Wholesale blocking of browsing by F-Secure on Mac OS?

ericrericr Posts: 2 New Member

For the second time in a week after installing F-Secure SAFE, all browsing on my Mac was blocked. Chrome and Safari just get stuck early on in the load sequence, with no content coming in, Firefox freezes since I rarely use it and it apparently gets stuck on an update attempt immediately after starting. Restarting the apps does not make a difference. Had to restart the Mac to fix it.

Not a specific app problem because affects Safari, Chrome and Firefox. Network is fine, no proxies or anything, and apps like Teams have no problem synchronising. Also pinging websites works fine.

Could some issue with F-Secure SAFE be blocking browsing on kernel extension level?

Running F-Secure SAFE version 17.7 (31693) on an iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2017) with Mac OS X 10.15.7 (19H2). No other AV, firewalls, VPNs or related software loaded.


  • ArthurValArthurVal Posts: 98 F-Secure Employee

    Hello, @ericr!

    Thanks for your report. That's definitely not the intended behavior.

    However, I cannot figure out what could be causing the issue right away. We don't have kernel extensions which control network traffic in SAFE on macOS. The browsing protection feature only works when the browser extension is active. The primary use case for it is to show rating icons in search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.) results and block the website categories by the Parental Control functionality (it shows a block page with additional information).

    I saw you mentioned that you are using SAFE 17.7. We have recently released SAFE 17.9. So I would recommend double-checking if this issue is still occurring for you with our latest release. It's kind of weird why the client has not yet upgraded to the latest version as it was released on October 12 and the client has a capability of automatic upgrade. But this part could also be affected by the network issue you are referring to.

    We can try to check for updates manually. You can click on the SAFE icon in the menubar (top-right section of the screen) and click "Check for updates". After that, it may take a couple of minutes for it to download the update. As soon as the update starts, the SAFE icon should disappear temporarily while the installer is placing the new SAFE version to disk. It will reappear as soon as the installation finishes.

    Alternatively, you can also download the latest SAFE version at My F-Secure portal https://my.f-secure.com/login by logging in with your F-Secure account.

    Please let me know if some extra guidance is needed on the steps above and if you are still facing this issue after upgrading to the latest version of SAFE. I'll be happy to help out!

    Best regards, Arthur

    SAFE Mac R&D Team

  • ArthurValArthurVal Posts: 98 F-Secure Employee
    edited October 2020

    Hi again, @ericr!

    By the way, could you please share whether you've recently updated to macOS 10.15.7? Did it happen recently?

    I have found a thread on Apple forums where macOS users report issues similar to yours even without any anti-virus software installed (https://discussions.apple.com/thread/251854730).

    If the issue with unstable network connection started occurring after your Mac has upgraded to macOS 10.15.7, I would also recommend reporting the issue with unstable network connectivity directly to Apple.

    SAFE on macOS does not have functionality of controlling network traffic. But it's still a good idea to upgrade SAFE to the latest 17.9 version on your machine.

    Best regards, Arthur

This discussion has been closed.