Remove StandardBoost (Mac Adware)

If Mac users are experiencing issues with their internet application, for example, if it keeps showing aggressive pop-up ads and redirects, there may be adware that is commanding the browser to produce such objects. Aside from the annoyances of continuous ad display, adware is able to steal several pieces of information from the browser. It can track web user’s data that is currently stored on the browser. Thus, Mac users’ online privacy is already compromised. One adware program that can perform such malicious tasks is called StandardBoost.

What is the StandardBoost app?

Technically, StandardBoost was designed to perform as an internet browser extension. But due to the usage of different intrusive tactics to penetrate the Mac computer, it was listed under the category of potentially unwanted application (PUA). Actually, StandardBoost is just another rendition of previously released malware like InputBalance, InitialMachine, and SimpleSearchGuide. All of these browser threats can contaminate the computer via different misleading online schemes.

Attackers are employing techniques such as software bundling hoaxes, bogus software updates, and malicious ad campaigns that promote StandardBoost as a valuable browser extension. Of all these techniques mentioned, only the latter requires a Mac user’s intervention to install the app. The rests are relying on the hosts software to carry the adware inside the computer and run a simultaneous installation.

Risks of installing StandardBoost adware

Ads that will show up on the browser during the existence of StandardBoost are unusual. In fact, they are not user-friendly. Most ads emerging from the adware infection are unsafe and could contain malicious links that forward the browser pages to other questionable websites, particularly ones that are offering fake software updates, as shown in the image below.

Screenshot of StandardBoost fake update

The data tracking abilities of StandardBoost could lead to identity theft. It is able to extract browsing and personal information such as favorite websites, browsing history, visited pages, username, password, and IP address or geographical location of Mac users. This information monitoring method by StandardBoost will persist as long as the unwanted browser extension is operational. In addition, the affected internet browser program will display the alert message “StandardBoostd will damage your computer.”

Obviously, StandardBoost is a threat to the online privacy and security of Mac users. Thus, immediate computer cleanup is recommended. Please follow the guide below to completely remove StandardBoost from the compromised computer and internet programs. As stated, scan the computer with effective virus and malware removal tools to delete hidden malicious items associated with the threat.

The “StandardBoostfld will damage your computer” alert

Your Mac is displaying a warning because it has identified the StandardBoostfld file as a potential threat, likely due to an unrecognized developer or potential malware. To remove the StandardBoostfld  file, locate it in the Finder and drag it to the Trash as stated in our removal procedures. Then, empty the Trash to permanently delete the file. Additionally, consider running reputable antivirus or anti-malware software to scan your system for any potential threats. Regularly update your operating system and be cautious when downloading files from untrusted sources to prevent similar issues in the future.

Procedures to Remove StandardBoost 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.

Step 1 : - 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 StandardBoost.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

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

3. The installation window will open. Please double-click or drag the Combo Cleaner icon to the Applications folder.

Screenshot of Installer

4. Proceed with the installation. When it displays the Software License Agreement, please click Continue, and then click on Agree in the confirmation window. Continue with the default installation.

5. The program should run automatically after installation. If not, open your Launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon.

6. Wait until antivirus downloads its latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing StandardBoost and other issues on the Mac computer.

Screenshot of Dashboard

7. After the virus and disk scan processes, the tool will display the results. Click on Remove Selected to start cleaning the computer.

To fully optimize the features of antivirus and privacy scanners, users may have to upgrade to the premium version.

If you are comfortable manually removing the adware and other malicious objects associated with it, please proceed with the remaining steps.

Step 2 : Delete StandardBoost 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 StandardBoost or any unwanted program.

Screenshot of Deleting App

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

5. Next, go to the Dock, right-click on the Trash icon, and click on Empty Trash.

Step 3 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to StandardBoost

Most adware and unwanted programs use an application called a "browser extension" to be able to take over the settings of internet applications. Therefore, we highly recommend checking and removing the extension that is closely related to StandardBoost. If it is not present, look for and delete any suspicious browser extension.

Google Chrome

Remove the StandardBoost Extension from Google Chrome

1. Open the Google Chrome browser.

2. Input the strings below in the address bar and press Enter on the keyboard:

chrome://extensions/

Screenshot of Chrome Extensions in PC

3. Find StandardBoost or a relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome.

Safari

Remove Malicious Extension from Safari

1. Open the Safari browser.

2. On the top menu, click Safari > Settings or Preferences.

3. The Safari settings window will open. Please select the Extensions tab.

Screenshot of Safari Extension Removal

4. Locate the suspicious extension and click the Uninstall button to remove it from Safari.

5. You may now close the window and restart Safari.

Microsoft Edge

Remove StandardBoost from Microsoft Edge Browser

1. Open the Microsoft Edge program.

2. Input or copy and paste the following string in the address bar. Press press Enter on the keyboard:

edge://extensions/

Screenshot of Edge Extension on Mac

3. Look for and Remove or Disable entries for StandardBoost from the Installed Extensions area.

Screenshot of Edge Extension Removal - Mac

4. You may now close the window and restart the Microsoft Edge browser.

Mozilla Firefox

Uninstall the StandardBoost Extension from Mozilla Firefox

1. Open the Mozilla Firefox browser.

2. Type or copy and paste the strings below in the address bar and press Enter on the keyboard:

about:addons

Screenshot of Firefox Extension

3. Click on Extensions from the sidebar menu.

4. Look for an entry that pertains to StandardBoost and Disable or Remove it from the browser using the options button.

Step 4 : Delete Malicious Files that have installed StandardBoost

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

2. Input the following string and press Enter on the keyboard.

~/Library/LaunchAgents

Screenshot of Go To Folder

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

  • com.StandardBoost.plist
  • unknown.service.plist
  • unknown.system.plist
  • unknown.download.plist
  • unknown.update.plist

4. The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. Attackers may use the following file names:

- StandardBoostfldfld, (random characters).plist

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing StandardBoost to be present on your Mac. Arranging all items to see the latest ones may also help you identify recently installed unfamiliar files.

