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I have a virus. Now what?

Posted by Bob Zenith on September 17, 2010

I am always asked this question when helping out friends who’ve fallen victims to a virus or a Trojan. The problem is, most of these viruses (especially fake anti-viruses) will disallow your connection to the internet and other programs, such as your real anti virus. So, people ask me, “what do I do now?”

I’m amazed how many people don’t know how to gain access to the internet via safe mode. If you get a virus that disallows your connection to the internet, you should:

1. Re-Boot your computer into safe mode with networking: Restart your computer and continuously press the F8 Key until a screen with 3 options comes up. Choose “Safe Mode with Networking”

2. Once you login and are at your desktop, start Internet Explorer. It is likely you will receive a message saying that you’ve failed to connect to the internet. If so, go to Tools -> Internet Options -> Connections (tab) -> LAN settings (button). Uncheck the box “Use a proxy server for your LAN”. Once unchecked, and you press OK and apply the settings, you should be able to access the internet via Internet Explorer.

3. Download a free removal tool: I always recommend installing MalwareBytes Anti-Malware and running a quick scan. Once you remove the infected items, I would recommend rescanning your computer, just to make sure everything is removed.
I would also install SUPERAntiSpyware, or SpyBot Search and Destroy, which ever you prefer (Personally, if find SUPERAntiSpyware a bit better, but they are both excellent programs).

4. You should be clean 🙂: If you removed the infected items found by these programs, your computer should be clean – If these programs didn’t find any infections, you probably aren’t infected, something else is disallowing your access to the internet, like some settings in the Control Panel, or some Internet Settings.


3 Responses to “I have a virus. Now what?”

  1. Spudz said

    Some great advice for the less knowledgable Bob. 😀

    Another useful program people could use that doesn’t slow the system down, affect any realtime security programs but will stop browser attacks etc, is [url=http://www.javacoolsoftware.com/spywareblaster.html]SpywareBlaster[/url]. I use it myself and it is a saviour.

    • Bob Zenith said

      Huh, I’ve never used Spyware Blaster; I’ll have to try it out 🙂

      Although, just from what I’m reading about, it seems that Spyware Blaster focuses more on prevention rather than detection, and the main purpose of this tutorial was to help already infected users / computers. Again, that’s just from what I’ve been reading, I’ll test it soon.

      • spudz said

        True but that xtra level of protection once you have a clean system is a big bonus especially when it only needs tro be manually updated about once a week and requires no further interaction 😀

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