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ThinkSmart Information
Type: Spyware
Analysis: Installs & gathers info from a PC without user permission.
Infection: By downloading freeware & shareware.
Symptoms: Changes PC settings, excessive popups & slow PC performance.
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ThinkSmart is a rogue anti-spyware program that appeared in November 2010. It is a direct clone of ThinkPoint, and, like ThinkPoint, ThinkSmart is based on the Hotfix virus. ThinkSmart and its family members are especially pernicious examples of rogue anti-spyware applications, and they will go to extreme lengths to make sure you think you have no control over your computer.

The root of the whole problem with ThinkSmart is an infection with a Trojan, which reportedly can exploit weaknesses in Java, and which is known to be disguised in fake video codecs or browser extensions. Although it is possible to wind up with a ThinkSmart infection by intentionally going to a website which you think offers actual software but which actually is malicious, most people do not decide to download the rogue anti-spyware and are surprised to find it on their computer.

Stages of the Infection

The ThinkSmart infection begins with a screen that mimics the appearance of Microsoft Security Essentials. This screen will pop up and say that a virus has been found on the computer, and in order to delete all components of the virus, the system needs to be restarted. If you believe this and restart, the next thing that happens is that ThinkSmart takes over. Windows will not load normally, and you will not see the desktop or the taskbar, but just a ThinkSmart "scanner" window that claims that your computer still has serious problems.

The ThinkSmart pop-up will provide a list of the "threats" it has been unable to remove, many or all of which are actually harmless Windows components. Then ThinkSmart will tell you that the reason these things haven't been removed is that it is missing the proper, updated "module," which you can only get by paying for and registering the application. The problem is, there is no registered or full version of ThinkSmart, since ThinkSmart is the disease, not the cure. Under no circumstances should you pay for ThinkSmart, because it is a scam.

ThinkSmart Holds Computer Hostage

From the point that the ThinkSmart "scanner" window pops up at startup, it will hold your system hostage. ThinkSmart will prevent you from running any other programs, even Task Manager, and so it cannot be dealt with in Windows running in its regular mode. ThinkSmart will try to get you to panic by showing an increasing number of fake pop-up warnings over time, and the warnings will claim things as outlandish as that your computer is presently under attack from a hacker. At this point, don't forget that you can't believe anything ThinkSmart tells you. It is all a bunch of scare tactics to try to think you are helpless and pay up.

The goal of the ThinkSmart rogue anti-spyware application is to make you feel helpless, frustrated, and scared. Remember that you do have options, and ThinkSmart can be removed.

To check your computer for ThinkSmart, download SpyHunter Spyware Detection Tool.

SpyHunter spyware detection tool is only a scanner meant to assist you in detecting ThinkSmart and other threats. If you detect the presence of ThinkSmart on your PC, you have the opportunity to purchase the SpyHunter removal tool to remove any traces of ThinkSmart.


Detection of ThinkSmart (Recommended)

ThinkSmart is difficult to detect and remove. ThinkSmart is not likely to be removed through a convenient "uninstall" feature. ThinkSmart, as well as other spyware, can re-install itself even after it appears to have been removed.

You also run the risk of damaging your computer since you're required to find and delete sensitive files in your system such as DLL files and registry keys. It is recommended you use a good spyware remover to remove ThinkSmart and other spyware, adware, trojans and viruses on your computer.

Run a ThinkSmart scan/check to successfully detect all ThinkSmart files with the SpyHunter Spyware Detection Tool. If you wish to remove ThinkSmart, you can either purchase the SpyHunter spyware removal tool to remove ThinkSmart or follow the ThinkSmart manual removal method provided in the "Remedies and Prevention" section.

Method of Infection

There are many ways your computer could get infected with ThinkSmart. ThinkSmart can come bundled with shareware or other downloadable software.

Another method of distributing ThinkSmart involves tricking you by displaying deceptive pop-up ads that may appear as regular Windows notifications with links which look like buttons reading Yes and No. No matter which "button" that you click on, a download starts, installing ThinkSmart on your system. ThinkSmart installs on your computer through a trojan and may infect your system without your knowledge or consent.

If you think you may already be infected with ThinkSmart, use this SpyHunter Spyware dectection tool to detect ThinkSmart and other common Spyware infections. After detection of ThinkSmart, the next advised step is to remove ThinkSmart with the purchase of the SpyHunter Spyware removal tool.


ThinkSmart may attempt to change your computer's desktop, hijack your browser, monitor your Internet browsing activities, change system files, and can do this without your knowledge or permission. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to remove all traces of ThinkSmart from your computer.

Remedies and Prevention

ThinkSmart, as well as other Spyware, are constantly evolving and becoming more advanced to avoid detection. ThinkSmart along with its variants can install in different locations and even when you try to uninstall it you find they reappear when you reboot your computer.

Install a good anti-spyware software

When there's a large number of traces of Spyware, for example ThinkSmart, that have infected a computer, the only remedy may be to automatically run a Spyware scan from a good anti-spyware software designed to detect ThinkSmart and other types of spyware.

Remove ThinkSmart manually

Another method to remove ThinkSmart is to manually delete ThinkSmart files in your system. Detect and remove the following ThinkSmart files:


  • %UserProfile%\Application Data\hotfix.exe
  • %LocAppData%\defender.exe

Other Files

  • %UserProfile%\Application Data\completescan
  • %UserProfile%\Application Data\install
  • %TempDir%\kjkkklklj.bat

Registry Keys

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon "Shell" = "%Documents and Settings%\[UserName]\Application Data\hotfix.exe"
  • HKCU\Software\PAV
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon "Shell" = "%LocAppData%\antispy.exe"
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce "SelfdelNT"
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings "WarnOnPostRedirect" = "0"
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run "thinksmart"
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run "tmp"
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings "WarnonBadCertRecving" = "0"

External links

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The readers of this article should not mistake, confuse or associate this article to be an advertisement or a promotion of ThinkSmart in any way. The content provided on this website is intended for educational or informational purposes and is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.