ConnectSystem

ConnectSystem Description

ConnectSystem is yet another PUP (Potentially Unwanted Program) that is targeting Mac users predominantly. The dubious application is equipped with both adware and browser hijacker capabilities. Most users may not even realize that ConnectSystem has been installed on their computers due to the misleading distribution techniques employed by the application. PUPs are known to proliferate themselves through bundling - the application is packaged alongside a more popular software product or hides inside fake software installers/updaters.

However, once established on the system, ConnectSystem will quickly make itself known. The PUP will run an intrusive advertising campaign that will see numerous unwanted advertisements being delivered to the affected systems. The advertisements could take various forms and may impact the browsing experience on the device significantly. Furthermore, the advertisement should be approached with caution because they may lead to unsafe third-party pages. 

In addition, the browser hijacker side of ConnectSystem will modify certain settings of the user's Web browser. In most cases, the homepage, the new tab page, and the default search engine will be affected and forced to open a sponsored address, usually that of a fake search engine. While the PUP is present on the system, it could prevent the users from making any further changes to these specific settings. 

While the aforementioned activities could be described more as annoying and causing frustration than being a serious threat to the system, a far more serious red flag associated with PUPs is their ability to harvest user data. These dubious apps may access, package, and upload select data to a remote server under the control of their operators. The tracked information could be browsing-related such as visited websites, clicked URLs, or conducted searches or it may also include device details - IP address, geolocation, ISP. The most dangerous PUPs, however, may also try to obtain sensitive payment details or credit/debit card numbers from the autofill information of the affected browser.