Yet another problem...

Discussion in 'Computer Science & Culture' started by USS Athens, Jun 23, 2008.

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  1. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    Along with my internet audio problem (which I now belive to be a flash player problem), I now have a virus/virus protection problem. I have AVG 8.0 installed and it is supposed to protect my computer. But, lately it hasn't been protecting my computer from spyware or viruses. It will occasionally list a few infecting trojans on the infections list after a scan.

    June 19, 2008: My computer had apparently aquired many tracking cookies that opened up my internet browser and displayed ads. And each time I did a virus scan with AVG, it revealed multiple tracking cookies. Each time I removed them to the "Virus Vault", they would eventually reappear on a later virus scan (and the pop-up ads through my Internet Explorer still persist to this day).

    June 23, 2008: My computer was working fine yesterday, but later in the day after I checked up on it, multiple "ad-like" internet explorers were opened up (11 to be exact) and it displayed messages saying "Your computer has been infected with spyware!" or a not very authentic looking online scanner saying "You have 312 infections on your computer! Click here to remove them!" Yet when ever I scan my computer, absolutely nothing appears on the scan! Yet obviously there is a problem if these non-authentic web scans keep poping up for no reason. What is wrong with my computer?
     
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  3. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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  5. darksidZz Valued Senior Member

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    eh, use CCleaner and run it on your system, just the cleaning part not the registry. It's likely those infections are just cookies and once you use this app it'll erase'm. Grr I usually disable that junk.
     
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  7. Blindman Valued Senior Member

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    1: Never trust anything a pop up tells you.
    2: never click on a pop up, close it. Ignore it.
    3: Most browsers have options or addons, that block pop ups.
    4: Don't go to doggy sites, download hacked, ripped or illegal files.
    5: Keep your OS up to date.

    I have not used anti virus software for many years now, they slow down the computer and are a pain in the ass. A virus can not get onto your computer without your help. If you follow the steps above you will not have any problems with virus/spyware etc. BTW cookies cant do anything they are nothing to be afraid of.
     
  8. Xelios We're setting you adrift idiot Registered Senior Member

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    AVG is a virus scanner. The problems you're describing are of a different sort called malware or spyware, and you'll need a different program to deal with that. Something like Ad-Aware Free or, if you don't mind paying $20, Spy Sweeper or CounterSpy.

    You can cut down on the amount of junk you see on the web by using Firefox or Opera and taking advantage of their ad blocking. In Firefox it's an extension called AdBlock Plus, in Opera it's built in and called Content Management.
     
  9. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    Oh yes, and another thing that really proves that my computer is fucked up is that all clock times, program checkpoints, and timers are now in military time and it has a big "VIRUS ALERT!" right next to it.

    For example, "1:05 PM" now reads as "13:05: VIRUS ALERT!" And this goes hand in hand with my files too, it also does this when it reads "Last Modified", and other things. Pretty much the sum of what I said is that all times read like this.

    And perhaps the biggest problem of all is that windows task manager doesn't come up anymore! When I hit CTRL+ALT+Delete, a window appears and says, "Windows Task Manager has been disabled by your administrator." :wtf:

    And still, nothing comes up on my virus scan!
     
  10. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    It wouldn't let me install it, it said "Your system administrator has set certain policies to prevent this installation." And the thing is that I don't have a system administrator!
     
  11. Challenger78 Valued Senior Member

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    Format. Format. Format.
     
  12. scifitm Registered Member

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    Yup sounds like the easiest way is to just wipe the system with a new OS - if you have your boot CD just pop it in and wipe everything, or there are multiple free OSs that will work on just about any computer.

    Once an infection gets so far, you can spend days trying to find the processes etc. to get rid of it. Formatting on the other hand take only an hour or so, and you can try to keep your personal data - but it might be compromised too...
     
  13. Xelios We're setting you adrift idiot Registered Senior Member

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    When it gets that bad then it's time to reformat. The only other option is to take the hard drive out and plug it into another computer, and have that computer scan it for viruses and malware. But you run the risk of infecting the other computer too. That and finding viruses is one thing, getting rid of them can be very hard.

    I'd honestly just format the thing. Put the most important stuff you want to save on a disc and wipe everything else. Then install a good virus scanner (like Avira or NOD32) and Ad-Aware before you do anything else.
     
