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Removal instructions for Defense Center

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What is Defense Center?

The Malwarebytes research team has determined that Defense Center is a fake anti-malware application. These so-called "rogues" use intentional false positives to convince users that their systems have been compromised. Then they try to sell you their software, claiming it will remove these threats. In extreme cases the false threats are actually the very trojans that advertise or even directly install the rogue. You are strongly advised to follow our removal instructions below.

How do I know if I am infected with Defense Center?

This is how the main screen of the rogue application looks:

main.png

You will find these icons on your desktop and in your taskbar:

icons.png

And see these warnings:

warning1.png

warning2.png

warning3.png

warning4.png

Extra warning: this rogue tries to remove our program by triggering the uninstaller.

extrawarning.png

It does not matter what you do with this warning, it will trigger the uninstaller anyway.

Do not click OK in the prompt the uninstaller will display when it is run. Click "No" to stop the uninstall.

How did Defense Center get on my computer?

Rogue programs use different methods for spreading themselves. This particular one uses a fake online scanner.

trick.png

How do I remove Defense Center?

Our program Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware can detect and remove this rogue application.

  • Please download Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware to your desktop.
  • Double-click mbam-setup.exe and follow the prompts to install the program.
  • At the end, be sure a check-mark is placed next to the following:
    • Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
    • Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware

    [*]Then click Finish.

    [*]If an update is found, it will download and install the latest version.

    [*]Check the additional removal instructions posted below

Is there anything else I need to do to get rid of Defense Center?

  • The rogue intercepts calls to your task manager. You can download Process Explorer. Run it and click "Options" > "Replace Task Manager". Enjoy the added value that Process Explorer has over your standard Task Manager.

How would the full version of Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware help protect me?

We hope our application has helped you eradicate this malicious software. If your current security solution let this infection through, you might please consider purchasing the FULL version of Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware for additional protection.

As you can see below the full version of Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware would have protected you against the Defense Center rogue. It would have warned you before the rogue could install itself, giving you a chance to stop it before it became too late.

protection1.png

protection.png

Technical details for experts

Signs in a HijackThis log:

C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\esentutl64.exe
C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\wscsvc32.exe
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defcnt.exe

O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [Defense Center] "C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defcnt.exe" -noscan

Alterations made by the installer:

  File System
===============
In the existing folder C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Desktop
Adds the file Defense Center Support.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1582 bytes
Adds the file Defense Center.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 678 bytes
Adds the file nudetube.com.lnk"="15:48 13/06/10 1597 bytes
Adds the file pornotube.com.lnk"="15:48 13/06/10 1601 bytes
Adds the file spam001.exe"="15:48 13/06/10 31 bytes
Adds the file spam003.exe"="15:48 13/06/10 31 bytes
Adds the file troj000.exe"="15:48 13/06/10 31 bytes
Adds the file youporn.com.lnk"="15:48 13/06/10 1593 bytes
In the existing folder C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp
Adds the file 1.ico"="15:48 13/06/10 9662 bytes
Adds the file 2.ico"="15:48 13/06/10 9662 bytes
Adds the file 3.ico"="15:48 13/06/10 9662 bytes
Adds the file 4otjesjty.mof"="15:55 13/06/10 453 bytes
Adds the file 572.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 45984 bytes
Adds the file 680.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 25240 bytes
Adds the file 749.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 39240 bytes
Adds the file 825.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 1842768 bytes
Adds the file asd3.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 0 bytes
Adds the file ce0d.tmp"="15:42 13/06/10 6307368 bytes
Adds the file def.dat"="15:54 13/06/10 136 bytes
Adds the file defr.dat"="15:54 13/06/10 112 bytes
Adds the file esentutl64.exe"="16:07 12/06/10 417792 bytes
Adds the file mschrt20ex.dll"="15:54 13/06/10 301056 bytes
Adds the file wscsvc32.exe"="15:54 13/06/10 219648 bytes
Adds the folder C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center
Adds the file Update.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1564 bytes
Adds the file Settings.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1576 bytes
Adds the file Scan.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1552 bytes
Adds the file Defense Center.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 690 bytes
Adds the file Defense Center Support.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1594 bytes
Adds the file Buy.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1546 bytes
Adds the file Activate.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1576 bytes
Adds the file About.lnk"="15:42 13/06/10 1558 bytes
Adds the folder C:\Program Files\Defense Center
Adds the file virus.mp3"="15:42 13/06/10 29256 bytes
Adds the file update.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes
Adds the file Uninstall.exe"="15:42 13/06/10 77824 bytes
Adds the file splash.mp3"="15:42 13/06/10 75738 bytes
Adds the file settings.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes
Adds the file scan.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes
Adds the file help.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 5430 bytes
Adds the file defhook.dll"="15:42 13/06/10 29696 bytes
Adds the file defext.dll"="15:42 13/06/10 48640 bytes
Adds the file defcnt.exe"="15:42 13/06/10 1661952 bytes
Adds the file def.db"="15:42 13/06/10 6307368 bytes
Adds the file buy.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes
Adds the file activate.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes
Adds the file about.ico"="15:42 13/06/10 1150 bytes

