Windows Defender Alert removal instructions
What is Windows Defender Alert?
"Windows Defender Alert" is a fake error message displayed by a malicious website. Many users visit this website inadvertently - they are redirected by various rogue applications that stealthily infiltrate systems during installation of regular software (the "bundling" method). As well as causing redirects, these potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) deliver intrusive online advertisements and continually track users' Internet browsing activity.
The "Windows Defender Alert" error states that the system has been infected with the Zeus virus and that private information (logins/passwords, banking information, local files, etc.) is at risk. It states that the virus must be removed immediately and victims are encouraged to contact "Microsoft Technical Support" via a toll-free telephone number ("(888) 252-1520") provided. They will then supposedly receive help in removing the malware. Be aware, however, that the "Windows Defender Alert" error is fake - there is no infection. Cyber criminals generate revenue by tricking victims into calling and paying for services that are not required. Therefore, you should never attempt to call the aforementioned telephone number. This error message can be removed simply by closing the web browser. As mentioned above, PUPs also deliver various advertisements. To achieve this, developers employ a "virtual layer" - a tool that enables placement of third party graphical content on any site. Therefore, the ads often conceal underlying content, significantly diminishing the Internet browsing experience. Furthermore, some lead to malicious websites - clicking them risks further computer infections. In addition, PUPs continually record various user-system information (for example, location, Internet Protocol addresses, Internet Service Providers, website URLs visited, pages viewed, search queries, mouse/keyboard activity, etc.) that might contain personal details. This data is shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) who misuse personal details to generate revenue. Therefore, information tracking can result in serious privacy issues or even identity theft. PUPs should be uninstalled immediately.
|Name||"Windows Defender Alert" virus|
|Threat Type||Adware, Unwanted ads, Pop-up Virus|
|Symptoms||Seeing advertisements not originating from the sites you are browsing. Intrusive pop-up ads. Decreased Internet browsing speed.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers.|
|Damage||Decreased computer performance, browser tracking - privacy issues, possible additional malware infections.|
To eliminate Windows Defender Alert virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
There are dozens of fake error messages similar to "Windows Defender Alert". The list of examples includes (but is not limited to) Microsoft Warning Alert, Login Security Alert, Your Computer Is In Blocked State, and Microsoft Help Desk. All of these errors claim that system is infected or damaged in some way, however, these are merely attempts to scare and trick victims into buying 'customer support'. None of these error messages should be trusted - they are designed only to generate revenue for the developers. PUPs also have an identical purpose: to generate revenue. By offering various 'useful features', they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy, however, they merely cause unwanted redirects, deliver intrusive ads, and collect various user-system information.
How did adware install on my computer?
As mentioned above, PUPs are distributed using the bundling method - stealth installation of third party programs with regular software/apps. Developers know that users often rush the download/installation processes and skip steps. Therefore, bundled PUPs are hidden within the "Custom/Advanced" settings. By carelessly skipping this section, users expose their systems to risk of various infections and compromise their privacy.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
To prevent system infiltration by PUPs, be very cautious when downloading and installing software. Closely analyze each step using the "Custom/Advanced" settings and opt-out of all third party applications listed for download/installation. Bundled software should never be installed.
Screenshot of "Windows Defender Alert" scam pop-up:
Text presented within this pop-up:
Windows Defender Alert: Zeus Virus Detected in Your Computer!
Please do Not Shut Down or Reset Your Computer.
The following data will be compromised if your continue:
2. Browser History
3. Credit Card Information
4. Local Hard Disk Files.
The virus is well known for complete identity and credit card theft. Further action through this computer or any computer on the network will reveal private information and involve serious risks.
Call Microsoft Technical Department (Toll Free): (888) 252-1520
Instant automatic removal of Windows Defender Alert virus:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of Windows Defender Alert virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is Windows Defender Alert?
- STEP 1. Uninstall deceptive applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove adware from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove rogue extensions from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove potentially unwanted plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue extension from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Windows 7 users:
Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.
Windows XP users:
Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.
Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:
Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.
Mac OSX users:
Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.
In the uninstall programs window, look for any suspicious/recently-installed applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted program, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove adware from Internet browsers:
Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently-installed suspicious browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows defender alert" virus, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.
Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.
In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.
Click the Reset button.
Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "Tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons, select these entries and click the trash can icon.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows defender alert" virus, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click "Extensions", in the opened window, remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.
Computer users who have problems with "windows defender alert" virus removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.
Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, in the opened menu, click Help.
Select Troubleshooting Information.
In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.
Remove malicious extensions from Safari:
Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....
In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...
In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.
Remove malicious add-ons from Microsoft Edge:
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions, right click your mouse on these entries and click "Uninstall".
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), and select Settings.
In the opened tab, click the "Choose what to clear" button.
Click Show more and select everything, and then click the "Clear" button.
- If this didn't help, please follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset Microsoft Edge browser.
Commonly, adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate Internet browsers through free software downloads. Note that the safest source for downloading free software is via developers' websites only. To avoid installation of adware, be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing previously-downloaded free programs, choose the custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal any potentially unwanted applications listed for installation together with your chosen free program.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove "windows defender alert" virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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