THREAT REMOVAL

Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam — How To Remove It

This article has been created in order to explain to you what is the Windows Defender Support Scam and how you can remove them as well as all potentially unwanted programs delivered through them.

The Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam is a dangerous phishing strategy that is aimed against ordinary computer users. The criminals will create and send out links to fake error pages prompts which are hosted on URLs that sound very similar to Microsoft and their services.

Threat Summary

NameWindows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam
TypePhishing site scams
Short DescriptionThe Windows Defender Support Scam is a recent example of fake tech support scam
SymptomsVictims will be shown a fake Windows Defender message
Distribution MethodHacker-controlled sites and redirects
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Windows Defender Support Scam Overview

Over the years tech support scams have been one of the most dangerous social engineering strategies used against both consumer end users and some businesses. They take advantage of the fact that the intended targets may not know exactly what are the legitimate notifications and messages that are sent in by services, companies and products. This is the case with Windows Defender as well as several different types of scams related to it have been detected over the years. One of the most prevalent ones are the Windows Defender support scam ones which are designed to manipulate end users into thinking that their computer is infected by a dangerous virus and they need to contact a support number or technician who is able to fix resolve the issue.

Many of the common cases are also referred to as the Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam as they will be related to the display of error pages that are designed to imitate possible errors that come from the Windows Defender program. Such websites are not affiliated with the program and they should not be trusted by any means! To manipulate the victims into falling to the scam there are several possible tactics that are placed in the sites:

  • Domain Hosting — The hackers will host the fake sites on domain names which sound very similar to terms related to Microsoft, Windows Defender and other such technologies.
  • Website Content — The hackers can post all types of content that will attempt to manipulate the visitors into clicking on fields, entering data and etc.
  • Redirects — The Windows Defender Support Scam pages will include various types of redirect code including ads, banners and etc. They can also be placed on social networks (both on stolen and fake profiles), forums, chat rooms and etc.

Links to the sites hosting the fake errors can also be done by spreading malware apps and files that can integrate them. There are multiple variants however some of the most popular types are the macro-infected documents — they can be of all popular file formats. Another approach which is taken from ransomware infections is the creation of software setup installers — they are made by taking the original files from their official sources and adding in the necessary redirect code.

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Infections are also possible by downloading browser hijackers from the Internet. These are dangerous plugins made for the most popular web browsers and designed to manipulate the victims into thinking that they have acquired an useful and legitimate extension. They are distributed by uploading the extensions to the relevant repositories or other hacker-controlled sites. The included descriptions will include promises of new feature additions or performance enhancements. To convince the users that they are safe to install the criminals may use fake or stolen credentials and post such user reviews.

Windows Defender Support Scam Consequences

Scams that are related to the Windows Defender security service will most likely revolve around the scenario that the users are infected with some kind of a virus infection. As such they will present error dialogues, scary messages and might lead to other infections as well. Depending on the actual form of presentation there may be different. If the Windows Defender Support scam messages are displayed from web pages or other Internet sources then the visitors will likely see one or several of these symptoms:

  • Full Page Switch — A built-in script will automatically overlay and switch the error page to a full-screen mode which will potentially scare the victims and make them believe that their computers are infected with a virus.
  • Additional Elements Creation — The web pages can spawn banners, pop-ups and other elements (such as text links) in order to manipulate the victims into thinking that this is caused by a massive viral infection. In truth this is all controlled by a script which will stop when the associated windows are closed.
  • App Installation and Download Prompts — With the pages open the victims may also be find that their browsers will receive prompts to download files, including executable ones. These are most likely viruses (commonly Trojans and ransomware) and depending on the configuration of the software may even download and execute the code directly!
  • Web Threats Infection — They are usually cryptocurrency miners which will be started immediately after the pages are displayed. They will download a sequence of performance-intensive tasks which will be run in a prescribed manner. This will have a negative effect on the stability of the system and key components such as the CPU, memory, hard disk space and etc.
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If standalone malware files are affected then most likely they will present errors, pop-ups and even lockscreens — full-size windows which cannot be closed and will constantly display a warning message. Almost all instances of the Windows Defender Support Scam will refer to a scam telephone number. If the users phone it they will fall victim to an operation that is designed to manipulate them into giving up their personal information and payment card details in return of a remote repair by a technician. The hackers will operate from different virtual card numbers or rented call centers especially suited for the phone scam. Every victim of a phone scam will likely suffer from an additional virus infection as well. This is why we recommend that all users scan their systems for viruses and remove such if found!

