From InfoWorld: In the second month of a campaign against fake security software, Microsoft has booted the rogue application "Antivirus 2009" from almost 400,000 PCs, the company recently claimed.
December's version of the Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT), a free utility that Microsoft pushes to Windows users as part of Patch Tuesday , targeted one of the most popular phony security app, Antivirus 2009. According to Microsoft, the MSRT erased the fake from over 394,000 PCs in the first nine days after it released this month's edition on Dec. 9.
Last month, Microsoft trumpeted a similar cleaning operation against another family of bogus security software that it said had purged nearly a million machines of programs like "Advanced Antivirus," "Ultimate Antivirus 2008," and "XPert Antivirus."
December's campaign targeted a different family -- dubbed "W32/FakeXPA" by Microsoft -- that includes fake security software going by names such as "Antivirus XP," "AntivirusXP 2008" and "Antivirus 2009."
Windows users increasingly have been plagued with worthless security software as criminals bundle the money makers with other malware or seed significant users with waves of spam touting the programs. According to one researcher, cybercrooks can pull in as much as $5 million a year by installing the rogue programs on PCs, then dunning users with infection claims and constant pop-ups until the victims pay $40 or $50 to purchase the useless applications.
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