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Browser hijack redirects to unrelated advertisements Driving me mad! Please help

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#1 Cubbies


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Posted 18 September 2009 - 07:17 PM

First off, Thanks so much for being here and for your help.

My Problem:
When searching anything (about every 3rd search) I get a redirect in 3 seconds message & then browser box flashes quickly through about 10 sites then settles on an unwanted & unrelated advertisement. I have been working on this non stop for days. I have CA Suite & CA Virus scan found nothing. CA Spyware found a few things and cleaned up but didn't change a thing. CA Spyware real time detection can't be turned on and each time I click on it I get the message it will enable upon reboot but after a dozen or more restarts it never does. Yesterday, I downloaded and ran Search and Destroy Bot which found 140 Trojan entries and other asundrie scary need fixed now problems. I followed instructions for clean up. I thought I had it whipped and much to my chagrin....no, more like utter despair....upon reboot redirect crazy making stuff started up again almost immediately. I uninstalled Adaware as I was afraid it would conflict with Search and Destroy and I was unable to open it anyway (even after I reinstalled). I also tried to restore to an earlier date and am not allowed to do that either. I am so sad because this has really wrecked my computer time and I feel like each time I reboot this nasty thing multiplies.
Nothing has worked. I can't even count the hours I have spent looking at a screen while scanning it over and over for problems.

Again, I THANK YOU so much for being here and for your willingness to listen and help me. You folks are absolutely awesome!

Please help me.

Cubbies (Linda)

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#2 Orange Blossom

Orange Blossom

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Posted 18 September 2009 - 08:13 PM

As no logs have been posted, I am shifting this topic from the specialized HiJack This forum to the Am I Infected forum.

==>PLEASE DO NOT NOW POST LOGS<== unless a log is specifically requested.
Help us help you. If HelpBot replies, you MUST follow step 1 in its reply so we know you need help.

Orange Blossom

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure

SpywareBlaster, WinPatrol Plus, ESET Internet Security, NoScript Firefox ext.


#3 Cubbies

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Posted 18 September 2009 - 09:12 PM

Just to clarify. By browser box I mean it flashes the addresses of about 10 web sites not pictures and it's in a separate address box from IE or Google. I also am 99.9% sure I got this from going to a site that offered a download for a tv show I had missed. I didn't download the show but was on the site for about 5 minutes and problem started almost imediately with about a hundred various "your computer is infected", "your information is being stolen", etc & one even had a horrible noise. I clicked on the first several which only made it worse of course. I feel pretty stupid.

#4 boopme


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Posted 18 September 2009 - 09:40 PM

Hello and welcome. We still need to scan further here.
Next run MBAM (MalwareBytes):

NOTE: Before saving MBAM please rename it to zztoy.exe....now save it to your desktop.

Please download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and save it to your desktop.

alternate download link

MBAM may "make changes to your registry" as part of its disinfection routine. If using other security programs that detect registry changes (ie Spybot's Teatimer), they may interfere or alert you. Temporarily disable such programs or permit them to allow the changes.
  • Make sure you are connected to the Internet.
  • Double-click on mbam-setup.exe to install the application.
  • When the installation begins, follow the prompts and do not make any changes to default settings.
  • When installation has finished, make sure you leave both of these checked:
    • Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
    • Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware
  • Then click Finish.
MBAM will automatically start and you will be asked to update the program before performing a scan.
  • If an update is found, the program will automatically update itself. Press the OK button to close that box and continue.
  • If you encounter any problems while downloading the definition updates, manually download them from here and just double-click on mbam-rules.exe to install.
On the Scanner tab:
  • Make sure the "Perform Quick Scan" option is selected.
  • Then click on the Scan button.
  • If asked to select the drives to scan, leave all the drives selected and click on the Start Scan button.
  • The scan will begin and "Scan in progress" will show at the top. It may take some time to complete so please be patient.
  • When the scan is finished, a message box will say "The scan completed successfully. Click 'Show Results' to display all objects found".
  • Click OK to close the message box and continue with the removal process.
Back at the main Scanner screen:
  • Click on the Show Results button to see a list of any malware that was found.
  • Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected.
  • When removal is completed, a log report will open in Notepad.
  • The log is automatically saved and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM.
  • Copy and paste the contents of that report in your next reply. Be sure to post the complete log to include the top portion which shows MBAM's database version and your operating system.
  • Exit MBAM when done.
Note: If MBAM encounters a file that is difficult to remove, you will be asked to reboot your computer so MBAM can proceed with the disinfection process. If asked to restart the computer, please do so immediately. Failure to reboot normally (not into safe mode) will prevent MBAM from removing all the malware.

