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Email Worm


Lorgeo
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Hello,

I was attacked by an email worm that emailed all my contacts a link on 11/22. Nothing obvious seems to have happened since. I ran Malwarebytes and nothing was found. Ran Stinger, nothing again. Ran some utility from the MS site which claimed to have found some things, but could do nothing or give any direction. So here I am.

Can someone please advise?

Thanks.

hijackthis.log

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Hi,

Download TFC to your desktop

  • Open the file and close any other windows.
  • It will close all programs itself when run, make sure to let it run uninterrupted.
  • Click the Start button to begin the process. The program should not take long to finish its job
  • Once its finished it should reboot your machine, if not, do this yourself to ensure a complete clean

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Start Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware

  • Once the program has loaded, click the "Update" tab and click the "Check For updates" button.
  • Once the updates were downloaded, click the "Scanner" tab, select "Perform Quick Scan", then click Scan.
  • The scan may take some time to finish,so please be patient.
  • When the scan is complete, click OK, then Show Results to view the results.
  • Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected.
  • When disinfection is completed, a log will open in Notepad and you may be prompted to Restart.(See Extra Note)
  • The log is automatically saved by MBAM and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM.
  • Copy&Paste the entire report in your next reply.

Extra Note:

If MBAM encounters a file that is difficult to remove,you will be presented with 1 of 2 prompts,click OK to either and let MBAM proceed with the disinfection process,if asked to restart the computer,please do so immediatly.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please download DDS and save it to your desktop.

  • Disable any script blocking protection.
  • Double click dds.com to run the tool..
  • When done, DDS will open two logs (DDS.txt and Attach.txt).
  • Save both reports to your desktop.

Please include the contents of DDS.txt in your next reply.

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Hello and thanks for the reply. I've downloaded and run TFC and rebooted. Updated and ran Malwarebytes and did a quick scan. It didn't take too long and found '0' malicious demons, so I'm assuming that is the reason there was nothing to check and remove. I'll paste in the log and run the DDS and paste the reports when complete.

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware 1.50

www.malwarebytes.org

Database version: 5214

Windows 6.1.7600

Internet Explorer 8.0.7600.16385

11/30/2010 7:05:20 PM

mbam-log-2010-11-30 (19-05-20).txt

Scan type: Quick scan

Objects scanned: 149419

Time elapsed: 2 minute(s), 12 second(s)

Memory Processes Infected: 0

Memory Modules Infected: 0

Registry Keys Infected: 0

Registry Values Infected: 0

Registry Data Items Infected: 0

Folders Infected: 0

Files Infected: 0

Memory Processes Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Memory Modules Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Registry Keys Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Registry Values Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Registry Data Items Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Folders Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

Files Infected:

(No malicious items detected)

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I seem to be having some problems posting. I'll try again.

DDS (Ver_10-11-27.01) - NTFS_AMD64

Run by George at 19:15:31.57 on Tue 11/30/2010

Internet Explorer: 8.0.7600.16385 BrowserJavaVersion: 1.6.0_22

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 6.1.7600.0.1252.1.1033.18.4061.2868 [GMT -5:00]

============== Running Processes ===============

C:\Windows\system32\wininit.exe

C:\Windows\system32\lsm.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k DcomLaunch

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k RPCSS

C:\Windows\system32\atiesrxx.exe

C:\Windows\System32\svchost.exe -k LocalServiceNetworkRestricted

C:\Windows\System32\svchost.exe -k LocalSystemNetworkRestricted

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k netsvcs

C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\stwrt64.inf_amd64_neutral_afc3018f8cfedd20\STacSV64.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k LocalService

C:\Program Files\Dell\DellDock\DockLogin.exe

C:\Windows\system32\atieclxx.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k NetworkService

C:\Windows\System32\spoolsv.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k LocalServiceNoNetwork

C:\Program Files (x86)\Absolute Software\Absolute Notifier\AbsoluteNotifierService.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Elements Organizer 8.0\PhotoshopElementsFileAgent.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\bin\AppleMobileDeviceService.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Bonjour\mDNSResponder.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k LocalServiceAndNoImpersonation

