Skip to comments.Are computer viruses just a protection racket?
Posted on 04/29/2008 5:24:58 AM PDT by reaganator
I have persistant, official looking pop ups in a yellow box (system alert) that are now telling me my computer is infected with viruses.
This eventually leads to the cure, me paying them 49.95
Seems like an old time protection racket to me. Odd that as soon as my computer acquires these viruses the prompting of the anti-virus companies begin.
Any thoughts on this?
It’s a scam by the antivirus company. Go to a site you know and download a fix for free.
Never, ever give your money to Symantec.
Those popups are not from legit antivirus developers- their “solutions” are usually conduits for more spyware. Get an AV program from a reputable publisher to remove them. Even the commercial ones like Norton offer a free trial version that will remove an infection.
Actually, it means you have spyware.
My advice, go to www.kaspersky.com and use their free online scan tool.
I actually never get these warning, then again I never download anything that looks sketchy.
Just keep you AV up to date, it’s not so much a protection scam though, that pop up is caused by spyware, and the program they tell you to download is even more spyware that won’t get rid of any virus, it will actually give you more.
I have a anti-virus program through my ISP, I had trouble removing my Norton 2005 so I don’t know how well it’s working.
Download AVG, which is free for personal use. It is excellent, and updates its tables pretty much every night.
(And yes, I do believe that the Anti-Virus Industry is a protection racket, and I have often suspected that viruses “appear” for no better reason than to require antivirus upgrades. Only mugs believe that the Anti-Virus industry wants computer viruses to go away.)
Spybot Search and Destroy (free) does a decent job of whacking this kind of thing. Download it... install it... update definitions.... reboot.... tap the f8 key... select safe mode.... run it.... and pray.
also, www.hijackthis.de is helpful in whacking this type of crapware. Use the direct download link on the top right of the page. Paste the log into the page, and click on nasties to remove them.
That being said, and even though we use Symantec at work, I would recommend that you NOT use Symantec or any of the big name products on your home PCs. They're expensive and they slow your system down especially if you install the full "security suite" or whatever they're calling it.
On my Windows systems at home I use:
Antivirus: AVG Free (http://free.grisoft.com)
Antispyware: Microsoft Windows Defender (http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/software/default.mspx)
Web Filtering: Blue Coat K9 Web Protection (http://www1.k9webprotection.com)
All of these products work well and they are FREE. I've been using these products for years and I highly recommend them.
Those are on the systems my wife and kids use. My personal notebook is running Ubuntu Linux 8.04 and I don't need any of that stuff. It is dual-boot, so on the rare occasion that I do have to boot into Windows, I've got all of that running.
Never again give Symantec or McAfee a bunch of money to slow down your computer and lock you into a subscription.
I love AVG
Those are keyed, usually, by your mouse pointer moving over a sensitive area of a web page, causing the pop up.
Some websites are worse about them.
Usually, you can ignore it or click on the ‘close’ or ‘back’ button.
Use a good virus program, however. It will catch most of the real culprits. AVG and AVAST are two that are free for home use.
I got Smitfraud into my system and it was a nightmare. I ended up wiping the HD and reloading Windows. All the “fixes”, both free and paid for were of no use.
I’m with you on this one...
I once put a VERY old disk in my computer and I got a pop-up warnign that I needed a new virus software update (for a fee, of course)
The only problem is that the disk could not POSSIBLY have had the virus it claimed because it had not been written yet when I last used that disk.
I wish i could repeat that test
What is AVG?
also free (home edition) and I like it a bunch
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