MacKeeper: A story of a genuine SCAM!
We will talk about Known Bad Software (KBS), or sometimes referred to as Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs).
Our “star” PUP for today is the well-known, persistent piece of garbage and a rip-off, MacKeeper.
Many users will see references to MacKeeper on various websites and via pop-ups on their browser.
MacKeeper has been classified by cybersecurity experts as highly invasive malware that can de-stabilize your operating system; besides this, it is unethically marketed, with a history of making false advertising claims, by a company called Kromtech.
Not only is it expensive for what it says it does, but sometimes it can also install itself without the user realizing it, being very tricky to get rid of after the install.
There are lots of other entities that are pushing unsuspecting users to download or buy software and services that have been reported to be of questionable value. These aggressive marketing techniques happen in many ways, including phone calls.
MacKeeper is one of these products, and because it seems so prevalent thanks to its extensive online advertising campaign, we’ll focus on it here. It is promoted as a suite of software programs that can securely erase files, perform backups, and other utilities. But some users claim that it slows down their Mac, and many people who accidentally downloaded and installed it now want to remove it.
MacKeeper trough time:
MacKeeper was started by ZeoBIT, LLC, out of Sunnyvale, California. MacKeeper, and like most programs, started out slow before gaining speed in the computer “cybersecurity” industry. The way it gained speed, however, is part of the reason that MacKeeper is so highly criticized. On December 6, 2016, ZeoBIT, LLC disappeared, but not before they sold MacKeeper to Kromtech Alliance Corp. Kromtech is known for its shady marketing techniques, which many users claim that are trying to scare them into buying the risky software. This is similar to how ZeoBIT, LLC operated the 1st MacKeeper campaign.
The main problems of MacKeeper:
MacKeeper is supremely one of the most aggressive advertisers across online. Their ads are predominantly on pages that are uncommon to the average user, but occasionally, you will see them on CNN.com or other popular sites. You will see their banner ads splattered across common pirating or torrenting pages, any page that speaks about computer speed, and even on the pages of other “cybersecurity” software like CleanMyMac. MacKeeper has been everywhere. Part, if not all of this, is made possible by CJ Affiliate, formerly Commission Junction, who is owned by Alliance Data. Because of this, MacKeeper is on many websites, because it is easy money, as they are getting a kickback off each click. The thing about MacKeeper that pushes this forward is that fact that MacKeeper sure does look legitimate.
Another MacKeeper problem is false advertising by people claiming to be Mac experts, that are in fact only scammers that are making the lobby for MacKeeper. For example, there are many websites that contain the word “mac,” which also makes Apple users more trustworthy of them. Macsumo is one of them, it has only four articles, but unfortunately, the website lands on one of the first pages of a “MacKeeper” web search.
If you make the mistake to install MacKeeper you will probably encounter this 3 main problems over time:
Many unexpected ads and pop-ups will be displayed
Your Mac will become slow for no reason
You will get false malware scanner confirms infection
In order to stay away from any threats related to MacKeeper, we recommend the install of an antivirus for Mac on every device that you own.