Microsoft Warning: Some New Chinese PCs Have Forged Windows, Pre-Installed Malware

Malware and viruses are bad, but so long as you're careful, your PC will stay squeaky clean, right? Maybe not. Microsoft has found that some PCs from China are coming with malware pre-installed, as many as a fifth.

As if bloatware wasn't bad enough, the four offending computers all run forged versions of Windows, forged versions of Windows with all kinds of nasty functionality baked right in. Generally, the malware is designed to control the PCs for use in a botnet, mostly for DDOS attacks. In worse cases, the viruses could remotely engage cameras and microphones.

You're probably safe; most of the computers that suffer from this come from relatively unregulated markets like China. Still, even if your laptop is clean having more infected computers out there in the wild isn't going to be good for anyone. Microsoft has been trying to fix the problem with a lawsuit, but it's a big problem to fix. For the time being, be careful buying a new computer overseas, especially if the price is too good to believe. [The Guardian]

Image by Lightspring/Shutterstock


Comments

    Oh I don't know, if you buy from China with this knowledge in hand you could get a decent rig for a good price. Just don't use it until you've wiped and reformatted the HD and installed your own OS. Ditch the Disks that came with it if there are any and don't forget to delete all the partitions before wiping and reformatting.

    A good killdisk before use would do the job.

    Is it possible that these programs could be written into the bios or part of the CPU ? If so then hard disk formatting etc would be of no use.

      It's just the usual stuff installed on the HD, nothing clever because it doesn't need to be.

    What computer isn't made in China?

      They wouldn't keep their business if they did this to name brands that they are contracted to build. The name brands would just go elsewhere.

    Should've got a mac

      Should have to just had some form of common sense

      these things happen. at least it would be very simple to fix.

      now what would it be like if it was a mac? for starters, a lot of the end users will have no idea what to do

    This could be applied to USB sticks, internal hdd's, and other media.

    This is hardly news. Anyone who has passed through the electronic markets of Huaqiangbei where this computer was bought will see both legitimate and fake vendors doing business. There is always a trade off when trying to obtain something for next to nothing, there is no free lunch and so it should never be surprising that the computers are infected with software that will make your computer part of a botnet. It is like being surprised that the fake expensive brand name tshirt you bought for $2 has given you a rash because of the cheap illegal industrial dye used.

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