Windows Malware Detected removal instructions
What is Windows Malware Detected?
"Windows Malware Detected" is another fake error displayed by deceptive websites. Research shows that many users visit these sites inadvertently - they are redirected by potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) or other malicious sites. PUPs typically infiltrate systems without permission, deliver intrusive advertisements, and continually record sensitive data.
This error states that the system has been infected with a certain type of malware that performs suspicious actions. It is also stated that personal details (e.g., logins/passwords) and stored data are at risk. Therefore, users are encouraged to immediately contact "tech support" via a toll-free telephone number ("1-855-341-4034") provided. Be aware, however, that the "Windows Malware Detected" error is fake and a scam. Cyber criminals (developers) generate revenue by tricking users into calling and paying for tech support that is not required. In this way, they abuse users' trust. Therefore, ignore "Windows Malware Detected". This pop-up error asks users to enter an administrator login and password, however, do not do this - the information will probably be saved and misused. The "Windows Malware Detected" error can be removed simply by closing the web browser, however, some rogue sites employ scripts that prevent users from closing browsing tabs/windows. In these cases, end the browser process using Task Manager or simply reboot the system. After re-running the browsers, do not restore the previous session, otherwise you will end up visiting the malicious sites again.
Potentially unwanted programs deliver various intrusive advertisements such as coupons, banners, pop-ups, etc. To achieve this, developers employ tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any visited website. Therefore, delivered ads often conceal underlying content, thereby significantly diminishing the browsing experience. Furthermore, these advertisements redirect to malicious websites and even execute scripts designed to download and install PUPs (or even malware). Therefore, even a single accidental click can result in high-risk computer infections. PUPs gather various information relating to web browsing activity. Collected data (IP addresses, URLs visited, pages viewed, queries entered into search engines, keystrokes, etc.) usually includes personal details that developers share with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals). These people misuse private data to generate revenue. The presence of data-tracking apps can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft, and thus all should be uninstalled immediately.
"Windows Malware Detected" shares many similarities with dozens of other fake errors such as Google Chrome Support Centre, Computer Detected To Be Corrupted, and COMPUTER BLOCKED. All falsely claim that the system is damaged (e.g., infected, missing files or similar). The only purpose of these errors is to extort money from unsuspecting users. Potentially unwanted programs also share many similarities. By offering "useful features", they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy, however, rather than giving any real value for regular users, PUPs pose a direct threat to their privacy and Internet browsing safety.
How did potentially unwanted programs install on my computer?
As mentioned above, Windows Malware Detected often infiltrates systems without permission. This is due to the lack of knowledge and careless behavior of many users. Potentially unwanted programs are typically distributed using intrusive advertising and "bundling" (stealth installation of PUPs with regular software) methods. Developers do not disclose PUP installations properly. Therefore, all are hidden within "Custom/Advanced" settings (or other sections) of the download/installation processes. Clicking advertisements and skipping download/installation steps often leads to inadvertent installation of rogue programs. In this way, users expose their systems to risk of various infections and compromise their privacy.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
The key to computer safety is caution. Therefore, to prevent system infiltration by PUPs, be very careful when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing software. Intrusive advertisements typically seem legitimate, but once clicked, redirect to gambling, adult dating, pornography, and other dubious websites. If you experience these redirects, immediately remove all dubious applications and browser plug-ins. Furthermore, carefully analyze each step of the download/installation processes and opt-out of all additionally-included programs. We also advise you to avoid using third party downloaders/installers, since developers monetize them by promoting PUPs ("bundling" method). Software should be downloaded from official sources only, using direct download links.
Text presented in "Windows Malware Detected" pop-up:
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 2:22
Your Data is at high risk
To immediately rectify issue and prevent data loss Call Toll Free: 1-855-341-4034
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 @ 1-855-341-4034. Suspicious activity detected on your IP address due to harmful virus installed in your computer. Call Toll Free now @ 1-855-341-4034 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 appearance of "Windows Malware Detected" pop-up (GIF):
- What is Windows Malware Detected?
- 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 extensions from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Removal of potentially unwanted programs:
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.
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"Windows Malware Detected" virus
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Remove rogue extensions 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 malware detected" 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 "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and remove them.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows malware detected" 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 malware detected" 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 malware detected" virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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