Computer Security & Viruses/I've been hacked


Hi Brian!

I have 2 computers, connected with a router. One is old, using WindowsXP, the other is newer and uses Windows10. They have worked well until yesterday.
The monitor's screen of the newer one changed from whatever was there to a screen showing the Microsoft logo and other Microsoft characteristics in easy, pleasant to read format.
The screen showed a warning "Microsoft has detected ????? that can harm your computer. (the ???? are intended to tell you that some words are covered with a dialog box with more warnings).
The screen further tells me to call an 888 number to get help.
I called the number, heard the telephone ring and then it closed. It further tells me not to shut down or turn off the computer.
The screen also has the standard buttons at the top right, i.e., minimize, maximize and turn off buttons. Clicking them accomplished nothing.
Obviously, something is very wrong. I shut down the computer by pressing and holding the ON button on the chassis.

I'm very worried. What should I do?



Hi Chris

You seem to have been infected by a Tech Support scam program.  First try closing that browser (and any others) by using Ctrl-Alt-Del to open your Task Manager.  End any tasks you see listed in the Processes Tab under Apps.  Next, download the following:

Run that program to stop any malware processes that may be running.  Then download AdwCleaner:

Run the program, first clicking Scan, then Clean to delete the malware.  Copy and paste the log file from that cleaning to me in a follow-up.


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Brian Benosky


I will help you in eradicating malware and all forms of virus/trojans/adware. I can answer all PC-related hardware issues. I can also troubleshoot Windows OS errors (all versions) and other software problems. HijackThis logs are a MUST for virus related help. If you do not know how to do this, I have posted easy-to-follow instructions on the Ask a Question page. Every computer infection is different, so I will give you personal instructions on how to remove the malware, not a 'pat' answer. You can be assured of a prompt, polite, and knowledgeable response in all regards.


I have over 25 years experience in using, building, and repairing computers. I have helped over two thousand people here on AllExperts, with consistent Top Feedback Scores. Please look at my answers here: I am also a Top Contributor of General Computing answers in Yahoo! Questions.

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