How to Remove Pirrit Adware Virus from Mac

George Herman
George Herman
IT Security Expert

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Some infections like this Pirrit virus can regenerate themselves. There is no better way to detect, remediate and prevent malware infection, than to use a professional anti-malware software like SpyHunter. One Application that is capable of solving all MAC problems.


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What Is Pirrit Mac Virus?

Pirrit Mac Virus


In this article, you’ll learn all about Pirrit, a Mac adware program. Pirrit is a browser extension that works through the use of questionable ads, that can get your personal information stolen and send malware to your Mac. The dangers of Pirrit are often not realized until it has already infiltrated a system, resulting in many unnecessary financial consequences from wasted time on the computer to lost credit cards. Pirrit is a Mac adware that is designed to use advertisements for financial gain. Pirrit can be used to create revenue for the developer, by aggressively promoting affiliate websites and creating pop-up ads on websites of your choice. First detected in early 2018, Pirrit is still actively being distributed to the public, which is a bad sign. Pirrit was designed to work on the Mac platform, and has been known for a long time. Copyrighted code was found hidden within the adware program itself. How can this be allowed? This is another example of outdated and harmful software that should not be running on any device connected to the internet at any given time.

How Is Pirrit Mac Virus Distributed?

Pirrit Mac Virus is distributed through the use of “bundling”. Bundling is the act of adding additional software to your computer, when you install something else. While this practice was common in the early 2000s, it is now considered to be a harmful practice by many. Pirrit regularly uses bundling to infect Macs with spam bot programs and other malicious software, paid for by these pesky adware programs. The online advertisements and pop-up ads that appear on websites you are visiting, are designed to trick you into installing the Pirrit adware. This is done by showing a link that appears on a website, asking you to download an application to your Mac. When this happens, the software is usually bundled with another application that is downloaded onto your Mac. The bundle itself may call itself a browser optimization tool or something similar. Once installed, this bundle will install additional software and will start working in the background, which will then display unwanted ads.

How harmful is Pirrit Mac Virus? 

Pirrit is a Mac adware most commonly found on the internet with advertisements and pop-ups. Pirrit Mac adware is especially dangerous because it seeks to make significant money by promoting affiliate websites, advertised in popup ads across the web. You can end up paying for products you never even placed an order for. These affiliate sites are often advertising online pharmacy programs, which can contain potentially harmful infections or viruses. Pirrit also uses tracking cookies to monitor your physical location across the web, and to track your search history. Pirrit has been known to deliver pop-up ads, which can be very irritating. If you see a website with popup ads that are proving difficult to remove, then you could be hosting Pirrit software. Popup adverts often contain links that are disguised to look like legitimate updates that must be installed. These popup ads are malicious and will trick users into installing software onto their computers without their knowledge.

How did I get infected?

Pirrit Mac adware is most commonly associated with pop up ads. Ads that appear in a webpage that are difficult to remove, or ads that seem out of place on websites you visit. As Pirrit is placed directly onto these websites, however, it is likely that you have already been infected with Pirrit adware. There are many online locations where unwanted software can be downloaded and installed onto a Mac, for the purpose of earning money for the developer. If a website claims that it can help optimize your browser faster than ever before, or that a “free” browser extension is available, you might want to consider where the download is coming from. Pirrit has been known to bundle software and programs with other applications, which then automatically installs without the user’s knowledge. Pirrit adware also uses bundling for software downloads, so be sure to pay close attention to what you are downloading.

How can I remove Pirrit virus ?

Step 1: Uninstall Pirrit and remove related files and objects

  • Open your Finder –> Click on GO –>Click on Utilities

macos utilities

  • Find Activity Monitor and open it

activity monitor macos

  • Review all the processes in Activity Monitor and write down the ones related to Pirrit virus

Pirrit stop

  • Select Quit

Pirrit info

  • To kill the malicious process, choose the Force Quit option.

force quit Pirrit

Step 2: Remove Pirrit – related extensions from Safari / Chrome / Firefox

The first thing you need to do is to make sure Safari is not running. If you have troubles closing it, you may need to Force Quit Safari - (Start Activity Monitor by opening up Finder, then proceed to Application --> Utilities --> Activity monitor. Locate the Safari process and force quit it.

Safely launch Safari again by holding the Shift key and clicking on the Safari application icon - This will prevent Safari’s previously opened malicious web pages.

