Dealing With Rogue Software

What is Rogue Software?

Rogue security software, also known as “scareware,” is software that appears to be beneficial from a security perspective but provides limited or no security, generates erroneous or misleading alerts, or attempts to lure users into participating in fraudulent transactions.

How to Check for Rogue Software

How to Defend Your Computer

How Does Rogue Security Software Get on My Computer?

Rogue security software designers create legitimate looking pop-up windows that advertise security update software. These windows might appear on your screen while you surf the Web.

The “updates” or “alerts” in the pop-up windows call for you to take some sort of action, such as clicking to install the software, accept recommended updates, or remove unwanted viruses or spyware. When you click, the rogue security software downloads to your computer.

Rogue security software might also appear in the list of search results when you are searching for trustworthy antispyware software, so it is important to protect your computer.

What Does Rogue Security Software Do?

Rogue security software might report a virus, even though your computer is actually clean. The software might also fail to report viruses when your computer is infected. Inversely, sometimes, when you download rogue security software, it will install a virus or other malicious software on your computer so that the software has something to detect.

Some rogue security software might also:

  • Lure you into a fraudulent transaction (for example, upgrading to a non-existent paid version of a program).
  • Use social engineering to steal your personal information.
  • Install malware that can go undetected as it steals your data.
  • Launch pop-up windows with false or misleading alerts.
  • Slow your computer or corrupt files.
  • Disable Windows updates or disable updates to legitimate antivirus software.
  • Prevent you from visiting antivirus vendor Web sites.

2 Responses to “Dealing With Rogue Software”

  1. Jack

    Hi Mr. Powel,

    I did as you suggested. Scanned my system as outlined in your video , for the threat name: \Rogue AV Cleaner\ with the Eset recommended cleaner \ ERACleaner.exe\.
    Result was: \Done- Nothing found\.

    Should I try the other listed thread listed cleaners?. I still have my \multi email with attachement\ problem to resolve. It is only the OUTLOOK EXPRESS that does it. Emails w attachments send thru my GMail account arrive and behave normal. Could I re-install O.E. on its own without the whole XP Package? I am no guru but game to try anything.
    Kind regards, Jack.

  2. Dale Powell

    Sadly to date, I have not encountered one of rogue programs that the ESET Rogue AV Cleaner cleans. It seems it is for the slightly older bad programs out there and not for the latest ones (at least not yet). Anyway, Malwarebytes and SUPERAntiSpyware are very good products to try. As for Outlook Express, just know that it is part of Internet Explorer. You should not have to reinstall XP just to repair Outlook Express. If you reinstall/update Internet Explorer, you will also be reinstalling/updating Outlook Express. As a tech, I would not want to just blindly do this because IE/OE might have just been botched from a Windows Update gone bad, so you might just try rolling back to the previous version. But, for something new to try, there are a couple Internet Explorer repair tools in a program called Dial-a-Fix for Windows XP or you could try FixWin for Vista and Windows 7. Hope this helps.

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