Just over two weeks ago, I was visiting a friend who suffered a virus attack on her laptop. Annoyed and perplexed, she told me the only thing she could think of was that she had received a Facebook wall post from a friend inviting her to see the people that had viewed her profile. Being less technically aware than I, she clicked on the link hoping to see a list of those who were curious enough about her to view her profile page and photos. Needless to say, she had fallen for what seemed like the oldest trick in the book, at least to an Internet geek like me.
I use the term “geek” loosely because I have worked in the online market for about a decade but a true IT geek I am not. I would say I’m more technically-savvy than a big chunk of the population – I started using the Internet in 1993, I can set up a wireless router, hook up your Internet cable modem, and I even know little tricks like doing a system restore and looking at the source code of a web page to unmask links.
What had infected my friend’s computer looked like a legitimate OS-branded antivirus program to the naked eye but it had all the telltale signs of malware:
- It kept popping up a warning message that would not go away when she closed the pop up, over and over and over again.
- The warning message stated that her computer was infected, that she needed to purchase protection and when she clicked “yes” to their offer of protection she was redirected to a website where she could purchase “their” protection product. Clearly, you cannot trust a virus “solution” coming from a program that is annoying you in the first place.
- Of course when clicking “no” to the protection offer, the warning message would not allow her to access her Internet browser.
- The infection would not allow us to access the System Restore feature to “turn back the clock” to a point before the infection took place.
The kicker: My friend already had brand-name virus protection but it didn’t detect or prevent her from accessing the malicious website that attacked her PC. This incident ended up costing her a week’s worth of PC usage and over $200 in fixes by the local Geek Squad.
This incident reminded me of something that happened several months ago. Even I, with my knowledge of “what NOT to do” in order to avoid virus intrusions, suffered a very similar attack of malware posing as antispyware software.
I had a different but more prominent brand name antivirus solution than my friend yet mine didn’t protect me either – even though I am careful not to enter suspicious websites, never download anything from P2P or any other websites, and never open email from people I don’t know or click on email links even in emails that appear to be sent from legitimate merchants. I was doing everything right. So why was my computer infected?
Even if you do everything right, you can still be infected. But why pay for something that is not going to do the job? We’ve all had antivirus software that fails us in some way. At the top of people’s lists of what they hate about antivirus software:
- Causes more aggravation with false positives (no, antivirus, Microsoft Excel is not a suspicious program, but thanks for the heightened security…)
- Doesn’t actually detect real viruses – and you get infected (see above)
- Annoying daily “reminders” telling you it’s time to scan for the millionth time (the worst offender usually comes pre-installed on your PC – you all know who I’m talking about…)
- Slows down your computer (waiting for the scan to complete…)
This is why I personally was so impressed with PerfectAntivirus once we launched it. I have never felt so reassured of my computer’s security ever. I tested it on my work PC and I was immediately impressed for just a few reasons:
- It’s what you don’t notice about PerfectAntivirus that impresses me the most. Totally nag-free. It does its job and that’s that. I don’t need to do anything to operate it – no configuring, no scanning, no nothing – it’s pre-set to run while your system is idle so it doesn’t hog your system’s resources.
- The Facebook, Twitter & Search Advisor. You’ll see what I like to call the “green lights” that tell you it’s ok to enter a website. Every link posted on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ – you name it – they all show a big green dot next to them (unless of course the website is unsafe – in that case, it’s a big red dot or “red light” warning you not to proceed). Even greater are the few times that I almost entered a malicious website by accident and PerfectAntivirus literally stopped me from doing so and took me back to the prior page. Whew, close one!
- We really do have the best prices on the market. Just look around. No legitimate antivirus software out there can beat our base price for 1 user. Just try to find someone with a better multi-user discount. Oh and with our free technical support. There is no way you’re going to find it. None.
- You all know and love PerfectDisk. And now you get an extra copy for free just by purchasing PerfectAntivirus. Buy any PerfectAntivirus or AntivirusPlus product (which has all the features of PerfectAntivirus plus antispam, a 2-way firewall and parental controls) and get a 1-user license of PerfectDisk Home Premium for free! Make your hard drive run even faster and more efficiently with PerfectDisk.
Sure, I’m a little biased but I felt so strongly about PerfectAntivirus when I tested it that I had to share!