Next run ATF and SAS:
Note.. SAS doesn't open the registry hives for other user accounts on the system, so scans should be done from each user account.

Note: On Vista, "Windows Temp" is disabled. To empty "Windows Temp" ATF-Cleaner must be "Run as an Administrator".

From your regular user account..
Download Attribune's ATF Cleaner and then SUPERAntiSpyware , Free Home Version. Save both to desktop ..
DO NOT run yet.
Open SUPER from icon and install and Update it
Under Scanner Options make sure the following are checked (leave all others unchecked):
Close browsers before scanning.
Scan for tracking cookies.
Terminate memory threats before quarantining
Click the "Close" button to leave the control center screen and exit the program. DO NOT run yet.

Now reboot into Safe Mode: How to enter safe mode(XP)
Using the F8 Method
Restart your computer.
When the machine first starts again it will generally list some equipment that is installed in your machine, amount of memory, hard drives installed etc. At this point you should gently tap the F8 key repeatedly until you are presented with a Windows XP Advanced Options menu.
Select the option for Safe Mode using the arrow keys.
Then press enter on your keyboard to boot into Safe Mode

Double-click ATF-Cleaner.exe to run the program.
Under Main "Select Files to Delete" choose: Select All.
Click the Empty Selected button.

If you use Firefox or Opera browser click that browser at the top and choose: Select All
Click the Empty Selected button.
If you would like to keep your saved passwords, please click No at the prompt.
Click Exit on the Main menu to close the program

NOW Scan with SUPER
Open from the desktop icon or the program Files list
On the left, make sure you check C:\Fixed Drive.
Perform a Complete scan. After scan,Verify they are all checked.
Click OK on the summary screen to quarantine all found items.
If asked if you want to reboot, click "Yes" and reboot normally.

To retrieve the removal information after reboot, launch SUPERAntispyware again.
Click Preferences, then click the Statistics/Logs tab.
Under Scanner Logs, double-click SUPERAntiSpyware Scan Log.
If there are several logs, click the current dated log and press View log.
A text file will open in your default text editor.
Please copy and paste the Scan Log results in your next reply.
Click Close to exit the program.

Please ask any needed questions,post 2 logs and Let us know how the PC is running now.
How do I get help? Who is helping me?For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear....Become a BleepingComputer fan: Facebook

#5 Cubbies

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Posted 18 September 2009 - 11:05 PM

Here's the report. Thanks so much for your help! I felt such huge relief when you responded to my problem. I'm headed to next steps and will report back. Cubbies

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware 1.41
Database version: 2823
Windows 5.1.2600 Service Pack 3

9/18/2009 11:53:41 PM
mbam-log-2009-09-18 (23-53-41).txt

Scan type: Quick Scan
Objects scanned: 103332
Time elapsed: 14 minute(s), 34 second(s)

Memory Processes Infected: 0
Memory Modules Infected: 0
Registry Keys Infected: 2
Registry Values Infected: 0
Registry Data Items Infected: 5
Folders Infected: 0
Files Infected: 0

