Information Security

How To Remove GimmieAnswers Spyware Virus, TDLS Alias Alureon

Earlier today a client called and said he had a virus or some spyware on his computer that could not be removed. The client was remote so I had to login to his computer to investigate. I used the typical tools such as Malwarebytes and Microsoft Security Essentials but the issue still existed. It seemed as if the computer had a proxy server configured but the proxy did not show underneath Internet Explorer connection settings or any of the other browsers. It didn’t happen all of the time but every now and then a pop up window would appear for the site GimmieAnswers.org and some other pop ups regarding “Daily Giveaway Contests” were also displaying. Below is more information on how the issue was resolved.

Technology Insights

How To Remove Personal Security Virus From Windows Computer

A client of mine called me in a panic yesterday because a laptop he uses for work got infected with the Personal Security virus. Personal Security is a nasty virus, also sometimes called antispyware or malware, that takes over your computer and attempts to get you to purchase the software. The virus actually makes the end user think that it is legit software and they are only doing you a favor by protecting your computer however this is not the case. Below I describe things that the virus will do to blend in to Windows as well as a method I have discovered as one of the easier ways to remove it.

Technology Errors

Windows Defender: This operation returned because the timeout period expired. (Error Code: 0x800705b4)

I recently received a new Dell laptop that has Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit as the operating system. A friend and I were discussing virus protection software as well as spyware protection software and how Windows 7 handles each. I am a big fan of Windows Defender so I was looking at the configuration on my Windows 7 computer and realized that the Windows Defender service was not starting. I hadn’t even realized this because I typically turn off the Virus, Spyware, and Firewall messaging that Windows complains about if you don’t have each installed the way the OS wants. So needless to say I was surprised that Windows Defender was stopped. It took me awhile to finally figure out how to resolve and I came across a bunch of issues that others may have so below I describe the error, steps I took to resolve, and final resolution.