Just when I thought that I was one of the most “web savvy” and “tech savvy” people on earth, who could never be tricked into downloading anything that would infect my computer…
My laptop gets infected by what’s come to be known as the “Google Redirection Virus”.
The symptoms are very obvious…
You do a Google (Yahoo or Bing) search, and when you click on any of the results, then it redirects you to a totally unrelated page on a completely unrelated web site that has all kinds of ads on it. My Google toolbar for FireFox even blocked some of the sites as spam/malware sites, and did not allow me to actually visit them.
So I first consoled myself following this rude shock that in spite of having McAfee Virus Protection on my laptop, using only Firefox (no IE) and being extremely “download paranoid”, I had still ended up a victim of this stupid virus.
And then I started my Google search (every time I did a search to research this virus, guess where the first Google result took me? To a spam site, of course! The virus was still very much in action!
The first thing I found, was that the virus had changed the way my Firefox browser connects to the interwebs.
See how the setting had changed to “Manual proxy configuration” to point to “127.0.0.1” on port “64646”.
First thing to do is to change the setting to “No Proxy” and hit “OK” (unless you’re actually using some other proxy server).
That seemed like it solved the redirection issue, but I had to be absolutely certain. So back to Google – without the redirection issue.
And that’s when I found more and more people talking about the Hitman Free Virus Scanner software.
The software itself has a cost associated, but they allow you to do a free scan and even remove any viruses it may find, for free, using their free 30-day trial version.
If you don’t wish to fully install the anti-virus software, just select the option to run a free “one time” scan of your computer.
Worked like a charm!
It picked up on many malware files on my laptop, as you can see below.
Here’s what it looks like after it cleaned up all the garbage (required a reboot to fully delete one file).
So here I am, after cleaning and rebooting – totally virus free (or so I hope!).
Now that I’ve destroyed whatever little confidence you may have had in “big name” anti-virus programs, go read more about the Hitman tool, and get rid of the trojans!
Happy Trojan Hunting! 🙂
– Ravi Jayagopal
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