Have you run a scan on your device and found it infected with HackTool:Win32/Keygen? Windows Defender may have automatically alerted you to the presence of this malware after you used a crack or key generator to activate premium software. Is it a serious threat, and can you easily overcome it?
In this article, we’ll go into detail about the malware, how it infected your device, and what you can do to remove it.
HackTool:How does Win32/Keygen infect a device?
Recent years have seen a rise in the popularity of software cracks and fake key generators. Using these tools, users can unethically activate licenses for third-party software, which usually cost them a fair amount.
Since these tools are freely available on third-party websites and many Internet users are constantly looking for ways to obtain premium software at no cost, hackers use them to spread malware.
Therefore, scammers bundle malware with a key generator, and when users download and install such programs on their devices, victims unwittingly allow the virus to invade. The sad thing is that all this happens with the consent of the victim. Hacktool:Win32/Keygen virus also gets inside the victim’s device with the help of similar fake key generator.
HackTools: What is a serious threat to Win32/Keygen?
The HackTool:Win32/Keygen malware has been classified by Microsoft Defender as a dangerous program with a critical threat level.
This malware poses a serious threat due to its ability to automatically create executable files within the key generator or software you have activated. These types of files are difficult to detect, and the infection will remain on your device until these files are removed.
Although Microsoft Defender often isolates this threat, which limits its ability to spread further, it cannot remove it automatically. Therefore, it can be found on your device every time you run a scan. The only way to completely remove malware from your device is by taking the manual route.
HackTool:How to remove Win32/Keygen virus from your device?
If you want to effectively remove HackTool:Win32/Keygen virus from your device, you should do the following steps one by one in that order:
1. First, remove the infected files
In most cases, malware infects certain files that Windows Defender detects and alerts users about. In the protection history, where the detected threat appears, we can see the name and location of the infected files. Therefore, you should first delete the infected files.
Most HackTool:Win32/Keygen infected files are in the Windows temp folder. Therefore, it is recommended to delete all temporary files in Windows, even those that are not infected.
2. Remove the culprit software
Next, you should remove any key generator software or crack that you have used to activate the premium features of the software.
3. Remove suspicious files from main software
Activating software with a crack or fake key generator alters the software files so that they appear as if the software was activated. Depending on the crack you are using, this software may add some malicious files to the folder so that its premium features remain active. So simply removing the key generator software won’t help much.
To remove the malware, you must remove these additional malicious files from the main Software folder. Since most malicious files are hidden in folders, you’ll need to unhide them first. To do this, click the View tab, expand the Show menu, and click Hidden Items.
Delete these files and run Microsoft Defender Scan again. After that, check the security history to see if the threat is still present. If the threat is present, you should use a third-party malware removal tool to remove the malware.
4. Use a Third-Party Virus Removal Tool
When manually deleting the key generator software and suspicious files from the key software fails to remove the virus, you should run a virus scan using a third-party virus removal tool. If you don’t already have one, download one from our list of the best antivirus software.
After that, install the software and let it complete a scan on your device and remove any suspicious files it finds. Upon completing a scan with a dedicated malware removal tool, your device should be malware-free.
What if the antivirus program fails to detect and remove malware, and malicious files remain hidden on your device? You should then remove the software that was activated with the key generator.
5. Remove the software itself
Antivirus will probably remove suspicious files, and you will get malicious crack or key.