Worst Spyware of 2008

The worst spyware of 2008 (in my experience) is certainly Windows XP Antivirus 2008/2009 or one of its many variations. This malware invades a computer in one of many ways, usually bundled with a video codec, or freeware or shareware, or sometimes when you accidentally go to (drive by) a bad website.

Infected computers display warnings and scans that look like Window alerts. They lead you–the besieged users–to buy the rogue product for $40. If you buy the rogue software then the fraudsters now have access to your credit card. (Call your credit card company immediately if this is the case.) And the purchase of the rogue anti-spyware does nothing to relieve the infection, in fact it takes over your computer to make it part of its botnet. This is the part I don’t understand. From my experience the infection makes the computer so totally crippled it can’t function, and for this reason I question how well it would serve even a botnet. But that according to this article is the intention.

And here’s another article about it.
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/30/technology/internet/30virus.html?th&emc=th

I find Windows XP Antivirus 2008/2009 extremely difficult to remove. Sometimes it comes back even after a Windows Repair from the cd.

Here’s a post that tells how to remove it.

The spyware that seems to have affected the most readers of this blog, is the Hallmark Card virus. So it is the 2nd Worst Spyware of 2008. Here’s how to remove it.

And here’s a great slideshow by Channel Web showing the top ten malware in the news.

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Hallmark Card Virus Fix and Removal

Many, many people are coming to this blog site looking for a fix for the Hallmark card virus. So it’s not a hoax!!! (The hoax part is that the virus will wipe out your hard drive. It doesn’t. But it does make a mess.) The e-mails going out purport to be a link to Hallmark card, read more here (see this post), and if you click that link, you’ll get a direct download of a virus.

If you already have the Hallmark Card virus, there is a fix, or several of them. Usually, normal virus software will remove it. Here are some free anti-virus software that will do the trick. Make sure your software is updated first, after you install and before you run the scan. Without virus definitions, it’s impossible to catch anything.

First to get rid of the virus use one on these antivirus software:

AVG 8 Free for Personal Use
Avast!
Dr. Web CureIt

Then use this antispyware:
SuperAntiSpyware


Virus software is not enough. You’ll also need an excellent anti-spyware tool. Call me at 403-483-0105, if you have any questions. (Please, not in the middle of the night in Canada, however!)

Now if your computer is so bad already it won’t allow you to download anything, you’ll need to go into safe mode.
1. Restart your computer and tap the F8 key repeatedly. Soon you’ll get to a screen that has many different options.

2. Pick the one (use your up and down arrows to move) that says Safe Mode with Networking.

3. A long list of drivers will scroll down the screen. Then you’ll be given and option of Yes or No. Pick Yes, you do want to go into Safe Mode.

4. Now open your browser such as Internet Explorer or Firefox. And type in https://www.ducktoes.com/blog. Find this post Hallmark Card Fix. And click this link to download Malwarebytes Antispyware.

5. Run and update the program. Make sure you update it first. If your computer (actually the virus or malware) won’t let you update it, run it anyway. Do the quick scan first. Remove the malware it finds and restart the computer and then run it again. If you can update it on the second time, update it and run it again, this time do the full scan.

Then go to the top of this blog post and install one of the antiviruses and the SuperAntispyware.

Good luck and let me know what works or doesn’t for you. Also let me know if it’s hard to download the antispyware. How bad is the virus? Click here to comment.

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