Posts Tagged ‘Scareware’

Beware of Scareware

Thursday, July 9th, 2009


Scareware consists of deceptive advertisements that pop up on websites where criminals have purchased such ads. The pop-up announces that your computer is infected and asks you to click on a box to run a free scan of your computer. If you accept the offer, the scan claims to find a viral infection on your computer. It then helpfully offers you the chance to buy security software to clean this virus. When you accept the offer, the software takes you to an online shopping cart to collect your credit card information. If you back out of the offer at this time, the system will badger you with endless fake scans. Scareware is distributed by a number of means: websites, online social networking sites, Twitter and others, so you must always be vigilant.

Should you encounter what appears to be a Scareware warning box,┬ápress Ctrl-Alt-Del to access Task Manager, click to applications, scroll to the dialogue box, and click “end task.” This will force the warning box to close. If you don’t stop at this point, it will be very difficult to stop the attack. You can try running Microsoft’s Malicious Software Removal Tool, or cleanup tools from the antivirus software you use.