Remove the Windows has been block Tech Support Scam

  • October 17, 2016

What is Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam?

Skip this and learn how to remove Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam!

The Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Tech Support Scam is a Trojan from the Trojan.Tech-Support-Scam family that displays a fake Windows alert that states suspicious activity has been detected and that Windows has been blocked from loading. The alert goes on to say that you should not shutdown or reboot the computer, but should rather call Microsoft at 1-888-322-9655 to receive help.

The reality is that this is nothing more than a fake alert that is designed to scare you into calling the listed phone number. Once a victim calls the number, the scammers will try to sell them unnecessary services and software.

  • Tech Support Scam Screen
  • Remote Support Form

The text of the Suspicious Activity Scam alert is:

Windows has been block due to suspicious activity.

Please Don't Shut Down or Restart Your Computer.

Call Microsoft 1-888-322-9655 (Toll Free)

Thankfully, this scam includes a backdoor by the remote support company to close the screen when a victim makes a payment. We can use this method to close the scam Windows and then fix your computer for free.

How did the 888-322-9655 Suspicious Activity Scam get on my computer?

It is important to note that this Trojan is installed by other programs that did not adequately disclose that other software would be installed along with it. Therefore, it is important that you pay attention to the license agreements and installation screens when installing anything off of the Internet. If an installation screen offers you Custom or Advanced installation options, it is a good idea to select these as they will typically disclose what other 3rd party software will also be installed. Furthermore, If the license agreement or installation screens state that they are going to install a toolbar or other unwanted adware, it is advised that you cancel the install and not use the free software.

As you can see, this scam was created solely to trick you into calling the listed number in order to trick you into spending money on unnecessary services or software. For no reason should you call this number, and if you have already have purchased services, I advise you to dispute the charges with your credit card company. To remove this Trojan and any related software for free, please use the removal guide below.

Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam Removal Options

Self Help Guide

This guide contains advanced information, but has been written in such a way so that anyone can follow it. Please ensure your data is backed up before proceeding.

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.

To remove Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam, follow these steps:

1

This removal guide may appear overwhelming due to the amount of the steps and numerous programs that will be used. It was only written this way to provide clear, detailed, and easy to understand instructions that anyone can use to remove this infection for free. Before using this guide, we suggest that you read it once and download all necessary tools to your desktop. After doing so, please print this page as you may need to close your browser window or reboot your computer.

2

The Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam Trojan includes a built in backdoor for the remote support company to close the Window when a victim pays them for services. To get to this screen, simply click on the fake alert and it will refresh and display a slightly different page. This new page will contain the word Microsoft in small letters in the bottom left corner of the scam screen as shown below.

Tech Support Scam Screen

At this screen, or another one showing a remote support form, simply left click once on the Microsoft word as indicated by the red arrow in the image above and the form will close. Now proceed to the next step where you will launch the Windows Explorer so you can get your desktop back.

3

As Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam makes it so the normal Desktop does not display, you need to launch Explorer.exe from the Windows Task Manager. To do this, press the CTRL+ALT+DEL keys on your keyboard at the same time to display the Windows Security Screen as shown below.

Windows Security Screen

At this screen, click on the Task Manager option to start the Windows Task Manager.

4

Now that the Task Manager is open, click on the File menu option and then click on Run. You will now be at the Run dialog as shown in the image below.

Task Manager Screen

In the Open: field, type explorer.exe and then press the OK button.

Your normal desktop should now appear and you can continue with the rest of the instructions. If the desktop does not appear, then a My Computer window will open that will allow you to navigate the file system to launch programs or delete files.

5

We now need to download a batch file that will remove the Shell registry configuration that is loading the ProductKey malware.

To do this, open Internet Explorer from the Windows Start Menu. If you are not able to see your desktop, then you can navigate to the C:\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer folder and double-click on the iexplore.exe file.

Internet Explorer should now be open and you should go to this link: http://download.bleepingcomputer.com/bats/clean-hkcushell.bat. When you visit this link, it will prompt you to save the clean-hkcushell.bat file.

