The economy is booming in the rogue security software sector this year. PandaLabs reports that malware posing as antivirus software is spreading fast, with tens of millions of computers infected each month. Over the course of this year, they predict that that there will be up to 637,000 variants of bogus security software available, infecting as many as 35 million computers each month.
Essentially a rogue security program convinces the user that their computer is infected with malware, when it’s really not, and the user agrees to install the software to remove the nonexistent threat. The duped user pays between $29 and $79, earning cybercriminals approximately $34 million per month through rogueware attacks.
What to look for in rogue software
- Their design is convincingly similar to real antivirus software
- Rogue antivirus programs often display more "alerts" like fake pop-up warnings or messages in the task bar
- Your system is scanned quickly and without your consent – something a legitimate software vendor would never do
- The ‘infections’ detected often refer to different files on each scan
- High-pressure sales copy to buy RIGHT NOW!
- Changes to the operating system that prevent you from restoring the desktop or screensaver
How to prevent infection with rogue software
- Use a safe browser. Many people prefer Firefox.
- Keep your antivirus and antispyware updated and install WOT
- Be careful in downloading freeware or shareware programs
- Avoid using file sharing (P2P) applications
- Don’t click on any pop-up that advertises antivirus software
If you have been infected, visit Free PC Security for help.
Do you have any other tips or something you want to share about this plague of fake antivirus software? Let us know.