How can you tell what your FixMeStick finds during a scan? What do the scan results mean? Why would you want to remove something labeled “not a virus”? Here’s how to interpret your scan results!
If your FixMeStick finds any threats on your computer during a scan, it will give you two options at the end of the scan: Clean Computer and See Results. In general, it’s a good idea to remove everything the FixMeStick has flagged. But if you’re curious, or concerned that something was incorrectly labeled a threat, you can click on See Results and look through a list of everything the scan has found. You can also see what your FixMeStick quarantined after the fact by checking your customer portal.
When you click on See Results, you will see 3 columns: File, Threats, and Actions.
The File column shows you the program on your computer that contains each threat the FixMeStick has found. Is this a program you use or recognize? If not, that’s a sign that the file is probably not something you want on your computer!
The Threats column shows you the reason the FixMeStick has identified each file as a threat. The FixMeStick has three different antivirus engines which each scan all the files on your computer. They categorize threats in similar ways. The best way to figure out what kind of threat a file is is to look for keywords. Here are some common keywords you might see in this column:
Adware - Adware is software that displays intrusive and sometimes malicious ads on your computer.
Exploit - An exploit is a type of malware that takes advantage of a vulnerability in a program to take control of your computer.
Home Page - Some programs can change your browser home page to a page with intrusive ads or unsafe links.
PUA - PUA is an acronym for “Potentially unwanted application.” This refers to a program that you agreed to download but probably don’t want. PUAs (also called PUPs, or “potentially unwanted programs”) are often “bundled” with other programs so that when you download something you want you might mistakenly agree to download a PUA as well. PUAs can show you pop up ads, change your homepage or search engine, add toolbars to your browser, and more.
Not-a-virus - A threat marked “not-a-virus” is usually adware or some other PUA: something that is not technically malware, but is unnecessary and can cause problems.
Toolbar - PUAs often install toolbars to your internet browsers which clutter your screen, slow down your browser, or display intrusive ads.
Trojan/Troj/TR - A trojan is a type of virus that pretends to be a helpful program but actually carries out malicious activities behind the scenes.
The final column is the Actions column. Here you can choose whether remove or keep each file. It is generally a good idea to remove everything, unless you are sure something has been accidentally labeled a threat. You can always undo the quarantine later if need be.
If you have any questions about the results of your scan, you can contact customer support at firstname.lastname@example.org.