C:\Windows\system32\mfevtps.exe

C:\Windows\SysWOW64\rpcnet.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\sftservice.EXE

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k imgsvc

C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\mcshield.exe

C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\mfefire.exe

C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\McSvcHost\McSvHost.exe

C:\Windows\system32\svchost.exe -k NetworkServiceNetworkRestricted

C:\Windows\system32\wbem\wmiprvse.exe

C:\Windows\system32\taskhost.exe

C:\Windows\system32\Dwm.exe

C:\Windows\Explorer.EXE

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\scheduler\STService.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\DSUpdate\DSUpd.exe

C:\Windows\system32\conhost.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Toaster.exe

C:\Program Files\Synaptics\SynTP\SynTPEnh.exe

C:\Program Files\IDT\WDM\sttray64.exe

C:\Program Files\Dell\QuickSet\quickset.exe

C:\ProgramData\Macrovision\FLEXnet Connect\11\ISUSPM.exe

C:\Users\George\AppData\Roaming\SanDisk\Sansa Updater\SansaDispatch.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Elements Organizer 8.0\ElementsOrganizerSyncAgent.exe

C:\Program Files\Synaptics\SynTP\SynTPHelper.exe

C:\Program Files\Logitech\SetPoint\SetPoint.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Online\DataSafeOnline.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\CyberLink\PowerDVD DX\PDVDDXSrv.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell Webcam\Dell Webcam Central\WebcamDell2.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\McAfee Security Scan\2.0.181\SSScheduler.exe

c:\Program Files (x86)\ATI Technologies\ATI.ACE\Core-Static\MOM.exe

C:\Program Files\Dell\DellDock\DellDock.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Roxio\Roxio Burn\RoxioBurnLauncher.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Java\Java Update\jusched.exe

C:\Program Files\McAfee.com\Agent\mcagent.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Absolute Software\Absolute Notifier\AbsoluteNotifier.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\ARM\1.0\AdobeARM.exe

C:\Program Files\Logitech\SetPoint\x86\SetPoint32.exe

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Logishrd\KHAL2\KHALMNPR.EXE

C:\Windows\System32\svchost.exe -k LocalServicePeerNet

C:\Windows\system32\SearchIndexer.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\ATI Technologies\ATI.ACE\Core-Static\CCC.exe

C:\Program Files\Windows Media Player\wmpnetwk.exe

C:\Program Files\iPod\bin\iPodService.exe

C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\mscorsvw.exe

C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\mscorsvw.exe

C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell Support Center\bin\sprtsvc.exe

C:\Windows\system32\taskhost.exe

C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Macromed\Flash\FlashUtil10l_ActiveX.exe

C:\Windows\system32\SearchProtocolHost.exe

C:\Windows\system32\SearchFilterHost.exe

C:\Users\George\Desktop\dds.com

C:\Windows\system32\conhost.exe

C:\Windows\system32\wbem\wmiprvse.exe

============== Pseudo HJT Report ===============

uStart Page = hxxp://www.google.com/

BHO: Adobe PDF Link Helper: {18df081c-e8ad-4283-a596-fa578c2ebdc3} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\Acrobat\ActiveX\AcroIEHelperShim.dll

BHO: McAfee Phishing Filter: {27b4851a-3207-45a2-b947-be8afe6163ab} - c:\progra~1\mcafee\msk\mskapbho.dll

BHO: scriptproxy: {7db2d5a0-7241-4e79-b68d-6309f01c5231} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\ScriptSn.20100916061814.dll

BHO: Java Plug-In 2 SSV Helper: {dbc80044-a445-435b-bc74-9c25c1c588a9} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jre6\bin\jp2ssv.dll

