Avira antivir adds ask toolbar and Scareware pop-up

Discussion in 'Spyware' started by ~BD~, Jun 14, 2011.

  1. ~BD~

    ~BD~ Guest

    Avira AntiVir has long been a favorite provider of free antivirus
    protection. The product has also received acclaims for the quality of
    protection. Unfortunately, Avira has made several changes, resulting in
    removing the product from the "recommended list".

    Avira AntiVir had replaced the Avira Personal Free edition notifier. It
    is no longer suggesting upgrading to Avira premium or the security
    suite. Instead, the notifier is advertising Uniblue "Registry Booster".

    Licensed users of Avira Premium are receiving e-mails advertising the
    same Uniblue "Registry Booster" product.

    The addition of a toolbar with the pre-checked option to include the
    Ask Toolbar (AntiVir WebGuard) and change the default search provider to
    Ask.

    Although some people have referred to Uniblue's "Registry Booster"
    product as a rogue, based on descriptions of how it works, the product
    is better described as scareware. Scareware products are those that
    provide scan results that imply there are serious issues with the
    computer. However, the only way to fix the issues is purchase the product.

    To add to the computer owner's confusion is that Uniblue proudly
    displays the Microsoft Partner logo. This gives the impression that the
    company has any close relationship with Microsoft. It is important to
    understand that there is no vetting to become a registered Microsoft
    partner. All it means to be a Microsoft Partner is that the company
    employs the requisite number of certified professionals and has
    completed the registration process, nothing more.

    In my opinion, as well as that of many members of the security
    community, it is deplorable when a security vendor adds a pre-checked
    option to include an unnecessary add-on and change the user's
    preferences. A responsible security vendor should provide a clean
    installer, focusing on improving the product, fixing any bugs and
    continuing to improve the product.

    If you are using Avira AntiVir antivirus software, I encourage you to
    read the articles listed in the references section below and decide for
    yourself if this is a product you wish to continue using.

    Read more:
    http://securitygarden.blogspot.com/2011/06/avira-antivir-adds-ask-toolbar-and.html#ixzz1PHRJCi1l
     
    ~BD~, Jun 14, 2011
    #1
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  2. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest

    I'm not one to willy-nilly accept all the installation defaults, so I
    think I'll keep using it. I made a .reg file to disable the 'nag'
    screen, so I'm good.
     
    G. Morgan, Jun 14, 2011
    #2
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  3. ~BD~

    ~BD~ Guest

    As you wish! ;-)

    Do you have any knowledge of, or views about, Uniblue?
    http://www.uniblue.com/company/story/
     
    ~BD~, Jun 14, 2011
    #3
  4. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest


    Shitware.
     
    G. Morgan, Jun 15, 2011
    #4
  5. ~BD~

    ~BD~ Guest

    That's pretty much the same as Dustin once said!

    Thanks. :)
     
    ~BD~, Jun 15, 2011
    #5
  6. ~BD~

    gaz Guest

    Downloaded the installation file direct from Avira, at no point in the
    installation does the option for an ask toolbar popup and one is not
    installed at the end. After installation during initial update there is the
    usual update pop up for avira paid for, nothing else.
     
    gaz, Jun 15, 2011
    #6
  7. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    Yea,my Avira still pops up the upgrade to the paid version ad during every
    update and is the same as always. He must have downloaded an "altered"
    version from a rogue website.
     
    Jagg, Jun 26, 2011
    #7
  8. ~BD~

    ~BD~ Guest

    *He*???!!!

    Look at the 'References' section, here:-

    http://securitygarden.blogspot.com/2011/06/avira-antivir-adds-ask-toolbar-and.html#ixzz1PHRJCi1l
     
    ~BD~, Jun 27, 2011
    #8
  9. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest

    The nag screen can be disabled with a local path exclusion policy.

    Copy everything in between the lines (except the lines), paste into a
    text editor (notepad if that's all you have). And save the file as
    nonag.reg to the desktop. Now double click the .reg file and it will
    ask if you want to add these to the registry, hit yes.

    This works for Win 7 Pro x32:
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Group
    Policy
    Objects\{62F44680-8A76-48DE-8EDC-91D72274E1B6}Machine\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Safer\CodeIdentifiers\0\Paths\{8bd48249-a31b-48a0-9e46-94b007f53f34}]
    "LastModified"=hex(b):90,f8,50,10,ee,34,cc,01
    "Description"="Disable Avira Nag Screen, -GM 6/2011"
    "SaferFlags"=dword:00000000
    "ItemData"="C:\\Program Files\\Avira\\AntiVir Desktop\\avnotify.exe"
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This works Win 7 x64:
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Group
    Policy
    Objects\{0E5E5113-C91A-432A-B576-AC61F22762B5}Machine\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Safer\CodeIdentifiers\0\Paths\{4be91efe-5c3b-4ac4-9c30-3d596ae62b95}]
    "LastModified"=hex(b):f1,6e,2b,1e,12,89,cb,01
    "Description"="Disable nag screen -GM"
    "SaferFlags"=dword:00000000
    "ItemData"="C:\\Program Files (x86)\\Avira\\AntiVir
    Desktop\\avnotify.exe"
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
    G. Morgan, Jun 27, 2011
    #9
  10. ~BD~

    gaz Guest

    Now getting infrequent popups about some download company offering
    wallpapers, contained within the Avira prompt.
     
