Posts Tagged ‘virus’

Scam Warnings!

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

There have been a lot of scams going around online recently, some of which seem frighteningly real and are completely fake – designed to scare the average computer user into forking over money to ‘fix’ a ‘problem’. Some recent examples would be: the FBI/ICE Virus, or ‘Microsoft Windows’ technicians actually calling over the phone.

These viruses have been seen frequently in our shop since mid-2013: The FBI, ICE, Homeland Security or similar Viruses. Upon starting your computer, you may be presented with a window that completely locks you out from your desktop. It will cover your whole screen and is intelligent enough to disallow all access to the Start button, Control+Alt+Delete, the Task Manager and every last thing that is useful in beating it. This virus may demand you pay it a fine usually between 200 to 400 dollars or more because your computer was found to be harboring some taboo material, such as child pornography and the FBI has frozen your computer for evidence. This is false – and paying the money will NOT allow you access to your computer again, and could potentially make it worse as it could allow them more control over your computer.

The way this virus asks to be paid is with a Moneypak Green Dot pay card code. This way, the payment is completely untraceable and non-refundable. Do NOT purchase any card for this or give any bank/card information to anyone or anything you don’t know.

Additionally, another recent scam warning is some ‘Microsoft Windows’ representatives calling people’s homes, warning them that their computers are in imminent danger. There are a few things immediately wrong with this, that you should remember. Number one: Microsoft, the actual company will not call individuals for any reason. Anyone claiming to be with Microsoft and calling you without you first knowing the person in real life is almost always lying to you. Number two: Nobody over the phone will know the status of your computer, unless this is a person or business you have previously authorized to have regular checkups with, or if a virus has already infected your computer. If someone calls you and you do not know who it is personally – and they also claim your computer is heading for an imminent issue, virus, or problem, they are lying to you. It is a good idea at this point to hang up and call a reputable computer repair company to get the computer or laptop cleaned up of malware and viruses to be safe.

Aside from legitimate shopping websites such as eBay, Amazon or any online retailers you trust do not give out your credit card or any payment info to anyone. Especially if they claim that they can fix or improve your computer or that your computer is going to be unusable. If you are concerned about the issue or have continuous, coincidental issues such as pop-ups, problem warnings, or “DO THIS NOW OR ELSE YOUR COMPUTER WILL BECOME A PAPERWEIGHT” scares, call Cold Snap Technology at 218-744-1210 and ask about anything you are not sure about, or feel free to stop by; we would be glad to help you.

Adobe Products

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

Adobe has several commonplace programs out that you more than likely already have on your computer. These are primarily Adobe Flash and Adobe Reader. Flash is very prevalent on the Internet, with many websites having Flash components, Flash games or advertisements, and Flash-based tool sets. Reader allows you to open and view PDFs (Portable Document Files) as well as load them online, using browsers such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, or Mozilla Firefox. Adobe Reader integrates into these platforms and allow you to view forms and documents on the web.

It is vital that these programs remain up to date. As of the writing of this article, December 2013, the latest version of Adobe Reader is XI (11.0.04) [Windows Vista’s last version is Adobe Reader X] and the latest version of Flash is 11.9.900.170 (for most major systems). While it’s generally okay to be a couple of minor versions behind (for example, 11.9.900.122 or so on), you still should check to make sure you’re not too far behind. One of the reasons Adobe does these updates is to patch security holes in their software so you are not vulnerable to exploits or attacks that can damage your system.

At the time of writing, the easiest way to ensure your Flash player is working (and check what version) is to go to this link: http://www.adobe.com/software/flash/about/ This website checks your version and displays it in a little information box, then there’s a chart of the most up to date versions for different operating systems and browsers. As for checking Adobe Reader, just do a Google (or your favorite search engine) search for “Test PDF” and click a couple of the links. If they load, you should be fine.

If you don’t have Flash, or need to update it, (at the time of writing) the easiest link is to just go to http://get.adobe.com/flash and for Reader – if you need it or need to update, it is similarly: http://get.adobe.com/reader .

There are fake Adobe Flash updates out on the Internet. Read the screen carefully, and you can usually tell these aren’t real. The only time you should ever receive an update automatically is from Adobe, or the Adobe product itself. (Adobe Flash, Adobe Reader, Adobe AIR – etc) These are usually windows that pop up when you turn your computer on (If you have it set to automatically search for updates, which is enabled by default) or on the bottom right of your desktop – unrelated to any Internet browser you are using. If it came up in a pop-up window or another tab, there’s a good chance it’s a virus or malware. If you see the request to update, and are not positive of your current version, download it from the adobe website: http://adobe.com or use one of the aforementioned links.

So just try to remember to check your Adobe products once in a while and don’t be fooled by a website advertisement telling you to get an update. These are some good simple steps to keeping your computer safe from attack and maintaining your PC’s health while making sure you are able to view and use common Internet resources.

What is malware?

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

A malware is a program that tells your computer to do something you dont want it to do. A virus or any other malware can be very hard to detect or not very hard to detect. No matter what the circumstances all malware make your computer run less efficient in one way or another. A virus is malware that gets copied when ever you do something on your computer.

A virus is not a bug, because a bug is what happens when someone makes an error in writing a program, a virus is a program purposely made to wreck your computer. Computers can be protected from viruses by using some form of anti-virus such as AVG, Avast, or another antivirus program.

Another form of protection from malware is keeping your computer up to date.

1. Trojan (Horse) – A trojan is a program that looks normal until you run it, then you may start to notice changes in how your computer operates.

2. Worms – A worm is a type of malware that spreads from your computer to others on the same network.

3. Virus – A virus is a type of malware that spreads whenever you tell your computer to do something.

4. Fake AV – Fake antivirus disguises itself as an antivirus program until you download it on to your computer.

5. Rogue Proxies – A rogue proxy is what occurs when someone hacks your dns server and they may be able to access all of your credit card numbers and other banking information.

If you have experienced any of these problems, contact us at Cold Snap Technology, and we will see what we can do to get your computer healthy again.