Stealth install of Webroot software

About a month and a half ago I purchased a 1 year subscription for Prevx anti-malware software. This was installed along Trend Micro Titanium Security and Malwarebytes Anti-malware Pro. This computer is only used for finances and nothing else (I keep it updated and locked down pretty good). So let's just say I freaked out when I noticed some unknown software running on my laptop.

Lately I also noticed a little bit of slowdown during boot but didn't think much of it. Until this morning that is. I noticed a popup saying something about Webroot SecureAnywhere software running a scan. Webroot? I never purchased or installed your software. It appears Prevx was owned by Webroot and was recently integrated into Webroot software. That's all fine I don't care. Good for you I guess.
Do you guys have any idea how people react to some unknown software they never installed? The only people who do these creepy stealth installs are people writing malware hoping you'll stumble upon an infected website and infect your computer without even knowing. I have a problem with any company installing their software on my computer without any prompts or even a popup window. How hard is it to include a prompt asking if it's OK to update or not? I immediately uninstalled your software and requested a refund. What kind of company would do this crap? For the record after I removed your unwanted software my boot time has gone back to normal. Most likely because I already had Trend Micro software installed?
Am I the only only who thinks this is not OK? I paid for software and you removed it without asking me if that's OK or not? There is no way i would ever even consider using your products and now I'm off to post this as reviews for your software on Amazon and any other site I can.

38 replies

Userlevel 7
If you had registered your Prevx KC you should have received some emails about the upgrade to WSA.
I dont see how its a stealth install its an software upgrade. The Prevx 3 agent is out of date and wont be recieveing any updates so it updates to the latest version which is Secure Anywhere. Adobe reader will uninstall old versions of itself and update itself to the latest version. Same goes for Java and Java is a good example as it got bought by another company and it still updates.
I dont see how this is any difference. We as a company are doing our best to protect our customers by making sure they have the latest and best version. The prevx home page has said Powered by Webroot for well over a year and we have worked hand in hand with Prevx since they joined Webroot (I sit beside a number of ex-Prevx support staff)
We agree to disagree I guess. If I install some software like Adobe Reader I expect updates/upgrades to be done in the background, same with Google Chrome. It is all displayed on my screen. Trend Micro updates in the background or woks perfect. Internet Explorer updated itself to version 10 but it kept the name and layout (most of it).
I don't expect for either of them to suddenly without any warning change name and the UI with absolutely no traces of original software. Even if Chrome upgrades it will still be Chrome just a higher version. It will not change it's icon, name and UI overnight with absolutely no on-screen notice.
This was a stealth install as far as I know. Stealth installs are done by companies/individuals I don't want to deal with. I am still waiting for your tech support to respond. Anyone reading this I hope you will stay away from this company and if you really like the software go to and get SecureAnywhere Complete for 5 devices for $25 don't get ripped of by Webroot renewal prices (all antivirus companies do this).
Userlevel 7
Badge +55
I'm sorry but it is the same company since Nov 2010 and I have been using Prevx since 2004 and now IMO Webroot made it much more then Prevx could have ever been they kept the Cloud, Quick scans & Prevx 3 with SafeOnline is so outdated and does not support newer Browsers and it will be shut down at some point the reason for the conversion to WSA!
Userlevel 7
I think your being very unfair on both Prevx and Webroot. When Adobe reader went to version 11 its UI changed substantially. Firefox looks quite different now that it did a number of years ago. IE 10 looks completely different to IE8/9 (due to the move to the Metro interface). You mention
This upgrade wasnt done overnight, Prevx has been part of Webroot for 3 years and we have been moving people over to Secure Anywhere for the last few months. I still dont see the issue you got a free upgrade to a substantially better program and it was done automatically without requiring the user to do any messy cleanup using removal tools.Did you want Webroot to update you to Secure Anywhere and leave a broken copy of Prevx 3 on your PC?
I am sorry that you feel this way and its a shame to loose you as a customer. And if there is anything we can do to help please let us know.
Userlevel 7
Badge +55
To Quote JoeJ the V.P. of Devolpment March 12th, 2013 and he's the same developer of Prevx since 2006.
The upgrade of P3 to WSA is automatic - P3's autoupdater will check in and receive WSA as the update, then WSA will fully uninstall P3, import and convert its license key, and reapply it to WSA while enabling protection and performing the learning scan. You can technically disable auto-updates in P3 to prevent it from happening automatically, but over the course of the next few months, we will be closing down P3's backend and moving all users over to WSA, which provides far superior protection and a superset of functionality.

