By | October 18, 2010 | 18 Comments

ThinkPoint is a malicious computer security tool that is being promoted via fake Microsoft Security Essentials Alert. Previously, this alert is endorsing only five (5) programs. Recently, it included Think Point as an addition to the family. To get users attention, this unwanted program will pop-up a security window and scans viruses on itself instead of your legally installed AV program. After that, several dozens of Trojans, viruses and spyware will be displayed attempting to scare computer users. This is an attempt to persuade user into obtaining the registered version of ThinkPoint Antivirus.

You must be aware that ThinkPoint full version is not the solution if it starts to bug your PC. As a matter of fact, you need to remove this malware from the computer. However, most users are having difficulty in getting rid of this virus. It is because rootkit is applied with it. With this technique, malware remains concealed on the system. Thus, most antivirus program will not be able to see it.

To get rid of annoyances brought about by this fake antivirus software, you must first remove the rootkit that dropped ThinkPoint. There are several anti-rootkit tools you can use; one is already posted in our removal procedure. Next, you need to uninstall ThinkPoint malware. Only an effective anti-malware program can detect and remove compromised files from the computer. If it is a system file, valid tool and totally cleans it and bring it back to its previous normal working state. Just follow the removal procedure stated below and remove ThinkPoint fully.

Type Rogue
Sub-Type FakeAV
OS Affected Windows

What are the Symptoms of ThinkPoint Infection?

Image of ThinkPoint

It will modify Windows Registry and add the following entries:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon “Shell” = “%Documents and Settings%\[UserName]\Application Data\hotfix.exe”
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run “tmp”
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce “SelfdelNT”
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon “Shell” = “%UserProfile%\Application Data\thinkpoint.exe”

The threat will drop the following malicious files:
%UserProfile%\Application Data\hotfix.exe
%UserProfile%\Application Data\thinkpoint.exe
%UserProfile%\Application Data\tmp.exe
%UserProfile%\Application Data\thinkpoint.exe
%UserProfile%\Local Settings\Temp\[random]

Follow these Procedures to Remove ThinkPoint

Procedure 1: Scan Computer in Safe Mode Using Installed Anti-virus Program

1. First, we will try to remove ThinkPoint by running a virus scan under Safe Mode with Networking. To perform this task, please complete these procedures.

Start in Safe Mode with Networking (Windows XP/Vista/7 Instruction)

- Please restart the computer and just before Windows start, press F8 on your keyboard repeatedly. You will be presented with Advanced Options Menu.
- From the selections, choose Safe Mode with Networking. Please use keyboard's arrow up/down to navigate between selections and press Enter to proceed.


Start Windows 8 in Safe Mode with Networking

- Please restart the computer and as soon as it begins to start, please press Shift+F8 keys.
- Instead of seeing Advance Boot Options, Windows 8 will display Recovery Mode. Continue with the given steps until you reach Safe Mode function.
- Click on 'See advanced repair options'.


- Then, click on Troubleshoot.
- Next, please select Advanced options.
- On the next window, please choose Windows Startup Settings.
- Lastly, click on Restart button. Windows 8 will now restart and boot into Advanced Boot Option wherein you can run the system in Safe Mode with Networking.


2. Open your installed anti-virus programs and update it to the most recent version by automatically downloading necessary updates.

3. Thoroughly scan the computer and remove all identified threats. Do not restart or turn off the computer after the scan process. You still need to run another scan. Please follow the next procedure.

Procedure 2: Scan and remove ThinkPoint files with MalwareBytes Anti-Malware

To remove ThinkPoint, download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware by clicking on the button below. This tool is effective in getting rid of Trojans, viruses and malware.

Download ThinkPoint Removal Tool

1. Save the file on your hard drive or any accessible location.
2. Install the program after downloading. Setup with default configuration, there is no need to change anything.
3. Before the installation completes, please put a check mark on "download update."
4. It will launch on itself after installation. The tool will also initiate an update and will require connection to its server.
5. Thoroughly scan the computer and remove all threats detected by this anti-malware program. If it requires you to reboot Windows, please proceed.

Procedure 3: Run Another Scan Using RogueKiller

1. Click the button below to Download the program RogueKiller. This tool is effective in finding malware components left inside your computer.

RogueKiller Download

2. After downloading the file, double-click on it to run the program.

Note: When using Internet Explorer 8 or 9, SmartScreen Filter will alert you that the file is "not commonly downloaded and could harm your computer." To proceed, please click on Actions. Select Run anyway from SmartScreen Filter pop-up.

