“Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” is yet another example of a browser-based scam that is currently targeting Mac users. Such pop-ups claiming that a specific action needs to be performed could cause various issues for the user.
For instance, if you agree “update” your machine and click on the provided button, you can end up downloading a PUA (potentially unwanted application) or an adware/browser hijacker. These are the types of bad software that mostly target Mac users.
Another example of a similar scam is the Congratulations! Your Safari is up to date! scam, which has compromised a large number of Mac users.
As already mentioned, there is a surge in unwanted applications and scams targeting macOS, and you should be aware of the risks lurking online. After all, no computer system is safe against “viruses”, macOS included.
This article presents information on the “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” scam, and provides instructions on how to remove the scam.
|Name||Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility|
|Type||Technical Support Scam, Rogue Program|
|Short Description||A message that suddenly interrupts your browsing to alert you about a security breach.|
|Symptoms||A dialog box may appear in the browser. It may restrict your access to other web pages, also claiming that you need to remove supposed issues detected on your system.|
|Distribution Method||Software bundles, Infected web pages|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility.|
“Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” Pop-Up Scam – Details
Scam messages such as “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” can be spread by suspicious domains. If you have visited a suspicious website and interacted with an ad on it, you could have triggered the pop-up scam message. The message itself may claim something like:
Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility
Enter you password to allow this.
Cancel / OK
It is also possible that the pop-up message is triggered by a potentially unwanted program (PUA) or a suspicious browser extension that sneaked into your browser without your knowledge.
Keep in mind that even legitimate websites can be compromised to contain malicious code that causes redirects and triggers scam messages such as this one.
Mac Scams and Rogue Programs
It is highly possible for scams such as “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” to be promoting rogue programs. To make things more complicated, rogue programs may be triggering the pop-ups as well. To put things in other words, another distribution channel that may be spreading the “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” message is through a rogue program. This could be an example of the so-called bundling method, in which legitimate software is installed together with third-party utilities, usually classified as PUAs. The bundling of software is done for monetization purposes, and is mostly popular among adware and PUA developers. There are many companies that specialize in the development of such software, for example PcVark.
In that relation, the PUA that may be causing “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” is most likely ad-supported as well. Adware, which can be anything from a browser add-on or extension to a PUP, compromises commonly used web browsers by tweaking their settings and displaying plenty of advertisements, redirects and push notifications.
There are several specific programs that are often promoted with the help of pop-up scams like this one, such as MacKeeper, Cleanup My Mac, and Qbit Mac Optimizer. Of course, the list is longer and you may have a totally different PUA installed on your Mac. There are several ways to learn what type of bad software has affected your machine, and we have provided them in the removal guide at the end of the article.
To sum it up, “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” is a suspicious message that should not be trusted or interacted with. The pop-up may appear during browsing sessions in the form of a dialog box. Once on the screen, the message could prevent you from accessing opened web pages and loading new ones. Thus, it should be removed along with what is causing it, be it a PUA or an intrusive browser extension.
Remove “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” Scam
In order to remove “Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility” scam message and all files that are causing it to appear in your browser, you should complete the steps described in the guide below the article. These steps provide both manual and automatic removal instructions that should be able to fix the issue for you.
About the Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility?
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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility:
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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility. 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility. 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility. 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility – related extensions from Safari / Chrome / Firefox
Step 3: Scan for and remove Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility, 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.
Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility FAQ
What is Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility 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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility?
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 Your Mac needs to be updated to improve compatibility?
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.