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easeus partition apparent unwanted install of toolbars and software: conduit, trustworthy toolbar and avg tune up coinciding with easeus installation

toolbar malware unwanted unauthorised unauthorized easeus free

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#1 arjaydavis

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:02 PM

Hi folks,
I downloaded the free version of EaseUS partition manager yesterday and shortly after running it following installation, further installation of unwanted programs took place.
I cannot be 100% certain that the EaseUS partition manager contains these but it has to be more than coincidence as they installed a matter of seconds after I ran EaseUS for the first time.
This is on a fresh install of Windows 7 64 bit with few other applications.

Details of the unwanted software:
- conduit toolbar / extension / addon / plugin - seen in Chrome and Firefox toolbars
- trustworthy toolbar extension plugin - seen in Firefox
- AVG PC tune up installed

Conduit replaces the default search engine with theirs and also the startup page URL. It's installed as a toolbar in Chrome for certain and I think Firefox as well.
It is also installed as Windows application.
Trustworthy toolbar is installed in firefox.

Removal
via standard Uninstall a program in Windows - remove Conduit
remove conduit from search engines list in Chrome in settings
remove conduit url from setting for page to open when chrome starts

change home page url back to what you want in standard settings
disable conduit and trustworthy addon / plugin / extension / toolbar in firefox

Remove AVG tuneup via standard uninstall

that seams to get rid of the visible manifestions - but I am now paranoid about what is lurking unseen, root kit

I feel that I am justified in suspecting EaseUS as a carrier of these programs as all of it happened right after running EaseUS for the first time.

I have used this software before and found it to be useful without problems, so it would appear that this malware has been included in more recent versions.

Other reasons why I am suspicious of it:
- It's free software - there's a lot of good free honest software out there but I guess they want to make their money in this case some how - by ad revenue from changing browser URL to the conduit search engine
- It is made in a country that are among those that have been suggested in reports as the source of hacking on large scale at large organisation

Norton did not detect any issue with the epm.exe install package downloaded that contains the EaseUS partition manager - and presumably suspected of containing above unwanted software.

I'm rather disappointed in EaseUS if they have included this stuff in their installation.

#2 arjaydavis

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:32 PM

To see if it really was related to EaseUS (and it is) I uninstalled EaseUS Partition Manager ( partition-tool.com / easeus.com ) and then reinstalled - ran the epm.exe file.

During install, there are prompts about installing these. It is possible to choose not to install trustworthy toolbar (and presumable conduit) by not checking the radio buttons/check boxes. See images below.

So these CAN be avoided. So it was down to me being too click happy to rush install it. I'm sure I'm not the only one - how many read through terms and conditions?

Trustworthy toolbar is mentioned but not conduit but presumably it is installed when trustworthy is installed.

However there is no option to not install AVG tune up. That's not so bad, as AVG has a reasonable reputation as anti-virus and this can be uninstalled.


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#3 arjaydavis

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:33 PM

So I've uninstalled everything - do you think that my machine is safe and there is no underlying malware?

#4 exile360

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 10:07 PM

You should be OK. None of these items are real malware, just adware mostly. If you'd like to verify that you've gotten rid of all of it simply follow the instructions posted here and post the requested logs in a new topic in this forum and one of our malware removal specialists will assist you in checking and cleaning your machine free of charge.
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#5 arjaydavis

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 12:52 PM

You should be OK.


Thanks for the advice - I am inclined to agree with you - after all EaseUS partition-tool.com aim to SELL a paid-for version of the tool so if they are sensible then they wouldn't want to annoy those trying out the tool.

None of these items are real malware, just adware


- Thanks - I certainly want to agree with this.

mostly.


- by mostly do you mean that most of it isnt malware but there is a possibility of a little malware?

If you'd like to verify that you've gotten rid of all of it simply follow the instructions posted here and post the requested logs in a new topic in this forum and one of our malware removal specialists will assist you in checking and cleaning your machine free of charge.


Thanks - carried out your instructions and my post is here:

http://forums.malwar...howtopic=127754

#6 arjaydavis

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 12:56 PM

PS I do own a paid for version of MalwareBytesPro but haven't yet installed it on this machine.

Also had concerns about possible clash with norton, but apparently I should be ok - see here: http://forums.malwar...l=&fromsearch=1

I will await advice from the other thread however: http://forums.malwar...howtopic=127754

#7 exile360

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 06:16 PM

- by mostly do you mean that most of it isnt malware but there is a possibility of a little malware?

No, I just meant that some of it might not strictly be classified as adware, but it's still not malware either. Just things that might be annoying and that you might not want on your PC.



Also had concerns about possible clash with norton, but apparently I should be ok - see here: http://forums.malwar...l=&fromsearch=1

Yes, the issue with Norton/Symantec products has been resolved and there is no actual conflict or performance problem that we are aware of.
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