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A virus got me, finally, after all these years

By DKeith45 ·
Wow. Finally nailed by a virus after all these years. I've been fooling around with PC's since 1992 and this is the first time I've personally gotten a virus. I've helped friends, family, and paying customers rid their systems of viruses they've picked up, but I've never gotten one myself because I've always been VERY careful. But this time I was blindsided. I visited a website I visit often, a free dating site, and BAM. Windows installer popped up, then poofed. I thought "what the heck was that?" Then suddenly I lost the ability to go to a different website. (I was using IE at the time). Then IT popped up. I knew what it was the moment it appeared... "AntiVirus System Pro". It told me I had viruses on my computer and started a scan. At that instant I disconnected from my LAN. Then started my anti-virus program running. While it was running, I got popups saying I was infected... and that I should buy the full version of AntiVirusSystemPro etc... I tried to "CTRL-ALT-DEL" and only got an error message. I tried to get to "Control Panel" only to again get an error message. WOW. Eventually my anti-virus software found the problems: W32:Agent-AEKI and W32:Crypt-FOQ. After they were deleted, and I rebooted, everything seemed fine again, but IE no longer worked. It was corrupted. So I had to use FireFox till I figured out how to fix IE. I eventually got IE going again, and all is back to normal now, but... WOW. I didn't click on an attachment, install anything... but got a virus anyway simply by going to a favorite website. HOW does THAT happen? How did I miss that possibility? Anyone out there that can shed some light on how to prevent future infections?

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RE: Virus

by PoppaTab In reply to A virus got me, finally, ...

Hello,

Sounds like you got a "drive by download". This is easy to fix in IE; open IE, click on tools,click on Internet Options, enable protected mode. Then click on the security tab, click on Internet, then click on Custom Level. A list will pop up with the browser security settings. Scroll down to the downloads section and set downloads to Prompt. If you have not already done so; go to URL http://malwarebytes.org download and install the mbamsetup.exe and run that as well. I have run into this a few times; you will still get the message at certain websites that show a virus scan running and then show a download dialogue to fix it. Close that web tab if you see this and life will be fine. Try using Firefox or other web browsers that are more secure to begin with. Most virus scanners will catch the exploit when run or running. Try Using Microsoft Security Essentials if you don't have a malware scanner. That program is free and does auto updates. Remember, IE8 is more secure than previous versions, but default settings are for workability and some security. I hope this helps you.

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You go hit by a drive-by

by NickNielsen In reply to A virus got me, finally, ...

The thing you can do to prevent it in future is to use Firefox with NoScript running.

Your other option if you want to keep using IE is to go to Internet Options, Advanced, and scroll down to security. For IE 7

Disable:
"Allow active content from CDs to run on My Computer"
"Allow active content from files to run on My Computer"
"Allow software to run or install even if the signature is invalid"

Enable:
"Check for publisher's certificate revocation"
"Check for server certificate revocation"
"Check for signatures on downloaded programs"

Now go to the Security tab, click on Custom Level, and use <a href="http://surfthenetsafely.com/ieseczone8.htm">this page</a> as a reference.

This won't get you as secure as you probably would be using FF with NoScript, but afaik, it's about as secure as IE gets.

edit: add link

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Not logged in as Admin, are you?

by seanferd In reply to A virus got me, finally, ...

Running in a limited user account is the best thing you can do. This can help avoid or limit the extent of infection from drive-by downloads.

Note, however, that there is currently a Flash exploit for which there is no fix, that is, it can't really be fixed at all.

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