This article aims to show you how you can remove the “Microsoft Alert” scam from your computer and how you can restore it back to normal working state.
A new scamming message, called “Microsoft Alert” and displayed by a fraudulent site has been reported by security researchers to cause problems to users. The scamming pop-up’s primary purpose is to display fake details about your system being at risk with the hope to get you to call a fake tech support number in order to solve the issues. Instead, this is a tech support scam which aims to lure you into paying a huge sum of money to fix an issue that doesn’t exist. If your computer has been compromised by the “Microsoft Alert” Pop-up scam virus, it is important that you read this article and learn how to remove it from your computer completely.
|“Microsoft Alert” Scam
|Tech Support Scam/Adware
|It’s main goal is to help users call a tech support number in fear their data is compromised and pay a hefty sum to fix a problem that does not exist..
|You get redirected to the web page and it locks down your web browser shortly afterwards.
|Bundled downloads and Potentially Unsafe Programs
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|Join Our Forum to Discuss “Microsoft Alert” Scam.
“Windows Malware Detected” Scam – Update May 2019
There is an increase in tech support scams exploiting the name of Microsoft.
A recent example of such a scam is the so-called [wplinkpreview url=”https://sensorstechforum.com/security-alert-what-is-it/”] SECURITY ALERT message. Furthermore, the SECURITY ALERT message is similar to [wplinkpreview url=”https://sensorstechforum.com/internet-security-alert-code-scam-remove/”] Internet Security Alert! Code: 055BCCAC9FEC. Both of the scareware messages will try to make you call a phone number – 1-844-313-6006 or (855)700-0815. Note that other numbers may be used as well, all claiming to be toll-free which is not true.
The SECURITY ALERT message, in particular, displays the logo and name of AVG Anti-virus but it has nothing to do with the legitimate security company. All of these scams are connected to multiple websites that push various support lines for a supposed team of Microsoft technicians. Don’t be fooled by anything such scareware messages claim, no matter how alerting they sound, as they are products of well-experienced tech support scammers.
“Windows Malware Detected” Scam – Spread
The main way via which programs, like the “Microsoft Alert” software may spread onto your computer may be via software bundling. This method is often conducted by downloading other third-party programs that include unwanted software in their setups. These program installers usually do not have the third-party PUPs embedded, but the websites that promote them may use it as a form of marketing by advertising “helper” programs which only pretend as if they work.
Such unwanted programs are often the main reason why you see such browser redirects and pop-ups that lead you to websites like “Windows Malware Detected” or other forms of advertisements and sites.
“Windows Malware Detected” Scam – Purpose and Activity
The primary goal of the “Windows Malware Detected” scam is to convince you that your computer is under threat. It works espeically well on the users who see such type of scams for the first time and the scam tricks these users by providing the following message to them:
Someone is Trying to steal your banking details, credit card details & other logins. Please Call Microsoft At 1-855-341-4034 Immediately to prevent data loss. Hard drive safety delete in starting in
Your Data is at high risk
To immediately rectify the issue and prevent data loss Call Toll Free:
The server is asking for your user name and password. The server reports that it is from your network. PLEASE DO NOT SHUT DOWN OR RESTART YOUR COMPUTER, DOING THAT MAY LEAD TO DATA LOSS AND FAILURE OF OPERATING SYSTEM, HENCE NON BOOTABLE SITUATION RESULTING COMPLETE DATA LOSS. CONTACT ADMINISTRATOR DEPARTMENT TO RESOLVE THE ISSUE ON TOLL FREE. Suspicious activity detected on your IP address due to harmful virus installed in your computer. Call Toll Free now for any assistance. Your data is at serious risk. There is a small file missing due to same harmful virus Debug malware error, system failure. Please contact technicians to rectify the issue. Please do not open internet browser for your security issue to avoid data corruption on your operating system.”
The scam aims to convince the victim to call the number 1-855-341-4034 which is the reason for many phishing, scamming fraud and identity theft types of scam reports online. The main reports by the victims who have called this number are that they were contacted with tech support “employees” who pretended to be the official Microsoft Support and asked victims to give out their personal information and other details about their operating system. From there, the victim has reported that they asked her to provide an e-mail on which they send a file that aims to ensure that they gain remote access to the computers of victims. Before they pretend to “fix” the issues on the victims computers, the scammers may want a hefty price to be paid in order to remove the malware, something around $100 to $300 USD, depending on how convincing you are.
In addition to this, since the software which is related to this fake redirect is ad-supported, meaning that it is installed in the form of a browser extension or other seemingly helpful program on your PC, but in reality it aims to display different types of advertisements on your computer, such as:
- Browser redirections.
