Remove AdvantageMethod from Mac

At first glance, AdvantageMethod can seem like a reliable search engine. But the authors of the adware have the malign intention of using the victim’s browser program to make money online. It was designed specifically to display paid links and advertising on browser pages. Mac users should remove the AdvantageMethod program as soon as possible after learning that it can annoy their computer. Removing it might also aid in regaining the affected internet browser program’s online privacy and security.

How does AdvantageMethod infiltrate a Mac?

AdvantageMethod and other homepage hijackers gain access to Mac computers using software bundles. Free games, tools, media players, file downloaders, and fake updates may be downloaded by users without their being aware that they contain potentially unwanted program (PUP). As a result, downloading such free programs also downloads several adware programs, like AdvantageMethod.

Adware typically enters the browser via a program called “software bundle.” In this instance, the extension for AdvantageMethod is the one that modifies web browsers like Safari and Google Chrome. The reason AdvantageMethod appears as the default web address on the homepage, new tab, and search engine is due to the same adware.

Screenshot of AdvantageMethod App

AdvantageMethod drawbacks

It is clear that AdvantageMethod is committed to controlling browser settings in order to carry out its work. This hijacker can illegally access the user’s online data in addition to hijacking the user’s browser pages. Data extraction occurs when an internet browser is redirected to AdvantageMethod, allowing the attacker to record information such as search terms, browsing history, and other personally identifying information. Unfortunately, malware writers may abuse the data they collect to show people misleading ads that they hope they will click on.

AdvantageMethod is undoubtedly an intrusive sort of adware, and like other adware with the name ThinDev and BatchesPassage, it poses a risk to Mac systems if it is not immediately uninstalled. As a result, we advise utilizing the below-listed steps to remove this danger from the computer. Use the tools that have been recommended to scan the computer for malicious components linked to the AdvantageMethod software, and then remove them.

Procedures to Remove AdvantageMethod from Mac

This area contains comprehensive procedures to help you remove adware and potentially unwanted program from the computer.

Guide on this page are written in a manner that can be easily understand and execute by Mac users.

Quick Fix - Scan the Mac Computer with Combo Cleaner

Combo Cleaner is a trusted Mac utility application with complete antivirus and optimization features. It is useful in dealing with adware, malware, and PUP's. Moreover, it can get rid of adware like AdvantageMethod. You may need to purchase full version if you require to maximize its premium features.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

2. Double-click the downloaded file and proceed with the installation.

3. In the opened window, drag and drop the Combo Cleaner icon onto your Applications folder icon.

Install Combo Cleaner

4. Open your Launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon.

5. Wait until antivirus downloads its latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing AdvantageMethod.

Combo Cleaner Scanner

6. Free features of Combo Cleaner include Disk Cleaner, Big Files finder, Duplicate files finder, and Uninstaller. To use antivirus and privacy scanner, users have to upgrade to a premium version.

Proceed with the rest of the removal steps if you are comfortable in manually removing malicious objects associated with the threat.

Step 1 : Delete AdvantageMethod from Mac Applications

1. Go to Finder.

2. On the menu, click Go and then, select Applications from the list to open Applications Folder.

3. Find AdvantageMethod or any unwanted program or suspicious item. It could be in disguise as a different file.

Delete Unwanted App

4. Drag AdvantageMethod to Trash Bin to delete the application from Mac.

5. Right-click on Trash icon and click on Empty Trash.

Step 2 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to AdvantageMethod

1. Locate the add-on or extension that is relevant to the adware. To do this, please follow the following depending on affected browser.

Safari - Choose Preferences from the Safari menu, then click the Extensions icon. This will open a window showing all installed extensions.

Chrome - Select Preferences from the Chrome menu, and then click the Extensions link found on the left pane.

Firefox - Choose Add-ons from the Menu. Look at both the Extensions and Plug-ins lists when it opens a new window.

