Virus Support Alert POP-UP Scam

Also Known As: "Virus Support Alert" virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

"Virus Support Alert" removal instructions

What is "Virus Support Alert"?

"Virus Support Alert" is a fake virus alert that is displayed in a pop-up window on a deceptive, dubious website. This is simply a scam that cyber criminals use to trick people into believing that their computers are infected and blocked. Most people arrive at this untrustworthy website due to potentially unwanted apps (PUAs) installed on their computers or web browsers. In addition to redirects, PUAs deliver advertisements and collect user-system information.

Virus Support Alert scam

According to this deceptive website (and its associated pop-up window), the system has detected unusual activity that might harm the computer and data stored on it, and that the activity might be related to tracking of financial information. Furthermore, within the "Virus Support Alert" pop-up window, scammers claim that the user's computer/registration key is blocked. They state that this happened for one of these reasons: the Windows registration key is illegal; there is illegal software installed; the operating system is infected and proliferates viruses over the internet, or; the Windows Operating System is hacked and being used from an undefined location. In any case, scammers claim that they have blocked the computer for security reasons (and users' safety). They urge website visitors not to close the window or restart the computer. Scammers encourage users to contact them by calling the "+1-866-391-4111" number. They claim to be a 'support team' that will help to reactivate the computer/registration key. Websites of this type should never be trusted. Typically, when contacted, scammers attempt to sell software or trick people into paying for online services. They use these scams to extort money from innocent people. None of the statements on this website are accurate and anyone who visits it should simply close it. If this website cannot be closed in the normal way (by closing the opened tab or browser window), use Task Manager to end the browser process. The next time a browser is opened, the previous browsing session should not be restored, since this will reopen the dubious website or another website that caused a redirect to it.

As mentioned above, PUAs that are responsible for redirects to untrustworthy websites, however, they often deliver ads and gather data as well. Unwanted apps of this type serve users with coupons, banners, surveys, pop-ups, and so on. These ads can be annoying, since PUAs display them via tools that enable placement of third party content on any site. Therefore, they conceal underlying content of visited websites. Furthermore, if clicked (accidentally or willingly), they usually open dubious (potentially, malicious) websites or run scripts that download and install even more unwanted apps. Another negative aspect of PUAs is information tracking. Usually PUAs collect IP addresses, URLs of visited websites, search queries, geo-locations, and other data relating to browsing activity. It is also possible that these apps will record personal/sensitive details. Developers share the data with third parties (cyber criminals) who misuse it to generate revenue.

Threat Summary:
Name"Virus Support Alert" 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.
Removal

To eliminate Virus Support Alert virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
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Most PUAs have similar behavior - they perform actions that allow their developers to generate revenue. Furthermore, they are usually promoted as useful and legitimate, however, they provide none of the functionality promised (tools, features, and so on). Furthermore, the the internet is full of deceptive websites that display scams such as fake virus alerts, fake errors, and so on. Some examples of other scams similar to this one are "ERROR 0X1CXX560", "Windows Is Not Activated", and "Activate Your Windows Now". Most are used by cyber criminals who attempt to extort money from visitors by offering purchase of software or paid services.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Some PUAs can be downloaded from their websites, however, most people do not download and install them intentionally. This usually occurs when developers trick them by using a deceptive marketing method called "bundling". This method helps developers to cause inadvertent downloads and installations when users download or install their chosen software. They include (bundle) unwanted apps in set-ups of regular software (software that people download willingly). All information about the inclusion of extra apps is usually hidden in "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings of the download/installation set-ups. Most people leave these settings unchanged, thereby causing unwanted installations/downloads of various PUAs .

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Always pay attention to all download/installation processes, especially if the software it is free. Check all available "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar options/settings, and look for checkboxes that are ticked by default. Deselect offers to install unwanted software. Download software using direct links and official websites. Avoid using third party software downloaders/installers, since they are usually monetized via the bundling method and go on to install unwanted programs. Do not use unofficial websites or Peer-to-peer networks (torrent clients, eMule, and others). Do not click intrusive ads, especially if they are displayed on dubious websites. These usually seem legitimate, however, they redirect to untrustworthy websites such as adult dating, pornography, gambling, and so on. If a browser causes unwanted redirects or displays various ads, PUAs might be installed on it. Check the list of installed extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins, and remove all unwanted/suspicious apps immediately. Also check the list of programs installed on the operating system. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Text presented in "Virus Support Alert" pop-up:

Virus Support Alert
Your System Detected Some Unusual Activity.
It might harm your computer data and track your financial activities.
Please report this activity to +1-866-391-4111
VIRUS ALERT!
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?
This 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 helpline to reactivate your computer.
Enter Windows registration key to unblock or Call Support at: +1-866-391-4111 (Toll-Free)

Instant automatic removal of Virus Support 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 Virus Support Alert virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Spyhunter By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

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.

PUAs 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 "virus support 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.

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 "virus support alert" 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 "virus support 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, 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 logoRemove malicious add-ons from Microsoft Edge:

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the three horizontal dots icon edge more 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".

Removing browser hijackers from Microsoft Edge step 2

Optional method:

Click the three horizontal dots icon edge more icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), and select Settings.

Resetting Microsoft Edge settings step 1

In the opened tab, click the "Choose what to clear" button.

Resetting Microsoft Edge settings step 2

Click Show more and select everything, and then click the "Clear" button.

Resetting Microsoft Edge settings step 3

  • If this didn't help, please follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset 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 "virus support alert" virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

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