Personal Antivirus a Scary Scam and Software

Have you seen “Personal Antivirus” software on your computer? This is definitely not an antivirus program you want to use. What is it and where does it come from? It’s actually a rogue software that uses fear to scam you and then continues to cause you problems for a long time to come. Find out about this antivirus program that does nothing to protect your computer and a whole lot to harm it.


http://www.xp-vista.com/spyware-removal/personal-antivirus.Imagine my surprise when I turned on my husband’s computer the other night, to find a pop up window that appears to be running a scan and then quickly (faster than any other antivirus program I have every used or tested) tells me I have over 25 spyware, malware and Trojan viruses on my computer. It’s very convincing, evoking the ever scary word “Trojan” and giving me a list of so called viruses on my computer that are XXX.exe. A big screen appears and states that Personal Antivirus has detected all these problems with my computer and if I could just complete the registration process they can solve all my problems and remove all the spyware. Here’s the catch, Personal Antivirus can do none of those things. It is actually a rogue software program, which disguises itself as a reliable security tool. It is neither a security tool nor is it really detecting harmful programs on your computer.
Curious, I click the registration page, and find that I have to purchase this handy dandy software that somehow got on my husband’s computer before it will remove the so called viruses. Of course my husband doesn’t appreciate the 12:30 AM wakeup call that asks him how this “crap” got on his computer. He says, “I thought it came through with the Windows update and was just trying to make me purchase antivirus software so I ignored it.” Well he was half right.

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Personal Antivirus does “piggy back” in during a download from your computer or sneaks in while you are visiting a website. The programming is very similar in nature, design and when you look at it, it really does seem to be a Windows XP security feature. But here’s how you can tell that it’s not.
1. In most cases, if you have already installed an antivirus system on your computer another one cannot function or override the existing software. For example, if I am using Trend and try to install Norton, without uninstalling Trend I will receive error messages and the installation will not complete.
2. Most reputable antivirus programs will not download to your computer without your help, such as accessing the page and taking you through download steps, not even free program such as AVG can just magically appear and scan your computer.
3. If you are currently running reputable software program to detect viruses you should not have another program telling you that you have X number of viruses on your computer. Yes, detection may vary from software to software and depend on your last update, but there should not be that many variations in the number of viruses, spyware or malware on your computer.
Personal Antivirus uses fear and manipulation in order to run its “scam.” If you believe this program to be true, you end up providing your name, address, credit card number, create a user name and password. Since many people use the same user name and password for multiple accounts you have now given away all the information anyone needs to commit credit card fraud, create a new identity and harm your credit in many other ways.
If left alone this software does the following:
 Changes your browser settings directing you to sites that continue to encourage you to purchase this so called security software
 Shows commercial advertisements
 Allows pop ups ads to sneak through your firewall
 Stays resident in the background, possibly recording keystrokes
This software needs to be removed immediately as leaving it on your computer and ignoring it can still cause you frustration and damage to your systems. There are several sites offering information on how to remove Personal Antivirus from your computer, I recommend XP Vista.com Spyware Removal. While the information provided from these sites appears to be the same, I used the XP Vista site, feeling more secure about the knowledge there, since it was an actual Windows XP site. Trying to remove manually takes quite a bit of computer knowledge, so you may want to find some help, from someone who knows about locating and removing files as well as creating restore points and uninstalling programs.
Other sites and video’s offered a downloadable remover tool, but I can’t vouch for either of them, as I didn’t try them and have no knowledge of their reliability.
It took me a great deal of time and effort (3AM and I was off to bed knowing my computer was fixed) but it was worth it. Just remember not matter how good your antivirus software is, nothing beats knowledge about what scams are out there as well as general information about how the systems on your computer works. Had I not known what I did about my desktop computer as well as scams and antivirus programs, I may have done as my husband did and simply ignored it, or as so many others did, and purchased it.

 

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5 Responses to “Personal Antivirus a Scary Scam and Software”

  1. Mike Says:

    Spyware is becoming more and more malicious and sneaky.
    I recently found out about, and wrote about, keyboard spyware. With this – malicious software is hidden inside programs or emails that consumers download from the web.
    Once its on your computer, it can watch every keystroke you make, most importantly, your passwords and other sensitive personal information.
    Thanks for helping to warn people of the dangers and consequences of spyware.

  2. parneet384 Says:

    Anti-Virus PLUS is best software that not only offers all the essential features necessary to provide virus protection to a PC, Free Download Antivirusbut can also be adapted for easy use. It is equally effective in case of advanced custom system scan as well as set-and-forget security. Besides being quite user friendly, it effectively scans and cleans a PC.

  3. parneet384 Says:

    Anti-Virus PLUS is best software that not only offers all the essential features necessary to provide virus protection to a PC, Free Download Antivirusbut can also be adapted for easy use. It is equally effective in case of advanced custom system scan as well as set-and-forget security. Besides being quite user friendly, it effectively scans and cleans a PC.

  4. Charlie Kimball Says:

    You also need to watch for identity theft that goes beyond credit cards. Medical records, utility, employment are all targets for these guys. http://ratenerd.com/is-there-anything-else-i-can-steal-from-you-1721

  5. Gaffer Wiles Says:

    Beware of people touting “the best anti-virus” software in comments. These programs too could be rogue AV programs themselves. As an example there is a well known rogue anti-virus program called AntiVirus Plus – differing ONLY with a hypen “-“.
    I tend to stick with known and advertised brands like TrendMicro, BitDefender, Symantec AV, McAfee AV, Avira, eSET NOD32, etc.
    Websites like BeepingComputer.com and MalwareBytes.org are good places to check for the legitimacy of certain products and often have reviews and tutorials to get rid of malware infections.