Registry
===============
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\secfile]
"Content Type"="'application/x-msdownload'"
"(Default)"="'Application'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\secfile\shell\start\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\secfile\shell\runas\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\secfile\shell\open\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\esentutl64.exe" /START "%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\secfile\DefaultIcon]
"(Default)"="'%1'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\SimpleShlExt]
"(Default)"="'{5E2121EE-0300-11D4-8D3B-444553540000}'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe]
"(Default)"="'secfile'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe\DefaultIcon]
"(Default)"="'%1'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe\shell\start\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe\shell\runas\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe\shell\open\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\esentutl64.exe" /START "%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{5E2121EE-0300-11D4-8D3B-444553540000}]
"(Default)"="'SimpleShlExt Class'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{5E2121EE-0300-11D4-8D3B-444553540000}\InprocServer32]
"ThreadingModel"="'Apartment'"
"(Default)"="'C:\PROGRA~1\DEFENS~1\defext.dll'"
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Folder\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\SimpleShlExt]
"(Default)"="'{5E2121EE-0300-11D4-8D3B-444553540000}'"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Defense Center]
"Infected"="14"
"LastScan"="1276436859"
"InfectedFiles"="'C:\WINDOWS\System32\wstpager.ax,C:\WINDOWS\System32\Drivers\hidparse.sys,
C:\WINDOWS\System32\Drivers\update.sys,C:\WINDOWS\System32\Wbem\provthrd.dll,C:\WINDOWS\Coffee Bean.bmp,
C:\WINDOWS\Fonts\cga80737.fon,C:\WINDOWS\Help\compfldr.chm,C:\WINDOWS\Help\rsop.chm,
C:\WINDOWS\Media\onestop.mid,HKCR\esafe.shpSafe*,'"
"dbsignsf"="'62577'"
"dbverf"="'1.1'"
"dbsigns"="'62577'"
"dbver"="'1.1'"
"swver"="'3.0'"
"Data"="':1866:1977:2088:2199:2310:2421:2643:2865:2976:3087:3198:3309:'"
"GUID"="'598922895988554259878628'"
"FD"="0"
"SecStatus_5"="1"
"SecStatus_4"="1"
"SecStatus_3"="1"
"Settings_0"="1"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\policies\system]
"DisableTaskMgr"="1"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Shell Extensions\Approved]
"{5E2121EE-0300-11D4-8D3B-444553540000}"="'Defense Center extension'"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\Defense Center]
"URLInfoAbout"=""
"UninstallString"="'C:\Program Files\Defense Center\Pklkvqdii+`}`'"
"Publisher"="'Defense Center'"
"DisplayVersion"="'1.0'"
"DisplayName"="'Defense Center'"
"DisplayIcon"="'C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defcnt.exe'"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMADSIDWFJPYX]
"NextInstance"="1"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMADSIDWFJPYX\0000]
"Capabilities"="0"
"DeviceDesc"="'PRAGMAdsidwfjpyx'"
"ClassGUID"="'{8ECC055D-047F-11D1-A537-0000F8753ED1}'"
"Class"="'LegacyDriver'"
"ConfigFlags"="0"
"Legacy"="1"
"Service"="'PRAGMAdsidwfjpyx'"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMADSIDWFJPYX\0000\Control]
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMAPQJXTUIQMB]
"NextInstance"="1"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMAPQJXTUIQMB\0000]
"DeviceDesc"="'PRAGMApqjxtuiqmb'"
"ClassGUID"="'{8ECC055D-047F-11D1-A537-0000F8753ED1}'"
"Class"="'LegacyDriver'"
"ConfigFlags"="0"
"Legacy"="1"
"Service"="'PRAGMApqjxtuiqmb'"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root\LEGACY_PRAGMAPQJXTUIQMB\0000\Control]
"ActiveService"="'PRAGMApqjxtuiqmb'"
"*NewlyCreated*"="0"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.exe]
"Content Type"="'application/x-msdownload'"
"(Default)"="'secfile'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.exe\shell\start\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.exe\shell\runas\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.exe\shell\open\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\esentutl64.exe" /START "%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.exe\DefaultIcon]
"(Default)"="'%1'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\secfile]
"Content Type"="'application/x-msdownload'"
"(Default)"="'Application'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\secfile\shell\start\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\secfile\shell\runas\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\secfile\shell\open\command]
"IsolatedCommand"="'"%1" %*'"
"(Default)"="'"C:\DOCUME~1\{username}\LOCALS~1\Temp\esentutl64.exe" /START "%1" %*'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\secfile\DefaultIcon]
"(Default)"="'%1'"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System]
"DisableTaskMgr"="1"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run]
"Defense Center"="'"C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defcnt.exe" -noscan'"