3. During the first time of launching the software, it will run a scan check the computer for presence of threats. Let the scan to finish.

4. Click on the Scan button on right side of the console. See image below for reference. Be sure that you have check mark on MBR Scan, Check Faked, and AntiRootkit. RogueKiller will scan the computer for infected registry entries, driver, and files.

5. After scanning, the tool will display a list of identified threats. Please look at all the tabs to view infected components associated with ThinkPoint and other threats.

RogueKiller Scanner

6. Select infected items and make sure that it has a check mark. Usually, the program will select all malicious items.

7. Click Delete on the Options area to remove selected items. Do the same on all tabs that contains infected elements.

8. Please restart Windows.

Troubleshooting Guides

Removing ThinkPoint from an infected PC may not resolve all issues. Most of the time, there are inconsistencies left by the malware like disabled Internet connection, hidden files and folders, and missing shortcut icons. You may solve these errors by performing the following steps.

Fix and Restore Internet Connection After ThinkPoint Infection

1. Please run RogueKiller once more.

2. Go to Options and click on the following buttons one at a time:

  • Host Fix - The tool will restore the original Windows Hosts file.
  • Proxy Fix - It will remove proxy settings on your Internet browser that was configured by the malware.
  • DNS Fix - Clicking on this button will reverse changes made by the rogue program on your DNS Settings.

Internet Fix

3. You may now restart the computer.

Steps to Restore Shortcut Links and Start Menu Icons

During the presence of ThinkPoint, it will perform some changes on the registry that will result to missing shortcut links and Start menu icons. The following steps will help you restore these settings back to normal.

1. Open RogueKiller once again. We will use this tool to restore missing items in your Start menu and desktop.

2. Go to Options and click on the ShortcutsFix button. This will restore missing shortcut links and Start Menu icons. The scan would take a few minutes.

RogueKiller Shortcut Fix Button

Run Windows Repair Tool

After removing ThinkPoint from your computer, the next move is to fix any damages caused by the infection. Most anti-virus programs are not designed to fix issues and errors initiated by ThinkPoint. This tool can do many things like repairing of modified winsock, hosts file, proxy, and file associations.

1. Download the program Windows Repair (All-In-One). This is a free tool. Download page will open on a new window.

Windows Repair

2. Once downloaded, double-click on the file to launch the program.
3. When the program is running, please select Start Repairs tab. Then, click on Start button to see a list of repair options.

Start Repair

4. Windows Repair comes with pre-selected options. These are the common functions being affected by viruses and malware like ThinkPoint.
5. Click to Start to begin the troubleshooting procedure.

Windows Repair

6. Once the repair has finished, the program may prompt you to restart Windows, please reboot the computer.

Protect your PC from ThinkPoint or Similar Attack

Turn On Security Features of your Internet Browser

Internet Explorer - Activate SmartScreen Filter

Internet Explorer versions 8 and 9 has this feature called SmartScreen Filter. It helps detect phishing web sites and protect you from downloading malicious files online. You may have avoided ThinkPoint virus if this has been active on your PC. To turn on SmartScreen Filter, follow these steps:

1. Please open Internet Explorer.
2. On top menu, select Tools (IE 9). For IE 8, please look for Safety menu.
3. Select SmartScreen Filter from the drop-down list and click on Turn on SmartScreen Filter.

IE SmartScreen Filter

4. Please restart Internet Explorer.

SEE MORE : Comprehensive steps to activate SmartScreen Filter

Google Chrome's Enable Phishing and Malware Protection

With Google Chrome's Phishing and Malware Detection feature, you will have lesser risks browsing the web. It will display a warning when the site you are trying to visit is suspicious. To enable Phishing and Malware Protection, please do these steps:

1. Open Google Chrome.
2. Click on the Customize and control Google Chrome (3-Bars Icon) located on top right corner of the browser.
3. Select Settings from the drop-down list.
4. Once on the settings page, click on Show advanced settings... at the bottom of the page to see the rest of the Chrome setup.
5. Locate Privacy section and mark 'Enable phishing and malware protection'.

Chrome Security Settings

6. Please restart Google Chrome. New settings keep your browser safe while surfing the web.

SEE MORE : Enable Phishing and Malware Protection on Google Chrome

Mozilla Firefox - Block Attack Sites and Web Forgeries

Phishing and Malware Protection is a built-in feature on Firefox version 3 or later. It warns you when a page you are trying to visit contains phishing content or an attack site designed to drop threats on the computer. To help you keep safe while browsing the Internet using Firefox, please follow this guide:

1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
2. On top menu, click on Tools. Then select Options from the list.
3. Select Security and put a check mark on the following items:

  • Warn me when sites try to install add-ons
  • Block reported attack sites
  • Block reported web forgeries

Firefox Security Settings

18 thoughts on “ThinkPoint

  1. Rosa

    I did all this things and are already removed with malwarebytes and ad-aware,and I don´t have internet and tried with task manager and iexplorer.exe says don´t find it and explorer.exe is the malware-aware…the network connections have disappear, what can I do?

