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How To Remove Malware From Your MacBook Air

Find out the most common kinds of malware attacking MacBook Air and learn how to clear machines from any malicious script.

Malware in Mac OS is not a rare scenario anymore. However, malware that targets Mac isn’t as well-developed as viruses found in Windows. The downside is that the threats on Mac system are evolving and the culprits inhabiting the invisible web are progressing in terms of their capabilities to damage the OS by developing their strategies.

There are many MacBook Air machines now all around the world since it became popular among Apple patrons because it is the more affordable version of the MacBook. Due to its popularity, it has gotten the attention of hijackers.

Considering how vulnerable even these well-secured machines are, remembering the late 2000s and the incidents of how the malware in Windows has evolved, people can associate that memory to a time when rogue security software also terrorized the digital ecosystem. Now, these deceptive anti-malware apps are becoming adept in infiltrating the MacBook Air.

Methods of removing known malware from your MacBook Air

Scareware on MacBook Air

Mac Auto Fixer, Mac Tonic, and Advanced Mac Cleaner are some of the examples of this scareware recently. They are segments of bogus utilities in a family of malicious software known for their notoriety. Any of these fake security apps usually gets into the MacBook Air through an installation method called “bundling.”

That means that the machine most likely became infected during the installation of another free software and one of this advertising-supported software, usually a potentially unwanted program, is included in the download bundle.

This software marketing technique is widely used by malware creators. The best way to avoid getting an unwanted bundle is by customizing the download settings on the installer UI instead of going for the default. By doing so, other inclusions to the package will be displayed and the choice to opt out from those items.

False Security Alerts on MacBook Air

There is a kind of a destructive software that is quickly rising nowadays. In order to remain vigilant against their attacks, users should know how it works.  While using a MacBook Air, a hoax security program starts checking the system for unwanted activities and items then sends an alarming report that there are several issues found that requires an immediate action. These alerts are used to create panic to the user to remove the problem by accepting to pay for the license of the fake software.


Browser Hijackers on MacBook Air

This type of malware that targets MacBook Air first takes control of the installed browsers on the device like Safari, Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome. It changes the default startup page to their own main web page or redirects the user to a certain landing page even while browsing the user’s regularly visited sites.

Sometimes the user may suddenly encounter a deceptive website by just launching the browser, searching the web, or adding a new tab. It has a specific URL which is designed to show information to manipulate the user’s browsing behavior.

The most notorious example of this kind of hijacker is the alert page that displays the message “Your Mac is infected with 3 viruses!” It tries to brainwash the user that the MacBook Air is infected by a malware and that the user should immediately choose to “Scan Now.” However, by doing so, it only leads the user to another harmful cargo.

Adwares on MacBook Air

Another kind of threat to browsers installed on MacBook Air are the embedded persistent ads found on website pages. These ads are made by a type of malware called an advertising-supported software. They aren’t as infectious enough to spread throughout the system, but it becomes too annoying that it disrupts regular browsing habit.

Adware viruses can infiltrate almost all websites opened on an infected MacBook Air by showing multiple popups, banners, in-text links, coupons, shopping offers, and others. To make it worse, some of the regularly visited webpages are infested with an invisible layer so that when the user clicks on any part of it, the whole page is covered by a full-screen advertisement.

Because of this, there are already several windows that are opened without the user knowing it. This activity consumes CPU power which is needed for other dormant tasks. Adware viruses usually pushes its way through the Mac OS with the help of installed free software filled with snares, just like hijackers.

Ransomware on MacBook Air

Although ransom software isn’t a big deal among MacOS devices, it has been undergoing upgrades and modifications to become large enough to hack into the system. FBI ransomware viruses, or police viruses are not actually Trojan types because it only affects browsers and the quickest way to deal with them is by resetting the infected browser.

However, another type of ransomware called the KeRanger virus which was discovered on March 4, 2016 by Palo Alto Networks, is so much more dangerous because it wildly infects the MacOS to encrypt private data on an infected MacBook Air by using asymmetric cryptography then leaves a ransom message which demands for Bitcoins in exchange for the RSA decryption code.

Fortunately, this kind of virus has never been massively distributed, and their cipher is usually unrefined and has several bugs. Still, blackmailing viruses and other ransomware nowadays are way too obviously focusing their aim on Mac devices including the MacBook Air.

