IT Connect
Information technology tools and resources at the UW

Malware Infections

Malware detectionImage result for sophos intercept events

Generally detection and removal of Malware is performed without any necessary user interaction by Sophos.  In the rare case where a malicious or potentially unwanted application is detected and cannot be removed automatically a Sophos administrator is required for removal.  Please submit a request to help@uw.edu with the computer name and you will be contacted for removal.

If you are concerned that your computer is infected you can perform a manual scan by following these directions:

  1. Open Sophos, either via Start — Programs, or through the blue S shield icon in the system tray near the clock.
  2. Click the Scan” button; the scan can take a few hours.  You can continue to use your computer while the scan completes.
  3. Any detection or clean-up actions should happen automatically and will appear in the Sophos console but a request can be submitted if necessary.

Preventing infections

Image result for sophos restart required

  • Use the most current version of your operating system, email software, and web browser.  Newer software typically has better defenses and fewer vulnerabilities.  The Managed Workstation Service can provide you with the latest versions of Windows, Office, and the most popular browsers.  Find the latest software in the Software Center on your MWS device.
  • Remove high risk software from your computer.  Remove Adobe Flash and instead use Edge or Chrome to view content that still requires a Flash player.  Remove any versions of Java that aren’t required for your work.  Uninstall QuickTime from your Windows computer and instead use another program.
  • Get your software from a trusted source.  Use the Software Center or UW Uware.  If you download software on the internet, only use software that came directly from the publisher.  Some third party sites repackage popular software with malware.
  • Perform actions as requested by antivirus software Sophos sometimes requires a restart after software updates or the removal of a threat.
  • Be wary of USB devices.  Moving files from device to device with a USB storage drive opens those devices to infections on the drive.  To move files around, use a network share, mapped drive, or cloud storage location.
  • Don’t open email attachments unless you are expecting them.  Even better, contact the sender to confirm.
  • Mouse over links before clicking on them in an email or on a web page — when you hover over the link with your mouse, you will see the actual location the link will take you to.  It may not be what you expect.
Last reviewed December 27, 2019