Remove Windows Defender Support Scam from Windows and Your Browser

If you want to remove the Windows Defender Support Scam from your computer, we strongly suggest that you follow the removal instructions posted underneath this article. They have been created with the main idea In mind to help you delete this virus either manually or automatically. Be advised that according to experts the best way to try and remove the software that is causing the Black Friday 2019 Scamming pop-ups is to use an advanced anti-malware software. Such program is created with the idea in mind to fully scan your computer and try to eliminate any traces of unwanted programs while protecting your computer against future infections as well.

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Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

How to Remove Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam

OFFER

Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your PC with SpyHunter

Keep in mind, that SpyHunter’s scanner is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware removal tool to remove the malware threats. Read our SpyHunter 5 review. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria

1. Hold Windows key() + R


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
Tip: Make sure to reverse those changes by unticking Safe Boot after that, because your system will always boot in Safe Boot from now on.


4. When prompted, click on "Restart" to go into Safe Mode.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam and related software from Windows

Here is a method in few easy steps that should be able to uninstall most programs. No matter if you are using Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP, those steps will get the job done. Dragging the program or its folder to the recycle bin can be a very bad decision. If you do that, bits and pieces of the program are left behind, and that can lead to unstable work of your PC, errors with the file type associations and other unpleasant activities. The proper way to get a program off your computer is to Uninstall it. To do that:


1. Hold the Windows Logo Button and "R" on your keyboard. A Pop-up window will appear.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


3. This will open a window with all the programs installed on the PC. Select the program that you want to remove, and press "Uninstall"
Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam on your computer.

The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.


3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Tip: To find a virus-created value, you can right-click on it and click "Modify" to see which file it is set to run. If this is the virus file location, remove the value.

IMPORTANT!
Before starting "Step 4", please boot back into Normal mode, in case you are currently in Safe Mode.
This will enable you to install and use SpyHunter 5 successfully.

Step 4: Scan for Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.


It is recommended to run a scan before purchasing the full version of the software to make sure that the current version of the malware can be detected by SpyHunter. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.


2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


4. After SpyHunter has finished scanning your PC for any files of the associated threat and found them, you can try to get them removed automatically and permanently by clicking on the 'Next' button.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

If any threats have been removed, it is highly recommended to restart your PC.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

Get rid of Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy


1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.


6: Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7: Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • Go to Finder.
  • In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
  • Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
  • If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.

In case you cannot remove Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam via Step 1 above:

In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Step 2: Scan for and remove malware from your Mac

When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts, programs and malware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. Combo Cleaner offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Google Chrome.


Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu


Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"


Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Erase Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Mozilla Firefox.

Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window


Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.


Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Uninstall Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Microsoft Edge.


Step 1: Start Edge browser.


Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.


Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".


Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.


Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Safari.


Step 1: Start the Safari app.


Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.


Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".

stf-safari preferences


Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.

stf-safari-extensions


Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.


Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.

stf-safari uninstall

A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam will be removed.


How to Reset Safari
IMPORTANT: Before resetting Safari make sure you back up all your saved passwords within the browser in case you forget them.

Start Safari and then click on the gear leaver icon.

Click the Reset Safari button and you will reset the browser.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Eliminate Windows Defender Browser Protection Tech Support Scam from Internet Explorer.


Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.


Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'


Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.


Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.


Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.


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