Window's Security Certificate Is Expired POP-UP Scam

Also Known As: "Windows Security Certificate Is Expired" virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Window's Security Certificate Is Expired removal instructions

What is Window's Security Certificate Is Expired?

"Window's Security Certificate Is Expired" is another fake error message similar to POSSIBLE_VIRUS_DETECTION, Windows Support Alert, ERROR 268D3, and many others. It is delivered by various deceptive websites. Users visit these sites inadvertently - they are redirected by intrusive advertisements (delivered by other rogue websites) or potentially unwanted applications (PUAs). Research shows that potentially unwanted applications infiltrate systems without permission and, as well as causing redirects, deliver intrusive ads and gather data.

Window's Security Certificate Is Expired scam

This error message states that the operating system is vulnerable to infections and that "unusual" activity has been detected. Therefore, users' personal details (logins/passwords, banking information, etc.) are at risk. Users are encouraged to immediately resolve these so-called 'issues' by calling Windows support (via the "+1-888-411-1165" telephone number) and follow further instructions. Bear in mind, however, that the "Window's Security Certificate Is Expired" error is fake and Windows Operating System developers (Microsoft) are not responsible for it. Cyber criminals generate revenue by claiming to be 'certified technicians' and charging victims for tech support. The "Window's Security Certificate Is Expired" error should be ignored and you should never attempt to call the aforementioned telephone number. The error can be removed simply by closing the visited site, however, note that some rogue sites employ scripts that disable closing of browsing tabs/windows. In these cases, close the browser using Task Manager or simply restart the computer. After rerunning the browser do not restore the previous session, otherwise the malicious sites are reopened.

Potentially unwanted applications deliver coupon, banner, pop-up, and other similar advertisements. To achieve this, developers employ tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site. Therefore, intrusive advertisements often conceal underlying content, thereby significantly diminishing the browsing experience. In addition, ads can lead to dubious websites and execute scripts that download and install malware. Therefore, even a single accidental click might result in high-risk computer infections. Potentially unwanted applications are also known to record information relating to browsing activity. Collected data (IP addresses, websites visited, pages viewed, search queries, etc.) usually includes personal details that developers share with third parties. These people generate revenue by misusing private data. Therefore, the presence of data-tracking apps can lead to serious privacy issues or even identity theft. All potentially unwanted applications must be uninstalled immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name"Windows Security Certificate Is Expired" virus
Threat TypePhishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
SymptomsUnauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of one's computer.
Distribution methodsDeceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
DamageLoss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
▼ Download Malwarebytes
To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Malwarebytes. 14 days free trial available.

There are dozens of fake errors that share similarities with "Window's Security Certificate Is Expired". All claim that the system is damaged (e.g., infected, missing files, fake or similar), however, fake error messages are designed only to extort money from gullible users. Potentially unwanted applications also share many similarities. By offering "useful functionality", they attempt to give the impression of legitimacy and trick users to install, however, rather than enabling the functions promised and giving any real value, they pose a direct threat to your privacy and web browsing safety. The only purpose of these rogue apps is to generate revenue for the developers.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Potentially unwanted applications are typically distributed using the aforementioned intrusive advertisements and a deceptive marketing method called "bundling". Developers hide "bundled" apps within "Custom/Advanced" settings (or other sections) of the download/installation processes. Furthermore, many users often rush these procedures and skip steps. This behavior often leads to inadvertent installation of potentially unwanted applications. Users expose their systems to risk of various infections and compromise their privacy.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

To prevent this situation, be very cautious when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing software. Remember that developers invest many resources into intrusive ad design, thus making them seem genuine. In fact, most of these ads lead to untrustworthy sites, such as gambling, adult dating, pornography, and so on. If you encounter them, eliminate all dubious applications and browser plug-ins. Furthermore, carefully analyze each window of the download/installation dialogs using the "Custom" or "Advanced" settings. During the process, opt-out of all additionally-included applications and decline offers to download/install them. Software should be downloaded from official sources only, using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue software, and thus such tools should never be used. The main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and careless behavior. The key to safety is caution. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Text presented in "Window's Security Certificate Is Expired" pop-up:

The Window's Security Certificate is Expired. This may cause Security breach on the machine. Windows has detected unusual activity on your Computer Network. Your information present on the machine might be at risk. Back up your files immediately to prevent information loss, or contact windows support at +1-888-411-1165
The following information might be at risk:
Financial information
Back account Logins
Credit Card Information
Other Login information
Stored Files on this computer

Instant automatic malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Malwarebytes By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Malwarebytes. 14 days free trial available.

Quick menu:

Removal of potentially unwanted applications:

Windows 7 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 7

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:

Accessing Add or Remove Programs in Windows XP

Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.

Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 8

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:

Uninstall app in OSX (Mac)

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.

Window's Security Certificate Is Expired adware uninstall via Control Panel

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 application, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Remove rogue extensions from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing rogue extensions from Internet Explorer step 1

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options 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".

Removing rogue extensions from Internet Explorer step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows security certificate is expired" 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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows XP

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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 7

Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.

Reseting Internet Explorer settings to default in Windows 8 - accessing

In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - Internet options advanced tab

Click the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - click the Reset button in the Internet options advanced tab

Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - confirm settings reset to default by clicking the reset button

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 1

Click the Chrome menu icon Google 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.

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows security certificate is expired" virus, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google 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.

Google Chrome settings reset step 1

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 2

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 3

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Removing rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox step 1

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions", in the opened window, remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.

Removing rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox step 2

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with "windows security certificate is expired" virus removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.

Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, firefox menu icon in the opened menu, click Help.

Accessing settings (Reset Firefox to default settings step 1)

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Accessing Troubleshooting Information (Reset Firefox to default settings step 2)

In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.

Clicking on Refresh Firefox button (Reset Firefox to default settings step 3)

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.

Confirm your want to reset Firefox settings to default (Reset Firefox to default settings step 4)

safari browser logoRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

removing adware from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....

removing adware from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.

Optional method:

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...

resetting safari step 1

In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.

resetting safari step 2

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) logoRemove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the upper-right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and click "Remove" below their names.

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the "windows security certificate is expired" virus, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 1

In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 2

Select Restore settings to their default values. In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Microsoft Edge settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 3

  • If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.

Summary:

declining installation of adware while downloading free software sampleCommonly, 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.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove "windows security certificate is expired" virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
If you have additional information on "windows security certificate is expired" virus or it's removal please share your knowledge in the comments section below.

Click to post a comment

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.

Our malware removal guides are free. However, if you want to support us you can send us a donation.

Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
Windows Security Certificate Is Expired virus QR code
A QR code (Quick Response Code) is a machine-readable code which stores URLs and other information. This code can be read using a camera on a smartphone or a tablet. Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of "Windows Security Certificate Is Expired" virus on your mobile device.
We Recommend:

Get rid of Windows malware infections today:

▼ REMOVE IT NOW
Download Malwarebytes

Platform: Windows

Editors' Rating for Malwarebytes:
Editors ratingOutstanding!

[Back to Top]

To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Malwarebytes. 14 days free trial available.