This is me – limping back on stage left – battered, bruised and bloody, but ultimately triumphant!
So who was it I’ve been locked in combat with this last couple of weeks? A Trojan horse name of Haxdoor, that’s who. And how did I get it? Nothing obvious – I thought I was already taking so many precautions, but these things are bloody clever … and then once they’re in, they hide, mutate, disguise, block and generally do all they can to evade detection and repair.
I’ve spent endless precious hours (8+ a day wasn’t unusual) downloading different anti-virus, anti-trojan and anti-spyware software (they’re all different!) and running scans.
Of the dozen or so I ran, only AVG and Panda detected the Trojan, though they were unable to heal or move it.
The others all congratulated me on having a clean pooter! Meanwhile, the scumbag who got me was collecting all my passwords and logon info …
• I’ll now delete any emails from anyone I don’t know. That may sound obvious, but I was concerned I might inadvertently delete a genuine attempt to contact me – which was the whole point of having a website and blog …
• I’ll run regular scans with several different systems. Time consuming but the price has to be paid …
• I’ll never again assume the playground is benign and safe. I know it never was, but …
In many ways that loss of innocence is the highest price of all …
Naivete, thy name is Debi …
The heartfelt gratitude bit
I could never have won this battle alone.
So massive thanks to:
• The mighty Ab for email links, support and encouragement
• Big Mac for phone support and suggestions
• Minx for daring to stay in touch by email and others of the bloggerati who posted positive vibes
• The AVG forum – especially their advice on how to clean an infected computer. Try it out. You might think you’re safe, but I bet you’ll be in for a shock! Am I scaring you? Sorry, but if it makes you follow the steps they advise, it will be worth it.
• SWI forum. This was the biggie. These guys are simply the best. If you ever have a problem, this is the first place to go. Their instructions are clear enough for even the dumbest non-techy (that’s me, folks) to follow. And the specific replies and hand-holding are the ultimate weapon. (Just be sure to read and act on their guidelines before posting.)
If there are cowardly Scum Geeks lurking in the ether, there are an equal number of Good People working tirelessly to stay one step ahead, designing new weapons all the time and, if they don’t work, taking the scum geeks on in one-to-one combat. These people are all volunteers! They give their time, energy and expertise freely and anonymously because they believe in keeping this space safe for us to work and play in.
I/we owe them a huge debt of gratitude! May the goodness these guys put out into the world come back to them a thousand-fold! And may the Scum Geeks likewise reap an appropriate reward for their actions …
So what Real Life have you missed?
• Well, there was First Born’s last days at his primary school (achey breaky heart stuff)
• A weekend on a campsite in Kent (colourful stories about aggressive fellow-campers)
• And then there was my uncle’s 95th birthday party (my 91 yr old dad heckled the speeches)
These and no doubt more would all have been separate posts. But as I said to FB, you can’t go back in this life, only forward, and I’ve already spent too much time glued to pooter.
Sorry I haven’t been able to check all your blogs. I’ve missed you all and now we’ll be going away soon, so time is still very restricted.
But at least Poots and I have had our loving relationship restored …