A Computer Virus Is a Nasty Thing

Our family bonds over weird things sometimes.  Like computer viruses.

To my knowledge, the hubby and I have never gotten a really bad computer virus before.  This is due, in large part, to the fact that the son has instructed us repeatedly in having virus protection.  Just before Christmas, though, we met up with a nasty one.

It started out, as some of them do, by saying that our computer was unprotected and it had detected thirty some viruses that needed cleaned.  Now, we knew that wasn’t so.  We knew we had virus protection.  At some point, though, as the pop-up kept popping up, we must have clicked and said no, we did not want to update our spyware instead of just closing the window.   That was a big mistake!  The son says it’s called social engineering.  You would think, wouldn’t you, that by clicking “no” the whole thing would go away, but that’s not what happened.  Clicking no gave the virus the entry point that it needed to lock up our computer and mess up our registry (the son told me those things; I’m taking his word for it).

Fortunately, the son,with his music education degree, actually works in computers, and he knew what to do.  Last night, from 150 miles away,  we spent the second of two hours finding out what else the virus had messed up.  As it turns out, the last step was for him to reinstall our virus protection.  It had gone into a super-lockdown mode to protect the computer, so it had done its job.  It was a bit overprotective, and we didn’t know h0w to get things back to where they were before.  Our son says our computer would be an Edsel if it were a car, but we like it.  It works.  More importantly, we don’t want to spend money on a new one at the moment.

Anyway… I guess the moral of this story is that, if you see a pop-up, do NOT click on anything in it.  Just close the window.  And if you make a mistake, like we did, I hope you have a family computer guru who can help you out.


2 Responses to “A Computer Virus Is a Nasty Thing”

  1. 1 Carol J. Garvin December 31, 2009 at 4:07 pm

    My condolences on the computer virus. We have Macs and few viruses are written for them, so we’ve been spared that. But last January there was a major power outage in our area… an exploding transformer followed later by a massive power surge. Despite surge protectors, all of our electronics were fried including $10,000 worth of computer equipment, a fridge, television and our water system (we’re on a well). We were insured, but getting all the new equipment set up with new software, etc., was a real hassle. Fortunately I’m a fanatic about backing up data so very little was lost but such incidents are a reminder of how vulnerable machines are.

    • 2 Becky December 31, 2009 at 4:11 pm

      Ouch! I bet that was a hassle. I can’t imagine losing that much equipment or how thankful you must have been for the insurance. How do you think we made do in the “old” days without all this technology?

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