The FBI is in your computer – and THEY WANT TRIBUTE!
If there’s one thing we get a lot of calls on, it’s the FBI virus. A lot of people get a lot of computer viruses, but most viruses don’t necessarily stop a computer user dead in their tracks like the FBI virus. It’s almost helpful in that way.When people get a “normal” computer virus, I swear to God that they will keep on banging on that computer until the original virus has brought in all its’ brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, a crapload of cousins and maybe even some neighbors. And THEN removing the darned virus gets a little ugly. People usually don’t seem to give up and call the computer repair company until they can no longer connect to the internet or something similar. What would have been a small quick fix, then turns into a “OMG” fix. And of course, they’re doable with a little knowledge and finesse.
With the right software and computer knowledge, most computer virus infections are not going to force us (or any other tech/user) to actually have to wipe a hard drive and reinstall. Though we still occasionally DO meet the virus that doesn’t go down easily. Probably once a month, tech Troy will tell me about a particularly nasty virus that he opted to just wipe the drive on and reinstall. There’s nothing more annoying than “going down the rabbit hole” with a virus – that is trying one more thing, and then one more thing, and just ONE more thing…. Soon, you’ve spent 5 hours on a job that you really can’t charge more than a couple hours on.
Anyway, the FBI virus is not that difficult to remove – at least it wasn’t until last week. Troy got hold of something that did NOT respond favorably to restore, safe mode or anything else. That was a wipe and reinstall situation. Hate those things. It’s a lot tougher to have to get all of someone’s data off and then reinstall the apps, and then push all the data back on than it is to kill the viruses off – to a certain point. After you’ve spent an hour or so, and there’s no signs of the virus being killed off through any means you’re using, THAT is when you should be looking at wiping the drive. NOT after you’ve gone down the rabbit hole for another 4 hours (or more) because then you’ll end up having 8 hours into it by the time you get all the reinstalling done.
So… If you get the FBI virus these days, keep your fingers crossed that it’s one of the earlier versions. This last one’s a killer! We’ll do everything we CAN to NOT have to wipe and reinstall, but be prepared. As always, keep your computer backed up!