Originally Posted by Systemlord
I was completely caught off guard and it was pure luck that I noticed Shop To Win, how do I keep my system clean? I trying to learn/understand why we needed both Hijack This and ComboFix to remove both spyware programs, is one not enough? What anti-malware, anti-virus programs do you recommend for keeping my computer virus and malware free? +Rep tompsonn!
One answer that I can give on how you keep your system clean is to just be careful where you go on the internet, and especially what you click. To put it in simpler terms (terms that I would prefer): think before you click. In other words, always take a moment before you click something. Analyze it. Put your mouse over it and look at the status bar in your browser (located at the bottom of the browser window) to see what the link is pointing to. If you're in doubt about what you're about to click, then perform a Google search on the address to see if it's safe.
Of equal importance (or perhaps of greater importance), never click advertisements - I don't care how financially beneficial your one click may be to the site you love! It doesn't matter! You may end up with something else that is just as irritating as Shop to Win, or you may end up with something even worse! It's never possible to predict, so always, always, always, always think before you click.
So, always study everything that pops up in front of you. Never just click an OK or Cancel button (or a Yes or a No button) just to get rid of it. Always, always, always, always know what you're doing. Think before you click. Sometimes, it's a matter of reading before you click. I'm not trying to be funny here.
Whenever you are about to install software, always look for the option to do a Custom or Advanced type of installation. This will enable you to say No! to getting additional things that are annoying, like some toolbar that you don't want. It is not necessary to know anything about computers: you just have to be careful and suspicious of everything because unfortunately, things like Shop to Win are usually somewhat hidden within things (including software installers for trustworthy software). This is why it's critical to always look for the Custom or Advanced installation option. It will guarantee that you are given complete control over what gets installed and what doesn't.
So, it's a matter of just being careful and always thinking before you click because you never know when you might be taking something that you don't want.
Here's a lame example, but it's an example nonetheless: when you go to Adobe's website to install Flash, the option to install "McAfee Security Scan Plus" is enabled by default. If you don't want that (I don't know of anyone who'd actually want this), then you have to actually go and remove the check mark from the box in order to avoid having that install. If you don't remove the check from the box, then it will get installed.
Or like when you install Java: I think that the installer always comes with a toolbar to install of some kind that can be avoided during the installation setup process (before the actual installation process of copying files and whatnot is started). You just have to remove the check from that box.
Finally, don't let anyone else use your computer. If this is not an option and if others must use it, then strict rules have to be set for them so that they aren't doing anything you wouldn't do (things that would put your system at risk).
I don't have any protection software installed of any kind; no anti-malware, no anti-virus, no anti-spyware, nothing. This is because I am careful about where I go on the internet and what I click. I am also careful about what I install (including making sure I set up the installation so that it doesn't install anything I don't want). I never do anything risky on the internet because I know what the results could be. I've been practicing this way for several years now, and during that time I haven't had any viruses or problems of any kind; none whatsoever. So, I feel that I am living proof that there's no need for such software; all it does is slow your system down.
Although, if my sig rig were also the family computer, then it would be an entirely different story (and it would suck - I know).
So in other words: you just have to be careful. Always think before you click, even if you think you're sure.