Avoid getting scammed by "Antivirus Update is prepared" pop-up scam

Also Known As: Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

"Antivirus Update is prepared" removal instructions

What is "Antivirus Update is prepared"?

"Antivirus Update is prepared" is a deceitful pop-up window, displayed by scam websites. By implying that users' antivirus software requires to be updated (is outdated) and their device is at risk, attempts to push them into downloading/installing untrustworthy and/or possibly malicious content. PUAs (Potentially Unwanted Applications) are often spread through such scams, for example: fake antivirus programs, adware, browser hijackers, etc. Users should note that no site can detect issues/threats present in systems, so ones making similar claims - are not to be trusted. Additionally, few visitors to deceptive/scam webpages enter them intentionally, most get redirected by intrusive ads or by PUAs, already infiltrated into the device.

Antivirus Update is prepared scam

The text presented in the "Antivirus Update is prepared" scam page, claims that the visitors' system may be infected with various viruses. It recommends them to update their "PC Cleaner" to prevent further damage to the system. This fake update is supposedly necessary to protect the system and personal data stored in the device (e.g. applications, photos and other files) from other potential infections. This page also lists currently available updates. When the "Install Update" button is clicked, the webpage displays a pop-window. The text therein states that the update has been prepared and urges users to click the "Download Update" button to initiate the update process. Pressing this button will redirect to the promotional page of some untrustworthy product. At the time of research, the redirect of the studied sample was broken. However, there are plenty of identical and similar scams on the Internet; this scam model (device is infected / antivirus needs to be updated) is popular and scammers reuse the same site design throughout hundreds of webpages. It must be emphasized that these scams have but one purpose - to generate revenue for their designers. Usually, this goal is achieved through the promotion of illegitimate, nonoperational, untrustworthy and even malicious software. It is expressly advised against downloading/installing and/or purchase products promoted via such dubious methods, as doing so can lead to serious issues and endanger device/user safety. In case a deceptive website cannot be closed by closing the browser tab/window, it is necessary to terminate the browser process using the Task Manager. However, the next time the browser is opened - the previous session should not be restored, otherwise the scam site will be reopened as well.

Schemes in the vein of "Antivirus Update is prepared" typically promote fake system cleaners/optimizers. This type of PUA requires to be activated (i.e. it needs to be purchased to perform the advertised functions), yet following activation - remains nonoperational. One of the main culprits behind rogue redirects to a various harmful websites (e.g. deceptive/scam, untrustworthy, compromised and malicious pages) are PUAs. However, apps under this classification can have other heinous abilities. They can run intrusive advertisement campaigns - deliver browsing-quality diminishing, undesirable and dangerous adverts. Other types can modify browsers and restrict/deny access to their settings. Most PUAs, regardless of type, can track data. They monitor browsing activity (browsing and search engine histories) and collect users' personal information inferred from it (IP addresses, geolocations and real-life details). It is highly likely that this gathered data is then shared with third parties (potentially, cyber criminals), intent on misusing it for profit. In summary, PUAs can lead to browser and system infiltrations/infections, financial losses, severe privacy issues and even identity theft. Therefore, it is recommended to remove all suspicious applications and browser extensions/plug-ins immediately upon detection.

Threat Summary:
Name Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scam claims visitors device might be infected and recommends updating their antivirus.
Related Domains protectyourpc-al[.]club
Detection Names (protectyourpc-al[.]club) CyRadar (Malicious), Avira (no cloud) (Phishing), ESET (Malware), 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.
Removal

To eliminate Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
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"ERROR 0xC004FC03", "Your PC is infected with 5 viruses" and "Norton Subscription Has Expired Today" are examples of scams similar to "Antivirus Update is prepared". Social engineering and scare-tactics are used to further these schemes. Alerts of outdated software, warnings of viruses present in the system, announcements of ludicrous prizes won - are a few common scam models. They are designed to trick users into performing specific actions, e.g. downloading/installing/purchasing untrustworthy and/or malicious programs, calling expensive fraudulent technical support lines, making monetary transactions (paying fake fees, fines and other payments), revealing personal information and so on.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

Select PUAs have "official" download webpages, which in turn are commonly promoted by deceptive/scam sites. However, PUAs also spread via download/installation setups of other software. The false marketing method of pre-packing regular products with unwanted or malicious programs is called "bundling". When downloading/installing, by ignoring terms, skipping steps and sections, using pre-set options - users risk unintentionally allowing bundled content onto devices. Intrusive ads also proliferate these applications. Once such an advert is clicked - it can execute scripts to stealthily download/install PUAs.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is important to research products to verify their legitimacy, before downloading/installing/purchasing them. Only official and verified download channels should be used. Sources like: free file-hosting websites, P2P sharing networks (BitTorrent, eMule, Gnutella, etc.) and other third party downloaders - are considered to be untrustworthy, hence are advised against use. When downloading/installing, it is recommended to read terms, study all available options, use the "Custom/Advanced" settings and opt-out from bundled additions (apps, tools, features and so on). Intrusive advertisements appear ordinary and innocuous, however they generate redirects to questionable and unreliable pages (e.g. pornography, adult-dating, gambling, etc.). Should users experience adverts/redirects of this kind, they are to check the system and remove all suspect applications and/or browser extensions/plug-ins without delay. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Text presented in "Antivirus Update is prepared" page:

UPDATE & SECURITY

 

Antivirus Update
System Defender
Backup
Recovery
Activation
For Developers

 

Antivirus Update
Update Status

 

Your PC may be infected by viruses. An urgent update is recommended for PC Cleaner to protect the system from viruses and prevent further damage to the system in your personal data, such as the loss of applications, photos or other files.

 

Install Update

 

Updates are available:
2018-08 Cumulative Update for Windows Version 1703 for x64-based Systems
(KB4025342)
2018-09 Cumulative Update for Windows Version 1703 for x64-based Systems
(KB4022725)
Advanced Options

Screenshot of the pop-up presented by "Antivirus Update is prepared" scam:

Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up

Text presented in the pop-up window:

Antivirus Update is prepared
Click the button below to download update
Download Update

The appearance of "Antivirus Update is prepared" pop-up (GIF):

Antivirus Update is prepared scam gif

Instant automatic removal of Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up: 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 Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up. 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 antivirus update is prepared pop-up, 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 antivirus update is prepared pop-up, 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 plugins 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 antivirus update is prepared pop-up 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 antivirus update is prepared pop-up from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

Post a comment:
If you have additional information on antivirus update is prepared pop-up or it's removal please share your knowledge in the comments section below.

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.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up 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 Antivirus Update is prepared pop-up on your mobile device.
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Platform: Windows

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