Prevent installation of NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE through Secret Love email

Also Known As: Secret Love spam campaign
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

"Secret Love Email Virus" removal guide

What is "Secret Love Email Virus"?

"Secret Love" is a spam email campaign that cyber criminals employ to trick recipients into extracting an attached ZIP archive file and executing the resultant JavaScript (.js) file. If executed, this file installs NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE ransomware. We strongly advise that you ignore this email and, more importantly, do not open the attached file.

Secret Love Email Virus malware-spreading email spam campaign

Cyber criminals attempt to proliferate malware through spam campaigns by sending emails with malicious files attached to them. Their main goal is to deceive unsuspecting recipients into opening a malicious attachment - in this case, into opening and executing the "LOVE_YOU.js" file, which is archived using a ZIP format. The archive file containing the malicious .js format file is "LOVE_YOU_428969_2020.zip", however, its name might vary. As mentioned, the "LOVE_YOU.js" malicious JavaScript file installs NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE ransomware. Ransomware is dangerous software that encrypts data. Typically, victims cannot access or use their files unless they recover them with a decryption tool/key that can be purchased only from the cyber criminals who designed the ransomware. Furthermore, most cyber criminals do not send decryption tools or keys even if victims pay the ransom. Victims of ransomware attack can only recover their files free of charge if they have a backup of their data. In other cases, they lose access to their files permanently. Therefore, never open the attachment associated with the "Secret Love" spam email campaign.

Threat Summary:
Name Secret Love spam campaign
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Attachment(s) LOVE_YOU_428969_2020.zip (its name may vary)
Detection Names DrWeb (Trojan.Siggen9.15359), NANO-Antivirus (Trojan.Script.Heuristic-js.iacgm), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
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.
Payload NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE
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)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
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Examples of other spam campaigns used to spread malicious software are "PETRONAS Email Virus", "WeTransfer Email Virus", "Coronavirus Email Virus". Cyber criminals who attempt to trick recipients into installing malware through malicious attachments usually disguise their emails as official, important, and use names of legitimate companies, familiar people, and so on. More examples of malware that is distributed via spam campaigns/emails include Emotet, TrickBot, Adwind and LokiBot.

How did "Secret Love Email Virus" infect my computer?

NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE is installed when recipients execute the "LOVE_YOU.js" malicious JavaScript file extracted from a ZIP archive file (in our example, a file named LOVE_YOU_428969_2020.zip"). More examples of files that cyber criminals attach to their emails include Microsoft Office, PDF documents, other archive files such as RAR and executable files (.exe). Systems become infected with malware only when recipients execute/open a malicious file. Note that, rather than attaching a malicious file, cyber criminals might include a website link that downloads a malicious file.

How to avoid installation of malware

Do not open attachments or web links that are included in irrelevant emails, especially if the emails are received from unknown, suspicious addresses. If there is any reason to suspect that an email could be sent by cyber criminals, then the safest option is to ignore it (leave its contents unopened). All files and program should be downloaded from official, trustworthy websites. Unofficial pages, various third party downloaders, installers, Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule) and other channels, tools should not be used to download or install software. Software must be updated through implemented functions and tools provided by official developers. If software needs to be activated, use the proper method. It is illegal to do activate software (bypass activation) with various 'cracking', unofficial activation tools. These can infect systems with malware. Finally, your computer should be regularly scanned for threats with reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software. If you have already opened "Secret Love Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Secret Love Email Virus" email message:

Subject: Don't tell anyone
;) 

Malicious JavaScript file ("LOVE_YOU.js") in the ZIP archive file, which is distributed via the "Secret Love Email Virus" spam campaign:

Malicious attachment distributed through Secret Love Email Virus spam campaign

Screenshot of NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE ransomware ransom message:

nemty 2.5 revenge ransomware ransom note

Files encrypted by NEMTY 2.5 REVENGE ransomware:

nemty 2.5 revenge ransomware encrypted files

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.

QR Code
Secret Love spam campaign QR code
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