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Danger level 8
Type: Malware
Common infection symptoms:
  • Installs itself without permissions
  • Can't be uninstalled via Control Panel


FakeMsMessage is a malicious piece of software that can be identified as ransomware. This infection is very weak, and it seems that its creators did not do a good job at turning it into a functioning ransomware. Although this program might ask for a ransom, it does not actually motivate users to pay it. Such well known ransomware infections as Chimera Ransomware or Cryptolocker encrypt personal files to have leverage. FakeMsMessage, on the other hand, simply disables explorer.exe to create an illusion that your operating system has been paralyzed. Continue reading to learn more about this, as well as the removal of FakeMsMessage.

There is no doubt that FakeMsMessage is very primitive. Even if you believe that your operating system has failed, a pop-up that is meant to represent the ransom is unlikely to show up. According to our researchers, popup.exe cannot be downloaded because its server is currently down. If this file fails to download, you are not introduced to the ransom, and the disabled UI (user interface) serves no purpose. If the file was downloaded onto your PC, you might be introduced to a fake message indicating fake Windows errors, and most users will recognize this as part of a scam associated with malware that requires removal. Of course, deleting FakeMsMessage is not very easy if you do not know how this threat works.

It was found that, once installed, FakeMsMessage kills explorer.exe and the processes of all browsers to create an illusion that your operating system is undergoing some crisis. Simultaneously, FakeMsMessage launches CMD to show fake error warnings to make you believe that the situation is serious. This is something that can fool many users; however, since popup.exe cannot be downloaded, all that you are likely to encounter is a recommendation to install necessary Windows updates. Of course, you do not need any updates to remove FakeMsMessage from your operating system. In fact, Windows updates have nothing to do with this.

According to our research, popup.exe is not the only file that FakeMsMessage uses and that deserves removal. WinoneBat.bat is a batch file that might be followed by WinoneApp.exe or WinKavApp.exe, depending on the folder installed under %appdata%\local\ (Winone or WinKav). If you delete these files, the infection will be eliminated completely, and our main goal is to help you remove them successfully. First, you need to restore explorer, which you can do by launching the Task Manager and adding explorer to the task list. Follow the guide below if you want to see the removal process broken down into little steps.

The removal of FakeMsMessage might be tricky, but it is not complicated, and you do not need experience or skills to be successful. Unfortunately, once you delete FakeMsMessage, you might have to worry about the removal of other threats. Malicious programs rarely travel one at a time, and it is more common to see clusters, or bundles. An automated malware removal tool can help you identify, remove, and keep away malware in the future, which is why we recommend installing it as soon as possible.

FakeMsMessage Removal

  1. Simultaneously tap Ctrl+Alt+Delete.
  2. In Task Manager move to the Processes menu.
  3. Kill popup.exe if it is active.
  4. Click the Applications tab.
  5. Click New Task, enter explorer, and click OK.
  6. Tap Win+E to launch Windows Explorer.
  7. Move to %appdata%\local\.
  8. Right-click and Delete the malicious folders.
  9. Scan your PC.
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