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Malware – Be a human firewall

Malware – Why you need to be a human firewall

 

Is this Windows Security Alert real or fake?  The answer depends on what you were doing when it appeared.

  • Did you click on a link in an email message?  It’s fake.  It’s advisable to never click on any link contained within an email message.  Instead, open your web browser and type in the website address.
  • Did it appear while you were browsing the web?  It’s fake.  Legitimate antivirus software must be installed and run from your computer, not from a website.
  • Did it show up while viewing someone’s Facebook or Twitter page?  It’s fake.  And worse yet your friend’s Facebook page may be infected with something or compromised.
  • Did you manually start a virus scan from within your anti-virus application?  It’s probably real.

 

Rogue AV1

 


How about this alert? Is it real or is it fake? The same rules apply, it depends on what you were doing at the time.  Human firewalls are skeptical and untrusting and any message that pops up should be regarded as suspicious.  So you can just click on cancel or the “X” close button in the upper right hand corner of the window, right?  Unfortunately, no.  Clicking any button in a window such as this one will have the same result:   malware will be installed on your computer.  Instead you should bring up the Windows task manager by pressing Ctrl-Alt-Delete. Then, highlight the process and click the End Process button.

Rogue AV2

 


So let’s say your friend sends you a link to a really cool new video.  You launch your web browser and type in the website address and receive the message below.  Should you click on the download link?  Absolutely not.  Hackers want to redirect you from legitimate websites to websites that they control.  You should instead visit the Flash player publisher website, such as www.adobe.com, directly and check for updates.

Rogue Flash player installer prompt


There are hundreds of bogus anti-malware applications floating around the Internet today.  Before deciding to install one from a popup ad like the one below, navigate to the company website and see if its legitimate.  Try finding reviews of the product from legitimate industry sources.  Many of these bogus anti-malware apps install more malware on your computer, attempt to steal your identity, or capture your financial information.

Rogue AV4

User’s submitted over 130 bogus anti-malware titles for 2009.  These are not legitimate anti-malware titles.

Advanced Cleaner
AlfaCleaner
Alpha AntiVirus
AntiSpyCheck 2.1
AntiSpyStorm
AntiSpyware 2009
Antivirus System Pro
AntiSpyware Bot
AntiSpywareExpert
AntiSpywareMaster
AntiSpywareSuite
AntiSpyware Shield
Antivermins
Antivirus 2008
Antivirus 2009
Antivirus 2010
Antivirus 360
Antivirus Pro 2009
AntiVirus Gold
Antivirus Master
Antivirus XP 2008
Antivirus Pro 2010
Antivirus System PRO
Avatod Antispyware 8.0
Awola
BestsellerAntivirus
Cleanator
ContraVirus
Cyber Security
Doctor Antivirus
Doctor Antivirus 2008
DriveCleaner

EasySpywareCleaner
Green Antivirus 2009
IE Antivirus
IEDefender
InfeStop[
Internet Antivirus
KVMSecure
MacSweeper
MalwareCrush
MalwareCore
MalwareAlarm
Malware Bell
Malware Defender
MS Antivirus
MS AntiSpyware 2009

MaxAntiSpy
Netcom3 Cleaner

PCSecureSystem
PC Antispy
PC AntiSpyWare 2010
PC Clean Pro
PC Privacy Cleaner
PC SpeedScan Pro
PerfectCleaner
Perfect Defender 2009
PersonalAntiSpy Free
Personal Antivirus
PAL Spyware Remover
PCPrivacy Tools
PC Antispyware
PSGuard
Privacy Center
Rapid AntiVirus
Real AntiVirus
Registry Great
Safety Alerter 2006
Safety Center

SafetyKeeper
SaliarAR
SecureFighter
SecurePCCleaner
SecureVeteran
Security Scan 2009
Security Tool
Security Toolbar 7.1
SiteAdware
Smart Antivirus 2009
Soft Soldier
SpyAxe
Spy Away
SpyCrush
Spydawn
SpyGuarder
SpyHeal
SpyMarshal
Spylocked
SpySheriff
SpySpotter
SpywareBot
Spyware Cleaner
SpywareGuard 2008

Spyware Protect 2009SpywareQuake
SpywareSheriff
Spyware Stormer
Spy Tool
Spyware Striker Pro
Spyware Protect 2009
SpywareStrike
SpyRid
SpyWiper
System Antivirus 2008
System Live Protect
SystemDoctor
System Security
Total Secure 2009
TrustedAntivirus
TheSpyBot
UltimateCleaner
VirusHeat
VirusIsolator
Virus Locker
VirusProtectPro
VirusRemover2008
VirusRemover2009
VirusMelt
VirusRanger
Virus Response Lab 2009
VirusTrigger
Vista Antivirus 2008
Volcano Security Suite
WinAntiVirus Pro 2006
WinDefender
Windows Police Pro
Windows Protection Suite
WinFixer
WinHound
Winpc Antivirus
Winpc Defender
WinSpywareProtect
WinWeb Security 2008
WorldAntiSpy
XP AntiSpyware 2009
XP Antivirus
XP-Shield
Zinaps AntiSpyware 2008

This webpage was developed from information provided by US-CERT and MS-ISAC.

 

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