Avoid installation of Emotet through Spark Email Virus

Also Known As: Spark email spam virus
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

"Spark Email Virus" removal guide

What is "Spark Email Virus"?

Spark is the name of a company which is New Zealand's leading digital services company. However, there are scammers who use its name to in their email scam to trick people into opening an attachment that is designed to install malicious software called Emotet. Note, the actual Spark company has nothing to do with this scam and we strongly recommend to ignore it (not to open the file that is attached to it).

Spark Email Virus

Scammers present this email as a letter regarding a monthly bill. They inform recipients that they have to pay $767.64 for services provided by Spark. More detailed information supposed to be provided in the "2413610029_25_09_2019.doc" file that is attached to this email. However, this is a malicious document that is designed to spread Emotet malware. Cyber criminals use this software to steal sensitive information like logins, passwords and details related to victim's browsing activities. Stolen information could be used to access various accounts (including banking, email and other accounts) and make transactions, purchases, spread emails that contain malicious attachments and so on. Moreover, Emotet is a trojan-type program, which means it can open "backdoors" for other high-risk malicious software. In other words, it could be used to infect computers with additional malware. To sum up, opening a file that is attached to this scam could lead to serious problems: victims may experience data, financial loss, identity theft, problems with privacy, and other issues. It is strongly recommended to leave this attachment unopened and ignore emails of this type in the future.

Threat Summary:
Name Spark email spam virus
Threat Type Trojan, Password stealing virus, Banking malware, Spyware
Hoax Scammers present this email as a letter regarding a monthly payment for Spark's services.
Attachment(s) 2413610029_25_09_2019.doc (its name may vary)
Detection Names Avast (VBA:Downloader-BLN [Trj]), AVG (VBA:Downloader-BLN [Trj]), Microsoft (Trojan:O97M/Sonbokli.A!cl), Symantec (ISB.Downloader!gen279), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms Trojans are designed to stealthily infiltrate victim's computer and remain silent thus no particular symptoms are clearly visible on an infected machine.
Payload Emotet
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.
Removal

To eliminate Spark email spam virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
▼ Download Spyhunter
Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

"Pipeline Supplies & Services CO.WLL Email Virus", "Indofuels Email Virus" and "Transcoal Pacific Email Virus" are just a couple examples of other scams that cyber criminals use to proliferate malicious programs. Typically, computers get infected when recipients open included attachments or web links. Examples of malware that cyber criminals spread through emails are Adwind, Pony, FormBook, and AZORult. However, there are many other malicious programs that can be distributed this way.

How did "Spark Email Virus" infect my computer?

In this particular case cyber criminals attach a Microsoft Office document (2413610029_25_09_2019.doc, it could be named differently) that, if opened, asks for a permission to enable editing/enable macros commands. Giving malicious documents this permission results in allowing them to install malware, in this case Emotet. However, MS Office files are not the only files that can be used to spread malicious software. Other examples are JavaScript files, archives like ZIP, RAR, executable (.exe) files, and so on. Either way, attached files cannot cause damage (installations of malware) without being opened.

How to avoid installation of malware?

In order to keep computer safe from malware attacks, we recommend to avoid opening email attachments that are presented in irrelevant email, especially when they are sent from unknown/suspicious address. Web links in emails of this type should not be opened as well. Download software from official, trustworthy websites and direct download links only. Third party software downloaders, installers, Peer-to-Peer networks like torrent clients, eMule and other similar tools can be used to distribute malware. Therefore, it is not safe to download files of programs through/from them. Additionally, we advise not to use various third party software updaters. Installed software should be updated via implemented functions or tools that are provided by official developers. If activation of installed software is not free, it should not be bypassed using unofficial activation ('cracking') tools. Tools of this type are illegal and can be used to trick people into installing malware. And finally, it is important to have a reputable anti-spyware or anti-virus installed and regularly scan the system for threats. If you've already opened "Spark Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Spark Email Virus" email letter:

Subject: Here's this month's Spark bill

Attachment: 2413610029_25_09_2019.doc

This month your services come to $767.64. This amount is due to on 25 Sep 2019

Account # 2413610029

Thanks for being with Spark.

Malicious attachment distributed via "Spark Email Virus" spam campaign:

Malicious attachment distributed through Spark Email Virus spam campaign

Instant automatic removal of Spark email spam virus: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of Spark email spam virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Spyhunter By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

Quick menu:

How to remove malware manually?

Manual malware removal is a complicated task, usually it's better to let antivirus or anti-malware programs do it automatically. To remove this malware we recommend using  Spyhunter 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's an example of a suspicious program running on 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 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 "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 Autoruns application and locate the malware file that you want to eliminate.

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

locate the malware file you want to remove

After removing the malware through Autoruns application (this ensures that the malware won't 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 file of the malware be sure to remove it.

searching for malware file on your computer

Reboot your computer in normal mode. Following these steps should help remove any malware from your computer. Note that manual threat removal requires advanced computer skills, it's recommended to leave malware removal to antivirus and anti-malware programs. These steps might not work with advanced malware infections. As always it's better to avoid getting infected that try to remove malware afterwards. To keep your computer safe be sure to install latest operating system updates and use antivirus software.

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

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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Malware activity

Global virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

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

QR Code
Spark email spam virus QR code
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Platform: Windows

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