How to prevent Legion Loader from causing system damage

Also Known As: Legion Loader virus
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

Legion Loader virus removal guide

What is Legion Loader?

Legion Loader is a malicious program designed to infect systems with 2-3 other programs of this type (or more). Research shows that Legion Loader is used to spread information stealers (such as Vidar, Predator the Thief and Raccoon Stealer), backdoors, cryptocurrency stealers and a cryptocurrency miner. Legion Loader can thus cause many problems. If a system is infected with this malware (or other malicious software installed through it), it should be removed immediately.

Legion Loader malware detections in VirusTotal

The aforementioned information stealers record details that could be used to generate revenue in various ways. For example, Vidar can steal IP addresses, browsing histories, cryptocurrency wallets, saved passwords, data from messaging clients, and so on. This malware can also take screenshots and infect systems with GandCrab 5.0.4 ransomware. Predator the Thief is capable of recording cookies, saved logins, passwords, and other information saved on web browsers. It is capable of stealing credentials of Steam, Discord, FileZilla, and WinFTP clients. Racoon Stealer can be used to steal passwords, browser cookies and auto-fill data that is saved on victims' browsers. It can also be used to steal cryptocurrency wallet details. All of these malicious programs are employed by cyber criminals to steal sensitive information. Generally, they target details that can be misused to make fraudulent transactions and purchases, and perform actions to generate revenue, thereby causing victims financial loss. Furthermore, one of the Legion Loader's payloads is a 'backdoor'. Software of this type allows cyber criminals to control infected machines remotely - it provides them with remote access to victims' computers. Typically, backdoors are used to infect computers with additional malware and perform other malicious tasks. Furthermore, Legion Loader contains a built-in PowerShell-based cryptocurrency stealer, which checks for used cryptocurrency wallets and steals wallet files and stored cryptocurrency-related credentials. It uploads the stolen information to a command and control (C&C) server controlled by cyber criminals. Legion Loader is also able to install a cryptocurrency miner. Programs of this type use computer hardware to mine cryptocurrency. In most cases, this process causes high GPU and/or CPU usage and increases electricity consumption, thus leading to higher electricity bills. Generally, software of this type is distributed to generate revenue at the victim's expense.

Threat Summary:
Name Legion Loader virus
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Detection Names Avast (Win32:PWSX-gen [Trj]), BitDefender (Gen:Variant.Ulise.88848), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/TrojanDownloader.Agent.EWC), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-Downloader.Win32.Generic), Full List (VirusTotal)
Malicious Process Name(s) eupanda.exe (the process name may vary)
Payload Vidar, Predator the Thief and Raccoon Stealer information stealers, cryptocurrnecy miner and stealer, backdoor.
Symptoms Trojans are designed to stealthily infiltrate the victim's computer and remain silent, and 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 passwords and banking information, identity theft, the victim's computer added to a botnet.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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People who have computers infected with Legion Loader are exposed to risk of identity theft, monetary and/or data loss, problems relating to privacy, installation of other malware, and so on. Legion Loader is high-risk malware and should be removed immediately. It is unknown exactly how cyber criminals proliferate this program, however, it is likely to be via a popular malware distribution method.

How did Legion Loader infiltrate my computer?

In most cases, cyber criminals proliferate malicious software using spam campaigns (emails), fake software updaters, untrustworthy software download channels and tools, Trojans, and unofficial activation ('cracking') tools. Using spam campaigns, they send emails that contain malicious attachments or web links that download malicious files. Examples of files that they attach are Microsoft Office, PDF documents, executable files (.exe), JavaScript files and archives such as ZIP, RAR, etc. If opened, these attachments cause installation of malicious software. Fake software updating tools usually infect systems by exploiting flaws/bugs or other vulnerabilities of outdated programs installed on the operating system (by installing malicious programs rather than updating those installed). Peer-to-Peer networks (e.g., eMule, torrent clients), third party downloaders, freeware and free file hosting pages and other similar download channels/sources are often used to proliferate malware. Systems become infected when people download and open a malicious file that was uploaded by cyber criminals. Typically, these files are disguised as harmless and legitimate. Trojans are malicious programs that often cause chain infections. Therefore, if a system is already infected with a Trojan, this malicious program will cause installation of additional malware. Unofficial activation ('cracking') tools are programs that supposedly activate other, paid (licensed) software free of charge (i.e., to bypass paid activation), however, they are designed by cyber criminals who seek to proliferate malware. People who use these tools risk infecting their systems with high-risk malware.

How to avoid installation of malware

Do not trust irrelevant emails that contain attachments or web links, especially if they are received from unknown, suspicious addresses. Attached files might infect computers with malware. All software should be downloaded from official websites and via direct download links. Other channels/tools cannot be trusted. Updates should not be installed through third party tools. The only safe way to update installed software is using tools and/or implemented functions that are designed by official developers. Installed software should not be activated through third party tools. This is illegal and might cause installation of malware. Keep systems safe by regularly scanning them with reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software. It is important to ensure that installed software of this type is up to date. If you believe that your computer is already infected, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Legion Loader process in Task Manager ("eupanda.exe")

Legion Loader malware eupanda.exe malicious process running in Task Manager

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 1Download 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 "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, be sure to 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.

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 malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

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Legion Loader virus QR code
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