Your decision as to what action to take should be made by reading and asking yourself the questions presented in these articles:
Backdoors and What They Mean to You
Whenever a system has been compromised by a backdoor payload, it is impossible to know if or how much the backdoor has been used to affect your system...There are only a few ways to return a compromised system to a confident security configuration. These include:
• Reimaging the system
• Restoring the entire system using a full system backup from before the backdoor infection
• Reformatting and reinstalling the system
This is what Jesper M. Johansson at Microsoft TechNet has to say: Help: I Got Hacked. Now What Do I Do?
The only way to clean a compromised system is to flatten and rebuild. That’s right. If you have a system that has been completely compromised, the only thing you can do is to flatten the system (reformat the system disk) and rebuild it from scratch (reinstall Windows and your applications).
In some instances an infection may have caused so much damage to your system that it cannot be successfully cleaned, repaired or trusted especially if you are dealing with backdoor Trojans
. These types of infections are very dangerous
because they compromise system integrity
. Rootkits are used by backdoor Trojans to conceal its presence (hide from view) in order to prevent detection of an attacker's software and make removal more difficult. Remote attackers use backdoors as a means of accessing and taking control of a computer that bypasses security mechanisms. This exploit allows them to steal sensitive information like passwords, personal and financial data which is then sent back to the hacker.
To learn more about the TDSS rootkit
, please refer to:
Security vendors that claim to be able to remove rootkits and backdoor Trojans cannot guarantee
that all traces of it will be removed as they may not find all the remnants. Wiping your drive, reformatting
, and performing a clean install of the OS or doing a factory restore with a vendor-specific Recovery Disk or Recovery Partition
removes everything and is the safest action
but I cannot make that decision for you
: Anytime you encounter a malware infection on your computer, especially if that computer was used for online banking, has credit card information or other sensitive data on it, all passwords should be changed immediately
to include those used for banking, email, eBay, paypal and any online activities which require a username and password. You should consider them to be compromised
and change passwords from a clean computer as a precaution in case an attacker was able to steal your information when the computer was infected. Banking and credit card institutions should be notified immediately of the possible security breach. Failure to notify your financial institution and local law enforcement can result in refusal to reimburse funds
lost due to fraud or similar criminal activity. If using a router
, you also need to reset it with a strong logon/password before connecting again..
Consult these links to find out the default username and password for your router
, and write down that information so it is available when doing the reset:
These are general instructions for how to reset a router
For more specific information on your particular model, check the owner's manual. If you do not have a manual, look for one on the vendor's web site which you can download and keep for future reference.
- Unplug or turn off your DSL/cable modem.
- Locate the router's reset button.
- Press, and hold, the Reset button down for 30 seconds.
- Wait for the Power, WLAN and Internet light to turn on (On the router).
- Plug in or turn on your modem (if it is separate from the router).
- Open your web browser to see if you have an Internet connection.
- If you don't have an Internet connection you may need to restart your computer.