NavigateNetwork Mac virus (Free Guide)
NavigateNetwork Mac virus Removal Guide
What is NavigateNetwork Mac virus?
NavigateNetwork malware can damage your computer integrity
NavigateNetwork is a malicious Mac application that can steal personal information
NavigateNetwork is a malicious application designed for Mac systems exclusively. Its appearance on the system is always surprising to users, as they never install the app intentionally but are rather tricked into doing so. Adload, a malware family it belongs to, is spread via fake Flash Player updates and pirated software that can be found on various high-risk websites.
Once on the system, the malware drops various malicious files to establish persistence – it would now load every time the system is booted. The NavigateNetwork browser extension is placed on Safari, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or another web browser, which helps the virus to fulfill its browser-hijacking tasks.
With the help of the extension, the app can take over users' browsing sessions, altering the search provider, inserting sponsored links at the top of search results, and inserting pop-ups, banners, auto-play, and similar ads everywhere they go. To make matters worse, users are more likely to encounter malicious material while NavigateNetwork is still running on the system. We recommend you follow the tips below to get rid of the infection as soon as possible.
|Type||Mac virus, adware, browser hijacker|
|Distribution||Third-party sites distributing pirated software, software bundles, fake Flash Player updates|
|Symptoms||A suspicious browser extension installed on the web browser; search and browsing settings altered to another provider; new profiles and other elements created on the accounts; increased number of ads and redirects|
|Removal||Manual malware removal is possible but not recommended, as it may fail. Performing a scan with SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner can quickly and easily remove the virus for you|
|System optimization||After you terminate the infection with all its associated components, we recommend you also scan your machine with RestoroIntego for the best results|
A long-lasting myth of Macs being impenetrable by malware has been long busted. In fact, in 2020, security researchers determined that malware is targeting Macs at a higher pace than it does Windows. While Macs are less prone to more serious infections such as ransomware, adware developed for these systems is typically much more aggressive and possesses tons of malicious traits.
It is not a coincidence that users never install NavigateNetwork on their systems intentionally – this is because of deceptive distribution methods used by its authors. It is true that malware doesn't get installed automatically but is rather implemented by misled users – plenty of phishing techniques are used to convince them.
One of the most common Adload delivery techniques (used in other versions such as MemoryFunction, WheelInstant, or IndexerSource) is fake Flash installers. Users are redirected to malicious pages accidentally and they are told they have to update or install the plugin to proceed. In reality, Flash has been long discontinued by its creator, hence all the requests to install it are fake and should be disregarded immediately.
NavigateNetwork spreads via fake Flash installers
Another common reason for the infection lies in pirated software. It goes without saying that downloading cracked apps is illegal and, while you are unlikely to go to jail because of it, you can face other consequences, such as malware infection, costing you money or privacy.
Removal of the NavigateNetwork virus
Thanks to rather simple yet effective methods, Adload variants might be much more difficult to delete in comparison to regular apps. For example, the browser extension might be simply grayed out and impossible to remove without trying other methods. The virus abuses the built-in AppleScript in order to prevent the removal by Gatekeeper – the native security system of Mac.
As a result, users may try to remove NavigateNetwork, but soon see it reappear again. To avoid this, a thorough removal should be performed – either with the help of security software or a comprehensive manual method explained below. We strongly recommend using SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes for the elimination instead of relying on a manual solution, as there could be files that would be missed during the removal process, which would result in malware return.
Nonetheless, we recommend you check the browser cleaning section regardless of which route you would want to take when dealing with this situation, as the residue of the infection may remain otherwise.
1. Start from the main app
If you want to uninstall an application on your Mac, you usually move it to Trash. Before you do this, you should make sure that malware processes running in the background are shut down:
- Open Applications folder
- Select Utilities
- Double-click Activity Monitor
- Here, look for suspicious processes related to adware and use the Force Quit command to shut them down
- Go back to the Applications folder
- Find ExtendedService in the list and move it to Trash.
2. Remove persistence mechanisms
Upon infiltration, the virus might establish new User profiles and Login items for persistence. This might be the reason why you can't get rid of the app or the extension.
- 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.
3. Remove leftover files
- Select Go > Go to Folder.
- Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
- In the Application Support folder, look for any suspicious entries and then delete them.
- Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and delete all the related .plist files.
Check your browsers
The NavigateNetwork virus consists of the main application and a browser extension. Both of these components are responsible for different system tasks, and none are beneficial for the affected users. In order to ensure that the system is secure and that malware won't return, the extension has to be eliminated as well.
Now that the persistence mechanisms of the infection are terminated, it should be easier to remove the extension from the browser. Follow these steps:
- Click Safari > Preferences…
- In the new window, pick Extensions.
- Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall.
Once done, you should clean cookies and other web data to prevent unwanted data tracking. For that, you can employ RestoroIntego maintenance utility or refer to the manual steps:
- Click Safari > Clear History…
- From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
- Confirm with Clear History.
In case you were unable to remove the malicious browser extension, you can opt for resetting the web browser instead. It would delete all the extensions installed, so remember to reinstall the ones you want to keep.
- Click Safari > Preferences…
- Go to the Advanced tab.
- Tick the Show Develop menu in the menu bar.
- From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches.
If you are using Google Chrom or Mozilla Firefox on your Mac, you will find the instructions on how to clean or reset them manually below.
Getting rid of NavigateNetwork 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
Access your website securely from any location
When you work on the domain, site, blog, or different project that requires constant management, content creation, or coding, you may need to connect to the server and content management service more often. The best solution for creating a tighter network could be a dedicated/fixed IP address.
If you make your IP address static and set to your device, you can connect to the CMS from any location and do not create any additional issues for the server or network manager that needs to monitor connections and activities. VPN software providers like Private Internet Access can help you with such settings and offer the option to control the online reputation and manage projects easily from any part of the world.
Recover files after data-affecting malware attacks
While much of the data can be accidentally deleted due to various reasons, malware is one of the main culprits that can cause loss of pictures, documents, videos, and other important files. More serious malware infections lead to significant data loss when your documents, system files, and images get encrypted. In particular, ransomware is is a type of malware that focuses on such functions, so your files become useless without an ability to access them.
Even though there is little to no possibility to recover after file-locking threats, some applications have features for data recovery in the system. In some cases, Data Recovery Pro can also help to recover at least some portion of your data after data-locking virus infection or general cyber infection.
- ^ Malwarebytes Finds Mac Threats Outpace Windows for the First Time in Latest State of Malware Report. Malwarebytes. Security research blog.
- ^ Ransomware. Imperva. Application and data protection.
- ^ Phishing. Wikipedia. The free encyclopedia.