Memory Processes Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Memory Modules Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Keys Infected:
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Interface\{04a38f6b-006f-4247-ba4c-02a139d5531c} (Adware.Minibug) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Ext\Stats\{3aa42713-5c1e-48e2-b432-d8bf420dd31d} (Rogue.AntiVirus2008) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Registry Values Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Data Items Infected:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Classes\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\URL (Hijack.SearchPage) -> Bad: (http://search-gala.com/?&uid=195&q={searchTerms}) Good: (http://www.Google.com/) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-19\SOFTWARE\Classes\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\URL (Hijack.SearchPage) -> Bad: (http://search-gala.com/?&uid=195&q={searchTerms}) Good: (http://www.Google.com/) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-19\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\URL (Hijack.SearchPage) -> Bad: (http://search-gala.com/?&uid=195&q={searchTerms}) Good: (http://www.Google.com/) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-20\SOFTWARE\Classes\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\URL (Hijack.SearchPage) -> Bad: (http://search-gala.com/?&uid=195&q={searchTerms}) Good: (http://www.Google.com/) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-20\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\URL (Hijack.SearchPage) -> Bad: (http://search-gala.com/?&uid=195&q={searchTerms}) Good: (http://www.Google.com/) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.

Folders Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Files Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

#6 Cubbies

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Posted 19 September 2009 - 05:51 AM

Dear Boopme,

I did everything as per your wonderfully detailed & idiot proof instructions which made it possible for even me to follow. The Super AntiSpy which I ran last as per your instructions found 12 threats (unbelievable after running 5 other spywear programs in the past 36 hours) and they quaranteened them as per their recommendation. When I rebooted and went into the preferences & log there was no record of that scan and I was afraid it hadn't worked so I ran the complete scan over again. I am sending that log and still no log appears for the 1st scan. It was set as per theirs and your instructions and I didn't open it till the scan was complete including reboot. I can try to tell you what some of the threats were. 3 were to registry. Also, some rogue applications & rogue browser were found. Also, 2 threats with name "coupon bar". I am really sorry the first log isn't there because I wanted to do everything you asked because you certainly did everything I asked and more.

Here is the 2nd scan log from Super AntiSpy:

SUPERAntiSpyware Scan Log

Generated 09/19/2009 at 04:05 AM

Application Version : 4.29.1002

Core Rules Database Version : 4111
Trace Rules Database Version: 2051

Scan type : Complete Scan
Total Scan Time : 01:32:40

Memory items scanned : 433
Memory threats detected : 0
Registry items scanned : 6054
Registry threats detected : 0
File items scanned : 87273
File threats detected : 0

Thanks so much for giving me my computer back! It is running great for the first time in a week and I feared it was going to be a permanent no fix problem. You are my hero! Should have known it would take a New Jersey guy to get this fixed! I have a thing for you Jersey boys since I married a great one many years ago who is still my best friend & Dad to our 6 grown kids & 7 grandkids.

I'll follow up in the next few days to let you know about how it's running.


Cubbies (Linda)

#7 boopme


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Posted 19 September 2009 - 09:42 AM

HI Linda. You're welcome.. Well I guess you know in Jersey it's kick but first then talk about it! :thumbsup:
Glad to have helped ..
Now you should Create a New Restore Point to prevent possible reinfection from an old one. Some of the malware you picked up could have been backed up, renamed and saved in System Restore. Since this is a protected directory your tools cannot access to delete these files, they sometimes can reinfect your system if you accidentally use an old restore point. Setting a new restore point AFTER cleaning your system will help prevent this and enable your computer to "roll-back" to a clean working state.

The easiest and safest way to do this is:
  • Go to Start > Programs > Accessories > System Tools and click "System Restore".
  • Choose the radio button marked "Create a Restore Point" on the first screen then click "Next". Give the R.P. a name, then click "Create". The new point will be stamped with the current date and time. Keep a log of this so you can find it easily should you need to use System Restore.
  • Then use Disk Cleanup to remove all but the most recently created Restore Point.
  • Go to Start > Run and type: Cleanmgr
  • Click "Ok". Disk Cleanup will scan your files for several minutes, then open.
  • Click the "More Options" tab, then click the "Clean up" button under System Restore.
  • Click Ok. You will be prompted with "Are you sure you want to delete all but the most recent restore point?"
  • Click Yes, then click Ok.
  • Click Yes again when prompted with "Are you sure you want to perform these actions?"
  • Disk Cleanup will remove the files and close automatically.
Vista Users can refer to these links: Create a New Restore Point and Disk Cleanup.
How do I get help? Who is helping me?For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear....Become a BleepingComputer fan: Facebook

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