Q: What are more dangerous, prolific and harder to kill than a computer virus?
A: Forwarded emails.
We all get them - emails from usually well-meaning friends and family who think we might enjoy something someone else sent to them. Political rants, religious reminders, cute animals, amazing views - they have far more potential to damage your computer experience than to help you in any way.
Most people sending you forwarded emails aren't trying to infect your computer, but when the email they got from someone else, who got it from someone else, contains something added along the way and you click on it to See More or even just open the forwarded email, suddenly you have lots more than a friendly "Hello". Popups, warnings, slowdowns, windows that won't close (by the way, DON'T keep trying to close those windows - you're activating even more bad stuff) - appear out of nowhere.
What should you do when something takes over your computer? Shut it off. Just shut it off by holding the power button on the computer in for about 10 seconds. Then, either leave it off and call someone you trust - NEVER CALL THE NUMBER that popped up on your screen purporting to help you - or turn it on again and see if you can run your cleanup routine. Don't have a cleanup routine? Try securitytango.com or call someone you trust.
Oh, and those warning windows that pop up trying to convince you they can clean up your computer if you just call the number provided? It's a scam. If you call them and follow through with their requests you'll not only not get your computer cleaned completely, they'll probably drop more unwanted garbage so you have to keep calling - and paying - until you wise up to their scheme.
I can probably clean your computer via remote, or you can drop it off, or I can pick it up and have it back to you usually next day. You can find me, I don't scam people, and the job I do is thorough and complete. Better - Faster - Cheaper is pretty rare, but it does exist. Call, text, email, Facebook Message any time, day or night, weekends and holidays too; the sooner we talk about what's going on the better the chances are to stop further infections and leave you with a clean computer.
Please share this with the people you care about who need this information.
Cathy Contant firstname.lastname@example.org 315-573-4905