WSA is compatible with more AVs than P3 and is being actively maintained/updated, whereas P3 hasn't had a software release in almost three years.

Each license key is transitioned independently, but a single, multi-PC license will be given the same number of seats/days as your previous license. You will receive a WSA AV license for any P3 license, which includes all of the SafeOnline functionality (now Identity Shield) and a number of additional shields for added protection.

Online account management allows you to manage PCs centrally, similar to MyPrevx (but now called MyWebroot and with considerably more functionality).

I appreciate the concern with not wanting software to install new software, but the transition is overdue at this point and we need to move users onto a common, mutually beneficial platform where we can provide the best protection and stability.
Also a Thread about it here in the Community:
This company made unautorized changes to my computer. I have never seen a notice or a prompt asking me if it's OK to proceed with the update. I don't really care how you guys feel about this software because I have never been a Webroot customer nor I will ever be considering what happened. Webroot will not lose me as customer because I never purchased their software. They should have provided updates untill PrevX licenses expire. I did receive a reply from tech support and they did not even bother to read my request. So much for tech support. I have again requested a full refund. I simpy don't give a **bleep** how your software was rated by PC Mag. I want my money back. What is it so hard to understand?
If the next reply to my request is anything but a confirmation of my refund I will dispute the charge with my credit card company and will research other options about intrusion commited by Webroot.
I signed in after a week away from the forums to post. I am saying this as a long-time PrevX owner with knowledge of the history of how this all came about:

WSA is PrevX version 4. It's the product they were working on when Webroot acquired them. Webroot dropped their old product and started working to assist the PrevX team in completing the product under the Webroot banner. It's the same people, same product, same tech, same company, different graphics.

