If you currently have a program named macOS Security Center on your computer, then you have probably noticed various changes in your Safari, Chrome or Mozilla Firefox browser. For example, the default homepage of the browser might have been replaced with some new and unfamiliar website, or the main search engine may have been changed with a sponsored one that you have never heard of before. It is also possible that your browser might have started to experience frequent page redirects to random websites that you do not want to visit. If this is the situation you are in now, then you are probably looking for a solution that will allow you to bring things back to normal, and stop the unpleasant program from spamming you with different ads, banners, pop-ups and page-redirects. Fortunately, here, you can learn how to uninstall and fully remove macOS Security Center in a few easy steps. Before you scroll down to the instructions in the removal guide, however, we would like to give you some additional info regarding the nature of the Browser Hijackers.
How can you land your browser with macOS Security Center ?
Contamination with Browser Hijackers may generally occur after some new (mostly free) programs get installed on your computer. This is because the free program installers are the most common way this sort of potentially unwanted apps get distributed. In fact, there is a term known as software bundling – a technique which allows less desirable pieces of software to get distributed alongside legitimate programs by getting added to those other programs’ installers.
Typically, the unwanted ad-generating and page-redirecting application may be found under the “Advanced/Custom” settings of the setup pack. However, most of the web users don’t pay close attention to these settings and simply proceed to the automatic installation steps. This way they allow the Browser Hijacker to become part of the system by default. The problem is that, sometimes, a hijacker may not only be an annoyance but it may be a potential security hazard as well.
That’s why our recommendation is to carefully inspect every step of the setup process and all of the advanced settings to locate and uncheck any questionable applications and prevent them from becoming part of your system. Choosing “Custom/Advanced” configurations is the best option. Once you click there, the extra components will be revealed, and you will be able to easily remove them from the installation package.
It is also very important to avoid all kinds of sketchy download wizards and managers, as they are generally created solely for the purpose of distributing bundled programs and earning pay-per-install or pay-per-click income. Downloading programs from their official websites will significantly decrease the likelihood of installing potentially unwanted programs (or viruses and malware) and will save you from the discomfort created by their endless flow of pop-up banners and advertisements. Also, bear in mind that user reviews and comments can also provide helpful information for certain programs, so make sure you check those before installing any bundle of software on your machine.
How to effectively remove the macOS Security Center ads?
It is not hard to remove the macOS Security Center or Top Results ads and browser changes – you can do that either manually or automatically. The second method is much more convenient for less experienced users. The professional removal software can detect and fully uninstall all components of the potentially unwanted program in one full scan. If you are concerned about the possible existence of malicious components (such as Trojans or Ransomware) in the operating system, you can run a system check for that too.
|Name||macOS Security Center|
|Type||Browser Redirect or Adware for Mac|
|Danger Level||Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)|
|Symptoms||You may notice changes in your browser’s homepage or search engine and aggressive ad-generation all over your screen.|
|Distribution Method||Software bundling is a common method of distribution along with spam, torrents, ads and free downloads.|
macOS Security Center Virus Removal
Step 1: Closing Safari (or any other browser that you may be using at the moment)
First, you will need to close your browser if it is still open. If you can’t do that normally, you will need to Force Quit it:
Open the Apple Menu and select Force Quit to do that. You can also use the ⌘ key + Option Key combination to open the Force Quit Applications dialog box. In this box, select the Safari browser (or whatever browser you are using) and then click on the Quit button. Confirm the action by selecting Force Quit again.
Step 2: Killing suspicious processes
Open Finder and go to Applications > Utilities and then open Activity Monitor. Now take a careful look at the processes there – look for any that seem suspicious, unknown and questionable. If you think that a given process may be the culprit behind the issue or may at least be related to it, highlight it with the mouse and select the i option at its top.
In the box that opens, click on Sample.
Scan the sample files with the online scanner we have on this page and if any of them get flagged as malicious, delete them and then kill their processes.
Step 3: Safely launching the browser
Hold the Shift from your keyboard and then launch Safari – holding Shift will prevent any previously opened pages to load again, just in case any of them were related to the problem.
If any problematic pages still load after you safe-launch the browser, then do the following:
Force-Quit the browser (Safari) again and then turn off your Wi-Fi connection by clicking on the Wi-Fi off option from the Mac Menu. If you are using cable Internet, simply disconnect the cable from your Mac.
Step 4: Uninstalling suspicious extensions
After you safe-launch Safari and are sure none of the previously opened pages load now, go to Preferences > Extensions.
Select and uninstall (by clicking on the Uninstall button) all extensions there that are unfamiliar to you or that you think may be suspicious. If you are not sure about a certain extension, it’s better to uninstall it – no extension is required for the normal functioning of the browser.
Step 5: Cleaning Safari
If you have other browsers aside from Safari, do the following:
In Safari, open Preferences from the browser’s menu and go to Privacy.
Select Remove All Website Data and then Remove Now. Note that this will delete all stored site data including any saved passwords and usernames. In other words, you will have to manually log-in to every site where you have a registration so make sure you remember your usernames and passwords.
Back in Preferences, click on General and see what your Safari’s homepage is. If it has been changed without your permission, change it back to what it used to be or to whatever you like it to be now.
Now go to the History menu and select the Clear History option.
Do the same to all other browsers you may have in your computer – here are examples with Chrome and Firefox.
Next, from the main menu, go to Settings and type Manage Search Engines in the search bar. Open the result that shows up and then delete all search engines other than the one you normally use by clicking on the three-dot icon next to the other ones and selecting Remove from list.
Daniel Sadakov has a degree in Information Technology and specializes in web and mobile cyber security. He harbors a strong detestation for anything and everything malicious and has committed his resources and time to battling all manners of web and mobile threats. He has founded MobileSecurityZone.com, a website dedicated to covering the top tech stories and providing useful tips for the everyday user, in an effort to reach and help more people.