One of the more alarming trends on the internet over the last couple of years has been the rise of so called ‘scareware’. These are fake computer programs aimed at getting the unsuspecting user to part with his or her money in return for downloading software which, at best is useless, and at worse will infect your machine with real viruses. Fake anti-virus scareware programs have been around for sometime now. Last year, a study by Google identified no less than 11,000 separate domains were hosting fake antivirus products out on the web.
Dubious websites will typically display a message stating that the user’s computer is infected and encouraging them to purchase and download their software in order to remove the infection. Don’t be fooled. Remember, if you already have an up to date antivirus product installed on your machine, it is unlikely that it would not have picked up this sudden “infection”. Never buy in haste on the internet, especially from a website that you are unfamiliar with, and never install software that you are unsure about.
And don’t think it is only antivirus software that attracts this sort of malpractice. Rogue utility programs offering to clean up and defrgament the user’s hard drive are also increasingly common. Beware of programs like HDDRepair, HDDRescue or HDDPlus for example. Don’t spend money on something to tidy up your hard drive when Windows does a pretty decent job behind the scenes most of the time. There are good utility programs available on the net if you really need them and none will use such blatant, ‘in your face’ advertising in order to attract your cash.
If you do suspect your machine have been infected as a result of malicious scareware, fear not. Even though your existing antivirus program may not be able to clean the infection – some of these programs are clever enough to disable functions on your computer and prevent your anti-malware from performing properly – My PC Surgery can offer peace of mind and restore your computer to health quicly and efficiently.