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware log:

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware 1.46
www.malwarebytes.org

Database version: 4216

Windows 5.1.2600 Service Pack 2
Internet Explorer 6.0.2900.2180

6/19/2010 7:40:44 PM
mbam-log-2010-06-19 (19-40-44).txt

Scan type: Quick scan
Objects scanned: 110351
Time elapsed: 2 minute(s), 44 second(s)

Memory Processes Infected: 1
Memory Modules Infected: 1
Registry Keys Infected: 2
Registry Values Infected: 1
Registry Data Items Infected: 3
Folders Infected: 2
Files Infected: 27

Memory Processes Infected:
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp\esentutl64.exe (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Unloaded process successfully.

Memory Modules Infected:
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp\mschrt20ex.dll (Rogue.FakeAV) -> Delete on reboot.

Registry Keys Infected:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\Defense Center (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Defense Center (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Registry Values Infected:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\defense center (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Registry Data Items Infected:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System\DisableTaskMgr (Hijack.TaskManager) -> Bad: (1) Good: (0) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System\DisableTaskMgr (Hijack.TaskManager) -> Bad: (1) Good: (0) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.exe\(default) (Hijacked.exeFile) -> Bad: (secfile) Good: (exefile) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Folders Infected:
C:\Program Files\Defense Center (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Files Infected:
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp\mschrt20ex.dll (Rogue.FakeAV) -> Delete on reboot.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp\esentutl64.exe (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings\Temp\wscsvc32.exe (Trojan.FakeAlert) -> Delete on reboot.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\about.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\activate.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\buy.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\def.db (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defext.dll (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\defhook.dll (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\help.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\scan.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\settings.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\splash.mp3 (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\Uninstall.exe (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\update.ico (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Program Files\Defense Center\virus.mp3 (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\About.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Activate.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Buy.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Defense Center Support.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Defense Center.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Scan.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Settings.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Start Menu\Programs\Defense Center\Update.lnk (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Application Data\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\Defense Center.LNK (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Desktop\Defense Center.LNK (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Desktop\Defense Center Support.LNK (Rogue.DefenseCenter) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

As mentioned before the full version of Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware could have protected your computer against this threat.

We use different ways of protecting your computer(s):

  • Dynamically Blocks Malware Sites & Servers
  • Malware Execution Prevention

Save yourself the hassle and get protected.

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Additional removal information.

Due to the rootkit this application often comes bundled with, you may need this information to fully remove the rogue.

For almost every .exe file you run the rogue will throw up a warning like this one:

exewarning.png

Simply click Ignore and continue.

  • After you updated Malwarebytes, click on the More Tools tab and click the Run Tool button under FileASSASSIN.
    FileASASSIN.png
  • In the explorer window browse to C:\Program Files\Defense Center folder (or the corresponding folder for your setup) and select the defcnt.exe file.
    defcnt.png
  • Click Yes to confirm you want to permanently remove the file and Yes to restart your computer.

  • After the reboot you should be able to run Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware without getting the warning mentioned earlier.
  • If this is true you can select to Perform quick scan, then click Scan.
  • When the scan is complete, click OK, then Show Results to view the results.
  • Be sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected. Reboot your computer if prompted.
  • When completed, a log will open in Notepad. The rogue application should now be gone.

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