If you’re wondering how to enable or disable the pop-up blocker in the Apple Safari web browser for various macOS devices, you’ve come to the right place!
Web page pop-ups are handy elements for online advertisers to show ads. And, some hackers may use it to show deceptive information to extract personal information from you. However, such pop-ups are also necessary for certain reliable websites like internet banking portals, payment gateways, online shopping, etc. You could find yourself in a confusing situation about these web pop-ups like when or when not to allow these.
Thus, I explain how to enable pop-ups on safari and how to enable safari pop-up blocker in multiple macOS editions like Ventura, Monterey, Sierra, El Capitan, and Yosemite in step-by-step. As a bonus, you’ll also learn how to enable or disable the pop-up blocker on your iPhone and iPad if you read the article until the end.
What Is Safari Pop-Up Blocker?
The pop-up blocker in Safari is a tool to block annoying web page pop-ups that distract you from reading an article or focused online research. Pop-ups randomly show up and ask you to do things that you really don’t want to. For online safety and privacy reasons, you must always activate the Safari pop-up blocker.
Some websites may need you to enable Safari pop-up blocker so that it can collect information from you or deliver content in a separate web browser window. In such situations, you can selectively turn off pop-up blocker in Safari. You can access this useful web browsing tool in several ways as outlined below:
- From the Safari menu on the Mac toolbar
- On websites, while surfing by accessing website settings
- By clicking the Show button on the address bar of websites on Safari when it blocks pop-ups
Are Pop-Ups in Safari Dangerous for Your Mac?
Apple’s robust macOS security systems ensure that you don’t get any virus programs from websites via pop-ups. However, pop-ups are still not safe because hackers can use these to collect personal information from you. For example, scammers may show you phishing pop-ups that look exactly like your internet banking provider’s website. The pop-up page will ask you for sensitive personal information using which the hackers can steal your money from digital wallets, mobile apps, or internet banking portals.
Some pop-ups come with hidden secondary pop-ups. These elements install bloatware and malware on your MacBook or iMac. Such programs slow down the entire computer or just the Safari browser. Not to mention, unwanted and annoying online games can open out of the blue if you randomly allow pop-ups on Safari.
Thus, pop-ups may not be dangerous for you, it’s smart to by default block all pop-ups. You can enable pop-ups on Safari as specific reliable websites ask for them. I’ll show you in a bit how to enable pop-ups on safari in real-time for websites that just need you to allow pop-ups for essential functions.
Safari Pop-Up Blocker for Safari 16 for macOS
Safari 16 comes with macOS Ventura, Monterey, and Big Sur. If you’re on these systems, then find below various settings like blocking and unblocking pop-ups on Safari. The steps are also the same if you’re enabling or disabling the Safari pop-up blocker on Safari editions 15 to 12.
Block or Allow Pop-Ups for All Websites by Default
- Select Safari and go to Preferences from the Mac toolbar
- Then, select Websites at the top of the Safari Preferences window.
- Select Pop-up Windows on the left side navigation pane.
- Use the When visiting other websites drop down list and choose any of the following:
- Block and Notify (macOS Safari will block incoming pop-ups and inform you about the same)
- Block (Safari will simply block pop-ups without informing you. Suitable for focused work and reading)
- Allow (The Safari browser will allow all pop-ups from all websites)
Block or Allow Pop-Ups on Single Website
- Visit the website on which you’s like to block or allow pop-ups.
- Select Safari > Preferences.
- Choose Websites at the top of the window that pops up.
- Select Pop-up Windows on the left side.
- The website should be listed where you can select a setting in the drop-down menu from the following options:
- Block and Notify
When Safari is set to Block and Notify mode for pop-ups, you can allow pop-up windows right after they have been blocked by selecting the two boxes (Show button) in the address bar as shown in the below image:
How to Enable Pop-Ups on Safari in Real-Time
In the above section, you learned how to use the Show button to allow pop-ups. There’s another intuitive way to turn off the pop-up blocker on Safari for trusted websites. Follow these steps on your MacBook or iMac:
- Visit a website you regularly visit on Safari that shows you pop-ups.
- If you see the Show button on the website, it means Safari blocked a pop-up.
- Right-click on the website URL in the middle of the Safari address bar.
- You’ll see a context menu with three options and one of those is Settings for website name.
- Click Settings for website name, in this tutorial Settings for webroot.com…
- Another context menu will appear displaying several website settings for the page you’re visiting right now.
- If the pop-up blocker for Safari is in Block and Notify or Block mode, then you’ll see a checkmark for the Enable content blockers box.
- It means that all pop-up content are being actively blocked by the Mac browser.
- If you trust the site, you can uncheck the Enable content blockers box.
- Safari will reload the page so it can show pop-ups from the site.
- The web browser will also save this selection for future browsing purposes.
Safari Pop-Up Blocker for Safari 11 and 10 on macOS
In Safari 11 and 10, the pop-up blocker setting is a bit different than in the latest Safari versions like Safari 16, 15, etc. The Safari 11 comes with OS X El Capitan and the Safari 10 ships with OS X Yosemite. If you’re on these two Mac devices, find below various ways to enable or disable pop-up blocker in Safari:
Block or Allow Pop-Ups for All Websites on Safari 11 and 10
- Go to the Safari icon on the Mac toolbar and select Preferences.
- The Preferences window opens with General as the selected setting.
- Click on the Security tab at the top of the window.
- Check the box Block pop-up windows under the Web content section to enable the Safari pop-up blocker.