TB: {21FA44EF-376D-4D53-9B0F-8A89D3229068} - No File

uRun: [iSUSPM] "C:\ProgramData\Macrovision\FLEXnet Connect\11\ISUSPM.exe" -scheduler

uRun: [sansaDispatch] C:\Users\George\AppData\Roaming\SanDisk\Sansa Updater\SansaDispatch.exe

uRun: [PhotoshopElements8SyncAgent] C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Elements Organizer 8.0\ElementsOrganizerSyncAgent.exe

mRun: [startCCC] "c:\Program Files (x86)\ATI Technologies\ATI.ACE\Core-Static\CLIStart.exe" MSRun

mRun: [Dell DataSafe Online] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Online\DataSafeOnline.exe" /m

mRun: [PDVDDXSrv] "C:\Program Files (x86)\CyberLink\PowerDVD DX\PDVDDXSrv.exe"

mRun: [Dell Webcam Central] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell Webcam\Dell Webcam Central\WebcamDell2.exe" /mode2

mRun: [Desktop Disc Tool] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Roxio\Roxio Burn\RoxioBurnLauncher.exe"

mRun: [DellSupportCenter] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell Support Center\bin\sprtcmd.exe" /P DellSupportCenter

mRun: [QuickTime Task] "C:\Program Files (x86)\QuickTime\QTTask.exe" -atboottime

mRun: [iTunesHelper] "C:\Program Files (x86)\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe"

mRun: [sunJavaUpdateSched] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Java\Java Update\jusched.exe"

mRun: [mcui_exe] "C:\Program Files\McAfee.com\Agent\mcagent.exe" /runkey

mRun: [Absolute Notifier] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Absolute Software\Absolute Notifier\AbsoluteNotifier.exe"

mRun: [Adobe Reader Speed Launcher] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Reader\Reader_sl.exe"

mRun: [Adobe ARM] "C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\ARM\1.0\AdobeARM.exe"

mRunOnce: [Launcher] C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\scheduler\Launcher.exe

mRunOnce: [DSUpdateLauncher] "c:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\DSUpdate\hstart.exe" /NOCONSOLE /D="c:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\DSUpdate" /RUNAS "c:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\Components\DSUpdate\DSUpd.exe"

mRunOnce: [sTToasterLauncher] C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\toasterLauncher.exe

mRunOnce: [Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware] C:\Program Files (x86)\Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware\mbamgui.exe /install /silent

StartupFolder: C:\Users\George\AppData\Roaming\MICROS~1\Windows\STARTM~1\Programs\Startup\DELLDO~1.LNK - C:\Program Files\Dell\DellDock\DellDock.exe

StartupFolder: C:\PROGRA~3\MICROS~1\Windows\STARTM~1\Programs\Startup\LOGITE~1.LNK - C:\Program Files\Logitech\SetPoint\SetPoint.exe

StartupFolder: C:\PROGRA~3\MICROS~1\Windows\STARTM~1\Programs\Startup\MCAFEE~1.LNK - C:\Program Files (x86)\McAfee Security Scan\2.0.181\SSScheduler.exe

mPolicies-explorer: NoActiveDesktop = 1 (0x1)

mPolicies-system: ConsentPromptBehaviorAdmin = 5 (0x5)

mPolicies-system: ConsentPromptBehaviorUser = 3 (0x3)

mPolicies-system: EnableUIADesktopToggle = 0 (0x0)

IE: E&xport to Microsoft Excel - C:\PROGRA~2\MICROS~2\Office12\EXCEL.EXE/3000

IE: {2670000A-7350-4f3c-8081-5663EE0C6C49} - {48E73304-E1D6-4330-914C-F5F514E3486C} - C:\PROGRA~2\MICROS~2\Office12\ONBttnIE.dll

IE: {92780B25-18CC-41C8-B9BE-3C9C571A8263} - {FF059E31-CC5A-4E2E-BF3B-96E929D65503} - C:\PROGRA~2\MICROS~2\Office12\REFIEBAR.DLL

Trusted Zone: real.com\rhap-app-4-0

Trusted Zone: real.com\rhapreg

DPF: {8AD9C840-044E-11D1-B3E9-00805F499D93} - hxxp://java.sun.com/update/1.6.0/jinstall-1_6_0_22-windows-i586.cab

DPF: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0022-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - hxxp://java.sun.com/update/1.6.0/jinstall-1_6_0_22-windows-i586.cab