    gaz, Jun 27, 2011
    #10
  11. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    OK, my mistake, I just got the prompt to install ask search bar this
    morning. I see it can be uninstalled after the install to get rifd of the
    install prompt anyway but that also removes the added web protection. I
    certainly don't want an ask toolbar so will either do it that way or use
    Avast instead.
     
    Jagg, Jul 2, 2011
    #11
  12. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    Thanks, but I know it can be disabled, it doesn't bother me though so
    haven't bothered to disable it.
     
    Jagg, Jul 2, 2011
    #12
  13. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    Haven't seen that yet but it was just today that Avira attempted to get me
    to install the ask toolbar. I don't want ask toolbar and it can be removed
    after it installs but that also removes the new free web proitection, which
    I don 't really need either. I use anonymous IXquikck for search so most
    definitely don't want ask whom keeps your IP address on record for 18
    months.

    I just downloaded Avast so if I get any malarky from Avira then off it
    goes.
     
    Jagg, Jul 2, 2011
    #13
  14. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest

    Mine has been asking to install it the last couple of days too. Just
    keep postponing it.

    I think I may just buy the damn full version. Maybe get it for free on
    a "trial-pay" offer.
     
    G. Morgan, Jul 2, 2011
    #14
  15. Mine only asked three times. After I stated that it would only
    happen one more time, it hasn't happened since. I *did* have
    the un-opened umbrella for a day, but that's okay now too.
     
    FromTheRafters, Jul 2, 2011
    #15
  16. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest

    I think mine has asked 3 times, but I don't remember seeing something
    along the lines of it not asking again. I may have just pressed
    'cancel' or whatever out of habit.

    Have not noticed a closed umbrella, but I'll keep an eye on it now, TY.
     
    G. Morgan, Jul 2, 2011
    #16
  17. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    If you let it install then uninstall from add/remove programs you won't get
    prompted to install it again. It has a seperate install entry in
    add/remove.
     
    Jagg, Jul 2, 2011
    #17
  18. ~BD~

    G. Morgan Guest

    TY.. It has not popped up today.

    I'll do that if it happens again.
     
    G. Morgan, Jul 2, 2011
    #18
  19. ~BD~

    Prince Serendip

    Joined:
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    Some people have claimed that after three times of clicking "Install Later" on the Systray popup that wants you to install the Ask Toolbar and Webguard, that it goes away. I kept getting the popup with every reboot, and more than three times. I hate nag screens and popups. I found a way to get rid of it for good.

    This method works on all versions of Windows. You make a manual tweak to your HOSTS file. You need to use Notepad with elevated/administrative privileges. You click Start, type in Notepad in the searchbar, then Right-click Notepad up above and select Run as Administrator. Using Notepad go to C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc (Vista) and open the HOSTS. (Note: Make a backup copy of the HOSTS before doing anything, putting it in another location.) Using Notepad put this entry at the top of the stack, 127.0.0.1 toolbar.ask.com I then hit File > Save and closed Notepad. I rebooted and NO popup from AntiVir. It seems that the HOSTS is not only for your web browsers, but for your entire computer.

    These little extras have zero effect on the original antivirus product. It's still good. We've had other products offer these kinds of extras in the past. What's one more? Maybe Avira will realize it's stupidity and get rid of this junk? We can hope. In the meantime there's work-arounds.

    I know how to stop the nag screen which urges you to upgrade to the paid version (for those who would like to know). It's easy to do, and I don't think it's a problem legally if you change permissions for a program on your own computer. On Vista the path looks like this:
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Avira\AntiVir Desktop\avnotify.exe

    Right-click avnotify.exe and select Properties. Hit the Security tab. In Group or User Names make sure SYSTEM is highlighted, then click the Edit button below (to change permissions). In the Deny column put checkmarks beside Read and Execute, and Read. Click Apply and OK. You're done. No more nag screen with updates.

    By the way, you shouldn't have to install something, then uninstall it to get rid of an annoyance. Uninstalls are almost never perfect.

    **This information is provided "As-Is" without warranty, and confers no rights.
     
    Prince Serendip, Jul 6, 2011
    #19
  20. ~BD~

    Jagg Guest

    I only allowed it to install to one of my 5 PCs and on the others I
    cancelled it every time it asked and after 3 times it doesn't ask again, as
    someone else said already. Maybe it was you.
     
    Jagg, Jul 10, 2011
    #20
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