- To disable pop-up blocker on Safari, uncheck the Block pop-up windows checkbox.
Block or Allow Pop-Ups on Safari Using the Terminal
Do you love coding and doing things using command line interface tools on computers? Are you an expert on the macOS Terminal app? Then you’ll love this method on how to disable pop-up blocker on safari and how to enable the same. Find out the codes and the steps here:
- Go to the Utilities folder on macOS or OS X and launch the Terminal app.
- Copy and paste the following code into the Terminal to enable pop-ups on Safari:
- Press the Return key on the keyboard to execute the command.
- Restart the Safari web browser to enforce the above changes.
- To activate the Safari pop-up blocker again, use the following code:
- Press Return and the command and the Terminal app engages the pop-up blocker in Safari
The Apple Safari web browser doesn’t just protect you from unwanted pop-ups on MacBook or iMac devices. The Safari pop-up blocker tool is also available on iPhones and iPads. Find out more here:
How to Enable Pop-Ups on Safari on iOS
- Launch the iOS Settings app from the Dock of the iPad or the App Library of the iPhone.
- Scroll down the left-side navigation list to find Safari settings and tap on it.
- On the right-side menu of the Safari settings window, you’ll see the General section.
- Under General, you must find Block Pop-ups.
- Toggle the radio button or slider to On mode to activate the pop-up blocker on iPad or iPhone.
- Restart your Safari browser so that the changes become effective.
Also read: iPad Won’t Update to iPadOS 16: 9 Best Fixes in 2023
How to Disable Pop-Ups on Safari on iOS
- Follow the above steps until you get to the Safari settings screen.
- Now, toggle off the Block Pop-ups feature in Safari settings’ General section
- Close and launch the Safari app to start allowing the needed pop-ups.
Also read: Stage Manager on iPad
So these were some of the methods to disable or enable pop-ups on Safari. You now know how to do this on various Apple devices. If you see I missed any method, do leave a comment below. Also, don’t forget to share this elaborate article on Safari pop-up blockers with your friends and colleagues to help them defend against unwanted pop-ups and phishing attempts.
Next up, macOS: Enable Web Inspector In Safari.
Tom Doolittle says
I’m using Safari 16.1 on Ventura 13.0.1, and I’m not given helpful options like “allow” or “block.” Instead, there’s a very vague (at least to me) prompt that says, “Use content blockers with the website settings below:” and then gives an “On” or “Off” option for each website. I was attempting to download statements from a banking website, and regardless of whether I change the setting to on or off the downloads are still blocked. Can you interpret this? Thanks.
I did it
This program is impossible to use!
I checked on security for safari, but I couldn’t find the block pop-ups option.
Joseph Smith says
I did it
Trina Johnson says
I have Safari through my IPhone XR. I just downloaded the CDA Schools app. Now I disabled the pop up in the menu options and I still cannot login to Skyward
I enabled pop up for safari (MacBook Pro) but the sites are still not allowing the pop ups. What am I doing wrong? this is aggravating. LOL
I still need help. Safari version is 12.1.2 and I cannot seem to update it unless I update my Mac OS from Mojave 10.14.6, which I cannot do at this time.
In my Safari Preferences, there is no option for Pop Up Windows under Preferences>Websites. “Notifications’ is the last option before Plug-ins. In the Security Pane (Preferences>Security) there is no checkbox to block popup windows.
I copied and pasted the terminal script above but it made no change in my Preferences. The popup windows is highly annoying but I can find no way to block them!
What does one do when there is no setting/option at all in Preferences?
Patrick Vatel says
Yes it was really helpful
Thank you! I was searching everywhere as most notes said to go to the Security Window, not Websites. Thank you!!
Carrie King says
Boy do I need help. When I log on all I get are My Documents. When I click on my documents all the pages that are there I looked at. It all says completed and everything is done but there is nothing letting me go farther. I’ve had a lot of trouble with my password but I think I have taken care of that. Thank you
p. henderson says
Thank you so much for the help! I couldn’t figure it out.
Kelley Brumfield says
Under currently opened websites, SKYWARD-SCHOOLNAME will be listed there (IF OPEN IN BROWSER) Then you click on the ASK /\ \/ option to the right and go to allow on everything listed as skyward
Passa Caglia says
No explanation for what Block and Notify does for Pop-up Windows…Like what if you select “Allow”? Clicking on the question mark (more information) lower right corner doesn’t really give much information
very helpful sir! much appreciated.
This did not work on my phone. I turned off pop up blocker and closed out the app completely and re-opened it. It gave me the same error message that my pop up blocker is blocking the website. I double checked, it’s not on.
Mary Lou ELLARS says
i need help what if i don’t have the selection block pop-up showing ?
how come i don’t have those options?? All i have there is fraudulent accounts and web content
FARRELL THOMPSON says
YES IT HELPED VERY MUCH. THANK YOU
Yes its very helpful. So easily described step by step
Solved my problem thanks for the instructions for Safari 12 for MacOS
I find it very helpful.
Very helpful, up to date and direct to the point.
Thanks very much.
HI – this wasn’t helpful because I don’t have that pop-up block box under security in safari preferences?
Very helpful! After an update it disappeared and couldn’t locate. Thank you.
L Redmond says
Helped! Thanks. Several other web searches did not help. Bless you!
Mike Matthews says
Thank you very much, an FAA web site I use to qualify my students uses popups extensively and the freshness of this build made it difficult to locate a clue as to where it went. Kinda like moving into a new house with all the boxes unlabeled. Makes it really tuff to find things.