"Activation Error 0xC004FC03" removal instructions
What is "Activation Error 0xC004FC03"?
Activation Error 0xC004FC03 (or simply ERROR 0xC004FC03) is an error, which is supposedly caused by a virus. It is 'detected' by deceptive/scam websites and used to scare users into calling a fraudulent Microsoft technical support line and consequently trick them into paying for fake services. A genuine "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" error code exists, which is displayed when the Window OS (Operating System) fails activation, however, associated warnings found on web pages are not related to the error. No site is capable of detecting issues/threats on devices, and any claims to this effect are false. These rogue websites are usually opened by Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUAs) already present on the device. Note that these applications do not need explicit user permission to infiltrate systems. PUAs generate redirects to untrustworthy and malicious web pages, run intrusive advertisement campaigns, and monitor users' browsing activity.
When the deceptive web page is opened, it displays a pop-up window that asks visitors to provide their name and password. It also claims to have detected 'suspicious activity' on the device due to a virus present on the system. For further assistance, a fake Microsoft tech support number is provided. Furthermore, users are informed that their data is in danger. The reason behind Activation Error 0xC004FC03 is allegedly a virus, which is responsible for a missing system file, thus causing Window OS (Operating System) to fail. The pop-up continues to urge visitors to call the "free" technical support number. Users are warned not to shutdown or restart their computers, as this will risk system failure and permanent data loss. The message ends with a final prompt to call the fake support line, while reinforcing that the number (+1-833-292-1252) is toll-free. These scams are created simply to generate revenue for their designers. They extort money from unsuspecting users. For example, any numbers listed can have high fees. Users might also be tricked into paying for bogus services and/or encouraged to purchase fake/nonfunctional or malicious software. If these rogue web pages cannot be closed in the usual way (by closing the browser tab/window), the browser process should be terminated using Task Manager. Before the browser is reopened, it is important not to restore the previous session, as failing to do so will reopen the scam web page (or cause the original site to repeat the redirect).
In general, PUAs are all quite similar, and some are even identical. They may seem legitimate and offer "useful" features/functions to entice users to install, however, these features rarely work as advertised and, in most cases, are nonfunctional. These applications have many unwanted and harmful capabilities. They generate redirects to sale-based, untrustworthy, compromised, deceptive/scam and even malicious websites. Some run intrusive ad campaigns (pop-ups, banners, surveys, coupons, etc.) by employing tools to enable third party graphical content to be displayed on any site. The ads they deliver diminish the browsing experience (overlay web page content) and also carry certain risks. Others hijack browsers and promote fake search engines. PUAs often have data tracking capabilities. They record browsing activity (browsing and search engine histories) and gather users' personal information (IP addresses, geolocations and other details). This sensitive data is then shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals) seeking to misuse it for financial gain. To summarize, unwanted apps can cause browser/system infiltration and infections, and lead to serious privacy issues, financial loss, even identity theft. To ensure device and user safety, remove all dubious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins without delay.
|Name||Activation Error 0xC004FC03 pop-up scam|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud.|
|Fake Claim||Cyber criminals pose as Microsoft company employees and claim that a virus error is responsible for a missing system file, thus causing system failure.|
|Tech Support Scammer Phone Number||+1-833-292-1252, +1-888-406-0642, +1-833-735-0218|
|Detection Names (onlinebookreading[.]site)
||Kaspersky (Malware), Netcraft (Malicious), Sophos AV (Malicious), Fortinet (Phishing), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Symptoms||Fake error messages, fake system warnings, pop-up errors, hoax computer scan.|
|Distribution methods||Compromised websites, rogue online pop-up ads, potentially unwanted applications.|
|Damage||Loss of sensitive/private information, monetary loss, identity theft, possible malware infections.|
To eliminate ERROR 0xC004FC03 virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
There are many deceptive sites online. They typically share common traits, such as using scare-tactics to promote 'technical support' services and/or untrusted programs. These web pages show alerts/alarms concerning "detected" issues/threats and offer to provide tech support and/or software, supposedly able to remove the problems. ERROR # ER36dx9832(3), Norton Subscription Has Expired Today, and Windows Antivirus - Critical Alert are other examples of scams similar to Activation Error 0xC004FC03.
How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?
Some PUAs have "official" websites, from which they can often be downloaded "free". These apps also proliferate via the download/install set-ups of other programs. The deceptive marketing technique of pre-packing normal software with unwanted or malicious content is called "bundling". Rushing download/installation processes (e.g. using pre-set options, skipping steps, etc.) endangers devices with potential system infiltration and infections. Intrusive advertisements also proliferate PUAs. Once clicked, they can execute scripts to download/install unwanted content without users' consent.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications
Research products to verify their legitimacy, before downloading/installing. Use only trustworthy and verified download channels. P2P sharing networks (BitTorrent, eMule, Gnutella, etc.), unofficial and free file-hosting sites, third party downloaders and similar sources are untrustworthy and should not be used. Treat download/Installation processes with caution. Read the terms, explore all possible options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings and decline offers to download/install additional apps, tools, functions, etc. Care should be exercised when browsing. Intrusive ads usually seem legitimate and harmless, however, they can redirect to dubious web pages (e.g. gambling, pornography, adult-dating and others). If you encounter ads/redirects of this kind, check the system and immediately remove all suspicious applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate them.
Text presented in "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" pop-up:
The server *** is asking for your user name and password.
That server also reports: "Suspicious activity detected due to harmful virus installed in your computer. Call Microsoft Toll Free now @ +1-833-292-1252 for any assistance. Your data is at a serious risk. There is a system file missing due to a harmful virus error, causing system failure. Please contact technicians at Microsoft Toll Free Helpline at @ +1-833-292-1252. 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 IN COMPLETE DATA LOSS. CONTACT MICROSOFT TO RESOLVE THE ISSUE ON TOLL FREE NUMBER: +1-833-292-1252".
Another variant of "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" pop-up scam:
Another variant of "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" pop-up scam:
Another variant of "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" pop-up scam:
Yet another variant of "Activation Error 0xC004FC03" pop-up scam:
Appearance of this website (GIF):
Text presented within this pop-up:
Activation Error 0xC004FC03
We Can't activate Windows on this device because the product key was already used on another device. if you think it wasn't used on another device . enter below your registration key for troubleshoot
Error code: 0xC004FC03
Enter registration Key Submit
This product is licensed under the Microsoft Software License Terms to:
Call Microsoft Support +1-833-735-0218
Instant automatic removal of ERROR 0xC004FC03 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 ERROR 0xC004FC03 virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is "Activation Error 0xC004FC03"?
- 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 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 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 error 0xc004fc03 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 error 0xc004fc03 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 error 0xc004fc03 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 error 0xc004fc03 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.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove error 0xc004fc03 virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
Post a comment:
If you have additional information on error 0xc004fc03 virus or it's removal please share your knowledge in the comments section below.