What is Microsoft Security Tollfree?
In most cases, the "Microsoft Security Tollfree" fake virus alert message appears when users end up visiting deceptive/untrustworthy websites. Potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) often force users to visit these websites. PUAs are usually installed without users' knowledge, cause redirects, collect data, and deliver intrusive advertisements.
Once a deceptive website is visited, it asks users for permission to download multiple files. Do not give permission. Click "Block" or another similar button. The website also displays a message stating that the computer is blocked and that Microsoft itself urges you to do not restart your computer or close the opened window. It states that your computer registration key is blocked.
It explains that this might have happened due to one of the following reasons: the Windows registration key is illegal; the opened window is using pirated software; the window is proliferating viruses; the window is hacked or is being used from undefined location.
According to scammers, the computer is blocked for your security and you should contact Microsoft Security support team via the telephone number "+1-844-391-8111" provided. These statements are false. Your computer is not blocked and Windows is not using an illegal key.
"Microsoft Security Tollfree" has nothing to do with Microsoft - it is a scam used to trick users into purchasing products or services that will supposedly solve the problem (unblock your computer, remove viruses, activate Windows, and so on). You are strongly advised to ignore all requests made by these scammers and to simply close the opened window.
If the website prevents you from closing it (a particular script is used), then restart your computer and do not restore the previous session (this opens identical deceptive websites or the websites that led you there).
As we mentioned in our introduction, potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) often redirect users to untrustworthy websites, including those containing fake messages.
Furthermore, PUAs deliver intrusive ads (pop-ups, banners, coupons, surveys, etc.) that are displayed through tools that enable placement of third party graphical content on any site and conceal underlying content. These are annoying, but can also lead to untrustworthy websites and even execute scripts that download and install other PUAs.
These unwanted apps collect IP addresses, keystrokes, URLs of visited websites, search queries, geo-locations, and other data that might include personal or sensitive details. Information is shared with third parties (potentially cyber criminals) who misuse it to generate revenue.
These actions might cause privacy/browsing safety problems or even result in identity theft. We strongly recommend that you uninstall all PUAs immediately.
|Name||"Microsoft Security Tollfree" virus|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud|
|Symptoms||Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of one's computer.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.|
|Damage||Loss 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 Combo Cleaner.
Many scammers use various fake messages (support alerts, viruses, errors, and so on) to trick users into paying for services or products that they do not need. Most of these scams are very similar - they display fake messages stating that the system is infiltrated by a virus infection, the computer is blocked, users' data is in danger, etc.
Most PUAs that cause visits to these websites are also very similar - they generate revenue for their developers by collecting and sharing data, delivering intrusive ads, and causing unwanted redirects. As a rule, PUAs are promoted as 'useful apps', however, few provide the functionality promised.
How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?
PUAs are often installed without users' knowledge. Users install them through clicked intrusive advertisements or when software developers use a deceptive marketing method called "bundling" - stealth installation of potentially unwanted applications or other software with regular third party software.
Developers avoid disclosing information about the presence of bundled applications and hide them in "Advanced", "Custom" and other options/settings of the installation processes. Frequently, PUAs are installed when users install software without checking additional options/settings or clicking intrusive ads.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
Avoid downloading software from untrustworthy/unofficial sources, or using torrents or third party software downloaders. Use direct links, official and trustworthy websites only. Do not to skip installation steps without checking "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings or options.
Opt-out of any additionally-included/bundled software, and only then proceed to the next step or finish the installation. Cyber criminals invest many resources into intrusive ad design, and so it is often difficult to determine which are legitimate.
Untrustworthy intrusive ads usually redirect to untrustworthy/potentially malicious websites (such as gambling, pornography, adult dating, and so on). If you encounter these advertisements, check installed applications (extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins) on your browser and remove any unknown/unwanted entries immediately.
If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate them.
Text presented in "Microsoft Security Tollfree" pop-up:
Microsoft Security Tollfree: +1-844-391-8111
VIRUS ALERT FROM MICROSOFT
This computer is BLOCKED
Do not close this window and restart your computer
Your computer's registration key is BLOCKED
Why we blocked your computer?
The window's registration key is illegal.
This window is using pirated software.
This window is sending virus over the internet.
This window is hacked or used from undefined location.
We block this computer for your security.
Contact Microsoft helpline to reactivate your computer.
The appearance of "Microsoft Security Tollfree" pop-up (GIF):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is Microsoft Security Tollfree?
- 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 applications:
Windows 11 users:
Right-click on the Start icon, select Apps and Features. In the opened window search for the application you want to uninstall, after locating it, click on the three vertical dots and select Uninstall.
Windows 10 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.
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.
macOS (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 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:
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 "microsoft security tollfree" 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 "microsoft security tollfree" 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 on "Extensions", in the opened window, remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.
Computer users who have problems with "microsoft security tollfree" 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 extensions from Microsoft Edge:
Click the Edge 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.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the "microsoft security tollfree" virus, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.
In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.
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.
- If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the 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.
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