DPF: {CAFEEFAC-FFFF-FFFF-FFFF-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - hxxp://java.sun.com/update/1.6.0/jinstall-1_6_0_22-windows-i586.cab

BHO-X64: McAfee Phishing Filter: {27B4851A-3207-45A2-B947-BE8AFE6163AB} - c:\PROGRA~1\mcafee\msk\MSKAPB~1.DLL

BHO-X64: McAfee Phishing Filter - No File

BHO-X64: scriptproxy: {7DB2D5A0-7241-4E79-B68D-6309F01C5231} - C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\ScriptSn.20100916061814.dll

BHO-X64: scriptproxy - No File

BHO-X64: Java Plug-In 2 SSV Helper: {DBC80044-A445-435b-BC74-9C25C1C588A9} - C:\Program Files\Java\jre6\bin\jp2ssv.dll

TB-X64: {21FA44EF-376D-4D53-9B0F-8A89D3229068} - No File

mRun-x64: [synTPEnh] %ProgramFiles%\Synaptics\SynTP\SynTPEnh.exe

mRun-x64: [sysTrayApp] C:\Program Files\IDT\WDM\sttray64.exe

mRun-x64: [QuickSet] C:\Program Files\Dell\QuickSet\QuickSet.exe

mRun-x64: [Kernel and Hardware Abstraction Layer] KHALMNPR.EXE

================= FIREFOX ===================

FF - ProfilePath - C:\Users\George\AppData\Roaming\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\07jjux0x.default\

FF - prefs.js: browser.startup.homepage - hxxps://login.yahoo.com/config/login_verify2?.intl=us&.partner=sbc&.src=ym

FF - plugin: C:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jre6\bin\new_plugin\npdeployJava1.dll

FF - plugin: C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Macromed\Flash\NPSWF32.dll

FF - HiddenExtension: Java Console: No Registry Reference - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0017-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - HiddenExtension: Java Console: No Registry Reference - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0019-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - HiddenExtension: Java Console: No Registry Reference - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0020-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - HiddenExtension: Java Console: No Registry Reference - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0021-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - HiddenExtension: Java Console: No Registry Reference - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0022-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - Extension: Default: {972ce4c6-7e08-4474-a285-3208198ce6fd} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{972ce4c6-7e08-4474-a285-3208198ce6fd}

FF - Extension: Java Console: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0017-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0017-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - Extension: Java Console: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0019-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0019-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - Extension: Java Console: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0020-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0020-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - Extension: Java Console: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0021-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0021-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

FF - Extension: Java Console: {CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0022-ABCDEFFEDCBA} - C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\extensions\{CAFEEFAC-0016-0000-0022-ABCDEFFEDCBA}

============= SERVICES / DRIVERS ===============

R0 mfehidk;McAfee Inc. mfehidk;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\mfehidk.sys [2010-9-16 529000]

R0 PxHlpa64;PxHlpa64;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\PxHlpa64.sys [2009-11-9 55280]

R1 mfenlfk;McAfee NDIS Light Filter;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\mfenlfk.sys [2010-9-16 75032]

R1 mfewfpk;McAfee Inc. mfewfpk;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\mfewfpk.sys [2010-9-16 283232]

R2 AbsoluteNotifier;Absolute Notifier;C:\Program Files (x86)\Absolute Software\Absolute Notifier\AbsoluteNotifierService.exe [2010-10-8 10408]

R2 AdobeActiveFileMonitor8.0;Adobe Active File Monitor V8;C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Elements Organizer 8.0\PhotoshopElementsFileAgent.exe [2009-9-6 169312]

R2 AMD External Events Utility;AMD External Events Utility;C:\Windows\System32\atiesrxx.exe [2009-11-9 203264]

R2 clr_optimization_v4.0.30319_32;Microsoft .NET Framework NGEN v4.0.30319_X86;C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\mscorsvw.exe [2010-3-18 130384]

R2 clr_optimization_v4.0.30319_64;Microsoft .NET Framework NGEN v4.0.30319_X64;C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\mscorsvw.exe [2010-3-18 138576]

