I’m using a Windows 10 desktop PC and today I’ve experienced some noticeable slowdown and occasionally the icons on the taskbar flickered.

My printer has something called the Brother Status Monitor, which appears in the system tray. It would repeatedly flicker on and off like it was continuously checking its status, so I exited out of it. After I did that, my PC slowed to a crawl.

I also noticed that Outlook wouldn’t autocomplete addresses after this and the cursor when typing disappeared completely. Opening and closing windows also lagged.

I restarted my PC and after closing and re-opening the Brother Status Monitor, the problems have stopped. I’ve run a full system scan with Bit Defender and no threats were detected, but I’m still not sure if there’s any malware on my computer.

So far the only irregulariy I’ve noticed is that the Task Manager lags quite a bit before it opens. About 76% of the Memory is in use and I don’t know if this is normal either.

**NOTE:** I’m not sure if the Brother Status Monitor has anything to do with the unusual slowness and flickering. It’s possibly a coincidence it happened at the same time. Currently, I have the status monitor in the system tray again and there hasn’t been any problems.

**NOTE 2:** This is embarrassing to admit, but today I fell for an ad that looked like it really was a message from Adobe. I clicked it and it redirected the tab I had open on Chrome. I quickly closed out of it, but I don’t know if this caused today’s computer problems.

**Questions:**

– Is it likely there is a virus or malware on my PC?

– Is there anything I should do to make sure my PC is clean?

– Is it safe for me to login to my email, Discord, and other accounts from this PC or is there a risk a hacker could steal my password and control of my accounts?

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