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Removal instructions for TapScroll adware and the adverts it displays

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

What is TapScroll?

TapScroll is a rogue application that our research team discovered while inspecting new submissions to VirusTotal. Our analysis of this app revealed that it operates as adware. Additionally, we learned that TapScroll belongs to the AdLoad malware family.

TapScroll adware

TapScroll adware overview

Adware stands for advertising-supported software. It is designed to run intrusive advertisement campaigns, i.e., display ads on visited websites and/or different interfaces.

The delivered advertisements endorse scams, untrustworthy/harmful software, and even malware. Once clicked on, some intrusive adverts can execute scripts to perform downloads/installations without user consent.

It is pertinent to mention that any genuine content encountered through these ads is most likely promoted in this manner by scammers abusing its affiliate programs in order to obtain illegitimate commissions.

Advertising-supported software might require specific conditions to run intrusive advert campaigns, such as compatible browser/system or user geolocation, visits to particular sites, etc. However, regardless of whether TapScroll displays advertisements – its presence on a system endangers device integrity and user safety.

Furthermore, TapScroll might have browser hijacker qualities since they are common for AdLoad apps, although this app did not exhibit any during testing.

What is more, TapScroll likely has data-tracking abilities. Targeted information may include: visited URLs, viewed pages, searched queries, usernames/passwords, personally identifiable details, finance-related data, etc. The collected information can be monetized via sale to third-parties (potentially, cyber criminals).

To summarize, the presence of software like TapScroll on devices can result in system infections, severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by TapScroll
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:AdAgent-DH [Adw]), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.Generic.32491435), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of OSX/Adware.Synataeb.G), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Search), 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

We have analyzed thousands of adware-type applications; InstantFreshOperativeQueueMajorLetterSearch, and ExtendedTech are just some of our newest finds.

Advertising-supported software usually appears legitimate and offers various functionalities. However, these features seldom work as promised, and in most cases – they are utterly nonoperational.

How did TapScroll install on my computer?

Adware can have "official" promotional pages, and it is endorsed on scam websites. Most users enter these kinds of webpages via redirects caused by sites using rogue advertising networks, misspelled URLs, spam browser notifications, intrusive ads, or installed adware (with browser force-opening capabilities).

Intrusive advertisements proliferate this software as well. Once clicked on, some of the adverts can execute scripts to perform downloads/installations without user consent. Fake Adobe Flash Player updaters/installers are also used in distribution.

"Bundling" is another technique used to spread advertising-supported software. Downloading from untrustworthy channels (e.g., unofficial and freeware websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, etc.) and rushing through installation processes (e.g., using "Easy/Quick" settings, etc.) – increase the risk of allowing bundled content into the system.

How to avoid installation of adware?

We strongly recommend researching software before download/installation or purchase. Furthermore, all downloads must be performed from official and verified sources. When installing, it is essential to read terms, inspect available options, and use the "Custom/Advanced" settings to opt-out of additional applications, extensions, tools, etc.

We also advise being careful when browsing since illegitimate and malicious content usually appears harmless. For example, intrusive adverts can look legitimate/innocuous yet redirect to highly questionable websites (e.g., adult-dating, pornography, gambling, etc.).

In case of encounters with advertisements/redirects of this kind, inspect the device and immediately remove all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with TapScroll, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

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

Pop-up displayed once TapScroll installation is complete

TapScroll adware's installation folder:

TapScroll 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 TapScroll adware using Combo Cleaner:

TapScroll adware removal:

Remove TapScroll-related potentially unwanted applications from your "Applications" folder:

Manual removal of malicious Mac applications

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 can diminish the browsing experience and system performance. It is considered to be a privacy threat since this software typically collects private data. Additionally, adware displays advertisements promoting deceptive/malicious content capable of causing serious problems (e.g., system infections, financial losses, etc.).

What does adware do?

Adware stands for advertising-supported software. It is designed to deliver intrusive advertisement campaigns by enabling the placement of ads on various interfaces. Furthermore, some types are capable of causing redirects and collecting sensitive information.

How do adware developers generate revenue?

Most of the profit comes from affiliate programs. Adware developers might earn commission from ad clicks, website visits, file downloads, product purchases, service subscriptions, or similar.

Will Combo Cleaner remove TapScroll adware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can scan computers and eliminate detected adware-type apps. It must be mentioned that manual removal (unaided by security programs) might be ineffective. In some instances, even after the advertising-supported software has been manually removed – file leftovers remain hidden within the system. What is more, these remnants can continue to run and cause issues. Therefore, it is crucial to remove 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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