R2 DockLoginService;Dock Login Service;C:\Program Files\Dell\DellDock\DockLogin.exe [2008-12-18 155648]

R2 McMPFSvc;McAfee Personal Firewall Service;"C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\McSvcHost\McSvHost.exe" /McCoreSvc [2010-9-16 355440]

R2 McNaiAnn;McAfee VirusScan Announcer;"C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\McSvcHost\McSvHost.exe" /McCoreSvc [2010-9-16 355440]

R2 McProxy;McAfee Proxy Service;"C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\McSvcHost\McSvHost.exe" /McCoreSvc [2010-9-16 355440]

R2 McShield;McShield;C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\mcshield.exe [2010-9-16 200056]

R2 mfefire;McAfee Firewall Core Service;C:\Program Files\Common Files\McAfee\SystemCore\mfefire.exe [2010-9-16 245352]

R2 mfevtp;McAfee Validation Trust Protection Service;C:\Windows\System32\mfevtps.exe [2010-9-16 149032]

R2 SftService;SoftThinks Agent Service;C:\Program Files (x86)\Dell DataSafe Local Backup\SftService.exe [2009-11-9 689472]

R3 cfwids;McAfee Inc. cfwids;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\cfwids.sys [2010-9-16 62800]

R3 CtClsFlt;Creative Camera Class Upper Filter Driver;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\CtClsFlt.sys [2009-11-9 172704]

R3 k57nd60a;Broadcom NetLink Gigabit Ethernet - NDIS 6.0;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\k57nd60a.sys [2009-6-10 270848]

R3 mfeavfk;McAfee Inc. mfeavfk;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\mfeavfk.sys [2010-9-16 190136]

R3 mfefirek;McAfee Inc. mfefirek;C:\Windows\System32\drivers\mfefirek.sys [2010-9-16 441072]

R3 NETw5v64;Intel

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Hi,

I'd like us to scan your machine with ESET OnlineScan

  1. Hold down Control and click on the following link to open ESET OnlineScan in a new window.
    ESET OnlineScan
  2. Click the esetOnline.png button.
  3. For alternate browsers only: (Microsoft Internet Explorer users can skip these steps)

    1. Click on esetSmartInstall.png to download the ESET Smart Installer. Save it to your desktop.
    2. Double click on the esetSmartInstallDesktopIcon.png icon on your desktop.

    3. Check esetAcceptTerms.png
    4. Click the esetStart.png button.
    5. Accept any security warnings from your browser.
    6. Check esetScanArchives.png
    7. Push the Start button.
    8. ESET will then download updates for itself, install itself, and begin scanning your computer. Please be patient as this can take some time.
    9. When the scan completes, push esetListThreats.png
    10. Push esetExport.png, and save the file to your desktop using a unique name, such as ESETScan. Include the contents of this report in your next reply.
    11. Push the esetBack.png button.
    12. Push esetFinish.png

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Hi Gammo,

Sorry it took a while to get back to this. I did the online scan as suggested and there were no threats found. Hence nothing to paste into my reply. Hopefully that is good news. Please advise if I need to do something else, otherwise thank you very much for your time and effort in helping me.

Lorgeo

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Hi,

Your logs appear to be clean now. There is only a bit of cleanup that we will deal with in this post, as well as prevention from future infections. :)

  • Download OTC to your desktop and run it
  • A list of tool components used in the Cleanup of malware will be downloaded.
  • If your Firewall or Real Time protection attempts to block OTC to reach the Internet, please allow the application to do so.
  • Click Yes to begin the Cleanup process and remove these components, including this application.
  • You will be asked to reboot the machine to finish the Cleanup process. If you are asked to reboot the machine choose Yes.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Keep a backup of your important files

Now, more than ever, it's especially important to protect your digital files and memories. This article is full of good information on alternatives for home backup solutions.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Make proper use of your anti-virus and firewall

You should keep your anti-virus and firewall guard enabled at all times, don't shut them off unless there's a specific reason to do so.

