Maybe you've been experiencing a sluggish Internet connection or have received security alerts informing you that your PC is infected. If these alerts have been accompanied by advertisements for the spyware cleaner SpyDawn, then the culprit of your problems might be surprising: it's SpyDawn!
SpyDawn False Alert
SpyDawn was created by the same developers of SpyCrush and VirusBurst, and it infiltrates your computer system in an especially sneaky way. Often, people who download audio and video codecs from suspicious sites will unwillingly invite a trojan into their system, which will then infect it!
Sure enough, those security alerts and that slow Internet connection will result, all designed to trick web users into downloading the full version SpyDawn, so as to correct the problem.
SpyDawn is adware, but it's also called a rogue security program. In other words, it uses scare tactics and false advertising claims to get people to invest in its help, thinking it will solve all their computer problems, when in actuality it only spells disaster. In addition to a slower computer and altered browser settings, a third party also might be monitoring an individual's Internet activity. So a lot is at stake!
Is your computer infected by SpyDawn?
Have you experienced the following?
An uncharacteristically slow Internet connection
A reboot process that takes longer than normal
A new default homepage
Unusual shortcuts on your desktop
Irritating pop-up ads
Security alerts that look almost identical to Windows notifications, telling you something to the effect that your PC is infected
Advertisements for SpyDawn
If you answered yes to one or more of these, then you just might have a big problem on your hands and it could indeed be SpyDawn that's harming your computer. Fortunately, there's a solution.
What NOT to do...
There are things you can do, and in fact should do, to protect your computer and save it from SpyDawn's effects. However, do not manually remove SpyDawn. Manual removal is a very difficult and dangerous task and it should only be accomplished by a trained and skilled professional. Your computer might be beyond repair in your own hands, but if it does need outside help, that's just what it needs... don't try to do it yourself. If you do have some help though, these instructions might be of assistance.
Uninstall SpyDawn: Programs like SpyDawn are really resistant to removal and techniques like this don't always work, but they're definitely worth at try. To remove SpyDawn, go to the Start menu and find the Control Panel. At the Control Panel, you'll see a lot of icons. Look for the Add/Remove Programs icon and double click it. A window will pop up that has all the programs you've installed on your computer listed. Scroll down to SpyDawn, highlight it, and then click Add or Change Program. Once you do this, an uninstall wizard will hopefully pop up and guide you through the rest of the uninstall process.
As mentioned earlier, this attempt may not be effective. SpyDawn may not show up as a program you can uninstall, even though it has indeed infected your computer, or it may still continue to do its harm even after you've supposedly removed SpyDawn. If this is the case, or even if the uninstall was successful, here are some more tips for detection and removal.
Delete SpyDawn files: It's a good idea to track down and delete any and all files associated with SpyDawn. In order to do this, simply go to the Start menu and click Search. Under "all files and documents," search for the following file names (there are several): SpyDawn.exe, msvcp71.dll, SpyDawn.lnk, SpyDawn 3.1.lnk, SpyDawn 3.1 Website.lnk, Uninstall SpyDawn 3.1.lnk, higehsg.dll, xkrdk.dll, sd.ini, SpyDawn. Zero, two, or all of the file names might show up. Whatever results you get, highlight them, right click, and press delete. Again, you may be completely or only partially successful. Or you may not have any success at all. Trojans often hide file names, so that you can't get rid of them manually.
What TO do...
The best line of defense you have against SpyDawn and other problem programs is to invest in a sophisticated spyware cleaner or remover that can remove SpyDawn and all other trojans and the like for you. Applications like iS3's STOPzilla can effectively scan for trojans on your computer and then promptly remove them. It's crucial that you have an authentic and up-to-date security program installed on your computer. If you don't, you're just asking for trouble.
However, many people realize this and are thus tempted to download rogue security programs, like SpyDawn, and end up welcoming those trojans that they originally wanted to ward off. The key is to keep yourself informed about what the threats are (by reading articles like these) and to protect yourself from them.
The rule of thumb though, is to simply not trust aggressive advertising and to approach every anti-spyware ad with a healthy dose of skepticism. You can research products online and at your local electronics store to find out which ones will help, rather than hurt, you.
All is not lost!
If you've got a great anti-spyware program on hand and you are careful to watch out for misleading advertising and the various traps out there, you can prevent many of those problems from ever realizing themselves on your computer. But even if rogue security programs like SpyDawn have already introduced themselves to you, there is plenty you can do to stop them in their tracks.
It really is best to keep them away from your computer in the first place though. Because once SpyDawn and its peers do dig their heels into your system, they can be very difficult to remove. So watch out for false advertising and run your anti-spyware application frequently and you'll likely be in good shape. But if you do experience symptoms of infection, take action immediately.
Scan your system with STOPzilla removing all detected infections.
Reboot your PC
Scan your system again to ensure the removal process is complete.
STOPzilla was updated on 20th October 2010 (software v7.0.1, database v432) to remove the latest SpyDawn variants. If the infection persists even after using STOPzilla, do the following steps to automatically raise a support ticket:
Ensure you are connected to the Internet
Open STOPzilla program
Click Backup List on the STOPzilla Menu
Click Email Log File
Type in all the details of your issue
Send the email
To mitigate the chances of future infections from malicious programs such as SpyDawn it's important to keep your PC up-to-date with the latest Windows security updates and use a reputable anti-spyware program such as STOPzilla.
If you have any questions regarding SpyDawn removal please feel free to contact us.
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The owner of this website is NOT affiliated with SpyDawn and does NOT endorse SpyDawn.