Threat Database Adware DivisionInitiator


Another dubious application is trying to sneak its way inside users' Mac devices. This PUP (Potentially Unwanted Program) is named DivisionInitiator, and it possesses the capabilities of both adware and a browser hijacker. Due to the underhanded tactics employed in its distribution, Mac users must be on the lookout when downloading programs from unproven sources as DivisionInitiator could be hiding inside as well.

Applications such as DivisionInitiator are designed to generate monetary gains for their operators by performing dubious activities. First, users will notice a significant increase in the advertisements they encounter. The advertising materials generated by the PUP could take various forms - pop-ups, banners, surveys, in-text links and more. Furthermore, engaging with the presented advertisements could take users to suspicious places such as phishing pages or hoax websites.

While users are trying to figure out how to stop the influx of intrusive advertisements, DivisionInitiator will take over their Web browsers. The goal is to change the homepage, new tab page, and the default search engine settings to now open a promoted address, usually one that belongs to a fake search engine. Fake engines do not bring any benefits to the users, as they simply cannot produce any results on their own. Any search query initiated through a fake engine will be redirected to a legitimate one, such as Yahoo, Bing or Google. Alternatively, the fake engine could start a redirect chain that goes through several dubious engines that show low-quality results filled with sponsored ad links.

PUPs also can be programmed to collect data from the device. Users risk having their browsing history, search history, IP address, geolocation, etc., tracked and then uploaded to a remote server.


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