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Remove Security Master AV (Uninstall Guide)

By on May 26, 2010 @ 03:45 PM | Read 165,282 times.
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Security Master AV is a program that impersonates an anti-malware program, but is in fact a computer infection that uses deceptive tactics to make you think you are infected. This program is considered a rogue anti-spyware program and is part of the Virus Doctor family. Security Master AV is typically installed through Trojans that pretend to be legitimate programs, but instead install this rogue onto your computer without your permission. The installer will also create numerous harmless files that will be detected as malware when Security Master AV scans your computer. When installed, the rogue will be configured to start automatically when you login to Windows. Once started, it will scan your computer and state that the files it created during installation are malware files residing on your machine. In reality, these files are harmless and pose no harm to your computer. They are only being shown to you in order to scare you into thinking that you are infected in the hopes that you will then purchase the program.

 

Security Master AV screen shot
Security Master AV screen shot
For more screen shots of this infection click on the image above.
There are a total of 7 images you can view.

 

While Security Master AV is loaded it will also display fake security warnings and alerts that contain alarming messages stating that malware is stealing confidential information or that you are under attach from a remote hacker. Some of alerts you may see include:

Warning! Identity theft attempt detected
Hidden Connection IP:
Security Risk: High
Target: Microsoft Corporation Keys

System alert
Suspicious software which may be malicious has been detected on your PC. Click here to remove this threat immediately using Security Master AV.

Warning! Virus detected
Threat Detected: Trojan-Spy.HTML.Citifraud

Just like the scan results, none of the above alerts are real and should be ignored. This rogue will also hijack your Internet Explorer search engine so that it will use findgala.com instead of the search engine that your browser normally uses.

Without a doubt, Security Master AV was developed to scare you into thinking that you have a computer problem so that you will then purchase the program. It goes without saying that you should definitely not purchase this program, and if you have, you should contact your credit card company and dispute the charge. Finally, to remove this program and any related malware, please use the removal guide below.

 

Threat Classification:

 

Advanced information:

View Security Master AV files.
View Security Master AV Registry Information.

 

Tools Needed for this fix:

 

Symptoms that may be in a HijackThis Log:

O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [Security Master AV] "C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\SM345d.exe" /s /d

 

Guide Updates:

05/26/10 - Initial guide creation.

 


Automated Removal Instructions for Security Master AV using Malwarebytes Anti-Malware:

 

  1. Print out these instructions as we may need to close every window that is open later in the fix.

  2. It is possible that the infection you are trying to remove will not allow you to download files on the infected computer. If this is the case, then you will need to download the files requested in this guide on another computer and then transfer them to the infected computer. You can transfer the files via a CD/DVD, external drive, or USB flash drive.

  3. Before we can do anything we must first end the processes that belong to Security Master AV so that it does not interfere with the cleaning procedure. To do this, please download RKill to your desktop from the following link.

    RKill Download Link - (Download page will open in a new tab or browser window.)

    When at the download page, click on the Download Now button labeled iExplore.exe download link. When you are prompted where to save it, please save it on your desktop.

  4. Once it is downloaded, double-click on the iExplore.exe icon in order to automatically attempt to stop any processes associated with Security Master AV and other Rogue programs. Please be patient while the program looks for various malware programs and ends them. When it has finished, the black window will automatically close and you can continue with the next step. If you get a message that rkill is an infection, do not be concerned. This message is just a fake warning given by Security Master AV when it terminates programs that may potentially remove it. If you run into these infections warnings that close RKill, a trick is to leave the warning on the screen and then run RKill again. By not closing the warning, this typically will allow you to bypass the malware trying to protect itself so that rkill can terminate Security Master AV . So, please try running RKill until the malware is no longer running. You will then be able to proceed with the rest of the guide. Do not reboot your computer after running RKill as the malware programs will start again.

    If you continue having problems running RKill, you can download the other renamed versions of RKill from the RKill download page. Both of these files are renamed copies of RKill, which you can try instead. Please note that the download page will open in a new browser window or tab.

  5. Now you should download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, or MBAM, from the following location and save it to your desktop:

    Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Download Link (Download page will open in a new window)


  6. Once downloaded, close all programs and Windows on your computer, including this one.

  7. Double-click on the icon on your desktop named mbam-setup.exe. This will start the installation of MBAM onto your computer.

  8. When the installation begins, keep following the prompts in order to continue with the installation process. Do not make any changes to default settings and when the program has finished installing, make sure you leave both the Update Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and Launch Malwarebytes Anti-Malware checked. Then click on the Finish button. If MalwareBytes' prompts you to reboot, please do not do so.

  9. MBAM will now automatically start and you will see a message stating that you should update the program before performing a scan. As MBAM will automatically update itself after the install, you can press the OK button to close that box and you will now be at the main program as shown below.


    MalwareBytes Anti-Malware Screen

  10. On the Scanner tab, make sure the the Perform full scan option is selected and then click on the Scan button to start scanning your computer for Security Master AV related files.

  11. MBAM will now start scanning your computer for malware. This process can take quite a while, so we suggest you go and do something else and periodically check on the status of the scan. When MBAM is scanning it will look like the image below.


    MalwareBytes Anti-Malware Scanning Screen

  12. When the scan is finished a message box will appear as shown in the image below.


    MalwareBytes Anti-Malware Scan Finished Screen

    You should click on the OK button to close the message box and continue with the Security Master AV removal process.

