If you are wondering how to remove PortalAgent app from Mac, then keep reading this guide.
PortalAgent Mac Adware
An adware program developed for macOS has been detected in the wild. It is called PortalAgent and its purpose is to adjust the settings of both your device and browsers installed on it. The program may appear in the Applications list without your knowledge.
Its installation might occur even without you noticing it. And this is one of the main reasons why PortalAgent is categorized as a potentially unwanted program (PUP). PUPs have the goal to adjust specific settings and hijack the browsers installed on the system. As a result, your online browsing is less secured than demanded.
You may also be forced to use a deceptive search engine. Beware that bogus search engines may sometimes trick you to visit dangerous or hacked websites instead of trustworthy sources of information. Apparently, PortalAgent adware poses a certain danger to online and Mac security, we recommend that you consider its immediate removal.
ProtocolPort Adware Summary
|Type||PUP, Adware, Hijacker|
|Short Description||A questionable application that hijacks Mac systems and popular browsers installed on them including Safari, Chrome and Firefox. The program performs browser modifications without your knowledge.|
|Symptoms||Browser slowdowns may occur due to increased number of online ads. The program may load every time you start the affected Mac.|
|Distribution Method||Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages, Corrupted Websites, Fake Software Updates|
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More Details About PortalAgent App on Mac
The program PortalAgent targets Mac operating systems. Installed web browsers, in particular, will be affected by the adware. This potentially unwanted program may obtain access to your Mac without you noticing it. The moment you notice PortalAgent may be after its successful installation.
This, in turn, means that the app has adjusted specific system settings as well as browser settings. The end goal of PortalAgent adware is to monetize its presence on Mac machines it affects. So the changes aim to enable the program to deliver intrusive advertisements during your online browsing. Strange ads like pop-ups and notifications may appear on the desktop as well.
One thing to consider is that ads generated by adware may open poorly secured sites that may endanger the overall system security. Another issue that may be caused by this potentially unwanted program is your default search engine replaced by a hoax one. Or constant redirects to legitimate-like search engines like Bing and Yahoo.
Note that those search engines are trustworthy but when bogus programs push them on browsers, they may not be the original versions. It is also possible that your browser will pass through a redirecting loop before it opens the search engine. Those loops may be misused for the unnoticed installation of potentially dangerous files. The process may happen in the background of your browser without you see any notifications.
We want to note that PortalAgent is a Mac virus without being malicious. It won’t cause permanent damage to the affected Mac or the personal files stored on it. However, it will make the system more vulnerable to malware attacks.
We recommend the immediate removal of PortalAgent PUP from the affected Mac and browser.
How to Remove PortalAgent from Mac
In order to remove PortalAgent along with all entries it creates on the system, you should complete several removal steps in a precise order. The guide below presents manual and automatic removal approaches. In order to fully get rid of files installed by undesired programs and strengthen macOS security, we recommend that you combine the steps. Some of the files associated with the adware cannot be removed manually except you are an experienced computer user. So the manual adware removal might be quite a complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. If you don’t feel comfortable with the manual steps, navigate to the automatic part of the guide.
In case you have further questions or need additional help with the removal process, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment.
About the ProtocolPort Adware Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this ProtocolPort Adware how-to removal guide included, is the outcome of extensive research, hard work and our team’s devotion to help you remove the specific macOS issue.
How did we conduct the research on ProtocolPort Adware?
Please note that our research is based on an independent investigation. We are in contact with independent security researchers, thanks to which we receive daily updates on the latest malware definitions, including the various types of Mac threats, especially adware and potentially unwanted apps (PUAs).
Furthermore, the research behind the ProtocolPort Adware threat is backed with VirusTotal.
To better understand the threat posed by Mac malware, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.
1. macOS More Susceptible to Adware and PUPs than Windows
2. XLoader Malware-as-a-Service Now Available for macOS for Only $49
3. XCSSET Mac Malware Targets Apple’s M1-Based Macs and macOS 11
4. macOS Backdoor Malware Linked to OceanLotus Hackers
5. The State of Apple’s Privacy So Far in 2021
Before starting to follow the steps below, be advised that you should first do the following preparations:
- Backup your files in case the worst happens.
