Despite having your OS, apps and AV software up to date, you can still get a nasty virus just by surfing the Web. Well, not me; I use a Mac. This recently happened to my niece, though. It doesn’t matter which website she was visiting, suffice it to say that the drive by malware she received caused multiple pop-ups to appear almost continuously. To make matters worse, she was ultimately unable to get back online to even attempt to update her AV software. Since she lives about 40 miles from me, I could not just swing by and fix her PC.
Armed with a USB drive and the Viper Rescue Program, she proceeded home that night and ran a scan. Numerous pieces of malware were present and Viper got them all. After the cleaning however, she still couldn’t get online. She ran another scan but nothing new came up. She called me up to ask what I thought. She was concerned that the malware “broke” her PC. I assured her that it was a software setting issue and not a hardware problem. I walked her through her Internet Settings and as I suspected, her machine had been altered to use a proxy server instead of her normal connection. Once we reset it back, she was back online and has remained good as new.