Microsoft has released a new tool (in beta) that scans and removes rootkits. It can be run from a CD, DVD, or USB drive when your computer turns on, and it will do a scan and remove any rootkits. We do *NOT* recommend the average user runs this tool. If rootkits are suspected, your Nerd can add it to his or her arsenal when performing a System Cleanup or removing viruses.
According to a PCWorld article, one in five computers are infected with a rootkit! Many rootkits cannot be detected by anti-virus or anti-spyware programs.
“Rootkits are often ‘dropped’ or buried by other infections. They then modify a PC’s operating system to hide themselves from both the user and any security products installed on the computer. By doing so, rootkits can allow criminals to remotely monitor, record, modify, steal and transfer data from the victim’s PC.
Some rootkits are undetectable by conventional anti-virus and anti-spyware programs, so even a tech-savvy user may believe his or her computer is ‘clean’, and the computer may still be compromised.
“Microsoft Standalone System Sweeper Beta is not a replacement for a full antivirus solution providing ongoing protection,” says Microsoft on it’s website. “It is meant to be used in situations where you cannot start your PC due to a virus or other malware infection. For no-cost, real-time protection that helps guard your home or small business PCs against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software, download Microsoft Security Essentials.”
For more information about rootkits and other infections, or if you have any questions, please contact your Nerd or call 1-877-696-3737.