Please save this file on your computer and double-click on it when it has finished downloading. This will run a batch file that will clear the Shell configuration that loads the malware file instead of your desktop. When it prompts if you wish to delete the key, press Y and then enter on your keyboard.

Next time you reboot your Windows desktop will appear as normal and you can continue with the rest of the instructions.

6

To terminate any programs that may interfere with the removal process we must first download the Rkill program. Rkill will search your computer for active malware infections and attempt to terminate them so that they wont interfere with the removal process. To do this, please download RKill to your desktop from the following link.

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Rkill

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

7

Once it is downloaded, double-click on the iExplore.exe icon in order to automatically attempt to stop any processes associated with Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam and other malware. 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 a log file will open. Please review the log file and then close so you can continue with the next step. If you have 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.

8

Now please download Emsisoft Anti-Malware, which will scan for and remove any other adware that may have been bundled with this adware. Please download and save the Emsisoft Anti-Malware setup program to your desktop from the link below:

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Emsisoft Anti-Malware

The download is fairly large, so please be patient while it downloads.

9

Once the file has been downloaded, double-click on the EmsisoftAntiMalwareSetup_bc.exe icon to start the program. If Windows Smart Screen issues an alert, please allow it to run anyway.

If the setup program displays an alert about safe mode, please click on the Yes button to continue. You should now see a dialog asking you to agree to a license agreement. Please access the agreement and click on the Install button to continue with the installation.

10

You will eventually get to a screen asking what type of license you wish to use with Emsisoft Anti-Malware.

Select License Screen

If you have an existing license key or want to buy a new license key, please select the appropriate option. Otherwise, select the Freeware or Test for 30 days, free option. If you receive an alert after clicking this button that your trial has expired, just click on the Yes button to enter freeware mode, which still allows the cleaning of infections.

11

You will now be at a screen asking if you wish to join Emsisoft's Anti-Malware network. Read the descriptions and select your choice to continue.

12

Emsisoft Anti-Malware will now begin to update it's virus detections.

Downloading Updates

Please be patient as it may take a few minutes for the updates to finish downloading.

13

When the updates are completed, you will be at a screen asking if you wish to enable PUPs detection. We strongly suggest that you select Enable PUPs Detection to protect your computer from nuisance programs such as toolbars and adware.

14

You will now be at the final installation screen. Please click on the Finish Installation button end the setup and automatically launch Emsisoft Anti-Malware.

15

Emsisoft Anti-Malware will now start and display the start screen.

Emsisoft Anti-Malware Start Screen

At this screen, please left-click on the Scan section.

16

You will now be at a screen asking what type of scan you would like to perform.

Scan selection screen

Please select the Malware Scan option to begin scanning your computer for infections. The Malware Scan option will take longer than the Quick Scan, but will also be the most thorough. As you are here to clean infections, it is worth the wait to make sure your computer is properly scanned.

17

Emsisoft Anti-Malware will now start to scan your computer for rootkits and malware. Please note that the detected infections in the image below may be different than what this guide is for.

Scanning screen

Please be patient while Emsisoft Anti-Malware scans your computer.

18

When the scan has finished, the program will display the scan results that shows what infections where found. Please note, due to an updated version of Emsisoft Anti-Malware, the screenshot below may look different than the rest of the guide.

Scan Results

Now click on the Quarantine Selected button, which will remove the infections and place them in the program's quarantine. You will now be at the last screen of the Emsisoft Anti-Malware setup program, which you can close. If Emsisoft prompts you to reboot your computer to finish the clean up process, please allow it to do so. Otherwise you can close the program.

19

Now please download AdwCleaner and save it to your desktop. AdwCleaner will scan your computer for adware programs that may have been installed on your computer without your knowledge. You can download AdwCleaner from the following URL:

img
AdwCleaner
20

When AdwCleaner has finished downloading, please double-click on the AdwCleaner.exe icon that now appears on your desktop. Once you double-click on the icon the AdwCleaner program will open and you will be presented with the program's license agreement. After you read it, click on the I agree button if you wish to continue. Otherwise, click on the I disagree button to close the program. If Windows prompts you as to whether or not you wish to run AdwCleaner, please allow it to run.