  13. You will now be back at the main Scanner screen. At this point you should click on the Show Results button.

  14. A screen displaying all the malware that the program found will be shown as seen in the image below. Please note that the infections found may be different than what is shown in the image.


    MalwareBytes Scan Results


    You should now click on the Remove Selected button to remove all the listed malware. MBAM will now delete all of the files and registry keys and add them to the programs quarantine. When removing the files, MBAM may require a reboot in order to remove some of them. If it displays a message stating that it needs to reboot, please allow it to do so. Once your computer has rebooted, and you are logged in, please continue with the rest of the steps.

  15. When MBAM has finished removing the malware, it will open the scan log and display it in Notepad. Review the log as desired, and then close the Notepad window.

  16. You can now exit the MBAM program.

  17. As this infection also changes your Windows HOSTS file, we want to replace this file with the default version for your operating system. Please note that if you or your company has added custom entries to your HOSTS file then you will need to add them again after restoring the default HOSTS file. In order to protect itself, Security Master AV changes the permissions of the HOSTS file so you can't edit or delete it. To fix these permissions please download the following batch file and save it to your desktop:
    hosts-perm.bat Download Link
    When the file has finished downloading, double-click on the hosts-perm.bat file that is now on your desktop. If Windows asks if you if you are sure you want to run it, please allow it to run. Once it starts you will see a small black window that opens and then quickly goes away. This is normal and is nothing to be worried about. You should now be able to access your HOSTS file.

  18. We now need to delete the C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\HOSTS file. Once it is deleted, download the following HOSTS file that corresponds to your version of Windows and save it in the C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc folder. If the contents of the HOSTS file opens in your browser when you click on a link below then right-click on the appropriate link and select Save Target As..., if in Internet Explorer, or Save Link As.., if in Firefox, to download the file.
    Windows XP HOSTS File Download Link
    Windows Vista HOSTS File Download Link
    Windows 2003 Server HOSTS File Download Link
    Windows 2008 Server HOSTS File Download Link
    Windows 7 HOSTS File Download Link
    Your Windows HOSTS file should now be back to the default one from when Windows was first installed.

  19. Now reboot your computer.

  20. As many rogues and other malware are installed through vulnerabilities found in out-dated and insecure programs, it is strongly suggested that you use Secunia PSI to scan for vulnerable programs on your computer. A tutorial on how to use Secunia PSI to scan for vulnerable programs can be found here:

    How to detect vulnerable and out-dated programs using Secunia Personal Software Inspector

 

Your computer should now be free of the Security Master AV program. If your current anti-virus solution let this infection through, you may want to consider purchasing the PRO version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware to protect against these types of threats in the future.

If you are still having problems with your computer after completing these instructions, then please follow the steps outlined in the topic linked below:

Preparation Guide For Use Before Using Malware Removal Tools and Requesting Help

 


 

Associated Security Master AV Files:

c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\16.mof
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\mozcrt19.dll
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\SM345d.exe
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\SMAV.ico
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\sqlite3.dll
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\Quarantine Items\
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\SMAVSys\
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\345d567\SMAVSys\vd952342.bd
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\SMNPCTCAV\
c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\SMNPCTCAV\SMMPIBBZGHAV.cfg
%UserProfile%\Application Data\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\Security Master AV.lnk
%UserProfile%\Application Data\Security Master AV\
%UserProfile%\Application Data\Security Master AV\cookies.sqlite
%UserProfile%\Desktop\Security Master AV.lnk
%UserProfile%\Recent\ANTIGEN.dll
%UserProfile%\Recent\CLSV.dll
%UserProfile%\Recent\DBOLE.exe
%UserProfile%\Recent\DBOLE.tmp
%UserProfile%\Recent\ddv.sys
%UserProfile%\Recent\energy.tmp
%UserProfile%\Recent\exec.dll
%UserProfile%\Recent\FS.sys
%UserProfile%\Recent\kernel32.drv
%UserProfile%\Recent\PE.dll
%UserProfile%\Recent\runddl.dll
%UserProfile%\Recent\runddl.sys
%UserProfile%\Recent\runddlkey.drv
%UserProfile%\Recent\sld.drv
%UserProfile%\Recent\sld.exe
%UserProfile%\Recent\sld.sys
%UserProfile%\Recent\tempdoc.tmp
%UserProfile%\Recent\tjd.tmp
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\Security Master AV.lnk
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\Programs\Security Master AV.lnk

File Location Notes:

%UserProfile% refers to the current user's profile folder. By default, this is C:\Documents and Settings\<Current User> for Windows 2000/XP, C:\Users\<Current User> for Windows Vista/7/8, and c:\winnt\profiles\<Current User> for Windows NT.

 

Associated Security Master AV Windows Registry Information:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\3
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{3F2BBC05-40DF-11D2-9455-00104BC936FF}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\SM345d.DocHostUIHandler
HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes "URL" = "http://findgala.com/?&uid=7&q={searchTerms}"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes "URL" = "http://findgala.com/?&uid=7&q={searchTerms}"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Download "RunInvalidSignatures" = "1"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run "Security Master AV"
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes "URL" = "http://findgala.com/?&uid=7&q={searchTerms}"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Download "CheckExeSignatures" = "no"

 


 

This is a self-help guide. Use at your own risk.

BleepingComputer.com can not be held responsible for problems that may occur by using this information. If you would like help with any of these fixes, you can ask for malware removal assistance in our Virus, Trojan, Spyware, and Malware Removal Logs forum.

If you have any questions about this self-help guide then please post those questions in our Am I infected? What do I do? and someone will help you.


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