What is scareware and how to protect yourself from it?


We all know the benefits and virtues of connectivity in the 21st century. However, when browsing the internet, it is common to encounter dangers and threats. In this note, we will talk about one of them. We will tell you what scareware is and how to prevent it. Keep reading!

What is Scareware?

Scareware is a type of malicious software. Basically, it consists of presenting the user with an imminent threat or danger to their computer. In addition, it tries to make the user perform certain actions to prevent it.

In other words, scareware is a form of virtual scam. It seeks to scare the user with false risks to make them make payments or install more malware.


scareware cases

Many people think they know how to avoid falling into these types of traps. But scareware can be subtle enough to fool even the most experienced users. We will give you some examples so that you can recognize them:

A very common case is that of scareware that passes itself off as an antivirus program. When browsing the internet, the user is presented with a banner or notification. This warns you that your computer is infected. By clicking, the user is made to pay to get rid of the virus.

The notification is presented with a special graphic design. This mimics that of the most qualified and recognized antivirus companies. In addition, harmful viruses can be downloaded. Thus, anyone, no matter how experienced, can fall for the scam if they are distracted. 

Another common case of this malicious software is that it is presented to the user in the form of a banner that invades their entire screen. This time, the sign features the logo of some authority, such as Interpol. The banner threatens to have detected illegal content on the device.

The user, taken aback by the threat, clicks on the banner and is redirected to a new page. Now, you are offered to forgive allegedly found illegal content by paying a fine. If the user, frightened by the threat, pays the supposed fine, he has fallen into scareware.

What to do in the presence of scareware

To recognize malicious software like scareware, common sense is often enough. For example, knowing what the notifications of real antivirus programs are like. These lack intrusive exclamation marks or intimidating colors and phrases.

The same could be said in a case like the police. If this institution had detected illegal content on your computer, it would not let you know in this way. 

Either way, the scareware is cleverly designed to intimidate the user. For this reason, our first advice is that, in a similar situation, remain calm and not rush into looking for instant solutions.


Ways to recognize

However, there are other, more sophisticated types of scareware. These skillfully mimic the interfaces of real problems. In these cases, calm and common sense will not be enough. 

It is essential, in these situations, to know how an antivirus program handles when a threat appears. First, they warn you, but instantly seek to offer you a solution. The scareware, on the other hand, fills your screen with pop-up windows until it completely invades it.

A symptom that your computer may be invaded by scareware is when new windows open without your consent. By clicking on scareware, it can install programs that manage your computer.

When your computer starts to slow down, it may be invaded by scareware. This type of software causes the screen to freeze or programs to stop responding.

How to act before infection of this type

If your device was already infected, you must uninstall the program that caused the infection. Then restart your computer in safe mode. Thus, your computer will work only with the necessary basic programs. You will have access to the internet and the malware will be held captive.

Once done, install a reputable antivirus and run it. This will completely remove malware from your device and prevent you from future threats. 

We have reached this far with the information “ What is scareware and how to protect yourself from it”, we hope it has been useful to you.

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