StationSure Mac Adware : How to Remove It

Computer annoyances such as adware, which often infects computers with ransomware, dominate the threat environment nearly totally. Thankfully, adware is not extremely hazardous. Its main target is web browser software, such as Google Chrome and Safari. Once within the target application, adware completely ignores user preferences and modifies the behavior of internet apps. One form of adware that is now in use targets browsers, particularly Mac OS browsers. It goes by the name StationSure.

Information regarding the StationSure app

In addition to StationSure, the people behind it have created numerous versions of the adware, including DiscoveryExemplary and DeviceMode. These browser annoyances are based on the idea that cybercriminals desire to take over internet programs in order to profit from them. The threat’s authors have resorted to a number of cunning entry strategies in order to infiltrate the target browser application and gain access to the Mac system, as the takeover is evidently detrimental to Mac users.

First and foremost, malicious software bundles are a common source of effective StationSure deployment. These bundles often pose as trustworthy shareware or freeware. Attackers are lurking in the shadows, waiting for victims to inadvertently add StationSure to their browser program, while Mac users can download and install these free apps without any cost at all. Since the StationSure app is an add-on to the main application, it has the same administrative privileges as the host app. Consequently, StationSure bypasses the installation permit phase with ease. In addition, StationSure can be obtained by Mac users by pretending to be an Adobe software update, as illustrated in the following image.

Screenshot of StationSure

What happens after installation?

As soon as StationSure is enabled in the browser, Mac users will notice that it responds aggressively to searches and online browsing. In order to promote a related, questionable search product, it takes over the website and search engine. There will be a noticeable sequence of redirects while StationSure handles the search function, before the browser program displays the final search result on Yahoo or Google. By forcing Mac users to utilize a third-party search engine, the attacker hopes to make money.

Along with a never-ending barrage of pay-per-click pop-up advertisements, there will be redirection. Put differently, authors get paid the same amount for each click. Because of this, attackers are more likely to succeed in getting clicks by showcasing a variety of ad formats, which explains why StationSure’s advertising is so common.

The StationSure app generates revenue by directing internet traffic to associated websites where the program can monetize recommendations. Put another way, the more traffic it diverts, the more money these robbers stand to make. From the standpoint of Mac users, this is unhealthy because most of the destination websites are loaded with malware and spyware that, should a Mac computer be accidentally accessed, can swiftly destroy it.

Procedures to Remove StationSure 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 malicious browser hijacker like StationSure.

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 StationSure.

Screenshot of Combo Cleaner Dashboard

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

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

Step 2 : Delete StationSure 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 StationSure or any unwanted program.

Screenshot of Deleting App

4. Drag StationSure 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 StationSure

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 StationSure. If it is not present, look for and delete any suspicious browser extension.

Google Chrome

Remove the StationSure 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 StationSure 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 StationSure 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 StationSure 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 StationSure 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 StationSure and Disable or Remove it from the browser using the options button.

Step 4 : Delete Malicious Files that have installed StationSure

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.StationSure.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:

- StationSure, (random characters).plist

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

- StationSure

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 StationSure homepage hijacker.

Step 5 : Double-check with Malwarebytes for Mac

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 StationSure.

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 StationSure 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 StationSure from Google 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 StationSure. 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 StationSure are gone.

Safari

Get Rid of StationSure from Safari

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 StationSure 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 StationSure 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 StationSure.

Screenshot of Edge for Mac Default Homepage

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

Mozilla Firefox

Delete StationSure from Mozilla Firefox browser.

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 StationSure 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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