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Today, while testing new malware and fake antivirus samples, a great idea occurred to me. Remember that trick when you hit CTRL+A and ENTER on your friend's computer? All programs, files, shortcuts, and everything else on the desktop are executed simultaneously. When this occurs, the only way to return the system to normal is to restart the computer.
The Idea - What if we do the same with many fake antivirus programs?
This was blowing my mind all day, so I finally decided to take the challenge and do the test. I prepared my old Intel P4 computer with 512 MB of RAM, restored it with a fresh install, and checked if it was in perfect working order.
Meet the participants - Fake antivirus programs
After spending some time searching for various fake antivirus samples, I selected 14 participants. These were fake antivirus programs that scare users into buying full versions by displaying bogus warnings and errors. Some were old versions, some more recent.
Before starting the test, I scanned all samples with AVG Antivirus Free Edition. One fake antivirus was not detected by AVG, despite ensuring AVG was running with the latest updates.
How to create a System Repair Disc in Windows 7
System Repair Disc is a useful option found in Windows 7, and is valuable in many situations. I believe every PC user should have this disk, since you never know when you might need it. The disk provides several solutions if you are unable to boot your operating system. For example, if your computer is infected with malware, your operating system files could be damaged, and you will just see a black screen when you try to boot your computer. If your operating system does not boot to a state whereby you can see a log-in screen, then it is likely to be a difficult problem to fix. If you have a Repair Disk, however, you can perform a Start-up Repair, and this often fixes the operating system so that you can access your desktop. You could also try performing a System Restore to roll back the configuration of your operating system to a previous state (this option is useful if you have recently installed/updated your hardware drivers and you cannot boot your computer). With the above issues in mind, a System Repair Disk is a very useful asset to have.
How to use Windows 7 and Windows Vista System Restore?
During normal operation, the System Restore feature automatically makes copies of system files and registry entries, thus allowing you to restore your operating system to a previous state. This feature is useful in many situations. For example, Windows Restore is useful if you have installed a program that considerably reduces computer performance and you are unable to uninstall it. In another example, malware, that may perhaps have infected your computer, could damage system files, and in this situation Windows System restore might be invaluable. This feature may also be used if you update/install hardware drivers and your computer subsequently becomes unstable. In summary, Windows System Restore is a useful feature that enables you to roll back to a state prior to experiencing system problems.
Rogue programs, fake antiviruses, fake security scans, fake antispyware, etc., are some of the most prevalent infections today.
When encountering many of the above software packages, most users believe they are genuine security products that do a good job. And of course, most of those users go on to enter their credit card details to 'purchase' one of these antivirus programs. Unfortunately, there is a high probability that the user is then charged considerably more than the price declared in the shopping cart.
The "Wait a minute! This is important - we check your devices" Message Promotes a Fake Malware Scanner
When you surf the Internet, be very careful. Many fake online security 'scanners' claim to scan your computer for viruses and spyware. However, these scanners are fake and attempt to scare PC users for malicious purposes. Do not believe these online scans, especially if you have not specifically requested one.
Wait a minute! This is important - we check your devices - Recognise this message? This is one of the most popular fake online spyware and malware scanners.
When you press OK, the web page imitates the 'My Computer' folder by displaying local hard disks, documents, folders, etc. These hard drives and document folders appear the same to all website visitors and do not represent your actual computer configuration. However, to less-experienced users, this may seem threatening and scary.
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