malware bytes

Why is my printer printing out ads?

Episode 1547

Steve from Nashville, TN

Steve's printer is suddenly printing out ads. What the heck? Leo says there's a good chance he got nailed by either a browser hijack, or malware that has replaced his printer driver. He recommends using Malware Bytes, by only get it from the original creator. The chatroom says that there is a printer exploitation tool kit out there on the web. It could be that there's malware in the HP firmware as well.

Do I have malware?

Malware Bytes

Episode 1471

Sarah from Prescott, AZ

Sarah is worried she may have malware on her system. She ran malware bytes and it says she has 170 possible malware issues. Leo says that probably isn't the case. Malware Bytes will give false positives, or overreact to things in the browser it doesn't like. Malware Bytes can also slow the computer down. What really probably happened is that her browser simply crashed. Leo suspects that Sarah's hard drive is getting flaky, and is starting to fail. The good news is her computer is only a few months old and she can have it repaired under warranty.

Why isn't Malwarebytes working for me?

Malwarebytes

Episode 1458

Don from Culver City, CA

Don is having issues with Malwarebytes. Leo says that if he's experiencing issues with Malwarebytes, there's a good chance that he's been infected. The first thing a malware creator will do is disable online security software and prevent access to those sites in the browser. That's one of the reasons why Leo doesn't like third party antivirus apps. Leo recommends using Microsoft Security Essentials/Windows Defender.

Does antivirus software keep PCs safe?

Antivirus symbol

Episode 1450

Alan from West LA, CA

Alan wants to know if an antivirus utility is any good anymore for malware. How about on a mobile device? Leo says that all too often, an antivirus leaves people more vulnerable because most malware is a zero day exploit. Antivirus can't stop users from themselves, either. All antivirus utilities have to hook themselves into the OS at a very low level and the virus can actually use that as a door to more exploits. So at the end of the day, an antivirus really is only of limited benefit.

Does antivirus software keep PCs safe?

Antivirus symbol

Episode 1389

Alan from Los Angeles, CA

Alan wants to know if an antivirus utility is any good anymore for malware. How about on a mobile device? Leo says that all too often, an antivirus leaves people more vulnerable because most malware is a zero day exploit. Antivirus can't stop users from themselves, either. All antivirus utilities have to hook themselves into the OS at a very low level and the virus can actually use that as a door to more exploits. So at the end of the day, an antivirus really is only of limited benefit.

Do I have a virus?

Episode 1368

Paul from Rochester, NY

Paul got a notice through Malware bytes that he a virus, but he can't seem to get rid of it. It keeps coming back. What gives? Leo says that it may not be malware at all. it could be a false positive. But the only real way to get rid of it, if it is, is to back up your data and reinstall windows from a known good source. You could also reboot into safe mode, then remove it. That could enable it to be removed without reloading. But Leo's betting it's not malware at all. Sometimes Malware bytes causes more trouble.

How can I get rid of malware?

Episode 1268

Carolyn from Pasadena, CA

Carolyn thinks she got attacked by a virus. MalwareBytes says there's over 174 viruses on her machine. Leo says there might not be. There may be malware on it, but sometimes Malware Bytes gives a false positive on cookies and calls them viruses. She'll also want to be sure that she got MalwareBytes from the >official MalwareBytes site. Carolyn really should just make a recovery, back up her data, wipe the drive, and then run the recovery utility. It's the only way to be sure that she's free of viruses.

How do I protect my computer from malware?

Episode 1188

Jim from Houston, TX

Jim has been watching some of Leo's podcasts and is concerned with security on his PC. What antivirus software should he use on Windows 8.1? Leo says that Microsoft ships Windows Defender for free and that's all he needs. But he should remember that an antivirus is only as good as his own behavior. What about MalwareBytes? Leo says that while Malware Bytes is effective, he can actually do more harm than good if he doesn't know what he's doing. And if his computer has been infected, he will have no idea if he actually removed all of it or not.

Why am I getting popups to run Windows Installer?

Episode 1083

Michele from Rapid City, SD

Michele accidentally clicked on an ad and now she keeps getting pop ups to download "Windows updater." Leo says that's malware and to avoid it. Leo also thinks that Michele hasn't gotten a virus just yet. But since she clicked on the ad, there may be a cookie there that keeps bringing it up. Leo advises running MalwareBytes, but she should only download it from http://www.malwarebytes.org/. There are bad versions out there that are designed to confuse people. Always download software from the original designer.