Scareware removal — the basic guide to avoid or block hackers’ attack
Everyone who uses the Internet on a regular basis has at least once received an alert in the form of a red exclamation mark and flashing text informing that your device is infected with a virus. Unfortunately, these days, such warnings are not uncommon, and more and more users are faced with different types of viruses that harm their online security. But the good news is that you can take steps that will make you feel safe.
The definition of scareware
Scareware is a form of malware that scares you to trick you into doing something. In most cases, it wants the scared user to buy and install malware. We mean that the notification you receive is not real. You don’t scan your computer for viruses, but it tells you that your system is infected. In a panic, you urgently buy a program that should save you, but it is this program that infects your data. This is how it works.
Hackers use scareware to:
- Steal your credit card data. When you buy their software, you have to enter your details, and of course, hackers can use it.
- Infect your device. Once your smartphone or computer is attacked, hackers can gather your data and use it for different purposes. For example, to delete it when it comes to really sensitive information. Or they can sell it, blackmail you, extort money, and so on.
How can you understand that your notification is scareware?
On the one hand, if you are an experienced Internet user, you may immediately suspect something was wrong. On the other hand, most hackers are very smart people who are constantly working to improve their methods. They can even set up bogus companies, websites, and support services. Therefore, it is not enough to simply check the company’s website before purchasing the software. Here are a few things that should alert you:
- You are asked to remove security software that is already installed;
- The notification will look very annoying and aggressive, you cannot close it immediately, or it redirects you to the site;
- The name of the program that you are offered is similar to the one you already know. Many hackers change a couple of letters in their names, relying on brand recognition. They can also fake the design so that the user has no doubts.
- Your system starts to perform worse or behaves strangely. For example, a lot of pop-ups appear, the device is slow.
- You have already downloaded the program, but you cannot stop the installation or uninstall the application.
Keep in mind that real antiviruses always warn you that they will scan your system and do not send aggressive pop-ups or banners. They are designed to help you, not put pressure on you. If you feel like you’re being forced to do something, it’s scareware.
How can you get rid of scareware?
Unfortunately, every user can get into a situation when he or she has been tricked into installing malicious software. Do not despair because now it is important to take appropriate measures and find a way out.
- First, you urgently need to remove this program and install a good antivirus. It is important to understand that this can be difficult, and you may even collide if you need to reinstall the system.
- Always use common sense. Panic should not induce you to click on all banners and windows or download programs. Use only trusted resources, and if you receive a message with a link, be sure to check it.
- Also, if the installation of the program has already begun, you need to act quickly. Close the browser, turn off the computer, connect without the Internet and delete everything that has been downloaded.
There are several reliable ways to ensure your protection:
- always use the latest browser and other software;
- use a VPN like VeePN when connected to the Internet;
- use an ad blocker to protect you from annoying pop-ups;
- check your computer regularly with the help of antivirus
Remember that cybersecurity is a priority these days. Keep your devices protected.