Severity scale:  
  (19/100)

“Error #268D3” virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Jake Doevan - - | Type: Adware

Error #268D3 – is a scam message that tries to blackmail users into disclosing personal data or downloading malicious software

“Error #268D3” virus
Error #268D3 is a fake alert that is usually displayed due to adware.

Questions about “Error #268D3” virus

Error 268D3 is a tech support scam and appears as a pop-up message on Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, or any other installed browser. While some users might experience the redirect once in a while, those who encounter Error 268D3 pop-ups regularly are most likely affected by adware. The purpose of the fake message is to convince users that their machines are damaged, infected, or criminals are stealing personal information. Thus, in order to “fix” it, they are asked to contact the fake technicians that try to convince users to grant remote PC access, are asked to install bogus software or pay money for the alleged support. There are several variants of the scam that are circulating on the web, such as Error 268d3x8938, Error 268D3-XC00037 or This Computer is BLOCKED.

Name Error #268D3
Type Adware
Variants
  • Error 268d3x8938
  • Error 268D3-XC00037
  • This Computer is BLOCKED

Symptoms

Tries to scare the victim that computer is blocked and that the only way to unlock it is to call at given number

Main aims Singing the victim for paid services, installing malware or suspicious program on the system
Elimination Reset your web browser to disable the error. To remove adware which is used for displaying it, use Reimage 

The purpose of the Microsoft Error 268D3 scam is to convince the victim that one's computer has been infected. The message claims that the detected issue can be solved only with a help of experienced computer technicians. However, people waiting for your call behind the provided number are simply scammers trying to swindle money from inexperienced PC users.

You might be dealing with “Error #268D3” virus if your computer reports about “critical” problems and claims that the only way to solve them is to call toll free numbers. In reality, these numbers will connect you to scammers[1] who are willing to trick users into downloading fake software or stealing their personal information.

Besides, in most of the cases, such scams as Microsoft alert 268D3 end up with greatly increased telephone bills, so there is no doubt that you must disable error by removing adware that causes these fake error messages as soon as possible. We should also add that this fake Tech support notification is closely related to Microsoftsupportdesk.com redirect problem. Of course, you can also be rerouted to another scam site that is filled with Microsoft logos, and other tricky details.

Signs showing that Error 268D3 virus is on the system

  • Unexpected redirects to phishing websites that pretend to be legitimate Microsoft support pages. These sites immediately show you a big alert which starts with a line ** YOUR COMPUTER HAS BEEN BLOCKED ** .
  • Then, the website provides the error code and claims that you must reach tech support immediately because your computer is infected with virus and spyware. Keep in mind that following commands that are given to you in this report can easily reveal your passwords, credit card details, and similar information[2].
  • When infected with the described virus, annoying pop-ups keep reappearing in Microsoft Edge, Safari, Google Chrome, and Firefox browsers. Usually, the website prevents the user from closing it by continuously enabling JavaScript codes that display repetitious pop-ups.

You must ignore this message and remove Error 268D3 on Mac Safari or Windows because it has nothing to do with a real tech support service. To unblock your computer, you should disable this scam alert by going to your Task manager and ending the process which is called as bsodm.exe.

Unfortunately, each virus, including Error number 268D3 scam, mutates, so there is a chance that you will need to disable another process. To spot the malicious one, check the date of installation and select the one that was installed on the same day as the appearance of this fake Tech support scam message.  

If you are not an advanced computer user, you can detect adware which has been causing the error on your desktop with a help of a well-known and trustworthy anti-malware program, such as Reimage. To implement a successful removal, you can also find instructions on how to fix Error #268D3 here.

“Error #268D3” malware sends bogus ads
An example of a phishing website and a fake alert that informs the victim about non-existent “Error #268D3.”

It is clear that the malicious software which is hiding behind this scam tries to intimidate its victims. If you see this bogus message on your screen, you should ignore[3] it and take care of Error 268D3 removal[4]. Make sure you do this without a delay tech support scammers who are seeking to intimidate you and trick you into calling the numbers provided below can try to initiate additional activities[5] on your computer.

Error 268D3 variants

As we already mentioned, there are several different Error 268D3 variants:

Error 268d3x8938

 ERROR 268d3x8938 hoax can appear on Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari or other browsers. However, the pop-up always states the the alert is coming from Microsoft Edge:

**Microsoft Warning Alert**
ERROR # 268d3x8938(3)

Suspicious activity detected on your IP address due to harmful virus installed in your computer. Call Toll Free now @ +1-855-624-0192 for any assistance…”
Please call us immediately at: +1-855-624-0192
Do not ignore this critical alert.
If you close this page, your computer access will be disabled to prevent further damage to our network.
Your computer has alerted is that it has been infected with a Pornographic Spyware and riskware. The following information is being stolen…
1. Facebook Logins
2. Credit Card Details
3. Email Account Logins
4. Photos stored on this computer.
You must contact us immediately so that our expert engineers can walk you through the removal process over the phone to protect your identity.
Please call us within the next 5 minutes.