In case that you still are having trouble with scripts interrupting the closing of unwanted pages, please do the following:

  • Force Quit Safari again.
  • Disconnect form Internet and try again.

Then Re-Launch Safari but don’t forget to press and hold the Shift button to prevent pop-ups. Then, click on Preferences.

  • Carefully take a look at your default home page and change it if the hijacker altered it.

  • Then go to the Extensions tab and make sure there are no unknow extensions installed.

  • Next step is to click on Privacy tab

  • Manage website data

  • Here you can remove any unwanted website data or just remove them all. Please, keep in mind that after you do this all stored website data will be deleted. You will need to sign-in again for all websites that require any form of authentication.
  • The next step is to Clear History (if you want), select the tab.

  • Click the menu next to clear and choose a time period — if you want to completely reset Safari, choose all history.
  • Press Clear History
  • To remove from Chrome, open the browser and click the icon with the three dots located in the top-right.
  • Select to More Tools --> Extensions and review what Chrome Extensions are present in the browser
  • Remove the ones that you do not recognize.

bad toolbar

  • If the parasite continues to disrupt your browsing with Chrome, this is what else you can do:
    1. Click again the menu of Google Chrome, and open Settings.
    2. Select the Search Engine from the left panel, review the available search engines and change the default to your preference.default search engine
    3. Then, click on Manage Search Engines, review the list of search engine availabilities and if any of the listed items looks suspicious, click the three-dots next to them, and delete.suspicious search engine
    4. Click on Privacy and Security in the left panel, select the Clear browsing data option, check every box except the Passwords one, and click Clear Data.clear browsing data
    5. Next step is to clear Notifications, select the Site settings option in the Privacy and Security section, then locate Notifications.clear notifications
    6. Review the listed websites in the Allow to send notifications section and if any of the entries shown there seem dubious or related to the browser hijacker, select the three dots next to the object and click on Remove.
  • Start Mozilla Firefox
  • On the top right click the three dashes

  • go to add-ons and themes
  • The add-ons manager will open
  • Carefully review review four Firefox Extensions
  • If any unwanted extension is present, click on the three horizontal dots and then Remove

  • After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red dot in the top left and start it again.
To make sure Pirrit is removed from the browser  we recommend to scan with a reputable antimalware program like SpyHunter for Mac

Step 3: Scan for and remove Pirrit files from your Mac

Fix your browser settings with SpyHunter Anti-Malware

Once you download and install SpyHunter for Mac run a scan.

Once the scan is complete, your mac will be virus free.

Pirrit malware Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How do I get rid of Pirrit?

Pirrit is an Adware program – malicious software that can be installed by third-party applications or websites. They usually change the settings of web browsers and search engines to display certain ads, pop-ups, banners, etc.

  • What are the symptoms of Pirrit infection in your Mac?

Pirrit can alter your web browser’s built-in search engine.

Your browser’ s search queries are redirected through bogus search engine websites.

  • How do I remove Pirrit from my browser?

Use a reputable antimalware program to trach down all related files of the infection

  • How do I uninstall Pirrit?
If you made a mistake when installing an app on your mac, the easiest way to uninstall it is by right clicking on its icon in your dock, then going to ‘move to trash’. Once it’s gone, restart your mac. If that didn’t work for you, try rebooting and looking for an icon opening up. Once you’ve found that, go to utilities/get info, then go to the ‘Applications’ tab and look for the app. Right-click it and select ‘Get Info’ and then look for the option to ‘Uninstall this Version’. If that doesn’t work, restart your mac again. If you don’t have any luck you can always use the SpyHunter free uninstall.

How to Make Your Mac Run Faster?

You might be wondering how to make your Mac run faster? It is a common misconception that the more processing power you have, the faster your computer will run. In reality, it’s actually about what’s going on in your processor and memory. For the average person using a computer for just general applications like word processing and web browsing, you don’t need much in the way of computing power.

– Use an SSD drive instead of a hard disk drive.

– Double your RAM if possible.

– Disable System Integrity Protection (SIP). (Attention! – do this only if you know the consequences.)


  1. More about pop-up advertisements on Wikipedia.
  2. MacOS malware
  3. Information on Browser Hijackers
  4. SpyHunter Anti-Malware overview and also the reasons why we recommend it for malware elimination.

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