Drop the mouse and back away, Slowly!

So, you’re happily surfing the Web one day, and a big scary banner appears that says, “Your Computer is Infected!”, or, “Your browser needs a security Update!”

bigupdate - Copy

The latest fake browser update scam (Above)

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One of many fake antivirus programs (Above).

You’ve been had! Or as geeks put it, Owned. What to do? You’ve got 42,863 viruses! It’s going to cost you $49.99 (Have your credit card ready) to clean your computer! Aaahhh! It’s the End of All Life as We Know it!

Step back. Take a deep breath. Relax. Think. Close your web browser, Right Now! You may have just dodged a bullet, or you may already be infected.

There are a lot of fake antivirus programs out there. It’s one of the most common infections I clean. They always try to scare the ^#^* out of you with dire warnings about hackers stealing your passwords or various security threats, and they always want money to fix the problem… Except they are the problem. They find their way onto your computer through malicious Facebook posts, banner ads on poisoned websites (Legitimate sites are frequently hacked), or links in Spam, among other things.

Very often, you can clean these yourself, with one very good, free program, called Malwarebytes. It’s an excellent idea to have this already on your computer, before something awful happens, because these viruses can disable your ability to install Malwarebytes. Here is an automated download link.

Click the link above, select Run, let the installer do it’s thing. When it’s finished, run Malwarebytes, let it update itself, then run a full scan and delete everything found. Restart the computer immediately. Nine times out of ten this will get rid of such programs.

Malwarebytes is a specialized anti-spyware program, and it will play nice with most antivirus, with the possible exception of Norton. Given the choice, ditch Norton in favor of AVG.

Remember, that your most important security software is between your ears. Get familiar with the real antivirus program you have. It will be one of the little icons next to the clock on your screen. If you can’t find one, you may need one! I recommend the free version of AVG, which you can get by clicking here. Do not, however, install more than one antivirus; That will slow your machine to a crawl, and it won’t help.

If all else fails, Call me at 520-977-5670, or visit my website at www.thegizmologist.com!

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