Monday, January 31, 2011

Anti-Spyware is anything but anti

I used to worry when my daughter went off to college, What if she gets sick?
Now I'm worried more about her computer catching a virus. Well, it happened. It's called system tool and is anti-spyware. Pretty much was what it sounds like. It flashed a faux message YOU ARE INFECTED, YOU HAVE A VIRUS and wouldn't allow her to continue unless she coughed up money and paid them to remove the virus. There wasn't any virus except the pesky System Tool that we had to work through how to remove.

When I first move away from home and got sick, it felt drastic. I didn't know the first thing about how to cure myself and I couldn't afford to miss classes. (As opposed to high school where my first thought was great now I can get out of school.) I mean I was paying for this and need to go or my grades, my life, everything will be affected. Yet what does one do when they can't even move? I went to the drugstore and bought a little of everything. (This was before computers and Google, or else I would have asked my computer what to do.)
After a few days I recovered. I remember feeling like a true survivor, a bit empowered that I had done it myself (with the help of Nyquil) and knew that I didn't have to freak out next time it happened. Which it did every winter.

My daughter had to work through her virus or anti-virus in order to see that she could do it on her own. Well not totally on her own. We were connected daily by cellphone talking about the situation. Still, she got it sorted out. And now we know: next time (hopefully not a next time) that she can buck up and tackle this better on her own.

At least we avoided paying the Geek Squad $200.

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