Whew……Problem Eliminated

Friday night’s adventure took about 3 hours but I got the Notebook decontaminated without having to erase & reinstall Windows Vista.

 

After connecting to the Notebook with CrossLoop, I downloaded & installed Malwarebytes’ to begin cleaning up the mess.  Malwarebytes’ is one of my favorite free tools available to remove Spyware/Malware.  I generally use the free version as a one time clean up tool but you can also spend a few bucks and buy the “real-time” protection version for $24.95 USD.  In my mind, that’s a small price to pay for piece of mind.

 

It’s a fact of life if you spend time on the Internet, you could be infected by doing nothing extraordinary.  While Malware is know infect dodgy websites such as gaming or peer-to-peer file sharing sites, many users don’t realize that computers can be infected with a “drive-by download” while only visiting reputable websites. If you don’t understand what I mean by a drive-by download, Wikipedia gives a simple definition.

 

Although I removed the existing Malware, I still needed to confirm that the Notebook has all the available Microsoft security patches installed and that the Antivirus program was up to date.  If I skipped these steps, my friend could be back in the same mess sooner than she thinks.  The Notebook was missing 25 critical Windows security updates. My friend told me she didn’t think she needed them. I also found that she had no Antivirus software enabled because she never took action when notified about the trial subscription expiring. 

 

I set up Vista to perform Windows updates automatically which requires NO THINKING on the end user’s part and keeps the system security up-to-date.  The last missing piece was to install avast! 4 Home which includes both Antivirus & Anti-spyware protection.  It updates automatically and is distributed at NO CHARGE to home users.  Check out my “free downloads” section if you find yourself in the same boat.

 

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the protection I installed, combined with a frank discussion about Internet security, will eliminate another Friday night panic call from my friend.  Well at a minimum, for this friend because I can’t swear that I won’t get a similar call from someone else!

One Response to “Whew……Problem Eliminated”

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