Good advise @kemical However I don't call him a tech. I call him a scum bag hacker that is to lazy to work and uses the internet to make a living and fleecing honest hard working people. I called our front desk here at my retirement village and had them put out a alert about this.
Thank you again Gwen!
I am so sorry to hear you had this experience and wanted to send my sincerest apologies that this happened to you.. Unfortunately there are many companies misrepresenting themselves as Antivirus companies even though they are not and they are using actual viruses and rogues to direct purchases to our product without our knowledge or consent. We constantly monitor our brand to ensure that our products are not being marketed in a deceitful way. Stopzilla is located entirely in the US (Boca Raton, Florida to be exact). All of our employees are located in the US, and this includes our customer service agents. If you have called a phone number and received what sounds like an outsourced call center, odds are it's not a legitimate call center. It is awful that these companies are using scareware tactics to try to scam people into buying products that they don't need. I just wanted to assure you that this is not how Stopzilla works and I'm very sorry that they tried to sell you our software in this way.
You really have to be on your guard, I never respond to things that say I need to do this or that, that pop up on my screen.
If I get a message that says you need to install this update for some software or have a security issue with something, I close the message (if it won't close I shut down my computer), then I manually go to the real website for the software manufacturer and see if they really do have an update for me.
I have a friend who is the school superintendent of a local school system.
They got their whole system held hostage because someone there let some guy get into their computer system who said he was from Microsoft and that they had a security issue that he needed to fix.
They actually had to pay several thousand dollars to get there data freed up, because they had no backups.
They do now, and they won't ever do that again.
This is another reason that everyone should have an up to date System Image File!!! and external storage with backups of all their important data.
I've actually seen this scam a lot lately, on 4 computers belonging to friends, 2 of them called the number (including my sister in law and my friend who is in his eighties) and when they wouldn't agree to pay the fee to repair the guy froze their browser and hung up on them.
Neither of them was a hard fix, only took me a few minutes, but they learned the lesson, never call an number from something like this and Never give them access to your computer.
You are certainly getting a lot of attention and good advise from our volunteers on what to do, that you're ok now, and what not to do next time. I especially would suggest you re-read Mike's Post #25 as it says almost everything I would have said if I'd gotten to your post before him.
One thing I'll add is that my wife just got this same exact Edge browser virus yesterday, and she got it by clicking on something via her facebook account. This virus and variants of it have been around for about 2 years now. Last year, my wife got the same one, again by clicking on some website she was unfamiliar with, and that time; I had 2 other Clients that got the same one the same day my wife did, but it took them 2-3 days to call me about it. Most people are embarrassed when they get something like this as it's mostly due to "Human Error", and the "Human" in this case was my wife, or you! So, they take a couple of days to try the common fixes, like turning off the computer (even though it tells you not to!), unplugging all your cables, turning your US Flag upside down, etc. Then you come to a forum like this filled with computer experts that tell you what you did wrong along with some good suggestions at fixing.
So, I just wanted to add that this is not unusual, and it is going around as of this past weekend. Facebook gets lots of these scareware viruses, and in some cases we get actual Ransomware try to lock up my Computer. I have multiple-layers of protection on my computers that the average home user doesn't have, as well as multiple backups, so I'm not as vulnerable as someone like you is to this type of attack.
I'm also involved with reporting these viruses to FBI, Homeland Security, antivirus manufacturers, etc. What hasn't been mentioned here in regards to prevention is that if this whole incident was upsetting to you and you wish to do something about it, it needs to get reported so the proper Government agencies and antivirus software makers can remedy it in the future and catch and prosecute the people perpetrating these viruses. Here's the website you need to report it: Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) | File a Complaint
This is a legit government agency, and if you are at all uncertain about clicking the link, I suggest you call the FBI or Homeland Security directly and verify the legitimacy of this site and link. Both of these phone numbers are usually listed in your Phone Book under "Government Offices". Ask for the CyberCrime division.
Recovering from a virus attack and repairing any damage is one thing, but prevention goes further than just downloading a better antivirus program on your computer, or realizing that you shouldn't be clicking on sites you are not familiar with.