Want to Get Rid of Pop-up Ads on Your Mac?

Mac devices are thankfully  not as prone to pop-ups as their PC counterparts. But that doesn’t mean you’ll never see one! Here’s a quick, easy guide to getting rid of pop-ups on your Mac.

Stopping pop-up ads on your Mac

Macs are generally quite user-friendly. If you closely follow the steps below, it should take care of most (if not all) of your pop-up problems.

  1. Open Safari
  2. Choose “Preferences” from the Safari dropdown menu
  3. Then choose the “Security” icon
  4. This will give you the option to “Block Pop-up Windows

If you’re still having problems with pop-ups, there might be a security or virus issue. We’d recommend running a virus scan using Clario anti-malware software.

Blocking pop-ups/browser redirects in Safari

On a similar note, your Apple products are equipped with a blocker that should be effective in stopping pop-ups and/or redirects (a redirect moves you to a different website to the one you intended to visit).


Here’s how to do it on your Mac:

  1. Again, go to “Preferences” in the security dropdown window in Safari (see above)
  2. On the left side of the screen, there’ll be an option to “Select Pop-up Windows”. Click on it.
  3. You should see a “When visiting other websites” dropdown menu. Choose whether to “Block and notify”, “Block” or “Allow”. In this case, you’ll want to choose “Block

Blocking pop-ups on iPad or iPhone is even easier. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Choose “Safari
  3. There’ll be a “Block Pop-ups” option with a slider beside it. Slide it to “On” (green) if you want to block pop-ups, or “Off” (grey) if you’re okay with pop-ups

Allowing pop-ups in Safari

There are times when you’ll want to disable pop-up blockers. For instance, if you want to download an app or enable customer support chat on a specific site.


Thankfully, many of the same steps for enabling individual sites to show pop-ups are outlined above. In fact, follow the directions for “Blocking pop-ups and browser redirects” above, then  when you get to “Preferences”, take the following steps:

  1. Select the “Windows” tab from the selection across the top of the screen
  2. When you do this, a list of previously visited websites should appear and options on whether you want to allow pop-ups to the right of the website’ addresses
  3. Simply click “Allow” to let your website of choice use pop-ups

For your iPhone or iPad, there’s good news and bad news.


The bad news is that, when it comes to pop-ups, you can’t easily access this website list.


The good news is that toggling between allowing and disabling pop-ups is only three steps (outlined above, in the section about “Blocking pop-ups and browser redirects”). This means you can toggle “Block Pop-Ups” on or off depending on which site you visit.


Recommended reading: How to Set up a VPN on Mac to Increase Security and Privacy


If you’re visiting a site with pop-ups you want to see, then switch it on beforehand; and vice versa.

How to remove adware that’s been plaguing your Mac

Your Mac might be infected with adware if it shows any of the following symptoms:

  1. Your machine is slowing down or freezing
  2. Suspicious pop-ups - especially (ironically!) ones trying to sell security software. Also, we generally wouldn’t recommend clicking on any ads that claim someone makes $4,000 a month working from home. Legitimate, lucrative job opportunities tend not to appear on popup ads or in comments under web stories. 
  3. You’re seeing more ads than usual. If you’re noticing this, then it means the volume of ads has really ramped up

You can remove adware with the following steps:

  1. Open “Activity Monitor” located on the LaunchPad
  2. Click on “Force Quit”if you see any suspicious applications. You’ll find this on the top left corner of the window. The applications might be suspicious if they were added recently without your knowledge or if they’re unfamiliar to you
  3. Drag the app into Trash
  4. Restart your machine, then empty the Trash icon

The Clario difference

Clario is a world leader in developing antivirus and anti-malware specifically for Apple devices. Join our product preview for the next generation of cyber security.

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