Wells Fargo Email Virus

Also Known As: Wells Fargo payment notice virus
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Wells Fargo Email Virus removal guide

What is Wells Fargo Email Virus?

"Wells Fargo Email Virus" is another spam email campaign similar to DocuSign Email Virus, Job Application Email Virus, and many others. Cyber criminals use this campaign to proliferate high-risk malware called Emotet. Developers send thousands of deceptive email messages that encourage users to open an attached MS Word document. Be aware, however, that this document downloads and installs Emotet.

Wells Fargo Email Virus malware

The email is an imitation of a Wells Fargo company message stating that a transaction will take up to 10 minutes. For detailed information, users are encouraged to read an attached Microsoft Word document. This is a scam - the opened document downloads and installs the Emotet trojan. Note that Wells Fargo is a legitimate company and has nothing to do with this fraudulent message. Cyber criminals often claim to be employees of various companies and governmental agencies. This is a deceptive tactic, since it is much simpler to trick users into opening files when they are received from a familiar name (domain, company, email address, etc.) Emotet is high-risk trojan designed to record various sensitive information (logins, passwords, browsing activity, etc.) Cyber criminals might then gain access to your personal accounts (social networks, banks, etc.) and misuse them to generate revenue (via identity theft, online purchases, money transfers, etc.) Therefore, the presence of this virus might lead to serious privacy issues and significant financial issues. If you have recently opened "Wells Fargo Email Virus" attachments, there is a high probability that your computer is infected with Emotet trojan. Therefore, you are advised to immediately scan the system with a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware program and eliminate all detected threats.

Threat Summary:
Name Wells Fargo payment notice virus
Threat Type Trojan, Password stealing virus, Banking malware, Spyware
Symptoms Trojans are designed to stealthily infiltrate victim's computer and remain silent thus no particular symptoms are clearly visible on an infected machine.
Distribution methods Infected email attachments, malicious online advertisements, social engineering, software cracks.
Damage Stolen banking information, passwords, identity theft, victim's computer added to a botnet.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
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There are dozens of trojan similar to Emotet, including FormBook, Adwind, TrickBot, LokiBot, and Pony. These viruses are also distributed using spam campaigns. As with Emotet, trojans are very likely to collect personal information, however, some proliferate other viruses (chain infections) such as ransomware. In any case, trojans pose a significant threat to your privacy and computer safety, and their presence cannot be ignored.

How did Wells Fargo Email Virus infect my computer?

As mentioned above, "Wells Fargo Email Virus" proliferates a malicious Microsoft Word document. After opening this file, users are asked to enable macro commands, otherwise the content will not be displayed properly. Once macros are enabled, the file executes commands that download and install the Emotet trojan. Although this distribution method is effective, it has a major flaw. Malicious attachments are only able to infect the system if they are opened using MS Word. If the user opens the file using any other program, the virus will not be downloaded/installed. In addition, this spam campaign targets Microsoft Windows users only, and users of other platforms are safe.

How to avoid installation of malware?

To prevent this situation, be very cautious when browsing the Internet. Carefully analyze each email attachment received. If the file is irrelevant or has been received from a suspicious/unrecognizable email address, it should never be opened. Furthermore, have a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running. Some trojans are distributed using fake software updaters and third party downloaders/installers. Therefore, keep installed applications up-to-date. To achieve this, however, use implemented features or tools provided by the official developer only. Download your software from official sources only, using direct download links. More recent versions (2010 and above) of Microsoft Office open newly-downloaded documents in "Protected View" mode. This prevents malicious attachments from downloading and installing malware. Therefore, we strongly advise you to avoid using older versions. The main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and careless behavior - the key to safety is caution. If you have already opened a "Wells Fargo Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Wells Fargo Email Virus" email message:

Subject: New Wells Fargo Email Virus payment notice
Hi
Please allow up to 10 minutes for a transaction to post to your account.
See your detailed information below.
Thank you for using Wells Fargo Email Virus.The strength to be there.
Warmest Regards,
Joseph Moore
Head of Bus Banking Customer Support
This email address is not monitored and you will not receive a response.

Malicious attachment distributed via "Wells Fargo Email Virus" spam campaign:

Malicious attachment distributed through Wells Fargo Email Virus spam campaign

Another Wells Fargo spam email (this one distributes Hanictor trojan):

wells fargo spam email sample 2

Another variant of an email spam campaign that is using "Wells Fargo" name to distribute malware:

wells fargo email scam variant 3

Text presented in this spam email:

Subject: RE: Purchase Order #19012479

Please check attached (Purchase Order #19012479)

Rob Gildea
Vice President
Principal Business Relationship Manager
Wells Fargo Business Banking
(Office:  209-943-4574
4Fax:  209-943-4585
 
This message may contain confidential and/or privileged information. If you are not the addressee or authorized to receive this for the addressee, you must not use, copy, disclose, or take any action based on this message or any information herein. If you have received this message in error, please advise the sender immediately by reply e-mail and delete this message. Thank you for your cooperation.

