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Your PC Ran Into A Problem Scam

Also Known As: Your PC Ran Into A Problem virus
Damage level: Medium

What is "Your PC Ran Into A Problem"?

"Your PC Ran Into A Problem" is malware that locks the screen and displays a fake error message. It is distributed with a potentially unwanted adware-type program (PUP) called "VinCE 1.5". 

The error states that the computer has ran into a problem and, therefore, victims must contact technical support for a solution. The adware generates intrusive online advertisements and track users' Internet browsing activity.

Your PC Ran Into A Problem scam

As mentioned above, this fake error states that the system has been damaged and will automatically be restarted after gathering error-relating information. Users are encouraged to contact technical support via a telephone number (1-888-523-2979 or 1-800-418-4202) provided. They will then supposedly receive help fixing this issue.

Be aware, however, that the "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" error is a scam. It is merely an attempt to trick victims into calling and paying for unnecessary services. You can remove this screen by simply uninstalling the aforementioned "VinCE 1.5" adware. 

Furthermore, this adware might generate advertisements (pop-ups, banners, coupons, etc.) that conceal underlying content of visited websites, and that also might redirect to malicious websites. Thus, even accidental clicks can result in high-risk computer infections.

Research shows that adware-type applications often monitor users' Internet browsing activity by gathering various data. Examples of collected data include (but are not limited to) Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, geo-locations, mouse/keyboard activity, queries entered into search engines, URLs visited, and pages viewed.

The data is later shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who generate revenue by misusing personal details. Therefore, data tracking can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. We strongly advise you to uninstall all adware-type programs immediately.

There are dozens fake errors that share similarities with "Your PC Ran Into A Problem". Examples include This User Is Disabled, Your Windows Has Been Banned, and Microsoft Security Essentials Toll Free - these are just some examples from many.

All claim that the system is infected, missing files, or damaged in other similar ways, however, these viruses are fake - they are designed only to scare victims and trick them into sending money to cyber criminals (who claim to be certified technicians). "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" is delivered with a "VinCE 1.5" app.

Developers distribute this application using a deceptive marketing method called "bundling" - stealth installation of PUPs with regular software. Developers hide bundled programs within the "Custom/Advanced" settings of the download/installation processes.

Users often rush and skip most steps, thereby exposing their systems to risk of various infections. To prevent this situation, closely analyze each step of the download/installation processes and opt-out of all additionally-included programs. The key to computer safety is caution.

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Quick menu:

"Your PC Ran Into A Problem" virus removal:

Step 1

Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer starting process press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.

Safe Mode with Networking

Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 8 users: Go to the Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click on Advanced Startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window select Advanced Startup. Click on the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into "Advanced Startup options menu".

Click on the "Troubleshoot" button, then click on "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen click on "Startup settings". Click on the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press "5" to boot in Safe Mode with Networking Prompt.

Windows 8 Safe Mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button.

In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.

windows 10 safe mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Step 2

Log in to the account infected with the "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" virus. Start your Internet browser and download a legitimate anti-spyware program. Update the anti-spyware software and start a full system scan. Remove all entries detected.


If you cannot start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking, try performing a System Restore.

Video showing how to remove viruses using "Safe Mode with Command Prompt" and "System Restore":

1. During your computer starting process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until the Windows Advanced Options menu appears, and then select Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list and press ENTER.

Boot your computer in Safe Mode with Command Prompt

2. When Command Prompt Mode loads, enter the following line: cd restore and press ENTER.

system restore using command prompt type cd restore

3. Next, type this line: rstrui.exe and press ENTER.

system restore using command prompt rstrui.exe

4. In the opened window, click "Next".

restore system files and settings

5. Select one of the available Restore Points and click "Next" (this will restore your computer system to an earlier time and date, prior to the "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" virus infiltrating your PC).

select a restore point

6. In the opened window, click "Yes".

run system restore

7. After restoring your computer to a previous date, download and scan your PC with recommended malware removal software to eliminate any remnants of the "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" virus.

If you cannot start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking (or with Command Prompt), boot your computer using a rescue disk.

Some viruses disable Safe Mode making it's removal complicated. For this step, you require access to another computer. After removing "Your PC Ran Into A Problem" virus from your PC, restart your computer and scan it with legitimate anti-spyware software to remove any possible remnants of this security infection.

Other tools known to remove this scam:

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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