McAfee notifications

A friend of mine has a new iMac (bought about 6 months back).
I assume it’s up-to-date OS wise, but I’m not sure.
He tells me he keeps getting notifications (top right corner) when he is searching Wikipedia, apparently telling him that McaFee has found 2, 4, 6 or more viruses on his Mac. It may happen on other sites too but he noticed it more on the wiki site.
He tells me that as far as he’s aware he doesn’t have McAFee on the Mac.
I do know that he uses an AOL email address and he logs in via a Yahoo home page with Safari.

I’m going to see him tomorrow and I’ll check for Mcafee and install Malwarebites for him.

My thoughts are that the notifications are fishing attemps but I’m not sure where to look to stop them appearing.
Any tips would be greatly appreciated,

This is a common scam. Going into Settings > Notifications, and look for something like MCafee (really anything ouy of the ordinary), then disable it. Running Malwarebytes may or may not show you the underlying software causing this.

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It’s a web site generating notifications that impersonate McAfee. Probably via code injected by some ad-serving network.

If you’re seeing them when you’re not browsing web sites, it means your friend was asked to enable notifications from the site and he said yes.

As @TonyTownsend wrote, look through your various system and browser settings and disable notifications from anything he doesn’t recognize. Or disable all notifications from all sites, if he doesn’t find them useful.

I’d also install an ad blocker. Most malware these days seems to be distributed via advertising networks, so a good ad blocker will keep a lot of it from even trying to install. Yes, many web sites will complain and some will demand that you disable it, but you can do that for specific sites (e.g. those you want to support or those you feel you must access) and leave it on everywhere else.


I install Privacy Badger (I use Firefpx). Takes care of a lot of crud.

I got one of these a few days ago. I was filling out a required Bureau of Labor Statistics survey and I must have mistyped the url and clicked on “You are not a robot” which authorized the web page to send me notifications. After finishing the survey, I was getting a 100 notifications with a Systems Icon:

The solution that I found via Google was to go to Safari Settings>Websites and Notifications and there I found the sneaky website using a fake Mac system icon.

Changing “Allow” website notifications to “Deny” got rid of it. :slight_smile:


See this thread for a similar discussion…

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Thanks everyone.
Turned out to be a couple of naughty sites had installed push notifications.

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