6 Replies Latest reply on Jun 13, 2013 9:00 AM by Peter M

    Is the Free Malwarebytes Actually a Registry Cleaner?


      I have reason to believe that my Windows XP desktop has been infected with some sort of malware.  My wife's AOL e-mail account was hacked.  I know that because I received an e-mail from her yesterday that she did not send.  Her password had been stored on the computer's hard drive so the malware may have obtained it from there.  Another indication of malware is that McAfee firewall has been turning itself off periodically for about the past week or so.  I'm able to turn it back on, but after about an hour or so I'll come back to my computer and find that it has turned off again for no apparent reason.


      I have changed my wife's AOL password (using a different computer in case the malware is also tracking keystrokes) and have changed other passwords that may have been entered using that computer so hopefully the damage has been limited to just that AOL account.  However, I still need to deal with the suspected malware.


      I am planning to run a full virus scan this weekend, but have not done so yet because of the time required for the scan (about 4.5 hours).  So last night, I used the link from Peter's blogs to download the free version of Malwarebytes.  However, after a few clicks, it took me to a partner site which was for something called "ARO 2013".  The description of ARO 2013 read like a registry cleaner in that it said things like "cleans registry errors".  I don't remember all that it said, but since Peter has always warned against using registry cleaners, I did not proceed with the download and installation.  I also did not want to download Malwarebytes Pro (the paid version) since Peter has also said that Malwarebytes Pro might interfere with McAfee Virus Scan.


      My McAfee Security Center is Version 12.1, Build 12.1.338. 


      My question is, is it OK to download and run this "ARO 2013" program or is it really a registry cleaner that might make things worse on my computer.  If Peter could offer some advice on this, I'd appreciate it.  Thank you.