Personal Security is a rogue anti-spyware program from the same family as Cyber Security. This program is promoted through the use of malware that will install it on your computer without your permission. In order to protect itself, this program will automatically attempt to terminate security programs that may help to remove it. When installed, Personal Security will be configured to start automatically when Windows starts. Once started, it will scan your computer and display a variety of infections, but will state that it will not remove them unless you first purchase the program. In reality, the infections it finds are either fake or legitimate programs that if deleted could cause problems with the proper operation of Windows. Therefore, please do not act upon any of the files it states are infections.
Personal Security also employs numerous methods where it tries to trick you into thinking you are infected. The first method is the display of a Window that impersonates the legitimate Windows Security Center. The difference is that this fake version suggests you purchase Personal Security to protect yourself. The program will also display numerous security warnings on your computer stating that there is a security problem on the infected computer. The text of these warnings are:
Privacy violation alert!
Personal Security has detected numerous privacy violations. Some programs may send your private data to an untrusted internet host. Click here to permanently block this activity and remove the possible threat (Recommended)
System files modification alert!
Important system files of your computer may be modified by malicious program. It may cause system instability and data loss. Click here to block unauthorized modification and remove potential threats (Recommended).
Internal conflict alert!
Personal Security has detected internal software conflict. Some application endeavors to access system kernel (such behavior is typical for spyware/malware). Click here to prevent system crash and remove potential threats (Recommended)
Spyware activity alert!
Spyware.IEMonster is a popular spyware that attempts to steal passwords from Web browsers, e-mail clients and other programs, including login information from online banking sessions, billing pages, CC transactions, etc. It may also create special tracking files to log your activity and compromise your Internet privacy. It is strongly recommended to prevent this threat immediately. Click here to get protection against Spyware.IEMonster.
Privacy Violation alert!
Personal Security detected a Privacy Violation. A program is secretly sending your private data to an untrusted internet host. Click here to block this activity by removing the threat (Recommended).
System files modification alert!
Some critical system files of your computer were modified by malicious program. It may cause system instability and data loss. Click here to block unauthorized modification by removing threats (Recommended).
System files modification alert!
Personal Security detected internal software conflict. Some application tries to get access to system kernel (such behavior is typical to Spyware/Malware). It may cause crash of your computer. Click here to prevent system crash by removing threats (Recommended).
Spyware activity alert!
Spyware.IEMonster activity detected. It is spyware that attempts to steal passwords from Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Outlook and other programs, including logins and passwords from online banking sessions, eBay, PayPal. It may also create special tracking files to log your activity and compromise your Internet privacy. It's strongly recommended to remove this threat as soon as possible. Click here to remove Spyware.IEMonster.
This program may also display a screen saver that pretends to be a Windows crash, or Blue Screen of Death, that states your computer is infected with the SPYWARE.MONSTER.FX_WILD_0x00000000 malware and that it crashed your computer. It then pretends to reboot your computer. Please remember that this is a screen saver and the crash and subsequent reboot are not real. Last, but not least, this program will hijack Internet Explorer so that it randomly displays a warning message when browsing the web. This warning message is:
This website has been reported as unsafe.
We strongly recommend to discontinue the use of this website.
This website has been report to Microsoft for containing threats that might steal personal or financial information from your computer.
Just like the scan results, all of these warnings messages are fake and are only being shown to scare you into thinking that there is a security problem on your computer. Therefore, please ignore these warnings.
As you can see Personal Security was created for the sole purpose of scaring you into thinking that you are infected so that you will then purchase the program. It goes without saying that you should definitely not purchase this program, and if you have, please contact your credit card company and dispute the charges stating that this program is a scam. Finally, to remove Personal Security for free you should follow the steps in the removal guide below.
Self Help Guide
If you are uncomfortable making changes to your computer or following these steps, do not worry! Instead you can get free one-on-one help by asking in the forums.
- Print out these instructions as we may need to close every window that is
open later in the fix.
- 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.
- Before we can do anything we must first end the processes that belong to
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.
- Once it is downloaded, double-click on the iExplore.exe
icon in order to automatically attempt to stop any processes associated with
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
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
. 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.
- At this point you should download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, or MBAM, to scan your computer for any any infections or adware that may be present. Please download Malwarebytes from the following
location and save it to your desktop:
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Download Link (Download page will open in a new window)
- Once downloaded, close all programs and Windows on your computer, including
- Double-click on the icon on your desktop named mb3-setup-1878.1878-188.8.131.529.exe.
This will start the installation of MBAM onto your computer.
- 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 Launch
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware checked. Then click on the Finish button. If MalwareBytes prompts you to reboot, please do not do so.
- MBAM will now start and you will be at the main screen as shown below.
Please click on the Scan Now button to start the scan. If there is an update available for Malwarebytes it will automatically download and install it before performing the scan.
- MBAM will now start scanning your computer for malware. This process can
take quite a while, so we suggest you do something else and periodically
check on the status of the scan to see when it is finished.
- When MBAM is finished scanning it will display a screen that displays any malware that it has detected. Please note that the infections found may be different
than what is shown in the image below due to the guide being updated for newer versions of MBAM.
You should now click on the Remove Selected button to remove all the seleted 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.
- You can now exit the MBAM program.
- 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 Personal Security 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.