Mac security analysts warn against an encounter with SectionBuffer app. According to them, this this malicious browser extension is currently targeting internet software on Mac OS computer. The moment that SectionBuffer is operating inside the computer, it displays different types of aggressive advertisements such as pop-ups, redirects, and push notifications. It also overrides search settings in an attempt to promote unwanted search engine, which is unreliable as compare to current user’s preference of Google, Bing, or Yahoo.
SectionBuffer Distribution Methods
Majority of computer users who encounter SectionBuffer ponders how it manages to enter the computer without their consent. Actually, there are several ways that attackers are utilizing to widely spread the adware. One is through a fake software update that web users commonly encounter when visiting sites that are involved in the illegal distribution of movies, software, or audio files. Another thing, installing freeware that originates from distrustful sources may likewise be the source of SectionBuffer app infiltration. Worse than that, the distribution of suspicious freeware bundles was also observed as a way to infect the computer with more dangerous threats including viruses and malware.
The intrusion techniques of SectionBuffer app can easily persuade Mac users into the accidental installation or execution of the carrier. Thus, it is advised to stay away from the said sources of infection.
Goal of SectionBuffer App
The adware in question is operating both as potentially unwanted application (PUA) and ad-supported software (Adware). That being said, it is clear that SectionBuffer is possessing traits for causing misbehaviors on the infected browser application. After penetrating the computer against the will of Mac user, SectionBuffer app begins to display an assortment of advertisements in the browser program. This normally causes disruption to Mac users browsing activities. Instead of viewing desired pages, SectionBuffer will redirect the browser to unsolicited ones that often holds malicious links and contents.
Bear in mind that aside from generating revenue through ad display campaign, one more objective of SectionBuffer is to refer internet traffic to partner’s websites. This will is not only annoying, but more than that, the redirect process by SectionBuffer could lead to more greater troubles because the unwanted destination is pushing for the installation of unknown executable file, which can be rogue application, adware, or virus.
Like what we advised to Mac users who encounters similar threats as AppEnviroment, DevModule, and NetInput, removal is a must with SectionBuffer. Aside from disturbances, the computer is at risks during its presence. Complete steps to remove this adware is outlined in the next section. Please follow the guide accordingly.
Procedures to Remove SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer. 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 SectionBuffer.
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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer or any unwanted program.
4. Drag SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer
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 SectionBuffer, 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 SectionBuffer
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:
- AppEnviroment, DevModule
If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing SectionBuffer 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.
- AppEnviroment, DevModule
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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer.
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, SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer. 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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer. 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 SectionBuffer 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 SectionBuffer.