Remove UpgradeSearchSystem from Mac

By | Posted on February 15, 2020 |

UpgradeSearchSystem is a kind of adware targeting operating system of Mac devices. Developers of this unknown app endorses UpgradeSearchSystem as a tool that enhances the browsing experience of Mac users such as providing fast search results with accurate and reliable contents. However, as UpgradeSearchSystem app keeps on spreading on Mac computers, it acts suspiciously infecting operating systems and browser applications.

Why UpgradeSearchSystem is an adware?

UpgradeSearchSystem acts just like any other adware that infiltrates devices without notice. Sometimes, developers market their programs through bundling, which they include it along with other apps under installation. Usually, it is free to download from the internet so Mac users are tempted to install it. It is also possible that packing UpgradeSearchSystem along with other extra programs can make it enter the devices without detecting by Mac users.

Behaviors of UpgradeSearchSystem

Installation of UpgradeSearchSystem on Mac devices could lead to complications on system. UpgradeSearchSystem functions while generating intrusive advertisements or campaigns that consistently displaying on screen. Since UpgradeSearchSystem is an adware, it is common to trace data of Mac users from browsing activity and even their personal information.

Ads generated by UpgradeSearchSystem can be in a form of pop-ups, banners, surveys, or coupons. Constant display of these annoying ads can reduce browsing experience of Mac users, which is the opposite of how developers are endorsing UpgradeSearchSystem. Intrusive ads that appear on screen can be risky to Mac users when clicked. It can link to unwanted websites containing unexpected contents. In addition, ads associated by UpgradeSearchSystem can have the ability to inject potentially unwanted application (PUA) or another adware on Mac devices.

UpgradeSearchSystem

The presence of UpgradeSearchSystem on Mac computer is not beneficial to user. It causes infections to Mac operating system. Instead of enhancing the functions of device, it operates otherwise. Installing UpgradeSearchSystem.app is not beneficial to Mac users. On the worst-case scenario, exposing tracked data caused by unwanted apps or adware can be use for cyber crime purposes.

Procedures to Remove UpgradeSearchSystem 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 : 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 UpgradeSearchSystem. You may need to purchase full version if you require to maximize its premium features.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

Click here to Download Combo Cleaner

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 it's latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing UpgradeSearchSystem.

Start Combo Scan

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 2 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to UpgradeSearchSystem

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 Plugins lists when it opens a new window.

2. Once you have located UpgradeSearchSystem, 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 UpgradeSearchSystem

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.UpgradeSearchSystem
  • 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:

- ProcessSave, SystemJump, BrowserToday

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing UpgradeSearchSystem 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.

- ProcessSave, SystemJump, BrowserToday

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 Locked Files

3. Click on Force Quit button.

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

Step 4 : Double-check with MBAM Tool for Mac

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

Click here to download MBAM for Mac

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 UpgradeSearchSystem.

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.

Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac

5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, UpgradeSearchSystem 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 UpgradeSearchSystem 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 UpgradeSearchSystem 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 UpgradeSearchSystem. 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 UpgradeSearchSystem 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 UpgradeSearchSystem. 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 UpgradeSearchSystem 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 UpgradeSearchSystem.

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