Threat Database Adware OperationBeta


Threat Scorecard

Threat Level: 20 % (Normal)
Infected Computers: 16
First Seen: November 15, 2021
Last Seen: July 10, 2022

OperationBeta is an intrusive application equipped with both adware and browser hijacker functionality. It appears that the main targets of the application are Mac users. OperationBeta will try to install itself unnoticed on the user's computers and then monetize its presence there. To avoid getting noticed, the application is most likely being spread via questionable distribution techniques, such as bundling or fake installers pretending to be for legitimate software products.

The adware part of OperationBeta is responsible for delivering numerous annoying and unwanted advertisements to the system. The advertising materials could be injected into unrelated websites, in an attempt to appear more legitimate. Users who engage with the advertisements risk being taken to shady or outright unsafe websites. The destination may include pages spreading additional PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs), attempting to obtain private information from their visitors in a phishing scheme, running fake giveaways, etc.

OperationBeta also is tasked with generating artificial traffic towards a sponsored Web address. Applications possessing such functionality are classified as browser hijackers. They assume control over the user's browser and change its homepage, new tab page and the default search engine. Usually, the intrusive application also will establish several persistence mechanisms ensuring that its changes will not be reverted by the affected users easily.

In the vast majority of cases where browser hijackers are involved, the promoted page will belong to a fake search engine. Users should be aware that such fake engines are incapable of producing results on their own. What they do instead is take the initiated search and redirect it to another engine. This may be a legitimate one (Yahoo, Bing, Google) or a dubious engine generating inaccurate results filled with ad links.

It is strongly recommended never to keep PUPs such as OperationBeta on your computers or devices. These intrusive applications are notorious for possessing data-collection capabilities. They may be spying on your browsing activities, while also harvesting numerous device details. All gathered data will be packaged and uploaded to a remote server. The operators of the PUP can then exploit the acquired information in a variety of different ways, including selling it to third parties.


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