Destroy Adware (and its’ friends) With AdwCleaner

AdwCleaner is one of those programs that I keep on my computer, that is engineered to target (and remove) adware, spyware, potentially unwanted programs (PUPs), and browser hijackers. If you download this program, you will have to manually run it in order for it to work its’ magic. There is no install involved (simply download and run). I typically download it and run it at least every couple of weeks. I have had great success with this program over the years and highly recommend it to help keep your computer in a healthy state.

Source: Malwarebytes – AdwCleaner

How can I download a video posted on Facebook?

This is a question I recently searched for using Google. What I found is that there is no easy way on Facebook to download a video that has been posted by another party; however, I did find that will download a Facebook video providing you have the URL for the video.

To get the URL, simply right mouse click on the video, click on “show video URL”, then click on the “URL” (to highlight it), then hit “Ctrll+C” to copy the URL to the clipboard (or you can right mouse click and select “copy” which will copy the URL to the clipboard). After you have copied the URL to the clipboard, go to and enter the URL in the input field at the top of the main page. This action should present a download button where you can initiate the download (which will either be in MP4-HD or MP4-SD file formats).

With you can also download audio, video, and other types of files from various websites and social networks such as,,, and others.



Keeping You Safe With Google Play Protect – One of the biggest security risks you’re likely to face is simply losing your phone. To help in these times of need, we’re launching Find My Device as part of Google Play Protect. With Find My Device you can locate, ring, lock and erase your Android devices—phones, tablets, and even watches… READ MORE

How To Unlock A Locked Account in Windows 10 – This tutorial explains how to unlock a locked account in Windows 10. A user account is locked when total number of invalid login attempts are reached. In that case, that particular user account is locked for 30 minutes (default lockout limit) or it can be more if you have manually set account lockout time… READ MORE

unlock a locked account in windows 10

Note-taking made easier for everyone—redesigning OneNote – As Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said, “We will focus on designing and building products that our customers love and that are accessible to everyone and built for each of us.” In this update, we focused on making OneNote more usable for those with disabilities—such as vision and mobility impairments… READ MORE

Screenshot of OneNote’s new design showing the navigation all on the left hand side. The columns are labeled from left to right: Notebooks, Sections, Pages.

Malwarebytes AdwCleaner 6.044 – a free anti-malware app that deletes adware, PUP’s (Potentially Unwanted Programs), toolbars, and browser hijackers… READ MORE

How to add a second clock to the Windows taskbar – All modern versions of Windows allow you to add up to two additional clocks. To do so… READ MORE

How To Remove A Photo From Your Device But Not Google Drive – If you bought a device that doesn’t have a lot of storage space, this is a great way to make sure you don’t run out of space on it… READ MORE

Stop users copying PDF text with PDF Anti-Copy – PDF Anti-Copy is a free tool which protects PDF content by preventing users selecting or copying its text… READ MORE


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FREE Tool To Remove Adware, PUP’s, Toolbar’s and Hijacker’s

Another FREE program that I use to remove unwanted programs and malware is AdwCleaner. This is a must have tool; especially, if you are the one who has the tech toolbox that is used to help others. AdwCleaner is a program that searches for and deletes Adware, Toolbar’s, Potentially Unwanted Program’s (PUP), and browser Hijacker’s from your computer. It comes with a “scan” and “clean” mode. Typically, these unwanted programs, such as adware, PUP’s, Toolbars, and hijacker’s, are bundled in with other software that we install (from the web) on our computers. ALWAYS, during a software installation, pay attention to any other optional software that may (or could) install; and, ALWAYS, research the software you intend to install. Typically, in honest cases, you are given an option (via a check box) to keep bundled software from not installing.


411 for Spyware and Malware Assistance

4-1-1 is one of those telephone numbers we learn to use (and remember) to call the operator for directory assistance (to help us locate a directory listing). It is one of those services that is there to help us when we are in a bind.

As a computer user, what an advantage it would be to have a service available that you could consult with to find information about malware and spyware infections.  Look no further…

If you suspect you are a victim of a malware or spyware infection where malicious software or content has installed on your PC, without your permission, then you need to visit:


411-Spyware is your online directory (click links below) for identifying specific infections and removal assistance for:

If you are tech, 411-Spyware is a great research starting point. The site provides visual cues of what the infections look like, descriptions and removal instructions. If you are new to computers and do not fully understand what malware is, I encourage you to visit this site for the educational experience (with pictures and all). Everything that you see on that site are examples of infections that have been engineered to exploit your computer and ultimately compromise your privacy.  Remember, 411-Spyware for spyware and malware assistance!

Tips to remember if you think your computer is infected:

If there are noticeable changes to your computer such as slowness, sudden pop-up ads, browser redirects, homepage changes, fake security software, then you are most likely infected.  Do not panic!

Write down exactly what you are seeing.  This is very helpful for researching and accurately identifying the problem.

