Antivirus Stops Working? What’s Next Step


Antivirus companies want continuous protection, but the software isn’t perfect. Here’s what you can do if your antivirus stops working or fails to block a malware attack.

In theory, once you install an Antivirus application on all your computers, your security is golden. Antivirus checks for frequent and automatic updates when your subscription is low. In an ideal situation, you would be ready. However, software—security software—is inclusive, not perfect. Your antivirus may miss a zero-day attack using unfamiliar exploit techniques. It might be on hold while it awaits your response. Or maybe you forgot to pay the bill.

There are various scenarios where ransomware, spyware or other malicious program can enter the system despite your Antivirus protection. If this happens to you, don’t panic! Keep a clear head and follow the suggestions below to recover from an attack.

Has my Antivirus stopped working?

Usually, you only notice an Antivirus application by tapping on its back to detect and remove a malware attack. Of course, some of them notify you when they update, while others show you a monthly report on what they’ve done for you. But most of the time, your security needs to be playing in the background.

That’s why it’s a good idea to periodically check that your antivirus is working. In the bottom right corner of the screen, in the notification area, locate its icon. To reveal hidden things if you can’t see something, click the icon. In Windows 10 and Windows 11, that icon looks like an enlarged carrot ^. Right-click on the Antivirus icon and click on the menu option that opens it.

Antivirus Application

When all settings are correct, each antivirus will display a green icon, banner or image in its main window. If you see red or yellow, something is not right. Usually, the antivirus will tell you what’s wrong and have a button or link to fix things. You may need to dig into the settings to fix any issues that prevent you from seeing green.

Is it green? That’s fine, but while you’re here, check stats like latest antivirus signatures update, last program update, and latest scan. You can tell the antivirus in advance to check for updates now and then run a full scan. Now it definitely works!

Yes, my Antivirus Stopped Working!

If your settings are incorrect or your antivirus is not up-to-date, malware may have passed through while it was inactive. How do you know if you have malware?

They pose as security software, warn of malware risks, and offer to “fix” them for a price. Brave uses logos and styles of authentic safety equipment with fake McAfee branding. Some infections are blatant, others hide behind pop-up ads or redirecting browsing to unwanted pages.


Other types of malware are more sophisticated. Did someone hack your passwords? A Trojan may be involved. Social media malware makes posts look like yours, and infects friends who click on links in the posts. Of course, sometimes there’s no sign of a malware attack—until you discover your bank account has been drained or your home loan is rejected for some reason that ruined your credit.

How to Recover from a Malware Attack

It will happen. Sometimes even though your antivirus is fully updated and working, a new malware strain sneaks past it. If the antivirus doesn’t recognize the threat by its malware signature or its behavior, you need to bring in the SWAT team.

Most antivirus companies offer a recovery disc, in the form of an ISO file. If you boot from a rescue disk, usually Linux-based, has built-in antivirus. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus makes cleaning even easier with the option to boot into recovery mode.

First, check if your antivirus offers a recovery disk. Was it discovered? As soon as you can, download and burn that disc now. Don’t wait until malware is already running roughshod over your computer.

Malware Attack

You can bring an aggressive cleaning-only tool like Malwarebytes Free. Such tools often come with a warning that collateral damage is possible, but if you have an active malware infection, you can take the risk. Most are free, so if one doesn’t do the job, you can give the next competitor a chance.

Norton Antivirus Plus takes an unusual approach, as do all Norton security suite products. At the end of the scan, “If you think there are still risks, click here”. Clicking will launch Norton Power Eraser, Norton takes an aggressive cleaning tool. Even if you are not a Norton user, you can download and run this tool for free.

Ransomware encrypted my files

If a Trojan or virus hits your computer because your antivirus is out of date or misses an attack, you can recover using the techniques described above. However, if ransomware is involved, you’re in deep trouble. Detecting and removing the malicious program will do nothing to recover your encrypted files.


You may consider biting the bullet and paying the ransom, but think twice before doing so. There’s no guarantee that paying will get your files back, and scammers have no real incentive to decrypt your files once you’ve paid. You cannot report them to the Better Business Bureau.

If the encrypted files are important enough, it may seem logical to hire a professional to recover them. Before you do, research the company thoroughly. UK sting operation Some so-called experts simply pay the ransom and then charge you the ransom price plus their own cut.

In fact, there is no need to hire an expert. When researchers crack the encryption of a ransomware strain, they usually make a decryption tool available for free. The recovery note will always contain the name of the strain, and a web search for ” ransomware decryption tool” will yield a solution, if any. Several antivirus companies that offer tools include Kaspersky, McAfee, and Trend Micro.

Of course, there is a possibility that your files will disappear forever, with no chance of recovery. If that thought fills you with dread, go ahead and set up a comprehensive online backup system for your most important files. Terabytes of backup storage are now available for a fair price.T Now if ransomware attacks, you can use the techniques described above to remove the attackers and then restore your files from backup.

Get a New Antivirus

If malware evades your antivirus even though it’s fully up-to-date, it has only one job to do… and fail. Security products are not all made equal. Independent antivirus testing labs offer a range of test scores, from perfect to very poor. We’ve tested dozens of antivirus programs (you can read about our antivirus testing procedures here),so if you’re considering a switch, read our comprehensive antivirus reviews to help you make the best choice. We hope you never experience failure with your antivirus protection.


Why does my antivirus keep turning off?

If your antivirus protection is disabled or refuses to run, your computer may have a software conflict. This can happen if you already have anti-virus software running and try to install another one.

How to remove antivirus pop-ups?

To remove the offending application, the computer must enable a pop-up blocker. All you need to do is go through the control panel. After that, go to Internet Options – Privacy – Enable pop-up blocker. It is recommended to set the level high to facilitate the most advanced filter settings.

Is McAfee virus warning real?

Therefore, it is always a best practice to read pop-ups or warning messages carefully. A typical phishing message might look like this: The above notification looks like it’s from McAfee because it uses the McAfee icon, but it’s not real and not from McAfee.

Do antiviruses get rid of malware?

Antivirus software is primarily designed to prevent infection, but also includes the ability to remove malware from an infected computer.

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