When browser program starts to exhibit significant amount of advertisements especially intrusive pop-ups, there is a reason to believe that affected internet software is under the control of adware. There are adware that specific on targeting internet programs running under Mac OS and FractionData is just one of them. Among other threats from the same clan are AssistiveFile, BoostCoordinator, InitialWindow, and many others.
Any variants from the said adware family are promoted as valuable tool that improves online browsing and searching experience of Mac user. This could be the reason why quite a number of them were tricked into downloading and installing FractionData app. However, the biggest chunk of victims are those that are fond of acquiring freeware from low reputation sources like torrent portals, suspicious file-sharing networks, and cracked software sites.
FractionData inside a freeware
Unknown to Mac users, makers of FractionData are taking advantages of the freeware to easily distributes a copy of this adware. By integrating the malicious code to different free applications and secretly repacking it to become a software bundle, FractionData enjoys the effortless intrusion on Mac computer. Actually, there is a method to evade this adware infiltration technique by taking the extra phase in running the setup via Custom or Advanced mode. This way, all inclusions will be visible to Mac user and excluding unnecessary app like FractionData is a one-click away. Hence, the mainstream of these high-end device users are neglecting this security measures that gives way for FractionData app to sneak-in.
Fake software update and FractionData
One more method that contributes to successful deceitful distribution of FractionData app is through fake software update. Receiving pop-ups alerts that encourages downloading of software update are not always legitimate. Those compelling alerts that do not give option to delay the software update installation is somehow suspicious. Majority of these cases are pop-up ads masking as system alert in order to trick web users into installing FractionData or any sort of unwanted program.
FractionData is a PUA
Since FractionData app is using different tactics to mislead Mac users, computer security experts classify it under the potentially unwanted application (PUA) category. This threat family is less hazardous than computer virus. However, this does not mean that having FractionData on the browser is not risky. Keep in mind that it is still a threat to online privacy and security and as usual, removal is the solution for this kind of computer nuisance.
Procedures to Remove FractionData 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 System 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 FractionData. 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.
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 FractionData.
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 FractionData 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 FractionData or any unwanted program.
4. Drag FractionData 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 FractionData
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 FractionData, 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 FractionData
1. Select and copy the string below to your Clipboard by pressing Command + C on your keyboard.
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.
4. You will now see a folder named LaunchAgents. Take note of the following files inside the folder:
The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. Attackers may masks the actual name with following:
- BoostCoordinator, InitialWindow
If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing FractionData 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.
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.
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 ~):
10. Lastly, go to your Finder and open the Applications Folder. Look for subfolders with the following names and drag them to Trash.
- BoostCoordinator, InitialWindow
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.
3. Click on Force Quit button.
4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to FractionData 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 FractionData.
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.
5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, FractionData 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 FractionData from Homepage and Search
- 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 FractionData from the Homepage field. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.
- 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 FractionData. 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.
- 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 FractionData 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 FractionData. 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 FractionData or any relevant profile from the left pane. See image below.
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 FractionData.