2. Once you have located AdvantageMethod, click on Remove or Uninstall, to get rid of it.

3. Close the browser and proceed to the next steps.

Step 3 : Delete Malicious Files that have installed AdvantageMethod

1. Select and copy the string below to your Clipboard by pressing Command + C on your keyboard.

~/Library/LaunchAgents

2. Go to your Finder. From the menu bar please select Go > Go to Folder...

3. Press Command + V on your keyboard to paste the copied string. Press Return to go to the said folder.

Command + V

4. You will now see a folder named LaunchAgents. Take note of the following files inside the folder:

  • com.AdvantageMethod
  • unknown.download.plist
  • unknown.ltvbit.plist
  • unknown.update.plist

The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. Attackers may masks the actual name with following:

- Advantage Method App

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing AdvantageMethod to be present on your Mac. Arranging all items to see the most latest ones may also help you identify recently installed unfamiliar files. Please press Option + Command + 4 on your keyboard to arrange the application list in chronological order.

Option+Command+4

Important: Take note of all the suspicious files as you may also delete the same item on another folder as we go on.

5. Drag all suspicious files that you may find to Trash.

6. Please restart the computer.

7. Open another folder using the same method as above. Copy and Paste the following string to easily locate the folder.

~/Library/Application Support

8. Look for any suspicious items that are similar to the ones in Step 4. Drag them to the Trash.

9. Repeat the process on the following non-hidden folders (without ~):

/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons
/Library/Application Support

10. Lastly, go to your Finder and open the Applications Folder. Look for subfolders with the following names and drag them to Trash.

- Advantage Method App

Optional : For locked files that cannot be removed, do the following:

1. Go to Launchpad, Utilities folder, open Activity Monitor.

2. Select the process you want to quit.

Force Quit Apps

3. Click on Force Quit button.

4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to AdvantageMethod adware.

Step 4 : Double-check with MBAM Tool for Mac

1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac from this link:

2. Run Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac. It will check for updates and download if most recent version is available. This is necessary in finding recent malware threats including AdvantageMethod.

3. If it prompts to close all running web browser, please do so. Thus, we advise you to PRINT this guide for your reference before going offline.

4. Once it opens the user interface, please click on Scan button to start scanning your Mac computer.

MBAM for Mac

5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, AdvantageMethod is surely part of it. Be sure to select all items in the list. Then, click Remove button to clean the computer.

Step 5 : Remove AdvantageMethod from Homepage and Search

Safari

- Open your Safari browser.
- Go to Safari Menu located on upper left hand corner, and then select Preferences.
- Under General tab, navigate to Default Search Engine section and select Google or any valid search engine.
- Next, be sure that "New Windows Open With" field is set to Homepage.
- Lastly, remove AdvantageMethod from the Homepage field. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.

Google Chrome

- Open Chrome browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and press Enter on keyboard : chrome://settings/
- Look for 'On Startup' area.
- Select 'Open a specific page or set of pages'.
- Click on More Actions and select Edit.
- Enter the desired web address as your home page, replacing AdvantageMethod. Click Save.
- To set default search engine, go to Search Engine area.
- Click on 'Manage search engines...' button.
- Go to questionable Search Engine. Click on More Actions and Click 'Remove from list'.
- Go back to Search Engine area and choose valid entry from Search engine used in the address bar.

Mozilla Firefox

- Run Mozilla Firefox browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and hit Enter on keyboard : about:preferences
- On Startup area, select 'Show your home page' under 'When Firefox starts' field.
- Under Home Page field, type the desired URL to replace AdvantageMethod settings.
- To configure default search engine, select Search on left sidebar to display settings.
- Under Default Search Engine list, please select one.
- On the same page, you have an option to Remove unwanted search engine.

Optional : If unable to change browser settings, execute these steps:

Some user complains that there is no way to change browser settings because it is grayed out by AdvantageMethod. In such situation, it is important to check if there is unwanted profile. Please do the following:

1. Quit any running applications and launch System Preferences from your Dock.

2. Under System Preferences, click Profiles.

3. Select AdvantageMethod or any relevant profile from the left pane. See image below.

Remove Profile

4. At the bottom of this window, click minus [-] button to delete the account. Please refer to image above.

5. Close the Profiles window and open the affected browser to change all settings associated with AdvantageMethod.

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