Windows Smart Security is a rogue anti-spyware program that utilizes aggressive advertising and false scan results to trick people into purchasing the program. When Windows Smart Security is installed it will be configured to start automatically and then scan your computer. When the scan has finished it will state that you have numerous infections on your computer, but will not let you remove them until you purchase the program. The results, though, are either grossly exaggerated or outright lies that are used to trick you into thinking you are infected.
Windows Smart Security will also display fake security alerts and firewall warnings on your computer. These alerts will contain dire warnings that your computer has security problems and that if you do not purchase Windows Smart Security you are at risk for identity theft, bank account theft, and loss of data. An example of a message you will see, including its horrible grammar, is:
REMOVE ALL SPYWARE FROM YOUR PC!
SECURE YOURSELF RIGHT NOW!
ARE STILL THERE and could break your life!
with all the images, and all the downloaded and maybe later removed movies or mp3 songs -
Every site you or somebody or even something, like spyware, opened in your browsers,
FOR YOUR BOSS, YOUR FRIENDS, YOUR WIFE, YOUR CHILDREN.
YOUR DATA IS STILL AVAILABLE FOR FORENSICS. AND IN SOME CASES
LOGGED. AND IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO REMOVE THEM WITH STANDARD TOOLS.
WHEN YOU VISIT SITES, SEND EMAILS... ALL YOUR ACTIONS ARE
ALL YOU DO WITH COMPUTER IS STORED FOREVER IN YOUR HARD DISK.
YOUR COMPUTER IS INFECTED WITH SPYWARE!
YOUR'RE IN DANGER!
Windows Smart Security will also show a fake Windows crash, or Blue Screen of Death, that pretends that a major Windows driver, NTFS.SYS, has a problem:
*** NTFS.SYS - Address 0xFBFE7617 base at 0xFD3094C2, DateStamp 3d6abeff
*** STOP: 0x00000050 (0xFD3094C2,0x00000001,0xFBFE7617,0x00000000)
select Safe Mode.
your computer, press F8 to select Advanced Startup Options, and then
If you need to use Safe Mode to remove or disable components, restart
or software. Disable BIOS memory options such as caching or shadowing.
If problems continue, disable or remove any newly installed hardware
for any windwos updates you might need.
If this is a new installation, ask your hardware or software manufacturer
Check to make sure any new hardware or software is properly installed.
restart your computer. If this screen apears again, follow
If this is the first time you've seen this stop error screen,
The problem seems to be caused by the following file: NTFS.SYS
to your computer.
A problem has been detected and Windows has been shut down to prevent damage
You will then receive a prompt to purchase Windows Smart Security to fix the problem.
As you can see Windows Smart Security was designed for one reason; to scam you into thinking that you are infected in the hopes that you then purchase the program. It goes without saying that you should not purchase the program, and if you already have, I suggest you contact your credit card company to dispute the charges. Last, but not least, please use the guide below to remove this infection and any related malware.
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.
To remove Windows Smart Security, follow these steps:
- STEP 1: Print out instructions before we begin.
- STEP 2: Use Rkill to terminate suspicious programs.
- STEP 3: Use Malwarebytes AntiMalware to Scan for Malware and Unwanted Programs
- STEP 4: Use HitmanPro to scan your computer for badware
- STEP 5: Run Secunia PSI to find outdated and vulnerable programs.
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.
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.
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.
Once it is downloaded, double-click on the iExplore.exe icon in order to automatically attempt to stop any processes associated with Windows Smart Security 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.
At this point you should download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, or MBAM, to scan your computer for any infections, adware, or potentially unwanted programs that may be present. Please download Malwarebytes from the following location and save it to your desktop:
Once downloaded, close all programs and Windows on your computer, including this one.
Double-click on the icon on your desktop named mb3-setup-1878.1878-220.127.116.112. 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.
We now need to enable rootkit scanning to detect the largest amount of malware and unwanted programs that is possible with MalwareBytes. To do this, click on the Settings button on the left side of the screen and you will be brought to the general settings section.
Now click on the Protection tab at the top of the screen. You will now be shown the settings MalwareBytes will use when scanning your computer.
At this screen, please enable the Scan for rootkits setting by clicking on the toggle switch so it turns green.
Now that you have enabled rootkit scanning, click on the Scan button to go to the scan screen.
Make sure Threat Scan is selected and then click on the Start Scan button. 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, adware, or potentially unwanted programs that it has detected. Please note that the items 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 selected items. 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.
Now you should download HitmanPro from the following location and save it to your desktop:
When you visit the above page, please download the version that corresponds to the bit-type of the Windows version you are using.
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.
Now click on the Next button to continue with the scan process.
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.
Once you have selected one of the options, please click on the Next button.
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.
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.
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:
Your computer should now be free of the Windows Smart Security program. If your current security solution allowed this program on your computer, you may want to consider purchasing the full-featured 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:
Are Your Protected?
While Malwarebytes 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.
Purchase the full-featured version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, which includes real-time protection, scheduled scanning, and website filtering, to protect yourself against these types of threats in the future!
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.