Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Trouble with a Trojan Horse

No, I haven't been on more classical holidays, this is the computer variety.

I thought I had grown accustomed to my new laptop (have I mentioned, it's purple?!).   I have finally got it all set up how I want it and was beginning to relax when using it, but then, on Saturday, disaster struck.  Despite having McAfee installed, up and running and up to date, I acquired a trojan horse.

A trojan horse is malware that pretends to be something else, then reveals it's evil intentions, installing more malware onto your computer at the same time.

In this case, it was something called "LowPrice" which hijacks your browser so that you are bombarded with what look like real offers and coupons for the website you are on (or the subject of your Google search), but if you were to click on them, you would go to a part of the internet you never want to see.  I realised straightaway that it wasn't legitimate, I didn't click on any of the ads, but I couldn't stop it.

I didn't ask for it, I didn't download it, it snuck in somehow while I was uploading photos to a respectable photo printing website.

It took me an hour, two laptops (I needed a second to look up instructions on how to remove it, as I couldn't use my browser) and a lot of inner calm to remove it from my laptop.

I think I've fixed it.

So beware of "LowPrice", and never leave your laptop connected to the internet for a few hours while you upload your photos of Rome!


Sarah said...

I suggest you download Malwarebytes and install it on your computer, then, if you stick with the free version, do a weekly sweep of your computer. That should keep the rubbish out.

Linda Metcalf said...

I have to call my teckkie person....don't think I could do it on my own. I'm always worried I'll mess something up!

Working Mum said...

Sarah - thank you so much for your recommendation. I downloaded the free version and ran a scan, it picked up 181 unwanted items which I researched and found that, yes, I didn't want them, so it then removed them. Hurrah! I have a clean computer again. Will scan regularly using malewarebytes from now on.

Linda - I'm pretty confident with basic uninstall and delete, but other stuff I have to look up. Knowing which sites give genuine advice is then the problem!

Sarah said...

Oh good! It's frightening what ends up on your computer by stealth when you think you're following all the security rules!