Should I be worried about this (now disappeared) browser hijack?

I have two laptops: one personal, one provided by my company. This morning i used the personal one to browse facebook for a while, then ate breakfast, then went sat down to do some work on the business laptop. But first I opened a Chrome window, and when I did I found it hijacked. The only tab had a message saying that I had malware on the computer; this message came over the speakers as well. I couldn’t get anything else done, so I used the control panel to close the window, then started up MalwareBytes and got to work on the business laptop.

A couple hours later I took a break and checked the personal laptop. MalWarebutes had finished its scan and found nothing. The browswer hijack seemed to be done. I was suspicious but also had work to do, so I started AVG and got back to work.

Two hours later I took another break and checked the personal laptop. No malware found. Work was still calling and I was still suspicious, so I rebooted in safe mode, ran RKILL, a, which found nothing to worry about. Ran Malwarebytes and AVG again while I read some more employee reviews. Nothing was found, and no further browser hijacks occurred (in the five inutes I spent on it before settling down to the final round.)

Should I worry about the mysteriously disappearing Chrome hijack?

Sounds like you were subject to a bogus error message intended to alarm you and perhaps have you call some dude in India who would fix (and I mean really “fix”) your computer. If so, this was not really malware, so it wouldn’t show in a scan. I was only intended to alarm you into doing something foolish.

Here’s an example, which might or might not look like yours:

It does sound like the kind of scam** Musicat** mentions. You should always be concerned but I’d assume you’re set up to make it difficult for such a website to leave anything permanent on your system. All you could do now anyway is try more malware detection or reload all the software on your machine.

If I’m right, those scam artists often have another trick up their sleeve, and are sometimes able to prevent you from closing the tab that displays the message. If so, the easiest way to fix it is to go to your Task Manager and close each instance of Chrome until the baddie is banished to the big beyond. Annoying to fix, but this works, and allows you to cackle maniacally as you nuke each tab.

thanks for the screen-cap as well as the knowledge, musicat … sobering reminders can be justified.

I knew it was a ransomware scam. Didn’t bother listeningto the message. I had only one Chrome tab open, so the Task Manager thing worked in one click. I was basically wondering if I should worry about some other hidden nastiness.

I’m not espeically worried about the machine tself. I only use the personal laptop for the likes of the Dope & Facebook and Amazon, and when shopping on online I use only a prepaid debit card whose balance is always kept low. Online banking and whatnot is done on a separae machine.

If it’s a warning much like the one I showed in the screenshot, it is probably only a graphic and if you had to nuke it, a temporary browser hijack. Still, a system scan wouldn’t hurt. Better safe than sorry, no?

And stay away from the site that caused it, if you know which one. Porn sites are notorious for things like this, the NY Times site, not so much.

It was the Dope.

Well, sort of. I was typing in the address bar and may have miskkeyed.

Quite likely. I find many sites that seem to take advantage of fat fingers that way.