Manually Remove All Kinds of Malware on MacBook Air

Whichever type of malware introduced above is causing trouble to a MacBook Air, you can use this step by step tutorial applicable to all kinds of problems. Once all of the steps have been completed, it should clear the machine of all of the issues and correct the machine’s settings damaged by any potentially unwanted program.

This step by step procedure is most effective if the user has successfully identified the kind of infection. (If not yet, refer to the information above for the different kinds of malware that could have possibly infected the machine.) It is better if the user knows whether it is a hoax anti-malware tool, or a fake data recovery tool.

Make sure to carefully follow the steps as instructed by its order. It should guide you on how to completely eradicate the virus including its residue.

  1. Go to the Apple Finder dock and click “Go.”
  2. Click on “Utilities” to open the utilities folder.
  3. Look for the icon “Activity Monitor” on the window and open it by double-clicking the icon.
  4. On the Activity Monitor window, look for the unwanted entry which causes the trouble on the system. Click on it the click on the red “Quit Process” button.
  5. A dialog popup will appear and ask to confirm the action or quit the process. Choose the option “Force Quit.”
  6. Return to the Apple Finder dock and click on “Go” again. Now, choose “Applications” from the drop down.
  7. On the window, look for unwanted entries and select “Move to Trash” by right clicking on the items.
  8. Go back to the Apple Menu and choose the option “System Preferences.”
  9. From the “Accounts” menu, click the button “Login Items.” The system will produce a list of startup applications that are launched when the box is opened.
  10. Look for potentially unwanted programs and click on the “-“ button corresponding the items.

Once the instructions have been followed accordingly, the MacBook Air’s OS should be free from the malware.

Web Browsers Malware Removal for MacBook Air

To restore the adware and ransomware infected web browsers’ settings back to their original values, they should all be manually restored. Below is the step by step guide on how to reset the most commonly used web browsers. Make sure that the steps are carefully followed.

Reset Safari

  1. Open Safari.
  2. From the menu bar, click on “Safari.”
  3. Choose “Preferences” from the drop-down list.
  4. A new window will appear that contains Preferences data. Click on the Privacy tab located at the top.
  5. Look for the option “Remove All Website Data.” It is located below the options for cookies and website data.
  6. A confirmation dialog popup will be displayed by the system which tells what will happen after the reset. If the user is fine with the changes in website behavior including getting logged out of some registered services, then it’s safe to click on the button “Remove Now.”
  7. On the other hand, if the user does not want some of the changes, then click on the button “Details.” It is found under the tab “Privacy” in Safari Preferences. The user can check on the data gathered by some websites and selectively delete them.
  8. All of the websites that contains potentially private data, which includes cookies and cache. Click all of the items that seems to be causing the problems and choose either to “Remove” or “Remove All.”
  9. Once it’s finished, click “Done” to exit.

Reset Google Chrome

  1. Open Google Chrome.
  2. Click the three horizontal bars located beside the search box. It is the “Customize and Control Google Chrome” icon.
  3. Choose “Under the Hood” from the tabs. Click the button “Reset to defaults.”

Reset Firefox

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox.
  2. Go to Help – Troubleshooting Information.
  3. Click on the “Reset Firefox” button found on the small gray box on the right side of the new page that will open.

Automatically Remove All Malware from MacBook Air Using Freshmac

It is good to have a reliable application on MacBook Air which also features a 24/7 technical support so that whenever the machine gets in trouble because of persistent, repetitive malware, the user doesn’t have to go through the meticulous process of manually erasing the malicious software from the system then from all the installed browsers on the machine.

Freshmac application has a very reliable technical support available 24/7. It is complete with the most important security features and essential modules to optimize the Mac OS. It cleans the whole machine and sweeps up unnecessary applications and malware with just a click.

  1. Install Freshmac onto the MacBook Air by downloading the application.
  2. Launch the file then choose the file destination.
  3. Enter the password to authorize the setup then select “Install Software.”
  4. As soon as it finishes the installation, Freshmac will automatically run a system check in 5 different levels from the Cache to the Trash then operates the Privacy Cleaner.
  5. Once it’s done with the scan, it will release a report with the number of identified issues detected during the scan.
  6. Click the button “Fix Safely” to delete all unwanted files and manage the privacy issues.
  7. Go to the Uninstaller tab to check if the malware has been completely erased. If there is still a suspicious entry, click on “Fix Safely.”
  8. Remove all redundant items as well by going to “Temp” and “Startup Apps.”

There should be no problems due to the malware anymore.

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