Viruses, Trojans, Malware and ... Keyboards? A cautionary Tale

Feb 22, 2018
Hello all, this isnt a question but rather an experience I wanted to share.

So for the past few days my Chrome browser seemed to be hijacked. Randomly it would open a new browser window and go to my default homepage. Sometimes it would open one window, sometimes multiple, up to 10 or so. Very annoying. I took to the internet to find a solution. I used nearly a dozen various anti-virus and malware removal programs suggested by the community, spent hours letting them scan. No results. I reset my browser, cleared my cache, cookies, all that stuff. Nothing. Still, seemingly randomly Chrome would pop open new browser windows to my increasing frustration. My room was filled with a veritable cloud of e-cig vapor as I kept puffing away like a chain smoker trying to calm my nerves. Finally, broken, I had had enough. I needed a shower and to contemplate my last two choices in failure. I could first try uninstalling/reinstalling Chrome and if that failed, I would have to shamefully format my PC and reinstall windows. Both unappealing options to me. I stood up and shoved my keyboard tray into the desk. Chrome popped up a new browser window.

Then, it hit me. Slowly I sat back down. I shook my keyboard. 5 or 6 windows popped up. I shook it some more, more windows. Holeee Sheeet. I peered down at my keyboard paying attention to the seldom used buttons on it. Multimedia buttons, My Computer button, and, yes.. a little button with a little house on it. Tentatively I pushed that button. Chrome said hello. I reached down, pinched that button and ripped its dirty little molded shell out of my keyboard. No more Chrome pop ups, hurray!

Not sure what caused that button to have such a touchy connection, but it's fixed now. No Virus. No Trojan. Just bad hardware. I am not exactly sure what lessons can be learned from my tale, but I am just glad the nightmare is over.