PCProtect PUP - What Is and How to Remove It from Windows
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PCProtect PUP – What Is and How to Remove It from Windows

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This article has been created in order to help you by showing you how to remove the PCProtect PUP from your computer and how to stop it from showing fake detections.

Cyber-Security researchers have detected a potentially unwanted program which pretends to be an actual antivirus and system protection software. The program, called PCProtect performs scans on your computer and it may display fake detections of various different types of issues, like viruses or other type of performance issues on your computer that may not even be real. The end goal for this program is to get you to purchase it’s full version and generate profits to it’s creators. If you have the PCProtect PUP installed on your computer, recommendations are to read the following article in order to learn more about it and how to remove it from your computer system.

Threat Summary

NamePCProtect
TypeHoax antivirus, hoax system optimizer / PUP.
Short DescriptionThe program may display fake virus and performance issues for your computer and to remove them it asks you to purchase the full version.
SymptomsPCProtect may run automatic scans on your computer and may run on system start.
Distribution MethodBundled Installers. Fake detection pop-up web pages on your browsers.
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by PCProtect

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User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss PCProtect.

PCProtect PUP – Methods of Distribution

There are two main methods by which the PCProtect PUP could be spread onto your computer system. The primary one is believed to be a very particular method that prays on the fear of the inexperienced user. It may involve pop-ups that may appear on your computer, claiming it has been infected by viruses, similar to what the image below displays:

Such pop-ups may be introduced on your computer as a result of you visiting suspicious web sites without ad-blocking or if you already have adware or other unwanted programs which may have modified your web browser to introduce such advertisements.

In addition to this, the software may also be spread onto your computer as a result of a Bundling operation, which is basically to include the PCPRotect program in legitimate installers of free programs that you may have downloaded online. Such installers are often available on software-providing websites and via them, you may encounter PCProtected added “as a free extra” in one of the installation steps. The step is usually missed since often it is concealed within the “Custom” or “Advanced” installation modes.

PCProtect PUP – More Information

PCProtect is a program, published by SS Protect Limited and in general it does not do anything malicious on your computer. However, the program may display different types of detections on the computers of users. The first thing done after the program is installed on your computer is to drop it’s files in the %Program Files% directory, which are reported by Symantec researchers to be the following:

→ %ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\AppConfig.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\avgio.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\AviraLib.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\bins\subinacl.exe
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\brand.json
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Community.CsharpSqlite.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Community.CsharpSqlite.SQLiteClient.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\account.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\addon.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\avconfig.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\certs.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\details.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\gcld
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\idpro.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\prefs.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\sdet.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\ui.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\data\vpn_locations.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\DotNetZip.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\devcon.exe
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\OemWin2k.inf
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\tap0901.cat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\tap0901.map
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\tap0901.pdb
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\amd64\tap0901.sys
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\devcon.exe
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\OemWin2k.inf
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\tap0901.cat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\tap0901.map
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\tap0901.pdb
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\driver\i386\tap0901.sys
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Engine.Win.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Engine.Win.dll.config
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Hardcodet.Wpf.TaskbarNotification.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\HtmlAgilityPack.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Ibt.Ortc.Api.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Ibt.Ortc.Api.Extensibility.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Ibt.Ortc.Plugin.IbtRealTimeSJ.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\installoptions.jdat
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Interop.IWshRuntimeLibrary.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Interop.NetFwTypeLib.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\Ionic.Zip.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\lib_SCAPI.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\LinqBridge.dll
%ProgramFiles%\PCProtect\locale\de_DE.mo

In addition to dropping the files, PCProtect also aims to modify the following Windows Registry sub-keys by adding the following Windows Registry entries on the victim’s computer:

→ HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Google\Chrome\Extensions\pmagdleikobihfikldcpmgfjcppcddnf
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Google\Chrome\NativeMessagingHosts\com.pcprotect.passwordvaultassistant
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SystemCertificates\AuthRoot\Certificates\02FAF3E291435468607857694DF5E45B68851868
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\PCProtect
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Mozilla\NativeMessagingHosts
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Mozilla\NativeMessagingHosts\com.pcprotect.passwordvaultassistant

After doing so, the application make sure that an automatic scan starts which displays different information on the victim’s computer of detections that may not even be real:

The app may also display different pop-ups above the system tray of Windows that aim to convince you that your computer is at risk. However, the actual surprise comes when you perform the removal action.

A pop-up appears which aims to convince you to purchase the full version of the software which can remove the “issues” on your PC. However, security analysts advise not to purchase the full version of the program, since it might as well scam you into purchasing a software that may not even be able to detect and remove actual malware.

Remove PCProtect Fully from Windows

In order to remove PCProtect from Windows, we advise you to follow the removal instructions down below. They are specifically designed to help you detect and remove all aspects and objects of this program either manually or automatically. If you lack the experience to remove this virus manually experts strongly recommend that your remove it automatically preferably by downloading an advanced anti-malware software. Such program will scan your computer and make sure that it is completely clean from all of the files, registry entries and other objects and settings, which may be modified by PCProtect plus ensure that your PC is protected against future infections as well.

Delete PCProtect from Windows and Your Browser

1.Remove or Uninstall PCProtect in Windows
2.Remove PCProtect from Your Browser

Remove PCProtect automatically by downloading an advanced anti-malware program.

1. Remove PCProtect with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool
2. Back up your data to secure it against attacks related to PCProtect in the future
Optional: Using Alternative Anti-Malware Tools

Ventsislav Krastev

Ventsislav has been covering the latest malware, software and newest tech developments at SensorsTechForum for 3 years now. He started out as a network administrator. Having graduated Marketing as well, Ventsislav also has passion for discovery of new shifts and innovations in cybersecurity that become game changers. After studying Value Chain Management and then Network Administration, he found his passion within cybersecrurity and is a strong believer in basic education of every user towards online safety.

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