Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Tripped Up Tuesdays: Hacked! "Deal Keeper" is no keeper.

Here's how computers work in our house:  My husband gets a top-of-the-line gaming computer, uses it until it becomes obsolete (here, "obsolete" means "slower than the other guys' computers"), passes it off to me, and gets a new one.  I then use the old computer until he is ready for his next upgrade.  This has worked pretty well for many years, until this year, when the hand-me-down started crashing with every mandatory update, and my husband wasn't yet ready to give up his current computer. 

I now have my very first brand-spanking new computer in over 2 decades! Unfortunately, it came with a little extra "gift."  When I downloaded Google's Picasa, it came bundled with the "Deal Keeper." Whether "Deal Keeper" is actually malware or merely a potentially unwanted program (PUP) is up for debate, but I can tell you that, even though I deleted it within 3 minutes of it's installation, criminals still managed to hack my Facebook page and steal a credit card number based on information that was diverted to them. Also--and this is important--I had *used* the Picasa custom install and had specifically *not* given permission to down load Deal Keeper.  It still downloaded.

as you can see, Deal Keeper clogs your screen, rendering your web browser virtually unusable. Screen capture courtesy Alesya Orlova

 Recommendations and Resources:
  • Truth is, I can't live without Picasa.  Maybe you can't either.  If this happens to you, or if Deal Keeper piggybacks on to some other download, I recommend you follow the excellent advice from Stelian Pilici from Malware Tips.
  • However, *do not* use Mr. Pilici's links to access the various software programs you need to remove this nasty malware.  Doing so will, ironically, result in other potentially unwanted programs being downloaded. 
  • Instead, go directly to each software provider's site, and download the software from there.  The sites are:
              http://www.surfright.nl/en (for Hitman Pro)

Malwarebytes has just been rated number one for eliminating unwanted malware.  To learn more about how well various software programs performed, go to Patrick Allan's post on lifehacker:

10 Malware Removal Apps Tested, Malwarebytes Comes out on Top

Deal keeper is no keeper.  Kind of like this stinky fish. 
Photo courtesy Rupert Morris March 2007.  Flickr user.

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