What is “Deceptive Website Warning”

If you receive Deceptive Website Warning pop-up, that looks like on the first picture below, in Safari, when visiting well-known, reputable websites, searching in Google, Yahoo or Bing, it means your browser or computer is infected. On this page you will learn how to deal with this problem. There are several other cases when you can see “Deceptive Website Warning” message while browsing:

  1. You are really trying to visit dangerous, infected website and you receive native Safari warning. In this case, it should look differently (we describe this case further in the article).
  2. There is no malware on your Mac, however, when you try to visit certain page or website you get “Deceptive Website Warning” pop-up. Sometimes such consequences are caused by malicious JavaScripts installed by webmasters. Usually, this happens while visiting unknown websites and pages. Problem can be fixed by installing AdGuard for Mac, that will block deceptive warnings in Safari and other browsers.

If you are sure, that you were able to visit websites, where you now see “Deceptive Website Warning” pop-up, earlier, or you get it on websites like Google.com, Facebook.com, Amazon.com and others, go on reading this article. Here we give detailed tutorial to remove virus, that causes scam messages in Safari in Mac, including “Deceptive Website Warning”.

deceptive website warning in safari

How your Mac was infected

Adware and hijackers can be a reason of “Deceptive Website Warning” scam in browsers. As a rule, such malware uses several methods to infiltrate computers. Those are: “bundled installers” of freeware apps, drive-by downloads, malicious attachments of spam e-mails, fake “Adobe Flash Player” or “Java” updates in browsers. When users fall into one of this traps, malware installs unwanted extension in Safari or application in Mac OS. To prevent infection, we recommend using high-quality antivirus software for Mac, like BitDefender Antivirus.

Download Malware Removal Tool for Mac

Download Spyhunter for Mac

To remove virus, that causes “Deceptive Website Warning”, we recommend you to use CleanMyMac. It can help you remove malicious files, folders and registry keys and uninstall hijackers, toolbars and unwanted add-ons from Safari browser.

Remove virus, causing “Deceptive Website Warning” manually for free

Important note: Safari browser may show legal “Deceptive Website Warning” pop-up, but it looks differently (see the picture below) and should be shown only on really dangerous, infected websites.

legal deceptive website warning in safari

Here is the manual step-by-step malware removal guide for your Mac. This works 99% and was checked with the latest versions of malicious installers on operating system with latest updates and browser versions.

Important update: Malware, being a reason of “Deceptive Website Warning” may install unwanted Device Profile called AdminPrefs on MacOS, that won’t allow users to make changes to browser settings. Follow instructions below, to remove this profile.

Remove malicious profile

  1. Go to System Preferences and click on Profiles.
  2. In the list of profiles on the left side choose AdminPrefs and click on “-” button to remove it.
  3. In your case it can be named differently, in this case remove all visible profiles. Check the picture below to see how it looks like.
  4. remove unwanted profile from system preferences

Remove suspicious programs from Applications

Remove suspicious apps from Mac:

  1. In the Finder sidebar, click Applications.
  2. Examine list of applications installed on your Mac
  3. Drag unknown or suspicious app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located at the end of the Dock).
  4. Then choose Finder > Empty Trash.

Cannot uninstall unwanted app

If you can’t uninstall unwanted application using instructions above, or it keeps coming back, you can use free AppCleaner for Mac to remove all residual data and libraries of the program. Follow instructions below:

  1. Download free AppCleaner.
  2. Drag unknown or suspicious app from Applications folder to AppCleaner window.
  3. Choose files and folders you want to remove along with this stubborn app.
  4. Click Delete button.

Remove unknown or suspicious add-ons from Safari

Removal of unknown or suspicious apps from Applications often does not bring the desired effect. Malware may install browser extension and it may still be active in Safari. Here are instructions on how to remove unknown or suspicious extensions from your browser manually.


  1. Start Safari on your Mac, click Safari to open drop-down menu and choose Preferences
  2. Click Extensions tab.
  3. Find unknown or suspicious extensions.
  4. Click Uninstall button to remove them.

Reset browser settings

To finish virus removal, reset your browser settings to make sure, there are no leftover items in browser folders.

Reset Safari:

  1. Start Safari on your Mac, click Safari to open drop-down menu and choose Preferences
  2. Go to the Privacy section of Safari’s preferences.
  3. Click Remove All Website Data button.
  4. In opened window click Remove Now button to remove data stored by websites in Safari.
  5. Go to the Advanced section of Safari’s preferences.
  6. Click the Show Develop menu in menu bar option.
  7. In the menu click Develop and select Empty Caches from this menu.
  8. Again, go to Safari menu and choose Clear History….
  9. Choose to clear all history and click Clear History button.

How to block browser scam pop-ups like “Deceptive Website Warning”

“Deceptive Website Warning” pop-ups, in most cases, are caused by a program installed on your PC or add-on installed in browsers. However, sometimes it can appear on a clean computer when visiting a malicious website, using an advertising script. Also, apps that generate “Deceptive Website Warning” ads and banners are themselves installed from pop-ups. To protect your PC and browsers from phishing websites, pop-up ads, banners, malicious scripts it is recommended to use AdGuard. Download free trial here:

Download AdGuard for Mac

How to protect MacOS and Safari from apps, causing unwanted pop-ups like “Deceptive Website Warning”

bitdefender for mac Mac OSX is known to be one of the safest operating systems, and for a long time there was no need in antivirus products for Mac. But with growing popularity of Mac computers and notebooks and evolving technology, viruses, trojans, adware, toolbars, hijackers and other malware paved the way for Mac users. We recommend you to use most advanced antivirus for Mac available – BitDefender Antivirus.

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James Kramer
Hello, I'm James. My website Bugsfighter.com, a culmination of a decade's journey in the realms of computer troubleshooting, software testing, and development. My mission here is to offer you comprehensive, yet user-friendly guides across a spectrum of topics in this niche. Should you encounter any challenges with the software or the methodologies I endorse, please know that I am readily accessible for assistance. For any inquiries or further communication, feel free to reach out through the 'Contacts' page. Your journey towards seamless computing starts here


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