How to Get Rid of a Trojan horse Virus?
If you’re regularly using a computer or own a computer, then there is a good chance that you have encountered a Trojan horse virus. A Trojan horse virus is essentially a malicious file that is attached to a legitimate program that end users download and install on their computers. The main characteristic of this particular virus type is the fact that it’s well known for destroying computer data. It attaches itself to your computer as legitimate software and does its damage once inside.
Trojan horse Virus Features:
According to recent reports, Trojan horse viruses make up over 70% of viruses that are detected by antivirus scanners today. Because of such a high infection rate, there is a good chance that you or someone else you know, that owns a computer, will at some point encounter one of these viruses. The effects of these virus types include the following:
• Sluggish system performance.
• Unsolicited pop-ups.
• Hijacking of your system.
Repairing your system from these types of viruses does not require an inordinate amount of computer expertise, nor will it require you to seek help from a computer professional.
The primary difference between your typical computer virus and a Trojan horse virus is that the Trojan horse virus is/was not designed to propagate itself inside your computer. The two most common ways that people get these virus types onto their computer is by mistakenly downloading and running the virus file or installing a program that has a Trojan horse attached to it (as previously explained). These virus types are capable of stealing confidential data from your computer, while downloading other malicious files to it. As a viable preventative measure against these viruses, you’ll want to ensure that you have a firewall program installed and running on your computer. That said having an antivirus program running on your computer may not always be the most effective solution against these viruses.
When it comes to removing Trojan horse viruses from your computer, there are a number of steps that you should take. These are the following:
Run a Full Antivirus Scan:
This is definitely the first thing that you should do, when infected with a malicious file. Of course, the general assumption is that if you have one of these virus programs running on your computer, then you’re system should be free of viruses to begin with. Well the reality is that there is a lot more to it than that.
Consider the following options:
- Update the virus definitions of your antivirus scanner.
- Change the Scan options to include heuristics and potentially dangerous applications.
- Set the antivirus program to scan archives, excluding only those files you know are not infected.
- Now carry out the full scan.
- Run Virus Scan in Safe Mode
After running a virus scan in your normal Windows environment, you’ll want to do the same in Safe Mode. This is because some or all of the infected files may be locked by the operating system. This typically happens when the infected file is in use by Windows. Thus, you’ll want to restart your computer in Safe Mode, where you’ll have a limited number of processes running in the background, then carry out the same steps.
To enter Safe Mode, simply press the F8 key after the POST, and then choose Safe Mode with Networking.
Use Specialised Removal Tools:
There are a number of special tools out there, developed by antivirus companies, made for the sole purpose of removing those hard to reach infected files. Kaspersky’s Virus Removal Tool is a favourite of mine, however there’s also Microsoft’s Malicious Software removal tool and McAfee’s Stinger. All these tools do an excellent job at removing threats from your computer.
The best way to approach this may be to try and find out which virus has infected your computer, that way you could try finding software that has been specifically designed to remove it.
Manually Remove Trojan horse Viruses:
The last option you have available to you, involves manually removing the virus file yourself. Removing it yourself is a process that will entail doing the following:
• Setting hidden folders to display, in Windows.
• Restarting your computer in Safe Mode.
• Stopping all processes that are either infected or associated with the Trojan virus.
• Lastly, editing the Windows registry.
Things to Consider:
When it comes to removing the infected files from the registry, you will need to locate the RUN folder. Once you find this folder within the entries, you will be required to delete all the associated .exe and .dll files. You should also look at the programs configured to start during boot up. This method may prove most ideal for those who have a strong knowledge in editing the Windows registry. Otherwise, you’re better off using specialised software or a really good antivirus tool to do all the leg work for you.
Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website compuchenna.co.uk.