Microsoft support scams have been around for a very long time, and users should learn how to recognize them. It is typical for ERROR # 268d3x8938 authors to construct a message that is filled with spelling and grammar errors and there is a always a “you must call the number or…” condition, that can allegedly put things back to normal. Of course, people who never encountered such fake alerts might become frightened that their personal data lake banking details might be stolen, and that is what crooks are counting on.

If you do not know much about scams, simply do some research online, do not rush calling anyone or performing money transactions, or whatever is asked of you. Just to be sure, scan your computer with anti-malware software such as Reimage or Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner.

ERROR 268d3x8938 scam
ERROR 268d3x8938 is a variant of 268d3 scam. It claims that a dangerous virus is affecting the PC, and users should call the provided number in order to fix it.

Error 268D3-XC00037

Error 268D3-XC00037 is another variant of Error 268D3. It shows a fake pop-up that states that the computer is blocked due to the alleged spyware and virus infection.  Crooks then proceed with explaining that credit card details, email account logins, and photos on the computer “are being stolen.”

Mostly, everybody who is PC savvy would immediately spot deception, as no hackers would inform you that your credit card details are being stolen. In a likely scenario, users might get infected with a trojan that affects the system and allows crooks to access it remotely. Now, their goal is not for you to be aware that such activity is taking place, because you could simply eliminate malware with the anti-virus. Thus, informing users that their computer is infected merely is not what real cybercriminals do.

Therefore, Error # 268D3-XC00037 is another fraudulent message that usually does not pose any risks, as long as the provided number is called. Those who do get tricked, actually risk of their personal data to be stolen with the help of deception.

This Computer is BLOCKED

In September 2018, security researcher Takedownscammer posted a tweet[6] about the new variant of ERROR 268d3x8938 scam – This Computer is BLOCKED. This new variant, for the most part, focuses on the supposedly illegal activities on the targeted PC, and for that reason, it has been locked. Bad actors claim that they “detected” the following:

  • Illegal Windows registration key;
  • Pirated software on the device;
  • The computer is sending viruses over the internet;
  • The device is hacked.

And then crooks explain that they have blocked the computer due to these reasons, and it should not be restarted. To unlock the  As evident, This Computer is BLOCKED is merely a scam and you should not fall for it. Remember, Microsoft would never ask you to contact support by providing a contact number, there are other procedures set in place – such troubleshooting on the official website or error codes that can be researched.

Therefore, if you found This Computer is BLOCKED pop-up on your Google Chrome or another browser, make sure you scan your computer for adware, ignore the message and never contact the criminals.

This Computer is BLOCKED scam
Researcher discovered a new threat that claims the the targeted system is blocked.

Scammers seek to swindle money from unsuspecting victims

Scammers who have been working behind this 268D3 scam seek to convince their victims that they need to call the given number. Otherwise, their computer systems will be blocked due to special circumstances. However, their primary objective is to convince the PC user to give them access to the computer and get a chance to install malicious programs on the PC system. Beware, because they might try to spy on you and steal your personal or banking information.

However, some scammers do not seek to get access to victim’s computer, but they aim to talk the victim into buying rogue anti-spyware or anti-malware programs. You should not let frauds fool you, so as soon as you notice Error 268D3 pop-ups, you should check the list of programs that were recently installed on your computer system.

Ways to catch a similar type of computer virus

Usually, such potentially unwanted programs (PUP) spread along with other free software and can be installed without the users' knowledge. It happens because the statements about the existence of these additions are usually concealed behind Default or Standard installation settings, and the majority of computers users tend to rely on them.

To avoid installing optional applications, we recommend you to choose Custom or Advanced option and then drop off all unwanted attachments by deselecting them. Only then you can finish the installation procedure as usual.

We also recommend you to inform your employees or family members how to install software properly and also warn them about tech support scammers. According to user reports, the virus is currently rampaging in Germany and France[7].

Remove Error #268D3 from Mac and Windows

You should remove Error 268D3 virus as soon as you can, since this program ruins computer’s performance, generates a never-ending flow of pop-up ads and attempts to deceive the PC user.

Cybercriminals hide behind the name of Microsoft to delude you but remember that Microsoft Critical Alert 268D3 is fake, and has nothing in common with Microsoft company. Microsoft support would never ask you to provide personal information or credit card details via phone.

To stop these fake alerts from appearing on your computer screen, you should implement Error 268D3 removal automatically or manually. Choose the method which looks the best for you, and get rid of this adware parasite right away.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes. We recommend these applications because they detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove “Error #268D3” virus, follow these steps:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete “Error #268D3” from Windows systems

If your Windows operating system is blocked, the first thing that you should do is to disable the affected web browser. For that, go to Windows Task Manager -> Processes tab and cancel chrome.exe, explorer.exe and similar processes. Then, you should uninstall every suspicious program which can be seen in your Task Manager by following the guide below.

