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How to remove WinPC Antivirus (Removal Guide)

By on April 2, 2009 @ 08:07 PM | Read 55,587 times.
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WinPC Antivirus is a rogue program from the same family as WinPC Defender. This program is advertised through the use of malware that displays fake security alerts and pop-ups on your computer. These alerts state that your computer is infected and that you should download and install WinPC Antivirus in order to clean your computer. Once the program is downloaded and installed it will be configured to start automatically. When it is started it will scan your computer and display a variety of infections on your computer. The files it states are infections, though, do not actually exist on your computer. They are only being shown to you to try and convince you that you are infected so that you purchase the program.

 

WinPC Antivirus screen shot
WinPC Antivirus screen shot
For more screen shots of this infection click on the image above.
There are a total of 8 images you can view.

 

When the program is running you will also continue to see a variety of security alerts on your computer. One alert pretends to be a firewall alert stating that your computer is sending sensitive information to a remote host. Another alert states that a self-replicating file was found and that you need to remove it with WinPC Antivirus. All of these nag screens are being shown for one purposes; to scam you into thinking you are infected with false information so that you purchase the program. Instead of purchasing the program, please ignore the warnings and instead use the removal guide below in order to remove this infection and the malware that promoted it.

 

Threat Classification:

 

Advanced information:

View WinPC Antivirus files.
View WinPC Antivirus Registry Information.

 

Tools Needed for this fix:

 

Symptoms that may be in a HijackThis Log:

O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [sysav] %UserProfile%\Application Data\winav.exe

 

Guide Updates:

04-02-09 - Initial guide creation.

 


Automated Removal Instructions for WinPC Antivirus 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 WinPC Antivirus 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 WinPC Antivirus 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 WinPC Antivirus 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 WinPC Antivirus . 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. If you continue having problems running RKill, you can download the other renamed versions of RKill from the rkill download page. All of the 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.

    Do not reboot your computer after running RKill as the malware programs will start again.


  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 WinPC Antivirus 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 WinPCAntivirus 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 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 WinPCAntivirus 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 WinPC Antivirus Files:

%UserProfile%\Application Data\winav.exe
%UserProfile%\Desktop\WinPC Antivirus.LNK
%UserProfile%\Start Menu\WinPC Antivirus.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 WinPC Antivirus Windows Registry Information:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\WinPC Antivirus
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\don't load "scui.cpl"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\don't load "wscui.cpl"
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run "sysav"
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center "AntiVirusDisableNotify" => 1
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center "FirewallDisableNotify" => 1
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Security Center "UpdatesDisableNotify" => 1

 


 

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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