AssistSample mac virus Removal Guide
What is AssistSample mac virus?
AssistSample mac virus can take over the browser and download other PUPs automatically
Mac viruses can change the browsing experience and cause ad spam
AssistSample is a virus that specifically targets mac machines and belongs to the Adload malware family. It has hijacking and adware capabilities, so it may cause an increased amount of commercial content, like pop-ups, banners, and redirects. It might also change the main settings, like the homepage, new tab address, and search engine.
The ads may be placed by rogue advertising networks so people can end up on dangerous websites by clicking on the embedded links. However, adware created for mac systems is much more aggressive than adware developed for Windows. For one, it can automatically install PUPs (potentially unwanted programs), and even malware in the background without the users' knowledge.
|TYPE||Adware, browser hijacker, mac virus|
|SYMPTOMS||Different homepage and new tab addresses; redirects to some other search engine and shady websites; decrease in performance|
|DISTRIBUTION||Fake software updates, deceptive ads, installing programs from torrent sites|
|DANGERS||Altered search results can lead to dangerous websites; pop-up ads might be promoting scams; the virus can install other PUPs or even malware in the background|
|ELIMINATION||Eliminating this Mac virus manually can be quite complicated if you do not have prior experience. The easiest and most effective way would be to open a professional security tool and scan your system to delete every related file|
|FURTHER STEPS||A maintenance tool ReimageIntego should be used to completely wipe out any data left and fix the remaining damage|
Most people do not notice the infection until it starts making obvious changes. We previously wrote about many other Adload viruses, like ExpandedSystem, CentralGeo, VibeProfile and they are very similar. They all have the same icon – a magnifying glass inside a green, teal, or grey background.
The reason why so many people do not notice Adload until it is already too late is that it can bypass Apple's own security system XProtect. Malware developers are constantly looking for ways to improve. That is why users should keep up and follow security researchers' guidelines.
The main file of the infection can be found in the “Applications” folder. However, that does not mean that it is simple to remove. It generates many other files disguised as normal system files and scatters them across the system to make them more complicated to remove.
There are various methods that crooks use to spread their malicious programs. The most common way mac viruses are spread is through fake Flash Player updates. When users are browsing the web, they may stumble upon a page that says they need to update or install Flash Player to be able to watch content. However, Flash Player was discontinued in 2020 and replaced by HTML5 so any page saying otherwise, should be exited immediately.
Another way AssistSample mac virus could have infiltrated the system is through “cracked” software installations. Many people like to browse through Torrent sites, and peer-to-peer file-sharing platforms looking for programs to download for free. Unfortunately, these platforms are the perfect breeding ground for all kinds of malware because they are unregulated.
One more thing that is good to know is the importance of security patches for your operating system and software. Hackers may use software vulnerabilities to deliver their malicious programs. Software developers regularly release security updates which should be installed immediately if you want to prevent infections.
Adload is spread using various methods so users should be careful while browsing
Remove AssistSample mac virus
Manual removal may be a race against time. With launch agents, daemons, cronjobs, it can sometimes take several attempts to beat all of these before one of them manages to re-write deleted components back. You should not do this yourself unless you know what you are doing and what kind of files you need to delete.
Some of the files can have a .plist extension, a standard settings file, also known as a “properties file,” used by macOS applications. It contains properties and configuration settings for various programs. The app also uses different persistence techniques and drops many files across the system, complicating browser extension and application removal.
To keep your mind at peace, we recommend using professional anti-malware tools SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes, which can detect unwanted programs and eradicate them. You also do not know if the virus installed any additional malicious programs, so this is the safest way to ensure the system is clean.
If you still want to try and delete it manually, proceed with these steps:
- Open Applications folder
- Select Utilities
- Double-click Activity Monitor
- Here, look for suspicious processes related to adware and use Force Quit command to shut them down
- Go back to the Applications folder
- Find AssistSample in the list and move it to Trash.
If you are unable to shut down the related processes or can't move the app to Trash, you should look for malicious profiles and login items:
- Go to Preferences and select Accounts
- Click Login items and delete everything suspicious
- Next, pick System Preferences > Users & Groups
- Find Profiles and remove unwanted profiles from the list.
There are likely to be more .plist files hiding in the following locations – delete them all:
- Select Go > Go to Folder.
- Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
- In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries and then delete them.
- Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the related .plist files.
The manual elimination process might not always result in full virus removal. Therefore, we still strongly suggest you perform a scan with security software.
Fix your browser
It is possible that AssistSample also collects browsing-related and sensitive information. Various scripts might be sending data to tracking servers. Some of the data that could be exposed is your IP address, user name, macOS and browsers' versions, an ID of the computer, items in the Applications folder, a list of installed agents, daemons, and system configuration profiles.
AssistSample mac adware also employs an unwelcome add-on that messes with the settings. After the dangerous files are eliminated from your system, you should take care of your browsers. You can get rid of cookies and cache automatically with the help of ReimageIntego. It will also fix any damaged files and system errors so you should notice an improvement in machine's performance.
If you prefer doing this yourself without additional help, here are the instructions. Steps for other browsers you will find at the bottom of this article.
- Click Safari > Preferences…
- In the new window, pick Extensions.
- Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall.
Cookies and website data:
- Click Safari > Clear History…
- From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
- Confirm with Clear History.
The simplest and quickest solution to this is completely resetting Safari:
- Click Safari > Preferences…
- Go to Advanced tab.
- Tick the Show Develop menu in menu bar.
- From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches.
Getting rid of AssistSample mac virus. Follow these steps
Remove from Google Chrome
Delete malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
- Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
- In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to the unwanted program by clicking Remove.
Clear cache and web data from Chrome:
- Click on Menu and pick Settings.
- Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
- Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
- Click Clear data.
Change your homepage:
- Click menu and choose Settings.
- Look for a suspicious site in the On startup section.
- Click on Open a specific or set of pages and click on three dots to find the Remove option.
Reset Google Chrome:
If the previous methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the unwanted components:
- Click on Menu and select Settings.
- In the Settings, scroll down and click Advanced.
- Scroll down and locate Reset and clean up section.
- Now click Restore settings to their original defaults.
- Confirm with Reset settings.
Remove from Mozilla Firefox (FF)
Remove dangerous extensions:
- Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
- Select Add-ons.
- In here, select unwanted plugin and click Remove.
Reset the homepage:
- Click three horizontal lines at the top right corner to open the menu.
- Choose Options.
- Under Home options, enter your preferred site that will open every time you newly open the Mozilla Firefox.
Clear cookies and site data:
- Click Menu and pick Settings.
- Go to Privacy & Security section.
- Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
- Click on Clear Data…
- Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear.
Reset Mozilla Firefox
If clearing the browser as explained above did not help, reset Mozilla Firefox:
- Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click the Menu.
- Go to Help and then choose Troubleshooting Information.
- Under Give Firefox a tune up section, click on Refresh Firefox…
- Once the pop-up shows up, confirm the action by pressing on Refresh Firefox.
How to prevent from getting adware
Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool
Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.
Lost your files? Use data recovery software
While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.
To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.