I can understand a shock if you haven't been paying attention, but after one Google search it's immediately apparent what happened and that you have a newer, incredibly improved version of the same product. This was not an acquisition by Webroot to fold PrevX users into their product line. Webroot bought PrevX to fold THEIR users into the PrevX product line. Webroot's customers are the one that ended up with an unfamiliar product, not PrevX owners. PrevX owners got what they've been asking for for years, and that ended up being under the Webroot banner.
Userlevel 7
@ wrote:
This company made unautorized changes to my computer.
No, sorry, that's not the case.  As Rakenisheu pointed out, that's a software update.  It's a given that when you download a cloud anti-virus program for which one of the top selling points is that it's always updated via the cloud that it will receive updates.  There have been emails notifying users of this update, updates to the main site, and the interface for upgrading PrevX users was even updated to have "PrevX" in the title bar to avoid any confusion.
So you're essentially upset because a graphic changed.  The actual engine of the program is still built on Prevx technology.  You're getting what amounts to 3 years worth of updates.  You're saying Webroot should have left PrevX users on a product that hasn't been updated in 3 years and presumably then just cut them off.  No, that would be much worse treatment than giving them a very deserved and well-overdue update.
I'm sure your refund request will be replied to.  Support actually did reply to your first message, and your second one was sent in at 10PM MST last night, so please give them a reasonable period in which to reply.  Thanks!
Userlevel 7
Badge +55
@  I have sent you a PM!
An honest company would stop sales of a product that's about to be discontinued. Why sell something that will not be available for 1 year? I paid for 1 year subscription for PrevX and now I can't get it. I never agreed to have my software 'updated'. I am still waiting for a reply from 'customer support'.
I hope Google will pick this thread up so more people know what to expect from this shady company 😞 If you want unauthorized changes on your computer get Webroot!
Userlevel 7
Badge +55
Well I'm sorry you feel that way really. You will be missing the great protection from Prevx Tech that I assume you liked? Nice and light, fast scanning, Cloud Based Anti-Malware just because it says Webroot SecureAnywhere it's 716kb download and uses 3 to 5MB of Ram. I'm sorry I really don't get it as I was a long time user of Prevx and now Webroot owns the Tech I still use it as my only fulltime AM. :(
With Regrets,
Userlevel 4
You're really starting to sound like a shill for a competing AV product. You've already been told THIS IS PREVX under a different name, Webroot. It's been updated to something far beyond what you had with Prevx, making it better in every way.
I don't feel you are grasping this fact. Webroot=Prevx.  Did I mention that Webroot IS Prevx now? Because it is. This is Prevx's new version, under the Webroot name. Webroot bought Prevx and is using their technology. Prevx is now Webroot. Webroot and Prevx are now one. They have merged. Webroot IS Prevx. Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, Prevx is owned by Webroot, who are using the Prevx engine under the Webroot name.
Not really sure how else to put it. Read that paragraph a few times and let it sink in. I'll wait...............
OK. Now, What you have there is a NEW IMPROVED version of Prevx, called Webroot Secure Anywhere! This is exciting because it's been a long time coming.
You cannot do better than this. There is nothing else out there like it. You haven't been swindled, or cheated, or had one pulled over on you. I wish you would stay with us. Although I am realitively new here, I have over 25 years experience in IT, as I do it for a living. And I can tell you that signature based AV solutions are a dinosaur. Webroot is way ahead of them. Oh and the cool thing is, Webroot is really Prevx! Prevx is Webroot. And it's amazing at what it can do.
Please stay with us. You won't be sorry.
Thank you Gorg for the entertaining post. 
At this point I really don't think there's anything left to say, BD. I'm sorry you are upset with the graphical change and that you did not get the outdated product you wanted. As an antivirus administrator for a large company, I recommended that we stick with Webroot directly because of their transition to PrevX code. In addition, I can assure you I have found them completely reputable in their product support and business dealings.
The forum administrators here work closely with support so I'm sure they will convey your urgent desire to find a solution.
Have a nice day everyone.
Userlevel 5
This is fairly standard practice in the software world. When products change owners branding changes. As stated before emails have gone out about the change, if you choose to not read them then you have no right to complain about the change. You should have spoken up about it before the change was made. Webroot has been nothing but helpful to PrevX's customers on the smooth update and other transitions.
Userlevel 7
Just couldn't agree more.
@ wrote:
This is fairly standard practice in the software world. When products change owners branding changes. As stated before emails have gone out about the change, if you choose to not read them then you have no right to complain about the change. You should have spoken up about it before the change was made. Webroot has been nothing but helpful to PrevX's customers on the smooth update and other transitions.
Userlevel 7
Johan, I second you.
BD, I cannot understand why you have unleashed so harsh campaign towards Webroot. Did Webroot inject any malicious code or malwares itself to your computer during upgrade from Prevx to WSA?  Did Webroot charge your credit card silently for the upgrade? OK you may hate Webroot but in this case I don't have a clue why you bought Prevx when there have been enough information that Prevx is Webroot and all Prevx customers will automatically be updated to the latest Webroot product.
BTW, your sentence "I hope Google will pick this thread up so more people know what to expect from this shady company" really smacks of slanders.
Webroot should have dicontinued sales of Prevx software if they were expecting this. Or at least show one pop up window with  a simple message explaining what's going on instead of simply pushing a silent upgrade. I while ago a had a bad experience and my computer was infected (no security software was installed).  Getting everything sorted out was a nightmare.