  2. kerrie

    It won’t let me into Task Manager and I don’t have the task bar so I cannot get into Start-Run to even clean the registry. I am at a loss. Guess I’ll have to restore. Does anyone have any other ideas.


    don’t worry ,
    think point is a virus that is fully fraud and show world leading security on a blue screen with two mode due to which u unable the any program so please relax and follow these step confidentally ,….
    1> restart your computer.
    2>press f 8 again and again now u have a black screen with many attributes
    3>select command prompt with the help ur keyboard then enter
    now u on the command prompt
    4>type c:
    5>type attrib for see your c attributes
    6>attrib -r -h -s hotfix.exe enter
    7>delete hotfix.exe enter

    hotfix.exe is a file in your c documents and settings\ application search in c manually that is a virus
    if these 7 step doest work then
    >>>>write control on command prompt>now u have desktop screen and control panel go in my computer /c documents and settings /applications or may be any name and delete hotfix.exe
    then restart your PC and press f 8 open window in normal mode scan with antivirus and enjoy
    please if this work properly then mail me at

  4. chris

    i tried to open task manager to get to the Internet but it is not there, what do i do?

  5. Emily

    I’ve got some serious weirdness going on with this. I managed to figure out the hotfix.exe removal but the think point logo keeps popping up every two days or so, but unlike the normal warnings that pop up, everything is fully functional, task manager, firefox etc. Oh yeah, Malwarebytes really didn’t work. I ran it and told it to kill everything, but I’m still stuck with thinkpoint.

  6. Sem

    I’ve tried over and over again to delete this virus. Only now when I start-up my PC and press f8. It just doesn’t work, I get an empty black screen with nothing in it. Have no idea what to do. (the other options like f10 f11 still work though)

  7. ibrahim

    I use all the first steps but it did not pan out
    Actually THINK POINT disables task manager and Internet Explorer and regedit
    so you cannot use DEL+ALT+DELET niether Ctrl+SHIFT+Esc

    but to now or to find a way to kill the hotfix process use tool named HajackThis and after running click on “Open the Misc Tools section”
    after then choose
    open process manager
    find hotfix
    kill the process
    every thing will be fine.

  8. Wendy Shores

    I have followed the procedure outlined here and am fine up until you say to
    3. Remove Registry entries that the threat added. You MUST BACKUP YOUR REGISTRY FIRST.
    – Click Start > Run
    – Type in the field, regedit
    – Navigate and look for the registry entries mentioned above and delete if necessary
    I can not do this as there IS no run button once I stop the hotfix.exe. there is nothing except a black screen with safe mode in all 4 corners. What should I do?

  9. handy

    Thankyou very much, it’s work with automatic removal way.

  10. deewakar chaudhary

    I have click think point but my system will not started & no show Internet & please tell me what I do?

  11. Dakota Cardillo

    hey I did everything here and I even deleted the hotfix.exe and ran malwarebytes afterwards. However, I still don’t have an Internet connection. I restarted my computer many times and used the troubleshooter constantly, but still nothing.
    I have Windows 7 64bit on a Toshiba satellite laptop.
    I have deleted the virus but its effects still seem to linger.

  12. Dakota Cardillo

    Hh and it says that i have an excellent connection but when i open up IE it says that it cant connect. i tried other browsers like Chrome and Firefox but still same result.

  13. Mark


    After you kill the hotfix.exe from the task manager, be sure to go to File>New Task(Run…) and type explorer.exe.

    This will get you back into Windows to be able to get to the registry.

  14. joel

    Hi I have done the first two part but the 3rd part is the problem now, the ‘RUN’ ain’t showing up so the page is just black with SAFE mode written on the 4 corners of the page

  15. Renee

    someone has installed thinkpoint I cant do anything all I get is the buy page I cant ctrl alt delet or ctrl shift esc no menu just the pay page how do I get rid of this with paying someone to do so for a arm and a leg

  16. Slyxxy

    Thanks a million for helping me solve my worst nightmare. Thinkpoint is so proud a virus…. I appreciate….. Kisses 2 all of you.

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