False positives – why Geeks to Go gets flagged as dangerous

warningMore and more frequently, we’ve had forum members and even staff receiving warnings from their antivirus program, from McAfee Site Advisor, or some other source of online protection that Geeks to Go is a dangerous site or contains dangerous links.  This is untrue – Geeks to Go is very safe, but we mistakenly get flagged.  This is known as a false positive.  Why does this happen?  There are a few reasons.

Many security suites and protection programs are adding website screening as part of their overall protection, and some browsers also have website blocking built-in to them.  I’ve had Firefox block sites on more than one occasion while doing research, and I’m glad when it does.  Much of the malware we encounter gets installed as a drive-by download, meaning simply visiting the wrong site can infect your computer.  Protecting against these things would seem to be a good thing.  However, these programs are often relying on heuristics to identify potentially dangerous downloads, meaning they’re looking at the characteristics of a file to try and determine if it’s dangerous.  In addition, there are many different security products available, and they all have different means to characterize potentially dangerous downloads.

Why do these companies flag Geeks to Go?  Primarily because of the many malware removal tools that are used by us.  Protection programs have been flagging many of our tools for years, but usually as an individual download.  There are certain tools for which we’ve always warned users that the download is safe, but it might get flagged due to certain processes.  Now that more companies are screening the actual downloads from websites, our tools are getting flagged more and more frequently.  Because malware changes rapidly, our tools must change also, so something that was deemed safe yesterday might be flagged today as malicious, simply due to a change in programming.

Rest assured, Geeks to Go has always been safe.  We’re on the side of the good guys, working hard to remove malware and prevent its recurrence.  We would never knowingly host or permit any kind of malicious download on our site, and work hard to get our name cleared every time we get a report of a false positive.

  • Vittorio

    This site has to be safe, we run off over military DNS servers here, with crazy filters that get tracked when people try to access sites that are on the filter list. I actually reccommended the site to some of our network administrators, system operators, and DoD civilains that work with us in system.

  • Vittorio

    This site has to be safe, we run off over military DNS servers here, with crazy filters that get tracked when people try to access sites that are on the filter list. I actually reccommended the site to some of our network administrators, system operators, and DoD civilains that work with us in system.

  • what you say about you being safe seems true. I have had troubles for years with Yahoo and AT&T. They have always have ads that come up when I delete certain E-mail. I am not computor savvy, so I am not too sure what is going on. I do know it always leads back to Yahoo and AT&T. Both companies clam they do no wrong, so it appears to be an employee or third party. They appear to tag certain words, because as soon as I type or click a certain word a Yahoo sponcerd ad comes up. One is ad.doubleclick.net

  • what you say about you being safe seems true. I have had troubles for years with Yahoo and AT&T. They have always have ads that come up when I delete certain E-mail. I am not computor savvy, so I am not too sure what is going on. I do know it always leads back to Yahoo and AT&T. Both companies clam they do no wrong, so it appears to be an employee or third party. They appear to tag certain words, because as soon as I type or click a certain word a Yahoo sponcerd ad comes up. One is ad.doubleclick.net

  • I am concerned that Cyberdefender is still on your list of anti-malware programs. If you read WOT and the Complaints Board, you'll see that many people have been screwed by them. Their program worked for less than 2 days. After repairs, the same thing happened. They had a 30-day no-questions asked warranty. I tried to cancel after 5 days. They put me through a 1 1/2 hour interrogation. They told me I had had the program for 3 months. They said that if I wanted a refund, they had to put my system back in the same shape it was when I bought it. That included reinstalling Trojans, removing my desktop, and more. They also said that they would keep $100.00 of my refund as payment for repairing their program. I was promised a refund (minus the $100.00) 4 times but never got it. One CS rep used a fake name. They rewrote and backdated their warranty during my LONG argument with them. When I finally got them to admit I was not a customer, they left a file on my system. My firewall showed that much of my info was going to them. That file was next to impossible to remove. My computer got worse & worse: I could only download a few things, none involving malware. It began to crash until it was crashing every 5 minutes. By now, downloading was a non-option. Every site I visited was a phishing site. When I finally got the file off my system, they reinstalled it along with another. Together, they were impossible to remove. My computer kept going slower & slower. Finally I got to the blue screen of death and had to reload my operating system. All the above problems then disappeared. These are common complaints with some variation from others who used their program, free or paid. I tried to make online purchases from 2 sites that I had never visited before. By now, I had changed my credit card and these 2 sites refused to do business with me because my credit card number did not match what they had in their files on me (which, since I had never been to the site, they should not have had.) Only Cyberdefender and Google had the old credit card number. Please don't promote this malware. Many people are convinced that they install malware in order to force a purchase. My computer worked much better before I got Cyberdefender, and after I got it off my system. Customer service was usually very rude, and you can plan on being on hold for 20 minutes. Then, they bombard you with hours of psychobabble. This is a highly condensed version of my experience. A really large problem also appeared. Since I didn't do more than email and visit websites, I don't know how I could have caused this problem, but cannot be sure if it was Cyberdefender so will skip the details on that. The complaints board got enough complaints that they had to condense them and place them in customer files. I haven't visited that site lately, but I have read the reviews on the Web of Trust. I highly recommend you check it out for more of the same.

  • Oops. In the above post, I meant technobabble, not psychobabble, but I think Cyberdefender actually gave me both, and some nice little Trojans too--I don't think I had them before I signed up for Cyberdefender--I think they installed them to scare me into buying the program, and it worked. And they TOLD ME that if I wanted out, they were going to put them back on my machine, and they did.

    I like Geekstogo. I just cringe when I see a Cyberdefender ad anywhere.