None of the antivirus applications on the market do very well against these fake anti-malware applications, see this thread regarding this particular one (and there are others): https://community.mcafee.com/thread/30971?start=0&tstart=0
They rely on you clicking something and that is when they take hold and one needs specialist tools to get rid of them usually.
By the same token those specialist tools don't do too well against the millions of viruses, trojans and worms that VirusScan already protects you against. McAfee, like all security software firms, tries to catch as much as it can but they have to strike a balance between total lockdown and free access to the web, and there are ways of submitting samples to them for analysis, but as you can imagine, it's a never ending battle.
Hi Pete, thanks for the reply and the effort to console me, but several of my questions continue to be unanswered.
McAfee claim to keep my PC safe - no-where does it say less than 100% safe, nowehere does it say "apart from some debiliating bugs known about for ages but haven't bothered to do anything about.".
If you now say that they only nearly get it right, then I'll only nearly pay for their expertise.
It's not good enough to just shrug and say they get most of it right, most of the time
They claim to get it right and they are contravening the Trades Description Act when they don't.
Hi darkshyre, Thanks for the information - I wish I had known that at the time.
I'm still peeved that McAfee didn't catch this - it's not a new bug - they have known about it for a long time.
How many other bugs are there that McAfee know about for which they can't be bothered to find a fix? Especially one like System Tool which knocks out every attempt to get the fix.
There are other anti-virus specialists on the net who have developed fixes for the System Tool bug so it can't be too difficult ...
Is there an email addy whereby I can contact McAfee directly, rather than bend the ears (eyes?) of you willing helpers ? The McAfee website leads me round in circles and never resolves my search.
Hi isettaworld, if you have not yet eliminated system tool here are full instructions from a reputable site.
Also not sure if this is what youe looking for.There is an E-mail here
Thanks for the input, newjack.
I had already tried the "Bleeping Computer" service which you recommend, but System Tool blocked it by disabling the .exe file.
System Tool blocked every program and every tool which I tried to use to get a solution. It even blocked downloads like Malwarebytes which said they could fix it.
I had also visited the service.mcafee page which you mention and pursued the "email" option offered, but it just led me round in circles and never gave the email addy which it had said was offered. It was a total waste of time and only added to my frustration. This is another example of mcafee not living up to their promises and not doing what they say they will.
However, as my laptop is only a couple of weeks old I didn't have a huge amount of data on it, so I resorted to get rid of System Tool by wiping the whole drive clean and re-booting to manufacturers start-up spec. I'll have to live with ( or without ! ) the data I lost.
I tried the "Stinger" tool which darkshire recommended and it has confirmed that my drive is now clean, which leaves two questions ...
1. Can I trust that Stinger is capable of recognising and fixing System Tool or does Stinger miss it like the installed version of McAfee did ? and ...
2. If McAfee Stinger CAN recognise and fix System Tool, then why haven't McAfee added the fix to their everyday protection ?
Maybe I was lucky to get infected so soon, otherwise I could have lost far more irreplaceable data ?
I am far from impressed by McAfee so far ...
System Tool is a fake, or rogue, program, like so many others that we encounter on these forums. In general, they fool AV programs because they look and behave like genuine programs (as far as AV software is concerned). Only the Mk.1 human eyeball and brain can clearly see that they don't belong and need to be got rid of.
System Tool though appears to be more malicious than most of the fakes. You need to talk to ConorD62, who is becoming something of an expert on these fake AV programs. As far as I can see System Tool has crossed the dividing line between scareware (a descriptive and accurate name) and malware. Many of these fake programs will try to avoid being deleted, but this one seems to have extra anti-removal features, which presumably is why it was considered to be worth including in the Stinger tool. I don't know why it hasn't yet been incorporated into the main threat database; perhaps it already has, or will be.
It's not just McAfee that doesn't deal effectively with this one (and others). The other AV vendors also have a patchy record in dealing with fake programs. The best thing to do is to use the specialist forums, like bleepingcomputer, who check the different products to see which one will deal adequately with a new rogue program, or new variant of an existing one.
Here on the forums we will always try to find the most effective solution to this sort of problem, even if it means pointing you towards a non-McAfee solution. Obviously, we would like a one-stop anti-malware store where we could simply select a McAfee tool to fix a problem and, in fact, McAfee is responding to our requests by putting something of the sort together. But it doesn't exist yet in anything like a finished form; it's being created by a few people, so it's a slow process. But it's coming together.
Thanks for your response, Hayton.
You say ...
" ... this one seems to have extra anti-removal features, which is presumably why it was considered to be worth including in the Stinger tool. I don't know why it hasn't yet been incorporated into the main threat database ; perhaps it already has, or will be "
I can say with the authority of recent experience that it definitely has not been incorporated into the main threat database, and the prospect that it may be ( maybe) at some indeterminate time in the future is no consolation after my recent experiences.
The System Tool bug does not just freeze your PC; it also demands money from you for them to remove it. Given that they are "bad guys" I wouldn't trust paying them as that would bring my monetary account details into play for them to interfere with. Furthermore, because they are "Bad Guys" there is no guarrantee that they will keep their promise to remove it, and because the removal tool is not available to the victims there is nothing to stop them attacking with System Tool again.
This is definitely a far more serious bug than McAfee admit. It has been known about for a considerable time. McAfee are specialists in the field so it is reasonable to expect them to defend us against it and they are negligent in not doing so.
I note there is also no response to my complaints of their website leading a user round in circles and failing to provide the email contact address which they say is available.
It's simply not good enough.