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Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

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Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Fri Jan 22, 2010 7:37 pm

The following has happened to me three or four times over the past month:
I'm browsing the internet in my wholesome, innocent, childlike way when unexpectedly my IE8 browser goes to a website that looks convincingly like a virus scanner, which claims that my PC is infected with all sorts of offensive creepy-crawlies and what I aught to do is download their AV software right away.

It's all shite, of course. The only AV software I have is McAfee that I have an up-to-date subscription for. It can't find anything wrong with my PC. I've been doing full scans that turn up 0 threats.

If a virus hasn't gotten in, how is my browser getting re-directed to the malicious website?

If a virus has gotten in, why can't McAfee find it? Is he spending all his time down at the pub lately?

Another thing is that I run Vista which has its famously annoying pop-ups whenever anything wants to install, and I didn't agree to install anything lately.

WTF?
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jan 22, 2010 7:47 pm

Dust Mite Rodeo wrote: I'm browsing the internet in my wholesome, innocent, childlike way when unexpectedly my IE8 browser

These "trojan horses" come up all the time at youporn.com. Or so I'm told.

The good news is that they don't seem to do permanent damage, they just do a good job of scaring people, and they leave a mess.

The first step to dealing with the problem is you have to reboot your machine into "safe mode" ( I know the F8 key does it in Windows XP, you can search on the web to find safe mode entry procedure for VIsta)

As a next step, I recommend running the following free program to clear infections off your machine:
http://www.malwarebytes.org/

(reboot into "safe mode with networking" if you have to access internet to download the program on an infected machine.)

I use a combination of the paid program Spysweeper and the free program AV Virus to prevent problems.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:20 pm

Webroot SpySweeper also didn't find anything on my PC except cookies.
(Cookies don't represent actual executable code, they are just small text files that websites use to know that you have been there before)

I'm convinced that what ever causes this is external to my PC.

It's those damn reds. They couldn't win in Korea and so now they're F-ing with my computer dammit.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:46 pm

run the malware program, it detects problems that spysweeper doesn't handle.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby fennel » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:01 am

Dust Mite Rodeo wrote:... my IE8 browser ... I run Vista ...
I don't think this belongs under the technology heading. Maybe the "Blind-man-inspecting-a-gas-tank-with-a blow-torch" category would be more appropriate.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:20 am

It was only a matter of time before the Mac-Wankers would weigh in, Blah blah blah...
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Huckleby » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:35 am

Image

The cool guy on the right stole your girlfriend in high school and gave her herpes.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby fennel » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:42 am

Dust Mite Rodeo wrote:It was only a matter of time before the Mac-Wankers would weigh in, Blah blah blah...
Heh. Welcome to the 1990s. You have quite a schlep ahead of you.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby snoqueen » Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:48 am

I finally realized the best way to keep the hard drive clean and one's browsing history private is use a bootable CD/DVD, and run your whole on-line session in short term memory. A Ubuntu Linux .iso image for this can be downloaded free, a disk burned, and you set your boot sequence to go to your DVD drive before your hard drive.
When you log out, the disk pops out and nothing you did is saved.

If you want to keep anything (including bookmarks) put them on a USB drive.

Every time you start up, it's like a totally fresh, newly installed OS.

Bootup time is not a lot slower than Vista (what IS slower?), and if you pick a Linux mini-distro it can be very quick. I've got a mini-Linux I use on my netbook that boots in 15-20 seconds from an SD card.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:16 pm

That's a great idea!

What I've figured out is that the browser redirections are caused by javascript that is contained inside advert boxes that appear on the main webpage of a certain normally respectable telecom provider. Since I've never let it dupe me into downloading the faux AV software, I don't actually have any infectuous files on my PC. Now that I have spysweeper it warns me about the attempt.

I've got Safari browser too but I don't like it because it lacks that drop-down address bar that shows recently visited pages. Yeah, there's the history menu, but it gets littered up with entries for every sub-page within a website, ie. every every forum topic I've looked at.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Athena » Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:24 am

You can get rid of these malicious pop-ups by switching to Firefox and installing No Script and Ad Blocker Plus. No Script can be a little annoying as it turns off all scripts, and some webpages you'll need to go and allow their scripts through in order to get their page to work, but your computer will be very secure since you have more control over what scripts are allowed.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby rrnate » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:11 pm

Huckleby wrote:As a next step, I recommend running the following free program to clear infections off your machine:
http://www.malwarebytes.org/


I just wanted to mention that Huck is right - Malwarebyte is a pretty dang awesome virus n' spyware cleaner. They're pretty aggressive with updates and the program is pretty innocuous otherwise.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby ilikebeans » Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:54 pm

Athena wrote:You can get rid of these malicious pop-ups by switching to Firefox and installing No Script and Ad Blocker Plus. No Script can be a little annoying as it turns off all scripts, and some webpages you'll need to go and allow their scripts through in order to get their page to work, but your computer will be very secure since you have more control over what scripts are allowed.

Yep, I'd highly recommend this option if you don't want to go the route snoqueen mentioned. While Firefox has its occasional issues as well, they're not nearly as severe as IE. I only use IE for trusted sites that absolutely require it.

We've been hit at work with the same "your computer is infected, click here!" ploy from time to time (switching browsers has been diplomatically problematic). It's effective because the dialogs look very legit, and most users don't realize it's a browser popup window instead of an actual alert from the installed malware scanner. However, just switching to Firefox won't kill these-- you need the NoScript add-on.

Regardless, if I had my wish, IE would be wiped from the face of the planet. Not only does it continually have security problems (the well-publicized Chinese hack into Google was due to IE vulnerabilities), they STILL refuse to adhere to W3C standards, making web authoring for anything but the simplest of layouts a complete bitch.
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby Huckleby » Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:57 pm

ilikebeans wrote: they STILL refuse to adhere to W3C standards, making web authoring for anything but the simplest of layouts a complete bitch.


I haven't done any web work for a couple years, but my experience with IE is they are the BEST at supporting web standards. The problem is they aggressively add and promote their own "standards" too. Are you saying that Opera, Safari, Firefox etc. are now following a set of comprehensive standards that require no browser-specific tweaks?
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Re: Fake virus scanner browser redirections.

Postby narcoleptish » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:12 pm

I just gotta say, I have never updated ANYthing, never installed spyware, never checked for viruses, never "cleaned" my computer.....nothing! And I have never had any kind of problem in 9 years of being online. I am possibly the most computer-illiterate person on this forum. I did not understand one word from any post in this thread. Am I just lucky? Could I not even know I have a problem? Is ignorance truly bliss?

For what it's worth I have a Mac, but not for any other reason besides thinking my original eMac looked cool. I recently bought a Macbook because I was used to the Mac and it was a good deal. The old one got pretty slow towards the end but it always worked. Am I not infection worthy?

snoqueen wrote: use a bootable CD/DVD, and run your whole on-line session in short term memory.


A bootable?? I've had the same desk for years! No problems.
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