A new round of rogue antivirus programs is hitting my clients hard this month. There are many different ones; some new, and some have been around for years.
If you see a pop-up window that looks like a security or antivirus program (maybe even looks like your antivirus program) and warns that your computer is infected - and offers to clean it - do NOT click on it. Clicking on anything in the pop-up window activates the trojan.
Here you'll find more information on rogue programs:
Names of some known rogue antivirus/spyware programs:
WinAntivirus 2007 (2008, 2009)
Antivirus Pro 2010
What to do if your computer gets infected with a rogue program
Rogue programs can usually be removed with a combination of antispyware programs. It can be a long, detailed process if the rogue program has been allowed to run on the computer for some time. Worst-case results include damage to critical operating system files and/or your data, requiring data backup, cleaning of data, reinstalling Windows and restoring the cleaned data.
If you see the pop-ups for these rogue antivirus programs, or porn popups, or your browser goes somewhere other than where you told it to go, stop what you're doing and take care of the problem before it goes too far.
Self-help includes running the Security Tango (thanks, Nick!) http://securitytango.com/
Malwarebytes has saved many computers from further infection: http://www.malwarebytes.org/
Or, if you don't want to dive into it, call me.
And stop clicking on things that look too good to be true!