AKA the great cleanup of 2006.
I've always said that I wasn't a good test subject to measure how effective any anti-trojan or spyware application is, so while I've kept a professional interest in the latest and greatest tools, I hadn't been given a really good opportunity to try them out, until last week.
A friend of Angela had a laptop that suddenly had this program called Brave Sentry popping up, telling her she was infected, and promising to fix it once she purchased the software, naturally. It wouldn't shut down, and it had taken over her desktop wallpaper, blocking her from changing it. I suspected that wasn't the only thing causing problems on this machine, but I wouldn't know for sure until I got my hands on it. I agreed to take a look at it, and try to get it back to being usable. . . .
At this point, it was time to do some research about this spyware, which was being identified as Adware.Virtumonde, and it was time to assess where I was in this process. Brave Sentry was gone. Almost all of the spyware and trojan files had been removed. I had a couple of dll's still connecting to the Internet and displaying popups that continually regenerated themselves and their registry entries whenever I tried to delete them and I still couldn't change the desktop wallpaper, though I could get to task manager. Definitely time to set this aside and do some more reading about these specific problems. Tomorrow, I'll talk about what I found out, and how this ends. [Out of the Frying Pan, and into the Cube]