Antivirus 8

Also Known As: Antivirus8
Distribution: Low
Damage level: High

Antivirus 8 - How to remove?

What is Antivirus 8?

This fake antivirus program will try to trick you into purchasing the full version by displaying various security warnings. This rogue program is mostly distributed through websites offering free security scans. These scans will report that your computer is infected and that you should download Antivirus 8 to clean your system. After infection, this fake scanner starts automatically on every system start up - performing a fake scan and instructing you to purchase a full version of the software to clean the ‘detected’ infections. Do not purchase this fake program, it is a scam.

antivirus8 fake antivirus program

The security warning messages generated are fake. This rogue program reports them to trick you into purchasing the bogus software. If you have already purchased this fake antivirus program, you should contact your credit card company and dispute the charges. Explain that you have been tricked into purchasing a fake antivirus program.

When Antivirus 8 infects your computer, you may observe the following security warnings:

“Warning! Identity theft attempt detected! Attacker IP: Attack Target: Microsoft Corp. Keys Description: Remote host attempting to gain access to your personal information.”
“This copy of AV is not genuine. You may be a victim of software counterfeiting. This copy of Antivirus 8 is not genuine and is not eligible to receive the full range of upgrades and product support from Microsoft. Warning! Active virus detected! Threat detected: Keylogger.iSnake.PRO Infected file: C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe”
“Warning! New Virus Detected! Threat Detected: Email-Worm.Zhelatin Infected file: Description: Worm Email-Worm.Zhelatin.vy is virus-like malware with destructive code, and is able to mutate by replacing its own code. This makes Email-Worm.Zhelatin.vy very dangerous, hard to find, and difficult to delete. Like most viruses, worm Email-Worm-Zhelatin.vy may spread to other computers by secretly emailing themselves to Internet users in your address book.”

If you notice Antivirus 8 on your computer, you should remove it immediately. This program is distributed by Internet criminals who use various Trojans and other devious methods to spread their rogue programs. When installed on your computer, Antivirus 8 will block execution of legitimate Windows programs, making its removal problematic. This bogus program encourages you to believe that it is the only program able to save your PC from spyware and malware purportedly attacking your machine. In fact, your computer is unlikely to have any infection and the security threats that Antivirus 8 ‘detects’ are completely fake. This program's purpose is to sell you a license to remove the non-existent security issues from your computer. Follow the Antivirus 8 removal guide to completely remove it from your computer.

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Quick menu:

Antivirus 8 removal:

1. Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer starting process press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.

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2. Download HijackThis and save it to your desktop. Some malicious programs are able to block HijackThis, so when you click the download link, in the Save dialog, rename HijackThis.exe to iexplore.exe and only then click the Save button. After saving the file to your desktop, double click it. In the main HijackThis window click the “Do a system scan only” button. Select the following entry (place a tick at the left of the entry):

O4 – HKCU\..\Run: [AV8] C:\Program Files\AV8\av8.exe

After selecting the required entry, click "Fix Checked". After this procedure you can close HijackThis and proceed to the next removal step.

4. Download Hitman Pro (30 day trial) and run a scan. After this procedure, download and install a legitimate spyware remover to completely remove the infection.

You can also try entering this activation code: ABC12-DEF34-GHI56-JKL789. If it works, Antivirus 8 will be disabled and you will be able to download and install legitimate antispyware software to completely cleanse your computer of this rogue software. 

If you are unable to remove Antivirus 8, you can use these manual removal instructions. Use them at your own risk, since if you do not have strong computer knowledge, you could harm your operating system. Use them only if you are an experienced computer user. (Instructions on how to end processes, remove registry entries...)

End these Antivirus 8 processes:

Antivirus8.exe
AV8.exe

Remove these Antivirus 8 registry entries:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\A88246
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\WinFD
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\explorer.exe
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run "AV8"
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\5.0\User Agent\Post Platform "WinNT-A8I 23.09.2010"
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\explorer.exe "Debugger" = "C:\Program Files\AV8\av8.exe -d"

Delete these Antivirus 8 files:

av8.exe
Antivirus8.lnk{jcomments on}
Uninstall.lnk

Summary:

The fake antivirus programs (also known as "rogue antivirus programs" or "scareware") are applications that tries to lure computer users into paying for their non-existent full versions to remove the supposedly detected security infections (although the computer is actually clean). These bogus programs are created by cyber criminals who design them to look as legitimate antivirus software. Most commonly rogue antivirus programs infiltrate user's computer using poop-up windows or alerts which appear when users surf the Internet. These deceptive messages trick users into downloading a rogue antivirus program on their computers. Other known tactics used to spread scareware include exploit kits, infected email messages, online ad networks, drive-by downloads, or even direct calls to user's offering free support.

A computer that is infected with a fake antivirus program might also have other malware installed on it as rogue antivirus programs often are bundled with Trojans and exploit kits. Noteworthy that additional malware that infiltrates user's operating system remains on victim's computer regardless of whether a payment for a non-existent full version of a fake antivirus program is made. Here are some examples of fake security warning messages that are used in fake antivirus distribution:

Fake pop-up used in rogue antivirus distribution example 1

Fake pop-up used in rogue antivirus distribution example 2

Computer users who are dealing with a rogue security software shouldn't buy it's full version. By paying for a license key of a fake antivirus program users would send their money and banking information to cyber criminals. Users who have already entered their credit card number (or other sensitive information) when asked by such bogus software should inform their credit card company that they have been tricked into buying a rogue security software. Screenshot of a web page used to lure computer users into paying for a non-existent full version of antivirus8 and other rogue antivirus programs:

example of a webpage used to collect payments for fake antivirus programs

To protect your computer from antivirus8 and other rogue antivirus programs users should:

  • Keep their operating system and all of the installed programs up-to-date.
  • Use legitimate antivirus and anti-spyware programs.
  • Use caution when clicking on links in social networking websites and email messages.
  • Don't trust online pop-up messages which state that your computer is infected and offers you to download security software.

Symptoms indicating that your operating system is infected with a fake antivirus program:

  • Intrusive security warning pop-up messages.
  • Alerts asking to upgrade to a paid version of a program to remove the supposedly detected malware.
  • Slow computer performance.
  • Disabled Windows updates.
  • Blocked Task Manager.
  • Blocked Internet browsers or inability to visit legitimate antivirus vendor websites.

If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove antivirus8 from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware removal forum.

If you have additional information on antivirus8 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
Antivirus8 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 Antivirus8 on your mobile device.
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