Monthly Archives: May 2009

Warning: Microsoft Privacy Center is a Virus

The other day my mom called me at work for some computer help. I work at a software company as a marketing and PR manager. This also means that I am my parents’ help desk by association. I know just enough about technology to be dangerous.

So mom calls and says that MS privacy center is running on her computer and the voice of a British woman is talking in the background. So while she was on the phone, I searched MS Privacy Center and discovered that it was a rogue virus, malware to be exact. And it’s not pretty.

It took over her computer by autorunning and scanning her computer and she could not do anything else. It also prompts for you to buy the software and enter credit or debit card payment. DO NOT DO THIS.

She hit control-alt-delete and was able to go to the task manager. From there, we were able to disable the .exe file under the processes tab and then I sent her an email to download the malware remover software. This took about a half day but was worth helping my mom out. Here are instructions if this happens to you.

If you see this or if it happens on your system, follow these steps:

Disable the exe file in the Processes tab of Task Manager (filename: pc.exe)

Download this link and run the malware remover software: Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware Download Link

Here is another explanation to remove the virus.

Be careful out there!


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Homeowners stumped – wrong trees cut down Earth Day week

Our tree story is in today’s Forsyth County News. Lessons learned so far when dealing with the County and City – if someone is in your yard and should not be, first call the police. We were at work so we weren’t aware of this, but a neighbor tried to halt the trees being cut by calling the City and County with no immediate response.

If you look at your property schematic, there is a right of way (ROW) marked that the government has rights to that is usually about 20 feet on both sides from the center of the road (our street is 40 feet total). The contractor went outside of the ROW and into our private property. We lost some very old hardwood and pine trees that shaded our yard and house.  It has been heartbreaking. Our saga continues with finding some sort of resolution. Will keep posted.