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What’s causing these fake virus pop ups

APX7000

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Quick background.... this 7+ was my iPhone till I upgraded to the 8+ over Christmas 2018. I wiped the 7+ and upgraded it to the latest iOS 12 firmware and gave it to my mom. It’s was back to factory in all aspects. Power it on and it’s like a new iPhone out of the box. I backed up moms older 6+ using iTunes and restored the backup to moms 7+. All was working great till the other day when she got over 3 pop ups out of nowhere saying she has viruses and download some software as shown below in the pics. Her iPhone has NEVER been jailbroken or tampered with in any way.

Why is she getting these fake virus notifications out of no where? One pop up notification had an 800 number to call to “fix” the problem. So I called it and was asked if the iPhone in question was the one that got the pop up message. I lied and said yes. After talking to them, they wanted $200 to fix the “problem”. I told them they were scum bags and preying on the elderly. They hung up on me, so I kept calling them and they promptly hung up on me every time.

What is causing mom to get these fake scam pop ups? It never had happened to me, and she gets my old iPhones.

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JandN2639

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Many Websites have spam attached to them. So do many emails. You and she should add security to the phone, including Web protection.
 

scifan57

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These pop up virus alerts are written with the same code as regular pop up ads.
BTW, there’s no way that anybody could remotely scan your iPhone as iOS security wouldn’t allow it and besides the inherent security of iOS makes it impossible for such a thing as a system wide virus infection.
 

933

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I would also make sure that you babe your settings set up to block all pop ups and cookies from all websites. Best thing to do if you are getting these kinds of things.
 
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APX7000

APX7000

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Thanks for the advice. I’ll have the chance this coming week to go through all my moms iPhone settings and make sure they are correct. This has never happened to my iPhone, only moms, and she’s not going to any funky or flaky webpages.

I had her go to safari settings and clear all cookies and history etc, yet a few hours later another pop up.

Thanks again folks
 

JandN2639

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If you can't stop them yourself, contact Apple Support. There is an app now.
 

bear7962

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Thanks for the advice. I’ll have the chance this coming week to go through all my moms iPhone settings and make sure they are correct. This has never happened to my iPhone, only moms, and she’s not going to any funky or flaky webpages.

I had her go to safari settings and clear all cookies and history etc, yet a few hours later another pop up.

Thanks again folks
She may not visit what you call funky sites but there are lots of sites that know older people are susceptible to this stuff. Strangely enough, if I use my cable company’s web site for a search, I get notifications that I won something. I close the app completely, clear the cache and keep “Limit Ad Tracking” on and reset the Advertising Identifier (in Settings under Privacy). And make sure she knows, never click on anything, no matter how dire it sounds.
 
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APX7000

APX7000

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Wanted Mom to have the cleanest restore from her older iPhone before I restored her to the newer iPhone, we sat down for over an hour and went through each app, photos, settings on her older iPhone before I made an encrypted back up.

We cleaned up everything everyone suggested above and made the backup. Also made sure security settings in settings were proper, as you’ve suggested.

New (my used iPhone wipes and restored to latest F/W) and restored the newer iPhone and all was good for months, then the photos I posted in my OG post.

I never have gotten these pop-ups on my iPhone, which got me thinking..... If there was anyone that would visit dodgy webpages, it would be ME, not Mom.

After reading Apple News app, there are many articles saying what apps to never install (or delete them). A few were Facebook, Pinterest, google maps. I don’t do Facebook or Pinterest, nor have their apps installed on my iPhone 8+. The above apps listed never actually shut down, even when you actually close them down (double click the home button and swipe up to clear running apps).

Made sure Mom had her passwords for FB and Pinterest and used the web interface to access them. Deleted FB and Pinterest and made a shortcut to their webpages on her home screen. So far, no more pop-ups!

I’m no internet expert, but I assume these pop-ups are “3rd party pop ups”, and because I’m running a Raspberry Pi with “Pi-Hole” running which blocks almost all 3rd party ads and pop ups (130,000 and counting) and other spying IOT things, this is why I’m not getting pop-ups and annoying ads. My Pi-Hole blocks 95%+ of ads on webpages, I feel guilty for not supporting ads on webpages I visit and want to support. So for the webpages I want to support, I make an exception and allow ads on these webpages, so they can get paid when I visit them. Fair is fair, right?

Mom is getting a Raspberry Pi soon with Pi-Hole installed. This should end these shenanigans.

Thanks for all who have chimed in with help
 

bear7962

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Wanted Mom to have the cleanest restore from her older iPhone before I restored her to the newer iPhone, we sat down for over an hour and went through each app, photos, settings on her older iPhone before I made an encrypted back up.

We cleaned up everything everyone suggested above and made the backup. Also made sure security settings in settings were proper, as you’ve suggested.

New (my used iPhone wipes and restored to latest F/W) and restored the newer iPhone and all was good for months, then the photos I posted in my OG post.

I never have gotten these pop-ups on my iPhone, which got me thinking..... If there was anyone that would visit dodgy webpages, it would be ME, not Mom.

After reading Apple News app, there are many articles saying what apps to never install (or delete them). A few were Facebook, Pinterest, google maps. I don’t do Facebook or Pinterest, nor have their apps installed on my iPhone 8+. The above apps listed never actually shut down, even when you actually close them down (double click the home button and swipe up to clear running apps).

Made sure Mom had her passwords for FB and Pinterest and used the web interface to access them. Deleted FB and Pinterest and made a shortcut to their webpages on her home screen. So far, no more pop-ups!

I’m no internet expert, but I assume these pop-ups are “3rd party pop ups”, and because I’m running a Raspberry Pi with “Pi-Hole” running which blocks almost all 3rd party ads and pop ups (130,000 and counting) and other spying IOT things, this is why I’m not getting pop-ups and annoying ads. My Pi-Hole blocks 95%+ of ads on webpages, I feel guilty for not supporting ads on webpages I visit and want to support. So for the webpages I want to support, I make an exception and allow ads on these webpages, so they can get paid when I visit them. Fair is fair, right?

Mom is getting a Raspberry Pi soon with Pi-Hole installed. This should end these shenanigans.

Thanks for all who have chimed in with help
Read you response and hope it all works for your mom. It made me think of something obvious that I didn’t suggest. In Settings, under Safari, scroll down to where it says Blck Pop-ups. Turn that on. Below that setting it shows if you have any content blockers.i do have one I added years ago, maybe even on a previous iPhone.that wouldn’t hurt either. You can find them in the iTunes App Store.
 
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APX7000

APX7000

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Bear7962, that’s good info! Can’t say if Moms iPhone has that turned on. It enabled on my iPhone.

What’s cool about the iPhones iOS is I can make videos of my screen to show Mom how to do these things like you suggested.

Can’t tell everyone how screen video capture can save time when helping someone fix problems who are not close to help fix problems.

Thanks for taking the time to help out bear7962
 

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