Also, regularly performing a full system scan with your anti-virus program is a good idea to make sure nothing has slipped through your protection. Once every two weeks works well for many people. You can set the scan to run during a time when you don't plan to use the computer and just leave it to complete on its own.

Keep in mind that anti-virus programs are far from perfect. They don't protect you against every piece of malware that's out there, so don't trust them blindly. If an anti-virus reports a file as 'clean' then it's doesn't necessarily has to mean it is.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Keep all your software updated

It is important to keep up on system updates from Microsoft by regularly checking their website at: http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com/, as these patch critical security vulnerabilities and help to keep you safe.

It's also important to keep programs up to date so that malware doesn't exploit any old security flaws. FileHippo Update Checker is an extremely helpful program that will tell you which of your programs need to be updated. Java and Adobe Reader are two of the main security vulnerabilities. You can find the latest version of Java here, you will want the Java SE Runtime Environment (JRE) one. You can find the latest version of Adobe Reader here.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Use a safer web browser

Internet Explorer is not the most secure tool for browsing the web. It has been known to be very susceptible to infection, and there are a couple good free alternatives: Firefox and Opera. Both are excellent faster, safer, more powerful and functional free alternatives to Internet Explorer. It's definitely worth the short period of adjustment to start using one of these. If you wish to continue using Internet Explorer, it would be a good idea to follow the tutorial here which will help you to make IE much safer.

If you decide to use the Firefox browser, the McAfee SiteAdvisor add-on will nicely help to enhance your security. This add-on tells you whether the sites you are about to visit are safe or not. A must if you do a lot of Googling.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Some other security programs

It is wise these days to have a few security programs installed and running on your machine except from just an anti-virus and a firewall. I will list some of them.

  • A good anti-spyware program installed on your pc is very important to help remove any spyware that may have gotten on your computer. I highly recommend Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware.
  • SpywareBlaster to help prevent spyware from installing in the first place.
  • MVPS Hosts file replaces your current HOSTS file with one containing well known ad sites and other bad sites. This prevents your computer from connecting to those sites in the future.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Be careful

Having security programs installed is very helpful to you, but none of them have the gift of human thought. The best way to make sure you don't get infected is to exercise common sense. Be careful of what websites you visit - if a site looks suspicious, trust your instincts and get out of there. Be careful of what attachments you open in emails and files you download from websites - check them over carefully to make sure that you know what you're getting.

Using peer-to-peer programs (eg: LimeWire, BitTorrent, uTorrent, Kazaa) or downloading cracks and keygens is something else to avoid. These are the most common way to get infected. Malware writers use these programs to spread infections as it is the easiest way for them. The majority of infections we see in the Malware Removal forum are due to people using p2p programs to download cracks/keygens/warez. These are not only illegal, but will always contain some form of malware. You have no way of verifying that the things you download are legitimate or that they don't contain malware. Even with an up to date anti-virus and firewall, some of these things will still infect you. It is highly recommend that you uninstall all peer-to-peer programs. It just isn't worth it.

Other common ways of getting infected are dis-reputable sites forcing you to download and install a codec. Or viruses using Instant Messaging programs (Windows Live Messenger, MSN Messenger, AIM) to send a file claiming it to be "photos" from a friend, only for it to turn out to be a virus.

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Slow computer?

If your computer begins to slow down in the future for no particular reason, your first step should not be to come to the malware forum. As your computer ages and is used, it's parts wear, files and programs accumulate, and its performance can decrease. To restore your computer's performance to its best possible level, follow the steps in this page written by malware expert Miekiemoes.

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I'll leave this thread open for a couple days in case you come across any lingering problems that need fixing, then I'll close it up. If you need it reopened for any reason just shoot me a PM. It's been a pleasure working with you, now best of luck!

Cheers,

Gammo :)

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  • Staff

Glad we could help. :)

If you need this topic reopened, please send a Private Message to any one of the moderating team members. Please include a link to this thread with your request. This applies only to the originator of this thread.

Other members who need assistance please start your own topic in a new thread. Thanks!

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