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How can I get rid of an unsolicited scan?


Any time I am working, an unsolicited ad from PCTools.com crashes into and destroys what I'm working on and starts a scan immediately. I do not want this product. How do I get rid of the irritating ad that keeps deleting whatever I'm working on a starts scanning as though I was a customer. I assure you, I am NOT a customer. I've written to them and they say they can't talk to me unless I purchase the product. I told them I would not do that. All I want is for the ads to stop.

Additional System Details

Sites Affected


Installed Plug-ins

  • Adobe PDF Plug-In For Firefox and Netscape "9.4.5"
  • NPRuntime Script Plug-in Library for Java(TM) Deploy
  • The QuickTime Plugin allows you to view a wide variety of multimedia content in Web pages. For more information, visit the QuickTime Web site.
  • RealPlayer(tm) LiveConnect-Enabled Plug-In
  • RealJukebox Netscape Plugin
  • Default Plug-in
  • Shockwave Flash 11.1 r102
  • Adobe Shockwave for Director Netscape plug-in, version 11.5
  • iTunes Detector Plug-in
  • 4.1.10111.0
  • Office Authorization plug-in for NPAPI browsers
  • The plug-in allows you to open and edit files using Microsoft Office applications
  • RealPlayer(tm) HTML5VideoShim Plug-In
  • RealNetworks(tm) RealPlayer Chrome Background Extension Plug-In
  • Google Update


  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.1; en-US; rv: Gecko/20120306 Firefox/3.6.28

More Information

Scans begin without warning, destroy all the information on the current document or work I am doing, and continues to scan until it tells me I have two thousand issues and I really need this product. How do I stop this pernicious advertising?

Tyler Downer
  • Administrator
  • Moderator
1166 solutions 6649 answers

It sounds like your computer may be infected with some sort of a virus / Malware.

I suggest the following resources:

Is my Firefox problem a Result of Malware is a Mozilla Support article with some good tips on avoiding and fighting malware.

To double check your system is clean, do the following (Not official Mozilla advice, just good practice from personal experience)

Download and Install MalwareBytes Anti-Malware, run a full Scan. http://www.malwarebytes.org/

Download and Run TDSSKiller http://support.kaspersky.com/faq/?qid=208283363

Download and Install Microsoft Security Essentials http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/products/security-essentials (not an official endorsement, but I personally recommend MSE as an awesome permanent anti-virus)

Also, click "start" then Control Panel, the "Programs and Features". Find anything related to PCTools, and uninstall it.

Double check for all Windows Updates.

If you are still having problems with Malware after that, I would recommend either http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/virus-removal/, or having your computer cleaned by a professional.

Also, you should begin to prepare to upgrade to Firefox 11. Firefox 3.6 will be dropped from support in a few weeks, which means it will no longer be receiving security or stability updates. Firefox 11 is up to 7 times faster than 3.6, has lots of new features and improvements, as well as support for new web standards and security features. http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/features/ and Updating Firefox have more information.