  14. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    I see, well I already have some of my most important items on a disk. But... Does anyone know have I could possibally save all my itunes songs?
     
  15. Xelios We're setting you adrift idiot Registered Senior Member

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    Burn them onto a DVD or several CD's. Just make sure you tell it to burn a Data Disc, not an mp3 or 'music' disc. Otherwise that wonderful Digital Rights Management software will throw a fit when you try to burn iTunes (.aac) files as a music CD.

    Then make sure you get the virus scanner up and running and updated again before you put the disc back in after you reformat.
     
  16. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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  17. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

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    Sounds like you have a really bad infection. It's likely a trojan has been installed on your computer, it has been allowed to run and download more trojan/viruses. This of course is a problem as because the more it's allowed to run and the more things you click that popup the more likely it's going to be difficult to outright clean.

    What you'll have to do is when you get a chance look through your running Processes (CTRL-ALT-DELETE for Task Manager) some of the running ones are ROGUE. What you will have to do is use something like MSCONFIG from your RUN dialogue in under your Start Button. Where it says STARTUP untick anything that looks ROGUE. (You can find out if a process is rogue by searching google, there are a lot of sites where people explain what a process does if it's rogue or not)

    When you've turned them all off you can also check your Systems SERVICES (If you have a trojan that's installed a service then you've severely been compromised) A good site for Services is www.blackviper.com where you can get an idea of what is SUPPOSE to run and anything else is obviously Rogue (or a service for a particular peripheral). I'd suggest that if you are unsure about services, you can turn them off and they will be off just for the duration of that session, if they are set to ON and are Automatic then they will reload the next time you reboot. (This is a safe way of checking to see if your OS is destabilised or loses functionality)

    Remember to note down what you've done however just in case you want to recreate it or of course inverse it in the future.

    Once you've turned those ROGUE processes off, you can reboot. On reboot those processes will not load, unless of course you manually load them or the trojan has hooked itself into one of your main processes which will require a specific removal tool or the ability to understand how to fix it manually.

    On the Reboot what you want to do is:
    • Run an Antivirus scan
    • Run an Anti-trojan/worm scan
    • Install any outstanding updates for your OS. (I recently had to upgrade a machines from XP PRO to Service pack 3. All I can suggest is that you make sure you download the Network Installation versions and install under SAFE MODE because the Windows Update system actually conflicts with itself causing installs to hang.)
    • Install http://www.javacoolsoftware.com/spywareblaster.html (This is not optional!)

    This should at least remove any current infections or stop infections continuing. There is however the chance that your OS is undermined beyond repair. If that's the case then obviously a Reformat and reinstallation is the only option.

    If you do that just make sure that you:
    • Install a firewall or Update the OS to include a firewall
    • Install Spywareblaster
    • Fully update the OS
    • Install an Antivirus

    In all cases involving Windows Operating systems it's Important to Update the OS. A lot of exploits exist on a Standard installation or a Pirated copy that you can't update.

     
  18. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    Hey, when I did a virus scan, it scanned the program you had me download. The scan marked it as "Fake anti-spyware".
     
  19. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    But I can't use the Run program, it for some reason like "My Computer" and "Control Panel" have been removed from my start menu.
     
  20. Xelios We're setting you adrift idiot Registered Senior Member

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    Maybe you could start it in safe mode. Press F8 a lot while the computer is booting up and select Safe Mode from the menu that appears.

    Though really, I'd still reformat. I think it'd be far simpler than trying to undo all the damage that's been done.
     
  21. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

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  22. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

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    It definitely sounds like you've got some serious problems.

    There is another way of getting the RUN dialogue up, try "CTRL+ALT+DEL" you should find "New Task(Run...)" under File.

    In all honesty it's going to be a lot of work to fix, I mean you can make it stable enough to make backups of things however the system will always be potentially flawed due to previously being compromised. Reformatting will give you a clean build to begin with, just make sure if you go that route to install the things I mentioned previously.
     
  23. USS Athens Very Special Senior Member Valued Senior Member

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    Even worse, it says my CTRL+ALT+Delete Task manager has been disabled for unknown reasons. So I cannot even do that!
     
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