Horizon Elite Mac

 

Horizon Elite

Horizon Elite belongs to the software category of browser hijackers. However, Horizon Elite is specifically targeted at macOS computers and their respective browsing programs. 

Horizon Elite 1024x614

When first facing browser hijackers such as Horizon Elite, many web users often panic and do not know what kind of application that is and where it may have come from. If you have also been getting bombarded with hundreds of aggressive ads, pop-ups, redirect links and banners on your screen and Horizon Elite is their source, you are probably wondering what this app is and how to make it go away. By definition, browser hijacker applications are not a serious threat to the computer because they do not contain malicious code like typical pieces of malware such as ransomware, Trojans and other viruses.

Horizon Elite for Mac

programs like Horizon Elite for Mac are generally not harmful, but their behavior can be startling to users. Horizon Elite for Mac tends to operate in a rather aggressive way by integrating with your Safari, Chrome, Firefox or any other browser and by starting to use it to display different sponsored advertisements during your regular browsing sessions.

For example, Horizon Elite may start to spam the screen with pop-ups or redirect links which lead the users to all sorts of advertising pages, which don’t have much to do with what the users are actually looking for. In addition, it may introduce a new default search engine and replace your browser homepage. This is something very normal for most browser hijacker applications because they exist for the sole purpose of advertising and promoting certain products, services, and pages.

They provide more publicity and increase sales chances for the distributors and the manufacturers, whose items have been displayed. The developers of such pieces of software typically earn income from all those banners, pop-up windows and sponsored links that get displayed on your screen with the help of reward systems such as Pay Per Click or Pay Per View.

What is Horizon Elite?

The PPC and PPV systems provide a small fee for each individual user click on a particular online advertisement that Horizon Elite displays. This is why Horizon Elite will typically place its ads in such places that will inevitably make you click on them.

At the same time, while being completely legitimate, such methods of advertising and revenue-generating result in some quite unpleasant promotional practices such as automatic page redirects and excessive exposure to pay-per-click ads, which, in turn, have gained browser hijacker the status of potentially unwanted software. That’s why many users prefer to uninstall applications like Horizon Elite and Vibe Profile and in this way save themselves from the ads invasion.

The HorizonElite app

If not uninstalled on time, the HorizonElite app can become very annoying. But even though its rather aggressive advertising practices tend to pose a browsing disturbance for many users, there are worse consequences you can expect from the HorizonElite app.

In case you let a browser hijacker like this one operate in your system for long, it is likely that, at some point, the machine’s performance may start to suffer. Sudden crashes in the system may begin to appear, the affected browser, as well as some other applications, may start to stop systematically, which is not only unpleasant but may be extremely bad for the important data that you did not have time to save. In addition, the changes that applications of this kind may often make to the system’s registry may significantly worsen the security mechanisms of your OS.

As a result, you may be at risk of infection with a variety of viruses, ransomware, Trojans, spyware, etc. Not only that, but infection with such threats can also occur as a consequence of the constant redirects that Horizon Elite initiates in your browser.

SUMMARY:

NameHorizon Elite
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger LevelMedium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms This program typically displays sponsored ads all over the screen of the main browser.
Distribution MethodSoftware bundling, free download sources, ads, spam, email attachments, shareware platforms.
Detection Tool

Remove Horizon Elite Virus from Mac

Step1

The first thing you need to do is to Quit Safari (if it is opened). If you have trouble closing it normally, you may need to Force Quit Safari:

You can choose the Apple menu and click on Force Quit.

Alternatively you can simultaneously press (the Command key situated next to the space bar), Option (the key right next to it) and Escape (the key located at the upper left corner of your keyboard).

If you have done it right a dialog box titled Force Quit Applications will open up.

In this new dialog window select Safari, then press the Force Quit button, then confirm with Force Quit again.

Close the dialog box/window.

Step2

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

Start Activity Monitor by opening up Finder, then proceed to activity-monitor

Once there, look at all the processes: if you believe any of them are hijacking your results, or are part of the problem, highlight the process with your mouse, then click the “i” button at the top. This will open up the following box:

chromeinfo

Now click on Sample at the bottom:

chromesample

Do this for all processes you believe are part of the threat, and run any suspicious files in our online virus scanner, then delete the malicious files:

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    Step3

    The next step is to safely launch Safari again. Press and hold the Shift key while relaunching Safari. This will prevent Safari’s previously opened pages from loading again. Once Safari is opened up, you can release the Shift key.

    On the off chance that you are still having trouble with scripts interrupting the closing of unwanted pages in Safari, you may need to take some additional measures.

    First, Force Quit Safari again.

    Now if you are using a Wi-Fi connection turn it off by selecting Wi-Fi off in you Mac’s Menu. If you are using a cable internet (Ethernet connection), disconnect the Ethernet cable.

    Step4

    Re-Launch Safari but don’t forget to press and hold the Shift button while doing it, so no previous pages can be opened up. Now, Click on Preferences in the Safari menu,

    Preferences in Safari

    and then again on the Extensions tab,

    extensions in safari

    Select and Uninstall any extensions that you don’t recognize by clicking on the Uninstall button. If you are not sure and don’t want to take any risks you can safely uninstall all extensions, none are required for normal system operation.
    Step5

    The threat has likely infected all of your browsers. The instructions below need to be applied for all browsers you are using.

    Again select Preferences in the Safari Menu, but this time click on the Privacy tab,
    Privacy in Safari

    Now click on Remove All Website Data, confirm with Remove Now. 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.

    Still in the Preferences menu, hit the General tab

    General Tab in Safari

    Check if your Homepage is the one you have selected, if not change it to whatever you prefer.
    Default Home Page

    Select the History menu this time, and click on Clear History. This way you will prevent accidentally opening a problematic web page again.

    firefox-512 How to Remove Horizon Elite From Firefox in OSX:

    Open Firefoxclick on mozilla menu (top right) ——-> Add-onsHit Extensions next.

    pic 6

    The problem should be lurking somewhere around here –  Remove it. Then Refresh Your Firefox Settings.


    chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundHow to Remove Horizon Elite From Chrome in OSX:

     Start Chrome, click chrome menu icon —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There,  find the malware and  select  chrome-trash-icon.

    pic 8

     Click chrome menu icon again, and proceed to Settings —> Search, the fourth tab, select Manage Search Engines.  Delete everything but the search engines you normally use. After that Reset Your Chrome Settings.

    If the guide doesn’t help, download the anti-virus program we recommended or try our free online virus scanner. Also, you can always ask us in the comments for help!

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    About the author

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    Violet George

    Violet is an active writer with a passion for all things cyber security. She enjoys helping victims of computer virus infections remove them and successfully deal with the aftermath of the attacks. But most importantly, Violet makes it her priority to spend time educating people on privacy issues and maintaining the safety of their computers. It is her firm belief that by spreading this information, she can empower web users to effectively protect their personal data and their devices from hackers and cybercriminals.

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