AppleCare Protection Plan also known as “Your system is infected with 3 viruses!“, and AppleCare scam virus is a fake virus warning associated with a tech support scam. Usually, such fake warnings promote supposedly toll-free phone numbers that belong to tech support services.
In this case, the scammers behind AppleCare Protection Plan are promoting a tech support line that should belong to Apple. Of course, this pop-up warning has nothing to do with the actual Apple company, and is just another scareware scam that tries to trick users into calling a bogus tech support line.
Continue reading to learn what steps to take to rid your system of the AppleCare scam virus.
|Name||AppleCare Protection Plan|
|Type||Tech Support Scam|
|Short Description||A tech support scam targeted at macOS users that tries to trick you into thinking your system has been infected.|
|Symptoms||Pop-ups and redirects, fake virus warning, browser slow-downs are also possible. In some cases, the affected browser can be locked.|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installers, Suspicious Sites, Redirects|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware |
|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss AppleCare Protection Plan.|
“AppleCare Protection Plan” Scam Virus – Distribution
The “AppleCare Protection Plan” scam could have been triggered by visiting a suspicious website and clicking on an ad. This is the primary method scammers employ to spread their scareware messages across the Web.
Note that one of the domains spreading this tech support scam is apple.com-macbook-fixse.galscan2.php.
Another distribution method requires the download of a freeware program which may have been bundled with adware. Freeware applications are often regarded as PUPs (potentially unwanted programs) and could also be spreading this sort of scam. You should be aware that suspicious software could cause the scareware messages to pop up in your browsers. Websites for free downloads usually come with third-party installations and bundled software packages. That is why they are widely regarded as unsafe, and you should be extra careful before downloading anything from such pages.
“AppleCare Protection Plan” Scam Virus – Details
The “AppleCare Protection Plan” scam virus is one of a few messages stemming from a tech support scam. The various scam messages may be promoting different phone numbers but the priciples of the scam are the same everywhere. One of the domains associated with this scam is apple.com-macbook-fixse.galscan2.php?s=vai3aat9_52_2867229&clcsr=1&sid = 50-qch8nt&ch = 50&dev=desktop&domd=www.google.com&bw=cr65&os.
NOTE. The above-mentioned site and its message might be connected with the Microsoft Windows Scam “Your system is heavily damaged by (4) Four virus!”.
All of these technical support scams are simply trying to scare you into calling the phone number given on the page, and both Windows and Mac users are targeted. To make it sound more trustworthy, the scammers are using either Microsoft or Apple on the fake virus alerts.
Be aware that there are other phone numbers associated with this scam, depending on the URL addresses and landing pages involved. The scammers on the other end of the line will try to trick you into believing that they are part of some sort of an official tech support team of Apple, which of course is untrue. The most common pop-up related to sites with the “AppleCare Protection Plan” scam virus message is the following:
This is what the message reads:
Your system is infected with 3 viruses!
Your Mac is infected with 3 viruses. Our security check found traces of 2 malware and 1 phishing/spyware. System damage: 28.1% – Immediate removal required!
The immediate removal of the viruses is required to prevent further damage, loss of Apps, Photos or other files. Traces of 1 Phishing/spyware were found on your Mac with OSX.
Personal and banking information are at risk.
To avoid more damage click on ‘Scan Now’ immediately. Our deep scan will provide help immediately!
1 minute and 29 seconds remaining before damage is permanent.
( Scan Now )
If you click on the “Scan Now” button, a new window will appear with a fake scan in progress. The results will try to trick you that you have viruses. Then you will be prompted to download and install a tool to remove the supposed virus. That tool that the scam is promotig could be a potentially unwanted program which may affect the performance of your Mac is many ways.
In most cases, the program will claim that it cannot rid your system of the viruses and that you need to call a phone number to fix the issues for you. You should remember that it is all part of the scam and you shouldn’t follow any instructions provided by experienced tech support scammers.
Remove “AppleCare Protection Plan” Scam Virus
If you want to remove the cause of “AppleCare Protection Plan” scam virus, we recommend that you use a specific anti-malware program. The main goal of such a program is to scan your system and terminate the files showing malicious behavior and also clean up any malicious code in your repositories. In addition, with a specific anti-malware program, your Mac will have a better protection against scams and malware.
