Protection Rackets on your desktop

I lost half a day this week getting rid of a piece of malware that not only disabled my machine but attempted to induce me to pay for the privilege of fixing it. The whole frustrating exercise was a WOMBAT that exposed me to the seedier side of the internet.

My first disappointment was the end of the quaint notion that my paid-for “world’s most effective” antivirus software that monitors all incoming traffic would detect this - but these racketeers happen to have expertise.

Trouble started with the appearance of a bogus Windows Security Alert dialogue box. Bogus Windows Security Alert

Then an increasing number of icons in my task bar started turning orange - and damn popups all over the place and IE starting up and offering me an adware removal site (Note: Don’t download anything from this site! Your antivirus should warn you - but why take the risk?)

adwarebg300.jpgThe popups were soon followed by a takeover of my desktop background with this little beauty. Not only was it not pretty but the whole of the desktop became a hyperlink to the website. Result - an unusable machine.

Next step - find a reputable adware/spyware search and destroy program. Trawled some forums and came across this “review” - yes, I should have known better - but I head straight for XostSpySE Scan - after all, FREE sounds pretty attractive. All is going well - run the scan and it detects all the right things and I click on the Remove (or similar) button and guess what - it wants a chunk of money for the “remove” function. Nice one - they know I’m desperate and now the sucker punch, pay up or else. No way do I pay - that kind of commerce deserves no rewards (I’ve searched their website and see no information anywhere on the real price - only inducements to “free downloads” - in my book that’s misleading and shonky).

Compare this sleight of hand with AdAware who are up front and clear from the outset about cost.

What did I learn?

  • I need an adware/spyware programme as well as my antivirus
  • the internet’s darkside is only a download away
  • there are methods for persuasion that really suck (an extreme form of this?)

5 Responses to “Protection Rackets on your desktop”

  1. Eric Says:

    I had similar experience with a twist. The adware which I contrated was UltimateCleaner, Softwarereferals, I had previosly used Lavasoft Adaware as a free download as well as Spybot and and was surprised to discover on downloading to my new infected laptop that they were also pay deals. I found a blog on Peretlogic’s Xsoftspye and paid my money because it had been mentioned that they had successfuuly deleted Ucleaner. I paid and it did the trick immediately. I took advantage of a soecial offer and got Regcure as well and for about five days my Machine was back to normal. Then Ucleaner and its friends were back with a vengeance. Peretlogic were quick to respnd and requested logs from thier Xsoft which I have sent and now witing instructions. I have manually located files which are clearly associated with the adware and deleted them but they come back within a short time.

    What did you do eventually to sort your problem because I did not pay for the Adaware cure . Did it work for you because non of the socalled free ones have ben any good. Infact it is Ironic to have a screen filled with VG proudly procaliming that all systems are running and no threats while Ucleaner is continually blocking my efforts and poping up all the time.

    I am 40 US poorer and still badly infected but hope that the three Girls names on Paretlogics charming messages are’t all the same hary aassed
    money grabber. Time will tell. Does anyone have a plan for retribution.
    The 10000 messages I sent ucleaner did’nt seem to raise an eyebrow.

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  3. Thomas Says:

    Interesting! You have supplied excellent information. I use and I never got any problem. Good Luck!

  4. Thomas Says:

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  5. lauren Says:

    Antispyware solution from Search-and-destroy.
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