Infected email attachment (Macros malware) that infects user's computers with Trojan:

wells fargo email malicious attachment sample 2

Another example of a Wells Fargo-themed spam email used to spread malware (in this case Remcos RAT):

Wells Fargo spam email spreading Remcos RAT

Text presented within:

Subject: WellsFargo EFT  Payment Notification - WEF009520EFT0

[This message came from an external mail server outside of the company.]
 
Hello -,
Beneficiary Email: *
Wells Fargo Bank has sent a payment to you at the request of our business customer.
If you are a Wells Fargo Bank account holder, you'll be able to access funds from this payment within 12 hours.
All other account holders will have payment posted by close of business on 06/11/2020.
Please see attached  file for your remittance details.
If you are not the right person for this notice, kindly forward to the appropriate Accounts Receivable contact.
CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: This email and any attachments are for the sole use of the intended recipient and may contain material that is proprietary, confidential, privileged or otherwise legally protected or restricted under applicable government laws. Any review, disclosure, distributing or other use without expressed permission of the sender is strictly prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact the sender and delete all copies without reading, printing, or saving.

Screenshot of the malicious MS Excel document attached:

Wells Fargo-themed MS Excel document designed to inject Remcos RAT

Yet another Wells Fargo-themed spam email used for phishing purposes:

Wells Fargo-themed spam email used for phishing purposes (2020-12-07)

Text presented within:

Subject: Wells Fargo


Dear Customer,

You have successfully changed your Wells Fargo email address. If you did not initiate this change, please login and check immediately at wellsfargo.com, or visit any Wells Fargo branch.

Remember, wells fargo  Online and Mobile Banking are safe and convenient ways to:


View account balances and transactions

Pay your bills

Transfer money

We appreciate your business and are committed to helping you reach your financial goals. Visit wellsfargo.com, or stop by your local branch to learn more about our helpful products and services.

Thank you for banking with Wells Fargo

Sincerely,

Wells Fargo  Customer Care

  Instant automatic malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
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How to remove malware manually?

Manual malware removal is a complicated task - usually it is best to allow antivirus or anti-malware programs to do this automatically. To remove this malware we recommend using Malwarebytes for Windows. If you wish to remove malware manually, the first step is to identify the name of the malware that you are trying to remove. Here is an example of a suspicious program running on a user's computer:

malicious process running on user's computer sample

If you checked the list of programs running on your computer, for example using task manager, and identified a program that looks suspicious, you should continue with these steps:

manual malware removal step 1 Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry, and file system locations:

screenshot of autoruns application

manual malware removal step 2Restart your computer into Safe Mode:

Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, and then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.

Safe Mode with Networking

Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 8 users: Start Windows 8 is Safe Mode with Networking - Go to Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click Advanced startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window, select Advanced startup. Click the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into the "Advanced Startup options menu". Click the "Troubleshoot" button, and then click the "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen, click "Startup settings". Click the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press F5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking.

Windows 8 Safe Mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button. In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.

windows 10 safe mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

 

manual malware removal step 3Extract the downloaded archive and run the Autoruns.exe file.

extract autoruns.zip and run autoruns.exe

manual malware removal step 4In the Autoruns application, click "Options" at the top and uncheck the "Hide Empty Locations" and "Hide Windows Entries" options. After this procedure, click the "Refresh" icon.

Click 'Options' at the top and uncheck 'Hide Empty Locations' and 'Hide Windows Entries' options

manual malware removal step 5Check the list provided by the Autoruns application and locate the malware file that you want to eliminate.

You should write down its full path and name. Note that some malware hides process names under legitimate Windows process names. At this stage, it is very important to avoid removing system files. After you locate the suspicious program you wish to remove, right click your mouse over its name and choose "Delete".

locate the malware file you want to remove

After removing the malware through the Autoruns application (this ensures that the malware will not run automatically on the next system startup), you should search for the malware name on your computer. Be sure to enable hidden files and folders before proceeding. If you find the filename of the malware, remove it.

searching for malware file on your computer

Reboot your computer in normal mode. Following these steps should remove any malware from your computer. Note that manual threat removal requires advanced computer skills. If you do not have these skills, leave malware removal to antivirus and anti-malware programs. These steps might not work with advanced malware infections. As always it is best to prevent infection than try to remove malware later. To keep your computer safe, install the latest operating system updates and use antivirus software.

To be sure your computer is free of malware infections, we recommend scanning it with Malwarebytes for Windows.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Removal Instructions in other languages
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
Wells Fargo payment notice virus QR code
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