How to remove the WindowsDefender virus

Most antivirus programs identify WindowsDefender.exe as malware—e.g. McAfee identifies it as Artemis!8AC0CC33DDC9, and Symantec identifies it as Trojan.Coinbitminer or Trojan.Gen.

The free file information forum can help you find out how to remove it. If you have additional information about this file, please leave a comment or a suggestion for other users.

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WindowsDefender.exe file information

The process known as Critical System Services or ICQ appears to belong to software ICQ or HrgfeyR hjerhjyuRjf eJRHbfJE by Microsoft ( or HEWGBhyj HJERe or ICQ (

Description: WindowsDefender.exe is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. The WindowsDefender.exe file is located in a subfolder of C:\Windows. The file size on Windows 10/8/7/XP is 515,584 bytes. 
WindowsDefender.exe is an unknown file in the Windows folder. The program is not visible. WindowsDefender.exe is not a Windows core file. Therefore the technical security rating is 100% dangerous.

Recommended: Identify WindowsDefender.exe related errors

If WindowsDefender.exe is located in a subfolder of the user's "Documents" folder, the security rating is 42% dangerous. The file size is 46,080 bytes. The program is not visible. WindowsDefender.exe is not a Windows system file. WindowsDefender.exe appears to be a compressed file.

If WindowsDefender.exe is located in a subfolder of C:\Windows\System32, the security rating is 80% dangerous. The file size is 462,885 bytes. There is no file information. The WindowsDefender.exe file is an unknown file in the Windows folder. The program has no visible window. The program starts when Windows starts (see Registry key: MACHINE\Run, Run). WindowsDefender.exe is not a Windows core file.

Important: You should check the WindowsDefender.exe process on your PC to see if it is a threat. We recommend Security Task Manager for verifying your computer's security. This was one of the Top Download Picks of The Washington Post and PC World.


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Best practices for resolving WindowsDefender issues

The following programs have also been shown useful for a deeper analysis: Security Task Manager examines the active WindowsDefender process on your computer and clearly tells you what it is doing. Malwarebytes' well-known anti-malware tool tells you if the WindowsDefender.exe on your computer displays annoying ads, slowing it down. This type of unwanted adware program is not considered by some antivirus software to be a virus and is therefore not marked for cleanup.

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding PC trouble. This means running a scan for malware, cleaning your hard drive using cleanmgr and sfc /scannow, uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using msconfig) and enabling Windows' Automatic Update. Always remember to perform periodic backups, or at least to set restore points.

Should you experience an actual problem, try to recall the last thing you did, or the last thing you installed before the problem appeared for the first time. Use the resmon command to identify the processes that are causing your problem. Even for serious problems, rather than reinstalling Windows, you are better off repairing of your installation or, for Windows 8 and later versions, executing the DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.

Other processes

WindowsDefender.exe [all]