Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Personally I have computer skills that are higher than the average computer user, so when I use the computer safely, I don't get many viruses and such, but that doesn't matter much when I share my computer with one who don't know ANYTHING about security...

So we're using Win8, and I use an admin account. And the other person using this computer has a regular account. I've also made a white list of programs the user can use with the built-in parental controls of Windows.

The problem is that the other person using this machine gave someone who is very competent on computers the TeamViewer ID and password. (On the regular account, not my admin account.) And then she turned off the monitor and left the room, so we have no clue as to what this guy has been doing on our computer. His reason for being inside was that he was going to upgrade something on the Minecraft server running on the machine.

But I'm thinking, since the parental white list should be pretty well tested, and the standard user shouldn't be able to do anything that affects the other users of the computer, I should be safe. But then again, I've white listed Java, and it can do harm if he decided to attack via Java...

So I don't want to format the computer, really because it literally takes one whole day sitting there from I get up till I go to bed again...

Am I safe, or should I format it completely?

What steps should I do to ensure that all is safe and secure?

share|improve this question

closed as not constructive by Xavierjazz, Dave M, Scott, Brad Patton, 8088 Apr 11 '13 at 1:15

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

What makes you think that he would have done something malicious? Is the computer behaving strangely? – ChrisF Apr 10 '13 at 20:07
As a techie I can confirm that literally every time I have access to another person's computer I install at least 4 forms of malware, steal one piece of hardware and 2 forms of identifying information – Ben Brocka Apr 10 '13 at 20:14
@ChrisF It's just that I don't know the guy and I'm fearing that he wants to "show of his skills" in a manner that isn't good for me... I'm not saying it is infected by anything, but some people can't resist installing a keylogger or similar if they have the chance, you can only know if you know the person. – Student of Hogwarts Apr 10 '13 at 20:14
@BenBrocka I hope that was sarcasm, but anyway, is it even possible to do anything harmful when the user is standard and has a white list of allowed programs? – Student of Hogwarts Apr 10 '13 at 20:15
@StudentofHogwarts Did you change the Teamviewer password yet? I would. – Carl B Apr 10 '13 at 21:18

It would be hard to install malicious software while logged in as a regular user, so on that score you can assume that he hasn't done anything untoward. I suppose he could download an installer and then somehow get you to run it as administrator, but you don't seem the sort of person that would run something without checking what it was first.

Also you have to ask yourself what benefit would there be for him in doing something malicious on your machine.

Formatting the machine would certainly remove any malicious software, but it seems to be overkill in this situation. If you are at all concerned that he might try to gain access later without your knowledge or authorisation then change the password on the user account.

share|improve this answer
Like ChrisF, I would just change passwords and run basic malware detection tools. If you're really worried, pull the primary hard disk and slave it to another computer and running malware detection tools against it. This should ferret out any rootkits or other hidden apps. Then just reconnect it to the computer and continue on your merry computing way. – music2myear Apr 10 '13 at 21:22

If a person direly wanted to install malware on your machine they wouldn't even need to boot into one of the onboard users, all they would need is a flash drive or a CD.

If you feel is necessary to format and reinstall, then go right ahead.

share|improve this answer
It's hard to use a flash drive or CD when they're not physically at the machine though. – ChrisF Apr 10 '13 at 21:23
Sorry the line; And then she turned off the monitor and left the room, made me think they did. – user88311 Apr 10 '13 at 21:25

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .