King of Excellent (according to Scaryduck)

Friday, December 5

Antivirus/spyware 2008/2009/XP/Vista

Yes, it's back. This nasty virus is now ending it's epidemic that seems to be rife in my area, and I wanted to write up and draw some conclusions about it. First of all, and most importantly, how it is obtained. Having seen it some 60 or so times in the past 6 months, I notice a couple of spyware programs that are always in the list of found programs.
Smiley central is the more commercial name for the program, but it's also under the corporate name of "Funweb products." This is a simple smiley addon that makes emails and messenger more 'fun,' which in turn makes it more attractive to teenagers.
Funweb Products normally comes with something else called My Web Search or just My search. As you can see, it is very prevalent, infecting not only Internet Explorer, but also Outlook Express, various IM (AOL IM, WLM Messenger, Yahoo messenger) clients, but also even AOL's email, and incredimail.

Whilst these programs are in themselves harmless, I also notice how often there is a downloading virus called Zlob included in the list of hits. I'm guessing that Zlob is downloaded as part of the above two programs, and it is this that then downloads the nastys like the aforementioned Antispyware/virus variants.

Now the big problem is removing them. AVG detects the Zlob, and thinks it's removed it. Spybot does the same, but you'll notice the pop up reporting back upon restart that you still have infections. It was whilst searching for a cure to this I was introduced to Malwarebyte's Anti-malware program. It is a simple enough program, no frills, but seems to be the only reliable thing on the market to remove this infection. And so, whilst you are mostly clean with Spybot and AVG, this should now be in the auxiliary programs to remove anything unwanted in the future.