- Make sure to have a device with these instructions on standy.
- Arm yourself with patience.
Step 1: Uninstall ProtocolPort Adware 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:
2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:
3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to ProtocolPort Adware:
4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.
5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to ProtocolPort Adware. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.
6. Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to ProtocolPort Adware. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.
7. Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:
- 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 ProtocolPort Adware 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:
1. Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:
2. Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:
3. Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as ProtocolPort Adware. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.
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: Remove ProtocolPort Adware – related extensions from Safari / Chrome / Firefox
Step 3: Scan for and remove ProtocolPort Adware files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as ProtocolPort Adware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. SpyHunter for Mac offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Quick and Easy Mac Malware Video Removal Guide
Step 4: How to Make Your Mac Run Faster?
Mac machines maintain probably the fastest operating system out there. Still, Macs do become slow and sluggish sometimes. The video guide below examines all of the possible problems that may lead to your Mac being slower than usual as well as all of the steps that can help you to speed up your Mac.
ProtocolPort Adware FAQ
What is ProtocolPort Adware on your Mac?
The creators of such unwanted apps work with pay-per-click schemes to get your Mac to visit risky or different types of websites that may generate them funds. This is why they do not even care what types of websites show up on the ads. This makes their unwanted software indirectly risky for your MacOS.
Can my Mac get a virus?
Yes. As much as any other device, Apple computers do get viruses. Apple devices may not be a frequent target by malware authors, but rest assured that the following Apple devices can become infected with a virus:
- Mac Mini
- Macbook Air
- Macbook Pro
What are the symptoms of ProtocolPort Adware on your Mac?
There are several symptoms to look for when this particular threat and also most Mac threats in general are active:
Symptom #1: Your Mac may become slow and has poor performance in general.
Symtpom #2: You have toolbars, add-ons or extensions on your web browsers that you don't remember adding.
Symptom #3: You see all types of ads, like ad-supported search results, pop-ups and redirects to randomly appear.
Symptom #4: You see installed apps on your Mac running automatically and you do not remember installing them.
Symptom #5: You see suspicious processes running in your Mac's Activity Monitor.
If you see one or more of those symptoms, then security experts reccomend that you check your Mac for viruses.
What types of Mac threats are there?
According to most malware researchers and cyber-security experts, the threats that can currently infect your Mac can be the following types:
- Rogue Antivirus programs.
- Adware and hijackers.
- Trojan horses and other spyware.
- Ransomware and screen-lockers.
- Cryptocurrency miner malware.
What to do if I have a Mac virus, like ProtocolPort Adware?
Do not panic! You can easily get rid of most Mac threats by firstly isolating them and then removing them. One reccomended way to do that is by using a reputable malware removal software that can take care of the removal automatically for you. There are many Mac anti-malware apps out there that you can choose from. SpyHunter for Mac is one of the reccomended Mac anti-malware apps, that can scan for free and detect any viruses, tracking cookies and unwanted adware apps plus take care of them quickly. This saves time for manual removal that you would otherwise have to do.
How to secure my passwords and other data from ProtocolPort Adware?
With few simple actions. First and foremost, it is imperative that you follow these steps:
Step 1: Find a safe computer and connect it to another network, not the one that your Mac was infected in.
Step 2: Change all of your passwords, starting from your e-mail passwords.
Step 3: Enable two-factor authentication for protection of your important accounts.
Step 4: Call your bank to change your credit card details (secret code, etc.) if you have saved your credit card for online shopping or have done online activiites with your card.
Step 5: Make sure to call your ISP (Internet provider or carrier) and ask them to change your IP address.
Step 6: Change your Wi-Fi password.
Step 7: (Optional): Make sure to scan all of the devices connected to your network for viruses and repeat these steps for them if they are affected.
Step 8: Install anti-malware software with real-time protection on every device you have.
Step 9: Try not to download software from sites you know nothing about and stay away from low-reputation websites in general.
If you follow these reccomendations, your network and Apple devices will become significantly more safe against any threats or information invasive software and be virus free and protected in the future too.
More tips you can find on our MacOS Virus section, where you can also ask any questions and comment about your Mac problems.