  1. Click Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs). Click 'Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features' (if you are 'Windows XP' user, click on 'Add/Remove Programs').
  2. If you are Windows 10 / Windows 8 user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once Quick Access Menu shows up, select Control Panel and Uninstall a Program. If you are 'Windows 10 / Windows 8' user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once 'Quick Access Menu' shows up, select 'Control Panel' and 'Uninstall a Program'.
  3. Uninstall “Error #268D3” and related programs
    Here, look for “Error #268D3” or any other recently installed suspicious programs.
  4. Uninstall them and click OK to save these changes. Right click on each of suspicious entries and select 'Uninstall'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Uninstall “Error #268D3” from Mac OS X system

To disable Error 268D3, you need to disable this fake error message by canceling the affected web browser. To do that on Mac OS X, you need to right-click the browser's icon, hold the Option key to see how Quit option changes to Force Quit option. Now you need to select it and follow the steps below.

  1. If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications. Cick 'Go' and select 'Applications'
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for “Error #268D3” or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash. Click on every malicious entry and select 'Move to Trash'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Erase “Error #268D3” from Internet Explorer (IE)

  1. Remove dangerous add-ons
    Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top right corner of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons. Click on menu icon and select 'Manage add-ons'
  2. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for “Error #268D3” and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable: Right click on each of malicious entries and select 'Disable'
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the gear icon (menu) on the top right corner of the browser and select Internet Options. Stay in General tab.
  4. Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes. Delete malicious URL, enter your desired domain name and click 'Apply' to save changes
  5. Reset Internet Explorer
    Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  6. Here, select Reset.
  7. When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete “Error #268D3” removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove “Error #268D3” virus from Microsoft Edge

Remove “Error #268D3” virus from Edge using these instructions:

Reset Microsoft Edge settings (Method 1):

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge app and click More (three dots at the top right corner of the screen).
  2. Click Settings to open more options.
  3. Once Settings window shows up, click Choose what to clear button under Clear browsing data option. Go to Settings and select 'Choose what to clear'
  4. Here, select all what you want to remove and click Clear. Select 'Clear' button
  5. Now you should right-click on the Start button (Windows logo). Here, select Task Manager. Open the start menu and select 'Task Manager'
  6. When in Processes tab, search for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Go to details option. If can’t see Go to details option, click More details and repeat previous steps. Right-click 'Microsoft Edge' and select 'Go to details' Select 'More details' if 'Go to details' option fails to show up
  8. When Details tab shows up, find every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right click on each of them and select End Task to end these entries. Find Microsoft Edge entries and select 'End Task'

Resetting Microsoft Edge browser (Method 2):

If Method 1 failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method.

  1. Note: you need to backup your data before using this method.
  2. Find this folder on your computer: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select every entry which is saved on it and right click with your mouse. Then Delete option. Go to Microsoft Edge folder on your computer, right-click every entry and click 'Delete'
  4. Click the Start button (Windows logo) and type in window power in Search my stuff line.
  5. Right-click the Windows PowerShell entry and choose Run as administrator. Find Windows PowerShell, right-click it and select 'Run as administrator'
  6. Once Administrator: Windows PowerShell window shows up, paste this command line after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and press Enter:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    Copy and paste a required command and press 'Enter'

Once these steps are finished, “Error #268D3” should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Eliminate “Error #268D3” from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions. Click on menu icon and select 'Add-ons'
  2. Here, select “Error #268D3” and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries. Select 'Extensions' and look for malicious entries. Click 'Remove' to get rid of each of them
  3. Reset Mozilla Firefox
    Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information. Click on menu icon and then on '?'. Select 'Troubleshooting Information'
  4. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete “Error #268D3” removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Get rid of “Error #268D3” from Google Chrome

  1. Delete malicious plugins
    Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions. Click on menu icon. Select 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Here, select “Error #268D3” and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries. Look for malicious entries and delete each of them by clicking on the Trash bin icon
  3. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  4. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  5. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  6. Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings. When in 'Settings', scroll down to 'Reset browser settings' button and click on it
  7. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete “Error #268D3” removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete “Error #268D3” from Safari

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences. Click on 'Safari' and select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for “Error #268D3” or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Reset Safari
    Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari.... Click on 'Safari' and select 'Reset Safari...'
  4. Now you will see a detailed dialog window filled with reset options. All of those options are usually checked, but you can specify which of them you want to reset. Click the Reset button to complete “Error #268D3” removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

About the author

Jake Doevan
Jake Doevan - Computer technology expert

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References

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