- Guide 1: Get rid of AppleCare Protection Plan from Mac OS X.
- Guide 2: Remove AppleCare Protection Plan from Google Chrome.
- Guide 3: Erase AppleCare Protection Plan from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 4: Uninstall AppleCare Protection Plan from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 5: Delete AppleCare Protection Plan from Safari.
- Guide 6: Eliminate AppleCare Protection Plan from Internet Explorer.
Get rid of AppleCare Protection Plan from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall AppleCare Protection Plan and remove related files and objects
1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:
- Go to Finder.
- In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
- Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
- If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.
In case you cannot remove AppleCare Protection Plan via Step 1 above:
In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:
You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove malware from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts, programs and malware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. Combo Cleaner offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Remove AppleCare Protection Plan from Google Chrome.
Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu
Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"
Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Erase AppleCare Protection Plan from Mozilla Firefox.
Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window
Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.
Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Uninstall AppleCare Protection Plan from Microsoft Edge.
Step 1: Start Edge browser.
Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.
Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".
Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.
Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.
Delete AppleCare Protection Plan from Safari.
Step 1: Start the Safari app.
Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.
Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the AppleCare Protection Plan will be removed.
Eliminate AppleCare Protection Plan from Internet Explorer.
Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.
Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'
Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.
Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.
Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.
AppleCare Protection Plan FAQ
What is AppleCare Protection Plan?
AppleCare Protection Plan is classified as a potentially unwanted app for Mac. It appears like a normal app, but it may cause unpleasant pop-ups and redirects on your Mac.
Be aware, that AppleCare Protection Plan may be able to affect the browsers Safari, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Edge and Opera. It may they perform unwanted activities on your Mac.
Such can turn out to be showing advertisements of all types, slowing down your Mac's performance and even infecting your Mac with other viruses by showing you dangerous ads.
Is AppleCare Protection Plan a Virus?
It may also cause dangers and may lead to risky websites, such as:
- Phishing sites.
- Web pages that are scam.
- Sites that may contain viruses.
These are the main reasons why threatening is considered by experts to be indirectly dangerous to your Mac.
Can my Mac get virus?
The answer to this question is "yes". Unfortunately it opened happens that Mac devices become infected with different types of malware, adware and other threats. This causes a lot of problems for both companies and users.
How did I get AppleCare Protection Plan?
AppleCare Protection Plan could be spread to Mac computers via several methods. One of those methods is via the installers of third party apps. This technique is called software bundling.
Also, AppleCare Protection Plan adware could be included in the installer steps of an app you may have downloaded for your Mac from a third party website. Search app could be a media player or some other free software you may have tried to recently install.
You may have missed AppleCare Protection Plan, because it could be hiding in one of the install steps or could be offered as a "free extra" or an "optional offer".
How to remove AppleCare Protection Plan from my Mac?
By removing its core files. To get rid of AppleCare Protection Plan from your Mac, security experts strongly advise to scan it with a professional anti-malware app for Mac.
An anti-malware security app has the capability of scanning all of the areas in your Mac were AppleCare Protection Plan could be residing.
It will also make sure that AppleCare Protection Plan is permanently gone from your Mac and that your Mac is safe in the future.
How to protect my Mac from viruses?
To protect your Mac from all sorts of virus threats, you can can minimize the risk of getting a virus in the first place. This is why we strongly recommend that you take the following steps for protection on your Mac below:
1. Register for a VPN service of your choice.
2. Clear the cookies that are on your web browsers and uninstall any browser extensions from them that you believe are suspicious.
3. Download and install reputable malware removal and protection software.
4. Always check if the website you're visiting has HTTPS instead of just HTTP in its address. This indicates that a site is secure.
5. Do not type any personal info on websites which are with low reputation or you can't trust.
6. Always check if the site you're visiting is the real web page at not a fake one by looking at the address bar. Many fishing websites that contain viruses change one or two letters in the main domain name of the site they're trying to mimic.
7. Always link your cell phone phone to your Bank Accounts, PayPal, Facebook, Gmail, Instagram and other accounts. This will allow you to see notification if somebody else logged in from your account and makes account hijacking nearly impossible.
8. Always find a way to backup all your important files regularly. You can save them on a USB stick or use Cloud backup services, like Google Drive. iDrive, Onedrive and others.