Has Your Computer Been Hijacked by Spyware?

By: Michael Archipley

I was recently working on a computer for a friend of mine. He failed to install some critical Windows updates and as a result Spyware and viruses were installed on his computer that eventually brought the system down. I was finally able get the system restored after a bunch of hard work.

At first it started out with a few pop-ups. Over the course of a few hours, the pop-ups were coming up faster than they could be closed. Eventually the system would not even boot up so he called me.

I brought the computer home and hooked it up to my network and made sure all other computers on the network were turned off as it can quickly spread. I was able to get the system to boot normally but it only stayed up for a couple minutes. Hundreds of pop-ups started coming up and I could not keep up with them all. Most of the pop-ups were telling me that the computer had a virus and I had to buy some certain anti-virus software to get rid of it. It looked like some kind of an affiliate scam. It appeared that one of the affiliate sellers for the virus program figured out how to install software that will hijack the computer and install viruses and Spyware then force those affected to buy the software to remove it.

Not wanting to spend $25 on some software that I was not sure would even fix the problem; I spent a couple hours getting rid of everything taking it over. I booted the computer into Safe Mode with Network Support so I could connect to the Internet to download some removal programs. I noticed that I was still getting the pop-ups this way but not near as many. I could close them faster than they could pop-up. I then downloaded a free program called Adware along with Windows Defender. After downloading the programs I disconnected the computer from the internet and ran the programs. All spyware was removed and the computer operation returned to normal.

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