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The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

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User offline. Last seen 14 years 37 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2005-03-18

Egad I have just had a nightmare. Never before have I ever seen a relatively brand new computer, only maybe 5 months or so at most, so completely infested with so much spyware as what I have just witnessed.

I am sure it comes to very little suprise to any of you that this was a windows user; a typical computer user with desktop filled personal documents and his documents folder brimming with "new folder" and "new folder (2)" all the way through the 20's of nothing but porn. Never puts his computer through shutdown but instead just hits the power switch. No defense of any kind in the form of spyware blockers, antivirus software, or firewalls. An old POS mouse that hardly worked, which was a pain in the ass btw as it would get stuck everytime I moved it so I eventually just said screw it and used only the keyboard. It was a very nice computer with a nice case, obviosly custom built, that left me sighing that it is wasted on this person.

When I get there he has messenger popups. Not like the MSN messenger but the networking tool that admins use to send messages to people on a network. I tell you...you could keep hitting okay over and over and over again and it would only bring up a new one. Just out of boredom as I was scanning with ad-aware I kept closing them and I went through 84 popups from the time I started to the time it finished. I also had time to clean his mouse as well. 117 found it replied! 117 pieces of spyware on his computer.

All I can say is HOW? How can you allow yourself to be so completely consumed by adware! It was only when the messenger popups started happening that he got in touch with me, I cannot imagine what else he had been going through. After about an hour of fixing, disabling unneeded services, cleaning up, and installling some defenses I eventually get it usable. Notice how I said usable, I could have gotten really in depth and made sure I gotten it all but I figured that it would just be wasted on him so I fixed the things that I could and whatever the programs could catch but I know they will get back on eventually so it's no point in double checking anything.

It is people like him that make me believe requiring a license to use computers is a good idea.

What about you? I am sure I am not the only person who has had a computer illiterate friend come to you asking for help with a "little problem" only to find it to be at the breaking point. Maybe you came accross a computer with so much adware, trojans, and other nasties it actually makes a noticable lag in network speed whenever it is turned on as everything radioed home all at once! If you have please post them as I am sure this may get somewhat humorous.

User offline. Last seen 14 years 15 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2005-03-21
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

Requiring a license to use a computer? They're working on this. It's called TCPA.

Surely the better solution would be to charge them an arm and a leg to fix it, and/or give them a Linux desktop that they can't infect with spyware. :-P with Linux you only have to refresh a home directory and it's all fixed. It's so much more difficult to... completely mutilate a Linux system.

User offline. Last seen 11 years 31 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-08-23
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

I once cleaned up about 70 spywares for someone, and installed firefox to prevent it from happening again. He doesn't visit any sites that are likely to "install" spyware, just online banking and such, so someone else must be the cause. I told him to please tell everyone who uses that computer not to use IE but FF instead. One of the next times I'm there, ad-aware is replaced by a "spyware blocker" I have never heard of, and probably is just a fake and spyware itself. Another next time I see his son surfing the web... with IE.
Criminal stupidity.

The problem is not people who cannot use a computer, they don't do many special things, give them a firewall and a virusscanner and everything is fine. The problem is kids who think they can use daddy's computer.

That was the first and last time I tried to fix a windows box. Even someone like me who is almost unable to use windows can fix it, I don't understand how anyone who is more used to windows can manage to mess things up so badly.

User offline. Last seen 13 years 30 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-12-21
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

Time to LART the lusers, have you got your SOD ready?

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User offline. Last seen 10 weeks 2 days ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-07-12
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

That story is a horror! But unfortunately (and again unfortunately proved by the above story) windows world is a world of computing horror - locked, brainwashed, manipulated, spyed on, nervewashed.. :humeur:

Quote:

Time to LART the lusers, have you got your SOD ready?

What's that? Laughing Crazy blog..

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User offline. Last seen 13 years 42 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-12-22
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

My best mate uses XP and 2000. His XP machine, which has just gotten broad band (XP + Broadband = virus & spyware fest). I have sat there, beside him, and I see like the effects of 2 viruses on screen and numerous spyware wreaking havoc on his system. I told him about it, and since he is only computer literate with WinAMP, Word, IE and surfing his files, he just looked at me.

Long story short, after seeing some hidden files on my flash stick, which I used in order to copy some music, I have decided to not touch the machine, not even with a 10 foot pole.

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wombat@wombat:~> apt-get moo

If the area around my avatar is dark gray chances are you are using MS Internet Explorer, one of the few browsers that do not have full PNG-24 support. Considered trying [url=http://bro

memenode's picture
User offline. Last seen 10 weeks 2 days ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-07-12
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

When i read these horror stories every comment comes down to: what a hell.. I'll be staying away from it as well man! Rolling Eyes :-)

Linux not only means freedom, it means peace (and prosperity) on your computer. :yes:

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User offline. Last seen 13 years 42 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-12-22
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

10 foot pole Daniel, 10 foot pole... Laughing

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wombat@wombat:~> apt-get moo

If the area around my avatar is dark gray chances are you are using MS Internet Explorer, one of the few browsers that do not have full PNG-24 support. Considered trying [url=http://bro

User offline. Last seen 14 years 15 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2005-03-21
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

Hah, all right then. I've just visited my sister who uses XP, and last night I managed to install a program highly suggested by friends, which came with a bundle of spyware piggy-backed on. By the time it was through she had an entire new set of favorites, and a toolbar attached to IE, as well as a number of processes running in the background.
I generally consider myself a competant Windows user, and have never managed to screw up quite so horribly as I did just then. Anyhow, several process cullings and a reboot into safe mode later, I managed to remove it all (hopefully). I can't wait until they have this stuff for Linux.

At least with Linux it's made exceptionally difficult to get into your kernel and screw around... But still it wouldn't be overly hard to bundle an application with something malicious. I know the average Linux user knows more about what they're doing; but with all the Ubuntus and Mepises, I think it'll be interesting just how many of you experts will be baffled by that pop-up ad. :-P

User offline. Last seen 11 years 31 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-08-23
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

I'm not sure if it's still true, but in the past any site could install anything into the mozilla sidebar, just one warning dialog, but you know average joe always clicks "yes".
I considered writing some demo spyware when I found out about that, but didn't Smiling . Anyway, with java you can do the same thing. One "yes" from the user and you're in. It might be difficult to screw up more than "only" the account of the user, but you can do things like keylogging already with only that.
It's a fact of life: incompetent users are never secure, whatever you do, except maybe putting the computer in a block of concrete.

User offline. Last seen 13 years 42 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 2004-12-22
Re: The worst spyware infestation I have seen EVER!

And ripping out the ethernet card/modem. Old saying my dad told me once. Safest computer in our age is one inbedded in a block of concrete with all network cards ripped out. :-)

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wombat@wombat:~> apt-get moo

If the area around my avatar is dark gray chances are you are using MS Internet Explorer, one of the few browsers that do not have full PNG-24 support. Considered trying [url=http://bro

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