If you selected to continue, you will be presented with the start screen as shown below.

AdwCleaner Start Screen

21

Now click on the Scan button in AdwCleaner. The program will now start to search for known adware programs that may be installed on your computer. When it has finished it will display all of the items it has found in Results section of the screen above. Please look through the results and try to determine if the programs that are listed contain ones that you do not want installed. If you find programs that you need to keep, then uncheck the entries associated with them.

For many people, the contents of the Results section may appear confusing. Unless you see a program name that you know should not be removed,please continue with the next step.

22

To remove the adware programs that were detected in the previous step, please click on the Clean button on the AdwCleaner screen. AdwCleaner will now prompt you to save any open files or data as the program will need to close any open programs before it starts to clean.

Please save your work and then click on the OK button. AdwCleaner will now delete all detected adware from your computer. When it is done it will display an alert that explains what PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs) and Adware are. Please read through this information and then press the OK button. You will now be presented with an alert that states AdwCleaner needs to reboot your computer.

AdwCleaner Reboot Prompt

Please click on the OK button to let AdwCleaner reboot your computer.

23

When your computer reboots and you are logged in, AdwCleaner will automatically open a log file that contains the files, registry keys, and programs that were removed from your computer.

AdwCleaner Log

Please review this log file and then close the Notepad Window.

24

Now you should download HitmanPro from the following location and save it to your desktop:

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HitmanPro

When you visit the above page, please download the version that corresponds to the bit-type of the Windows version you are using.

25

Once downloaded, double-click on the file named HitmanPro.exe (for 32-bit versions of Windows) or HitmanPro_x64.exe (for 64-bit versions of Windows). When the program starts you will be presented with the start screen as shown below.

HitmanPro Start Screen

Now click on the Next button to continue with the scan process.

26

You will now be at the HitmanPro setup screen. If you would like to install the 30 day trial for HitmanPro, select the Yes, create a copy of HitmanPro so I can regularly scan this computer (recommended) option. Otherwise, if you just want to scan the computer this one time, please select the No, I only want to perform a one-time scan to check this computer option.

Kickstart Setup Options

Once you have selected one of the options, please click on the Next button.

27

HitmanPro will now begin to scan your computer for infections, adware, and potentially unwanted programs. When it has finished it will display a list of all the items that Hitman has found as shown in the image below. Please note that the items found may be different than what is shown in the image.

MalwareBytes Scan Results

You should now click on the Next button to have HitmanPro remove the detected items. When it is done you will be shown a Removal Results screen that shows the status of the various programs that were removed. At this screen you should click on the Next button and then if prompted you should click on the Reboot button. If HitmanPro does not prompt you to reboot, please just click on the Close button.

Once your computer has has restarted or you pressed the Close button, you should now be at your Windows desktop.

28

As many malware and unwanted programs 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 Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam program. If your current security solution allowed this program on your computer, you may want to consider purchasing the full-featured version of Emsisoft 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

Are Your Protected?

While Emsisoft Anti-Malware & HitmanPro will scan and clean a computer for free, the free versions do not offer real-time protection. If you want to be fully protected at all times then it is recommended that you purchase a premium version.

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Emsisoft Anti-Malware

Purchase the full-featured version of Emsisoft Anti-Malware, which includes real-time protection and behavior blocker, to protect yourself against these types of threats in the future!


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HitmanPro

Purchase the full-featured version of HitmanPro, which includes discover viruses, trojans, rootkits, spyware and other malware on up-to-date and fully protected computers using cloud protection and behavioral detections, to protect yourself against these types of threats in the future!

Disclaimer: While we do earn a commission from the sale of the above products, rest assured we only recommend them due to their effectiveness.

View Associated Windows has been block due to suspicious activity Scam Registry Information

HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Shell [path_to]\Adobe Flash Player.exe

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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