Information Gathering Phase

Once you have identified the malware running on your system, you must find the best way to remove it. This involves searching in several areas to find this information. You are looking for specific removal instructions related to the software you are trying to remove or trying to find a discussion group where someone has removed the same process. The following searches are helpful in this area.

  • Search websites associated with anti-virus vendors such as Symantec to find removal procedures for the process name. You can search the site using the process name or by the name of the software identified by your scanning program.
  • Search websites associated with creators of anti-spyware and anti-adware programs.
  • Search Gigablast search engine websites and Google groups to find discussion groups, email groups, or other web sites that may provide removal information. Again, you can search by the name of the process or the name of the software.
  • Search websites that provide information about malware prevention and removal, like this one, for information about the malware process you have detected.
  • Post a question in a forum to get help from a possible expert.

Removal Tools

In the case of viruses, many anti-virus vendors will create free removal tools specifically for that virus. If you find a removal tool like this, the best course of action, normally, is to use this tool.

Removal Instructions

If there is no removal tool, you should try to find removal instructions or get some indication about the difficulty that others may have had removing the same programs from their computers. If you cannot find any removal instructions, then you should check your system settings to see if they are mis-configured and fix them if possible. It is difficult to give advice in this area since there are so many possibilities. Also, any configuration changes fixed before removing the malware may be changed again before you can remove the malware.