- Ad-supported search results.
In addition to this, such unwanted software may also redirect you to other third-party sites that may be dangerous for your computer, like:
- Fake phishing sites that aim to steal your Facebook and other login information.
- Malicious websites that may directly infect your computer with viruses.
This is the main reason why it is important to immediately secure your computer and not call the number, associated with the “Windows Malware Detected” scam.
Remove “Microsoft Alert” from Your Computer Completely
It is often a good practice to isolate the unwanted software which may be displaying the “Windows Malware Detected” redirects on your computer and then focus on removing it. To remove the “Microsoft Alert” software manually, you can follow the manual removal instructions underneath, but if you still see those pop-ups and other adware, recommendations are that you focus on following the automatic removal instructions underneath and as experts often recommend, to download an advanced anti-malware software and run an automatic scan. Such program will remove all of the unwanted programs related to your computer and ensure that your computer is protected against future infections as well.
“Microsoft Alert” Scam-FAQ
What Is “Microsoft Alert” Scam?
The “Microsoft Alert” Scam threat is adware or browser redirect virus.
It may slow your computer down significantly and display advertisements. The main idea is for your information to likely get stolen or more ads to appear on your device.
The creators of such unwanted apps work with pay-per-click schemes to get your computer to visit risky or different types of websites that may generate them funds. This is why they do not even care what types of websites show up on the ads. This makes their unwanted software indirectly risky for your OS.
What Are the Symptoms of “Microsoft Alert” Scam?
There are several symptoms to look for when this particular threat and also unwanted apps in general are active:
Symptom #1: Your computer may become slow and have poor performance in general.
Symptom #2: You have toolbars, add-ons or extensions on your web browsers that you don't remember adding.
Symptom #3: You see all types of ads, like ad-supported search results, pop-ups and redirects to randomly appear.
Symptom #4: You see installed apps on your Mac running automatically and you do not remember installing them.
Symptom #5: You see suspicious processes running in your Task Manager.
If you see one or more of those symptoms, then security experts recommend that you check your computer for viruses.
What Types of Unwanted Programs Are There?
According to most malware researchers and cyber-security experts, the threats that can currently affect your device can be rogue antivirus software, adware, browser hijackers, clickers, fake optimizers and any forms of PUPs.
What to Do If I Have a "virus" like “Microsoft Alert” Scam?
With few simple actions. First and foremost, it is imperative that you follow these steps:
Step 1: Find a safe computer and connect it to another network, not the one that your Mac was infected in.
Step 2: Change all of your passwords, starting from your email passwords.
Step 3: Enable two-factor authentication for protection of your important accounts.
Step 4: Call your bank to change your credit card details (secret code, etc.) if you have saved your credit card for online shopping or have done online activities with your card.
Step 5: Make sure to call your ISP (Internet provider or carrier) and ask them to change your IP address.
Step 6: Change your Wi-Fi password.
Step 7: (Optional): Make sure to scan all of the devices connected to your network for viruses and repeat these steps for them if they are affected.
Step 8: Install anti-malware software with real-time protection on every device you have.
Step 9: Try not to download software from sites you know nothing about and stay away from low-reputation websites in general.
If you follow these recommendations, your network and all devices will become significantly more secure against any threats or information invasive software and be virus free and protected in the future too.
How Does “Microsoft Alert” Scam Work?
Once installed, “Microsoft Alert” Scam can collect data using trackers. This data is about your web browsing habits, such as the websites you visit and the search terms you use. It is then used to target you with ads or to sell your information to third parties.
“Microsoft Alert” Scam can also download other malicious software onto your computer, such as viruses and spyware, which can be used to steal your personal information and show risky ads, that may redirect to virus sites or scams.
Is “Microsoft Alert” Scam Malware?
The truth is that PUPs (adware, browser hijackers) are not viruses, but may be just as dangerous since they may show you and redirect you to malware websites and scam pages.
Many security experts classify potentially unwanted programs as malware. This is because of the unwanted effects that PUPs can cause, such as displaying intrusive ads and collecting user data without the user’s knowledge or consent.
About the “Microsoft Alert” Scam Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this “Microsoft Alert” Scam how-to removal guide included, is the outcome of extensive research, hard work and our team’s devotion to help you remove the specific, adware-related problem, and restore your browser and computer system.
How did we conduct the research on “Microsoft Alert” Scam?
Please note that our research is based on independent investigation. We are in contact with independent security researchers, thanks to which we receive daily updates on the latest malware, adware, and browser hijacker definitions.
Furthermore, the research behind the “Microsoft Alert” Scam threat is backed with VirusTotal.
To better understand this online threat, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.