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Is a "Microsoft Security Essentials Alert" window a virus?

By kvre25 ·
A window appeared on a computer entitled Microsoft Security Essentials Alert - with an X to click for Potential threat details. Inside the window is the message Unknown Win32/Trojan. Is window a hoax? Buttons include "Clean computer,"
"Apply actions" and "Close" The window has not been removed by Norton AntiVirus. Has anyone had experience with this situation?

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It depends...

by TobiF In reply to Is a "Microsoft Security ...

Are you using Microsoft Security Essentials? If no, then this is probably some kind of scam. Could be a web popup, for instance, since this Security Essentials is gaining traction, I guess there will be impostors around, now and then.

if you DO use this program, then:
Different AV vendors can have slightly different views on what is malware, or not. In addition, the update cycle will certainly be different between these products.

I'd check in task manager and try to find out what programs and processes are running in the computer (and where their files are located). Also check what kind of file they're warning about, does it seem realistic?

Good luck!
Oh, I read somewhere that Security Essentials would only run if you don't have other AV and Malware scanners active.

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Security Essentials

by santeewelding In reply to It depends...

Gets along right fine with MBAM on my machines.

One thing I noticed the OP reporting was what options the window offered. MSSE doesn't work like that for me. I get a notification down at the right side of the taskbar, and always to open SE and see what's what.

If Security Essentials is not installed, then, surely, it is an infection, and good to know about.

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not 100% sure

by PurpleSkys In reply to Is a "Microsoft Security ...

but my senses are screaming "run a malwarebytes scan in safe mode" http://www.malwarebytes.org/mbam.php download, install, update and then run

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Are you also getting popups?

by NickNielsen In reply to Is a "Microsoft Security ...

Are popups telling you that application files cannot be opened because they are corrupted?

If so, you have a malware infection. DO NOT click on the popups. Reboot your computer into safe mode, and use a system repair utility such as <a href="http://www.piriform.com/ccleaner/download">CCleaner</a> to check your startup options. (In CCleaner, click on Tools, then Startup.) You are looking for an entry with what seems to be a randomly-generated name (nhwsdoi1.dll, for example). Delete that entry and the directory to which it refers. If you have any questions about which entries are valid or not, enter the file name into a web search engine; the random filename will usually not give any results.

Another alternative is to use the registry editor in safe mode. Click Start | Run, type in "regedit.exe", and press enter. When the registry opens, back it up by clicking File | Export. Set the Export range to All, enter your filename of choice, and click OK. After this completes, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run and check for the randomly-generated name. You should also check in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run. Again, if you find it, delete the registry entry and the directory it refers to.

If you do not feel comfortable with either of these methods, you should contact a professional to repair your computer.

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