Monday, 20 February 2012

The Windows Security problem or ...

A few weeks ago, I got home, switched my desktop PC, which runs Windows 7 Ultimate, patched to gills, and I was greeted with bucket loads of errors.

It complained that I had some sort of issue writing to disk. One of my hard drives makes a really strange noise sometimes and I thought it had finally given up the ghost. 

A pop-up appeared suggesting that I could fix it now or later, when I clicked later it bounced my desktop. It started up again and the same malarky with the errors occurred, so I decided to fix it this time. This started a program that scanned my desktop and it announced that the c:\ drive was unreadable, which is when the alarm bells should have started ringing, because if it weren't readable then how did the system boot up? 

Anyway, I followed the charade a bit more to see how it develops, after all I wasn't sure what was going on and after a diagnosis telling me that my ram is running at 83 C, which to my eternal shame I believed, at least for a moment; I'm informed that most of my problems will not be fixed by free version, but if I buy the paid version, all will be well. So I follow the link, which launches I.E.

Except that it isn't I.E. but something that looks like I.E., I guess so that people are not freaked out, and this is when the penny finally dropped and I realized that this is one of them fake programs, welcome System Check Virus;a bit slow on the uptake, I know (hangs head in shame).

I have read about these virii before and I know my mother in law actually paid to get rid of it. She got rid of her computer shortly after, so I don't know whether the pop-ups would come back after a while. I suspect that not for a while, until the new super duper version was out and her credit card was not abuse, but I digress.

So I followed this guide to get rid of the little bugger, which can be done with Malwarebytes' Anti Malware. Ironically, I had installed it but because I barely use my desktop at home anymore, I never actually ran a scan with it.
Let that be a lesson for me in the future.

It's simply mind boggling, though, that this kind of virus can run in Microsoft's latest and greatest OS and yet UAC prompts you to approve even something as mundane as opening a management console.

One of these days I will bite the bullet and buy a Mac... well maybe.

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