| By Ryan Russell |
The last several rounds of malware I’ve had to fight were all of a type — bogus security applications.
In this article, I’ll share my favorite techniques for removing those fake “You’re infected!” warnings that pop up on your PC.
Scareware installs fake antivirus tools
Some hackers’ current money-making strategy is installing pop-up applications claiming your PC is infected with all kinds of scary things. Then they try to con you into paying for a full version of their faux antivirus software, which will supposedly clean your PC.
At that point, giving the malware vendor money may only compound your troubles because your machine will still be infected, and the malware vendor will then have your money and your credit card information!
When scareware code is installed on your PC, it often uses difficult-to-remove rootkits to protect itself. (For details on identifying fake security apps, see today’s article by WS senior editor Woody Leonhard. Also see a Feb. 25 article on rootkits by contributing editor Susan Bradley.)
Current favorite scareware removal tools
I’ll start with my oft-repeated mantra — multiple tools and multiple scans. It’s been years since I could trust a single tool to get rid of everything.