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Rogue Anti-Virus is Taking Over

Over the last year or so, I am running into more and more computers that have been infected with rogue anti-virus software. Now spreading from hundreds of different websites based in various foreign countries, these fraudulant anti-virus programs are starting to take over.

The program “WinAntiVirus Pro 2008” may sound like an authentically named anti-virus program, but beware! It is only one of the many names now popping up on computer screens all over the world.

These programs are hiding behind the promise that they will clean your computer from harmful viruses and malicious software. It is only after installing these programs that some users finally realize “WinAntiVirus” is nothing but a virus itself!

If you trusted one of these programs to scan your computer, it will display a list of many “infections” that it claims you computer has, although none of these are usually legit. The program then offers to remove the infections, but only after you have purchased a licence for the “Full” version of the program which costs around $40.

If you think that there is no way anyone would fall for this scheme, think again. Watch the special report video below of a woman who is seeking a class action lawsuit against the source of one of these programs.

Here is a list of more programs like this:

  • WinAntiVirus Pro 2008
  • WinAntiVirus 2008
  • WinFixer
  • XP AntiVirus
  • Vista AntiVirus 2008
  • SpySheriff
  • DriveCleaner
  • PC-AntiSpyware
  • SystemDoctor
  • UltimateCleaner

For a longer list click here

Do not be fooled!

Beware of any program that you see in a pop-up or in advertisements. Do a quick Google search before clicking on them and see what you may be in for in the long run. Some of these are becoming quite hard to get rid of.

If you are looking for reputable software to scan for infections, download a legit anti-virus program from a well know company like Symantec (Norton), McAfee, Kapersky, or Sophos. You would also be wise to download an anti-spyware scanner as well. A few I can personally vouch for are Ad-Aware SE, Spybot – Search & Destroy, Windows Defender, and HijackThis.

UPDATE:  I found a scanner that will get rid of these fake antivirus scanners, read my update to learn more.

About the author

RJ Ponzio

RJ founded Shore Web Tech LLC in 2011. The mission of Shore Web Tech (SWT) is to help small and medium local businesses take advantage of today's affordable technology solutions. RJ currently holds Google's "AdWords Qualified Individual" certification.

4 comments

1 ping

  1. Rick Norman

    I’ve noticed that some of these “anti-virus programs” come as a popup that will not allow you to take it off the screen. Click on the X or “close” and a secondary popup comes up. I think the idea is to get you so frustrated that you finally just give in. I had to push the reset button on the underside of my computer to get rid of it.

  2. RJ Ponzio

    Unfortunately sometimes that is all you are able to do. I have read that many of these pop-up messages will download the virus no matter if you click “yes”, “No”, or try and close the message by clicking the “X” in the top corner. In this case you would need to end task on your browser completely, disconnect your internet connection before clicking anything, or turn off your computer.

  3. Zac

    I’ve been coming across exactly this problem, other than disconnecting from the net and turning my computer off entirely is there no anti-virus software that can scan and block these pop-ups automatically???

  4. RJ Ponzio

    Check out my update to this article at the link below. I have been using “Malwarebytes” to get rid of these infections now. It has been working very well so far.

    http://www.rjponzio.com/2008/08/21/rogue-anti-virus-update/

  1. RJPONZIO.COM - » Rogue Anti-Virus: UPDATE

    [...] is a quick update to my previous article on fraudulent [...]

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