5. Please click on "Show items as..."

Screenshot of LaunhAgents Folder

6. To arrange the items in chronological order, click Date Modified.

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

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

8. Please restart the Mac computer.

9. Open another folder using the same method as above. Copy and paste the following string to easily locate the folder:

~/Library/Application Support

Screenshot of Go to Folder

10. Select any suspicious items that you have noted previously. Drag them to the Trash.

11. Repeat the process in the following non-hidden folders (without ~):

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

12. Lastly, go to your Finder > Go and open the Applications folder. Look for subfolders with the following names and drag them to Trash.

- StandardBoostfldfld, (random characters).plist

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

1. Go to Launchpad > Other folder, open the Activity Monitor.

2. Select the process you want to quit.

3. In the upper part of the window, click the Stop button.

Screenshot of Force Quit

4. Click on Force Quit button.

5. You may now delete or remove the locked file that belongs to StandardBoost homepage hijacker.

Step 5 : Double-check with Malwarebytes for Mac

Use Malwarebytes for Mac to do another scan to make sure the machine is already clear of viruses, malware, and adware. This efficient anti-malware application allows you to detect things that other security software was unable to recognize.

1. Download Malwarebytes for Mac from the link below.

2. Locate the downloaded Malwarebytes-Mac.pkg and install it with the default settings.

3. Run Malwarebytes for Mac. It will check for updates and download the most recent version if one is available. This is necessary for finding recent malware threats, including StandardBoost.

4. Once you are on the Malwarebytes dashboard, please click on the Scan button to start scanning your Mac computer.

Screenshot of Malwarebytes Dashboard

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

Step 6 : Fixing the Homepage and Search Engine

Google Chrome

Remove StandardBoost from the Homepage and Search of Chrome

1. Open the Google Chrome browser and type the following on the address bar and press Enter on the keyboard:

chrome://settings

Screenshot of Chrome Settings

2. Go to the left sidebar and click On Startup.

3. Select "Open a specific page or set of pages" in the right panel.

Screenshot of Chrome Startup

4. Locate the unwanted Homepage URL, click on More Actions (3-dot icon), and select Edit.

5. Enter the desired web address as your home page, replacing StandardBoost. Click Save.

6. To set the default search engine, go to the sidebar, and this time, select Search Engine.

Screenshot of Default Search

7. Click on the Manage search engines and site search button in the right panel.

8. Find the unwanted Search Engine in the list. Click on More Actions, and then click Delete.

9. Go back to the left side bar and click Search Engine.

Screenshot of Search Engine Address Bar

10. In the right panel, choose a valid entry from the "Search engine used in the address bar."

You can now restart the Google Chrome browser to see if the unwanted homepage and search engine related to StandardBoost are gone.

Safari

Get Rid of StandardBoost from Safari's Homepage and Search

1. Open your Safari browser.

2. Go to the Safari Menu located in the upper left-hand corner, and then select Settings or Preferences.

3. In the General tab, remove the StandardBoost item or unwanted URL from the Homepage section. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.

Screenshot of Safari Home Settings

4. Next, be sure that the "New windows open with" and "New tabs open with" fields are set to "Homepage".

5. Please click on the Search tab, and in the "Search engine" section, select Google or any valid search engine.

Screenshot of Safari Search Settings

6. You may now restart the Safari browser.

Microsoft Edge

Remove StandardBoost from the Homepage of Edge Browser

1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser on your Mac computer.

2. In the address bar, type or copy and paste the string below, then press Enter on the keyboard:

edge://settings/startHomeNTP

Screenshot of Edge Homepage Settings on Mac

3. Go to the "When Edge Starts" area. Under the "Open these pages" section, click More Actions (3-dot).

4. Select Edit to open the Edit Page window.

5. Input your desired address to replace the homepage settings of StandardBoost.

Screenshot of Edge for Mac Default Homepage

6. Click the Save button. You may now restart Microsoft Edge for Mac.

Mozilla Firefox

Delete StandardBoost from the Homepage and Search of Firefox.

1. Open the Mozilla Firefox browser on your Mac computer.

2. Type the following on the address bar, then press Enter on the keyboard:

about:preferences

3. Click Home in the sidebar area.

Screenshot of Firefox Homepage Settings

4. Under "Homepage and new windows", you may choose Firefox Home (Default) or Custom URLs.

5. If you chose Custom URLs, input the desired URL to replace StandardBoost settings.

6. To configure the default search engine, select Search in the sidebar to display the settings.

Screenshot of Firefox Search Settings

7. Under the Default Search Engine list, please select a legitimate one (i.e., Google).

8. Scroll down to "Search Shortcuts" and select an unwanted search engine.

Screenshot of Deleting Search

9. Click on the Remove button to delete the unwanted search engine. You may now restart the Mozilla Firefox for Mac.

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