I'm an amateur tech support guy for a friend who lives 12 hours away. We're both Comcast Internet customers, by the way. My friend (an elderly lady and former neighbor) is--at her age--surprisingly good with a computer, but she's had a problem with downloaded malware that takes over her browser (Google chrome), changes her search preferences, and installs a "helper" toolbar. She has Constant Guard installed on her Windows Vista computer. We spent two hours on the phone Sunday evening trying to get rid of this stuff. I think we succeeded. My question: Can CG/NIS be configured to keep such software from installing?
Hopefully she also has Norton Security Suite installed also. I ask, as most users do not releize they are separate and independent system - either can be run, installed, uninstalled (and break) on their own. So let's say both Constant Guard and NSS are installed.
Now do you have any idea what you found/removed? Was it found by something like MBAM or SAS? they both sek out and remove PUP (Potentially Unwanted Programs) - something that Norton does not necessarily seek out and remove. Most PUP's are installed y the user (although unknowingly in most cases) and Norton tends to not mess with items that the user installs on their own. I now of now settings in NSS that could help more than the default settings.
Now with that said - we do have some Norton Support representation on the forum - but of course they work days I am sure they may add a lot more when they see this post - but I just wanted to get some info out to you tonight.
In reagtrds to CGPS - I'll leave that to CGPS-Support (a Comcast employee) who is the expert on Constant Guard on this board.
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Constant Guard Protection Suite (CGPS) includes the link to the Norton Security Suite installer, and once installed, CGPS will flag suspicious programs which may be used to capture your keystrokes, but Norton Security Suite is a full-blown security application which will watch the system and will warn and block malware and adware. CGPS includes a secure browser for secure online account protection, and it should be used for any banking transactions.
You make mention of malware which is installing a toolbar and is changing the browser preference to chrome. Google actually does this. Are you sure that your friend is not simply *not* disabling the Google preferences? If they are not disabled, the preferences for Google are to install the toolbar and set the default browser to Google. It is possible that your friend doesn't have malware at all. Regardless, I would do the following:
1. Install Constant Guard Protection Suite (CGPS) if it is not already installed. If it is not, then go to www.comcast.net/security and click to install Constant Guard Protection Suite.
2. After installation, click on the "Options" tab from the CGPS dashboard (main page). You will see an option to "configure my protection services."
3. Click this option, and after entering the PIN, which was created at the CGPS activation, you will see the anti-logging options. These are the additional security pieces which CGPS offers beyond the secure browser for your stored account/credentials protection. If checked, the software will screen for suspicious programs which may be used to capture your keystrokes. This is NOT the same as Norton's protection for malware and that is what would protect you or your friend from software hijacking the browser.
4. If you have not already installed the Norton Security Suite (NSS), you can return to the CGPS home page and click to Install the Norton Security Suite.
As USAF has pointed out, you can install NSS without installing CGPS and vice versa. So, I would first ensure that the issue isn't just the normal behaviour of Google. I would then install the CGPS, and would then install the Norton Securtiy Suite if it hasn't already been installed.
Like USAF_E-8_RET stated above, many of such PUPs get to the computer as an add-on when installing new updates or new programs, where users install it unknowingly on most cases. Did you try using our Norton Power Eraser tool to run a scan?
To be clear: My friend uses Google Chrome by choice. She prefers it over Internet Explorer. The malware she unintentionally and unknowingly installed herself changed her homepage, not the browser, and installed one or more toolbars. We disabled and uninstalled those items manually—we did not use any online cleaners, free or otherwise. The malware we uninstalled had names such as "Conduit," "WhiteSmoke," and the "Keybar 1.12 Toolbar." We simply went into Control Panel and uninstalled those things. (I did not venture to edit the Registry. I've messed with the Registry on my own, but I was not going to do that over the phone!)
Thank you for clarifying that CGPS and Norton Security Suite are separate items. I can't say right now whether my friend uses either of them.
You wrote, "CGPS includes a secure browser ... ." Do you mean to say that installing CGPS simply adds security features to the user's browser of choice, or does it actually install a new browser? Does it matter whether they use Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Opera, or one of the many other browsers available?
By the way, is CGPS fully compatible with Internet Explorer version 11?
I've urged my friend and other computer users to be very careful about downloading and installing stuff from the Internet. She got this stuff by being less than careful—I think she understands that now. My objective in this forum is to learn whether CGPS and/or NSS will help protect her against inadvertently installing stuff from, say, Conduit Software—one of the big perpetrators. I take from your reply that Norton Security Suite will help, provided she configures it properly.
Hi Tater3 - Constant Guard Protection Suite (CGPS) includes its own proprietary browser, called, "Secure View." If you have stored the log on credentials for a United States bank or financial institution in the Secure Accounts of CGPS, when you select that bank account to open it, you will be prompted for your PIN. When you enter the PIN, the account will open in the secure browser and NOT in the default browser of the computer (in your friend's case, that would be Chrome). This prevents fraudulent accounts from opening in the browser, thereby curtailing phishing attempts to get you to enter your credentials in a facsimile of the actual log-on page.
If you store the credentials for a non-financial account, such as a Penny's card, in the CGPS, when you enter your master PIN to open the account, it will open in your normal browser (again - in this case it would be Chrome), as it would with any other password management software.
Thank you for a very helpful explanation. My friend tells me she uses the security software the Comcast provides, so I must assume that she uses CGPS and Norton software. I don't live near this lady, so I can't dig much deeper into this issue than I have so far. Your message should help me help her understand how to prevent the problems she has experienced of late.
For example has a few listed, I've only personally used Comdo's built in, Bufferzone and Sandboxie. They each have different feature sets they're solid with, yet lacking in some crucial way, overall I ended up sticking with Bufferzone for what I needed. (Sandboxing a less than savy user to prevent them from installing bad things.)
Thank you for that interesting response. I confess I know next to nothing about sandboxing, but I'm game to learn. Of course, there's the problem of the 11 hours ground travel between me and my "customer." I hesitate to try anything as exotic as this sandbox idea from this great a distance. I might surely try it if I still lived close enough. Thanks!