Update: Since I first published this article, a new software package called Malwarebytes Anti-Malware for Mac has arrived on the scene to make removing Trovi and other Malware and Adware from the Mac a whole lot easier. I gave it a whirl recently and was thrilled with the results. The free version is for home use, but you can also purchase a business edition for a nominal fee. Read on for tips on avoiding Trovi and other Malware or Adware as well as how to manually uninstall them from your Mac.
Last week, my mac caught its second ever virus. Trovi is an insidious little hijacking software that’s often bundled with free software installs. I’ve extricated it from my computers twice now. Both times it found its way onto one of my systems, it’d slipped in with a bundled download my boy had found and unwittingly installed. Truly, I couldn’t even yell at him for it; the company that makes Trovi has managed to hitch its work to quite a few downloadable software installs that are perfectly legitimate. The one my son installed sure was. He just didn’t know it was there and hadn’t yet learned how to avoid installing the virus along with the software he wanted.
Trovi hijacks data through your browser. It changes settings across platforms, so no matter which browser you launch to surf the net, Trovi will take over. It sends information, including your keyword searches, the links you click on, and other keystroke combinations you’ve used to the data collectors at Tovi’s homebase, the company who created it.
Beyond resetting your browser’s preferences and stealing information from your computer, which is bad enough, Trovi imports ads onto your browser that bog your system down. It also alters the results of your internet searches, ensuring the sites that make money for Trovi’s parent company come up at the top of your browser regardless of how relevant or reputable they are. It’s like something out of a bad science fiction film.
The good news is, avoiding Trovi is all about building two simple habits. If you’ve accidentally installed it already, you can get rid of it on your own, too. Be aware that all platforms are vulnerable to Trovi, so educating your whole family on how to avoid it is as common sense as teaching them to lock the front door before going to bed or to not take candy from strangers.
To avoid accidentally installing Trovi, avoid bundled software. If you run a Mac, you can instruct your kids to only download software from the Apple App Store. If you’re not on a Mac, avoid downloading and installing any software bundles from sites or companies you don’t trust completely. Aim to only install individual software programs at a time rather than bundles when you can, too.
Trovi cannot install itself, so if you’re installing software that’s bundled, choose the custom install option. Choose only the software install pieces you know are definitely related to the software you want to install. If you see an item that will alter any of your browsers, do not install it. Avoid any other pieces or add-ons that look suspicious. If the software is legitimate, you should be able to get information on what each of the pieces are, how they’ll affect your system and whether or not they’re a part of the software install from the software manufacturer. Often that information is included in the Readme file or Release notes for the software you’re installing. Sometimes you need to go to the software manufacturer’s website to get it.
If Trovi has managed to sneak onto your system, you may notice your browser has started to do strange things, like hesitate when you send a search request to Google or your favorite search engine. It almost feels like in the old movies when the bad guys pick up the phone and hear that little hesitation that tells you the good guys are listening and the wire’s been tapped. You may also notice odd ads or more ads than usual loading on your browser, extra browser windows, or the name “Trovi” where Google or Yahoo or Bing used to be.
If you suspect Trovi may be on your system, or just want to be sure it’s not, there is hope. For folks who run Windows or another non-Mac operating system, you can follow the steps in this video. If you’re on a Mac like me, you can follow vfrawley’s steps from the Apple Support Forums I’ve included right here:[note align=”left”]You need to throw Trovi away. But there’s sort of a process to it if you want to completely get rid of it, which you do.
- Go to your trash.
- Search for “Trovi.”
- Make sure the “This Mac” search option is chosen, instead of “Trash.”
- Click on the “+” by the save button.
- Click on the first option box that shows up. I’m assuming the current option will be “Kind.” Choose “Other.”
- A new box should appear. Search and select “System files.”
- You should now be back in the “Trash” box. Where “Kind” was once, the option should now read “System files.” The option box directly to the right may read “aren’t included.” Select the option “are included.”
- You may now throw all that shows up in the trash. It will delete everything related to Trovi.
- Once this is done you may close your trash bin and Trovi should be completely gone from your Mac!
After you’ve cleaned your system of Trovi, I recommend you take the time to change your passwords or at least those you may have entered through your browser while Trovi was active. While there are no definitive reports showing Trovi has collected personal and sensitive information, such as passwords and banking data, it’s wise to take appropriate precautions against the potential identity theft Trovi and hijacking virus software like it represents.
For PC Users:[tvideo type=”youtube” clip_id=”spx-t81HaSg” autoplay=”false” rel=”false” theme=”light”]