Disconnect from the internet…  Do not continue using the internet to do your shopping, banking or other online activities that involve user names, passwords or other sensitive information until you are sure the problem has been resolved.

Use layers of protections (firewall, anti-virus, anti-malware, anti-spyware).

Maintain your Windows and Software updates.

Use common sense when surfing the internet.  If it looks too good to be true, avoid it!


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The Malware Evolution…

While conducting research on computer malware, I happened across an article at ‘howstuffworks -10 Worst Computer Viruses of All Time” (by Jonathan Strickland).  I was very impressed with the article and decided to summarize, in a table format (see below), the ten worst computer viruses of all time (based on the information from that article), in an effort to demonstrate how malware is evolving. You can read the full article on the “10 Worst Computer Viruses of All Time”, by clicking on the “howstuffworks” logo at the bottom of the page.

Another source of information that blends in well with this topic, is an article posted at Tech-for Everyone, “A Brief History – Holiday Edition”, that provides a short history on who wrote the first true virus, the evolution of viruses; and how virus and malware protection has led to a $38 billion industry.  I recently communicated with the author (known as TechPaul) and he made the following “real world” statement, that demonstrates how the malware evolution is affecting people on a personal level.

“As a Help and Support tech, I see (and repair) the damage done by malware everyday, and it is no joke. I have talked with folks who were forced to buy new machines due to rootkit and firmware infections. I have talked with people who have spent time rebuilding their credit after their “identity” was stolen.” –TechPaul

In conclusion, the objective of this article is to display the timeline and evolution of viruses (aka: malware) and to impress upon my readers the importance of keeping your security and system software up to date.  Malware has evolved from what you are seeing in this table to include thousands of variations of computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, rootkits, spyware, dishonest adware, crimeware and other malicious and unwanted software.   The motivation in the past was more idealistic; whereas, today the motivation is money.




MS-Word Macro; Propagated via email attachment; When opened: sent itself out to the top 50 people in the recipient’s e-mail address book.




Standalone Program; Worm; Propagated via email attachment; Subj:  Love Letter from a Secret Admirer, Attachment: LOVE-LETTER-FOR-YOU.TXT.vbs; When opened: wide range of attacks.




Propagated via Email message; Spoofing; Replicated itself; Sent itself to people in recipient’s address book; Some variations rendered a persons computer inoperable.


Code Red


Worm; Propagated via Internet; Exploited vulnerability in operating system (buffer overflow); distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on the White House.




Nimda is “Admin” backwards; Worm; Propagated via the Internet & Email (very quickly); Primary target: Internet Servers; Purpose: To bring the internet to a crawl.


SQL Slammer / Sapphire


Propagated via Internet; Attacked Web Servers; Took down unprepared infrastructure systems; Caused $1 Billion plus in damage; Victims infected within seconds after initial launch.




Propagated via email; Created backdoor in victim’s computer; Had two triggers: Caused Denial of Service Attack and second trigger commanded the virus to stop distributing itself on Feb. 12, 2004; Replicated via email addresses on victim’s PC; Second outbreak caused search engines to come to a crawl.


Sasser and Netsky


Worm; Propagated via internet; Attacked computer through a Microsoft vulnerability; Scanned random IP’s for victim computers; Virus created by 17 year old German programmer.




Infected Apple Mac’s PC’s; Propagated via instant messaging (iChat); Caused little harm; Demonstrated that Mac PC’s can be vulnerable as well.


Storm Worm


Progated via email and fake links; Trojan Horse; Original had email subj line: “230 dead as storm batters Europe”; Can turn PC into “zombies” or “bots”; Vulnerable to remote control by attacker.


clipped from


10 Worst Computer Viruses of All Time

by Jonathan Strickland


Computer viruses can be a nightmare. Some can wipe out the information on a hard drive, tie up traffic on a computer network for hours, turn an innocent machine into a zombie and replicate and send themselves to other computers. If you’ve never had a machine fall victim to a computer virus, you may wonder what the fuss is about. But the concern is understandable — according to Consumer Reports, computer viruses helped contribute to $8.5 billion in consumer losses in 2008 [source: MarketWatch]. Computer viruses are just one kind of online threat, but they’re arguably the best known of the bunch.

Computer virus


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Threat Analysis of Security Related Risks…

Have you ever wondered where the security threats (such as viruses, worms, trojans, adware, spyware, etc.), we are exposed to, are being generated from?  I recently visited a site called ThreatExpert that specializes in the analysis of computer security related risks and how those threats are distirbuted; and from what origin (Country).  As of the date of this post, the percentage of threats captured for analysis came from the following Countries:


China – 31.6%
Russian Federation – 23.77%
United States – 7.79%
Brazil – 6.77%
United Kingdom – 5.53%
Ukraine – 5.02%
Spain – 4.02%

Threat Expert

ThreatExpert (patent pending) is an advanced automated threat analysis system (ATAS) designed to analyze and report the behavior of computer viruses, worms, trojans, adware, spyware, and other security-related risks in a fully automated mode.


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