ folder:

Mac go to /Library/LaunchAgents - step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchAgents/

Mac go to /Library/LaunchAgents - 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 exact same string.

Mac removing related files and folders - step 2Check for adware generated files in the ~/Library/Application Support/ folder:

Mac go to /Library/Application Support - step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: ~/Library/Application Support/

Mac go to /Library/Application Support - 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.

Mac removing related files and folders - step 3Check for adware generated files in the ~/Library/LaunchAgents/ folder:

Mac go to ~/Library/LaunchAgents - step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: ~/Library/LaunchAgents/

Mac go to ~/Library/LaunchAgents - 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 exact same string.

Mac removing related files and folders - step 4Check for adware generated files in the /Library/LaunchDaemons/ folder:

Mac go to /Library/LaunchDaemons - step 1

In the "Go to Folder..." bar, type: /Library/LaunchDaemons/

Mac go to /Library/LaunchDaemons - 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.

Mac removing malware related files and folders - step 5Scan your Mac with Combo Cleaner:

If you have followed all the steps correctly, your Mac should be clean of infections. To ensure 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 the 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 its virus definition database and click the "Start Combo Scan" button.

Mac remove malware with Combo Cleaner - step 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.

Mac remove malware with Combo Cleaner - step 2

After removing files and folders generated by the adware, continue to remove rogue extensions from your Internet browsers.

Remove malicious extensions from Internet browsers

Safari iconRemove malicious Safari extensions:

Removal of malicious extensions in Safari - step 1

Open the Safari browser, from the menu bar, select "Safari" and click "Preferences...".

Removal of malicious extensions in Safari - step 2

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 regular browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Safari.

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removal of malicious extensions in Google Chrome - step 1

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More Tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".

Removal of malicious extensions in Google Chrome - step 2

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Google Chrome.

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious extensions from Mozilla Firefox:

Removal of malicious extensions in Mozilla Firefox - step 1

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window) and select "Add-ons and themes". Click "Extensions", in the opened window locate all recently-installed suspicious extensions, click on the three dots and then click "Remove".

Removal of malicious extensions in Mozilla Firefox - step 2

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Mozilla Firefox.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What harm can adware cause?

Adware may decrease browsing quality and system performance. It is also considered to be a threat to user privacy, as this software usually has data tracking abilities. Furthermore, adware-displayed adverts can be deceptive/malicious and cause serious problems (e.g., system infections, financial losses, etc.).

What does adware do?

Adware stands for advertising-supported software. It operates by enabling the placement of ads on visited websites and/or other interfaces. This software may also be capable of force-opening sites and collecting private data.

How do adware developers generate revenue?

Adware generates most of its revenue via affiliate programs by promoting various websites, software, products, services, and so on. The developers might earn commission from ad clicks, site visits, file downloads, product purchases, service subscriptions, or similar.

Will Combo Cleaner remove ApproachWired adware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner is capable of scanning computers and eliminating installed adware-type apps. It has to be mentioned that manual removal (unaided by security software) might not be a perfect solution. Since in some cases, even after the adware itself has been (manually) removed - leftover files remain hidden in the system. Furthermore, these components can continue running and causing issues. Therefore, it is crucial to eliminate adware thoroughly.

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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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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

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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.