I purchased this laptop just to do work (other PC is gaming only). I'm sure some of you are aware there are lot of fake security programs that try to get money from you to 'clean' your PC. You guys have no idea how I felt when I saw unknown software running a scan on my computer where I do all of my banking etc. I know Webroot is not of them and it seems to be a real software company but at that time I did not know what's going on.
They are processing my refund. I thank you all for your replies however I still think there was a better way to do this. I remember when Microsoft purchased a company (I think it was called SuperGiant Anti Spyware) that was later the base of their Live One Care software and they never pushed a silent upgrade. This is something that Webroot should have done.
Userlevel 7
Badge +55
I'm not here to argue but Prevx in itself did silent updates unless you had another firewall or anti-exe then it would pop-up a window to let you know that Prevx has updated to the latest version so in this case WSA does the same as it updates in a flash sorry that you are leaving. 😞 One other thing is when was the last time you visited the Prevx website? I haven't checked for awhile but now it redirects to Webroot.
Yes these days most security software will update in the background and not show any messages. That's fine with me. Google Chrome will even upgrade in the background. But after it's done it will still be Google Chrome. My Trend Micro security software will do the same thing, the program version may change but it's still Trend Micro. See the difference? I don't find Webroot SecureAnywhere software interesting at all. To me it seems they are pushing their brand hoping it will become well known like Norton or other big boys. Not 100% positive but I think I removed Webroot Spysweeper  (I think that was the name, had horrible UI and was a system hog) from multiple computers because it was such a system hog it was unbelievable. You see I work as a cable guy and after I while I know what software needs to be uninstalled. McAfee is another example of a system hog. 
Again Webroot should have stopped sales for Prevx if they knew this was coming. I assure you there was no redirect when I purchased the software. If it was i would have never purchased it since I really don't care about Webroot or know much about them (or even willing to find out more). My last experience was helping people remove Spysweeper from their PCs.
This was simply wrong. My reviews will stay and I will not do any business with Webroot or any affiliated entity. I will also try my best to talk people out of giving this company any money.
Userlevel 7
@ wrote:
Yes these days most security software will update in the background and not show any messages. That's fine with me. Google Chrome will even upgrade in the background. But after it's done it will still be Google Chrome. My Trend Micro security software will do the same thing, the program version may change but it's still Trend Micro. See the difference?
Yes, the difference is the user interface and three years' worth of additional development (by the same Prevx developers no less) to make the program better.
Nevertheless, we're pleased to give you a refund because our intention is not ever to cause anyone to purchase something they don't want.
Userlevel 7
Feel I've got to say something here. I can easily understand a user getting an initial shock when their familiar P3 updated to an unfamiliar WSA, if they were unaware that Prevx had been bought-out by Webroot approx two and a half years ago. But to then come here, have the transition fully explained to them, including total reassurance from former Prevx users, and nevertheless continue such an illogically adverse campaign, is more than just overreaction...very strange indeed. And yet to say about Webroot "not know much about them (or even willing to find out more)"....How can something be criticised from that viewpoint? Very strange. I was a very happy Prevx user, from about 4 years ago, and when I heard they had been taken over by Webroot, I was initially a bit sceptical, and a little worried that the software I really felt happy with would inevitably change, perhaps for the worst. But when I ran the first few betas of WSA I just knew from the feel of it that this was P4 in all its glory (with JJ's wonderful touches), and it continues to improve to this day. Rock on WSA!! The better you get, the more people will try (and fail) to pull you down. Dermot
Userlevel 4
From his last response, he's a lost cause. Glad he got his money back.
The man has taken up a crusade against Webroot. He's too far gone. Completely blinded by whatever rage he's built up in his mind.
As I recall, more than a year ago there was a lively debate on the Wilders Security Prevx support forum about both of the points that the OP has raised, namely:
  1. there should be a warning pop-up window when transitioning from Prevx to WSA
  2. sales of Prevx should have been discontinued after it was purchased by Webroot
Joe Jaroch, the chief Prevx/WSA programmer (PrevxHelp on the Forum), had convincing answers to both these points.
On the first point, if I recall correctly he said that Prevx was designed in such a way that it was impossible to provide a pop-up window. A pity, given Webroot’s purchase of Prevx and the subsequent change of user interface and brand name, but that is how it was.
On the second point, he pointed out that Prevx’s first priority was to its existing customers. If they discovered that sales of Prevx had been discontinued, this would have created totally unnecessary FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt). When the autoupdate coding was finished, they would be automatically transitioned over to Prevx4 (now rebranded as WSA). It was believed that this would take a maximum of three months. No-one, least of all Joe, foresaw the complications that would be involved in the coding, and therefore the considerable delay.
Regarding informing customers, as the vast majority of them had registered their keycode online (MyPrevx), there would be no problem for them as they would be informed by email. As for the small minority who hadn’t, they would have an onscreen explanation when the programme had autoupdated.
I may have remembered some of this incorrectly, and if so I invite other posters to correct me. Also, here is one of the many Wilders threads on this subject which I have managed to find.
Given all the reassurances that we Prevx users have given the OP that WSA is Prevx4, I am as nonplussed as everyone else as to why the OP continues to adopt such a strident tone. Strange! But that's life...
Userlevel 7
Great post Muddy.  I am not one of the old Prevx users, so I didn't have all that background.  Thank you for all the good information regarding the migration!


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