What is the "Coronavirus Face Mask" email?
The email claims that recipients can order disposable face masks and forehead thermometers, however, rather than providing information concerning these products, the attached file contains the Agent Tesla RAT (Remote Access Trojan). This is a high-risk piece of malicious software that compromises device integrity and can lead to many serious issues.
The email is supposedly from the Fujian Joy Solar Technology Corporation representatives. The message states that due to the coronavirus, they have begun manufacturing two new products: disposable face masks and forehead thermometers. Mass production has begun, yet demand exceeds supply.
Therefore, if interested, the email urges recipients to make an order without delay. The attached file allegedly contains product details. In fact, the archived file contains the executable of Agent Tesla RAT. This malware allows cyber criminals remote access and control over the infected device.
RATs can be employed in various ways, and Agent Tesla is primarily used to steal information. One of its capabilities is keylogging, via which any and all typed information can be stolen. This endangers the integrity of all accounts such as emails, social networking, social media, e-commerce (i.e. online store), financial, etc.
They can be misused to ask users' contacts/friends for loans and/or to spread malicious programs, make online purchases and so on. To summarize, Agent Tesla can lead to significant financial loss, serious issues and identity theft.
Therefore, if it is suspected or known that Agent Tesla, or other malware, has already infected the system, you are strongly advised to use anti-virus software to remove it immediately.
|Name||Agent Tesla virus|
|Threat Type||Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.|
|Hoax||Email claims recipients can order face masks and thermometers.|
|Attachment(s)||Face Mask Quotation.rar containing Face Mask Quotation.exe|
|Detection Names||BitDefenderTheta (Gen:NN.ZemsilF.34100.xm0@aSRiJPk), DrWeb (Trojan.Inject3.36400), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of MSIL/Kryptik.VBW), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-PSW.MSIL.Agensla.gen), 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.|
|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 Combo Cleaner.
Large scale operations, during which thousands of deceptive/scam emails are sent, are called "spam campaigns". "UNICEF", "COVID-19 Insurance Plan From CIGNA", "Your friend’s account was compromised" are some examples of spam campaigns designed to spread malicious software.
The emails are usually presented as "official", "important", "priority" and "urgent", and they may also be disguised as mail from legitimate organizations, institutions, corporations, services, etc.
The only purpose of these message is to generate revenue for the scammers/cyber criminals behind them. Malware (e.g. Trojans, ransomware, etc.) proliferation is just one way to achieve this. Malicious programs that have been observed being spread using spam campaigns include Raccoon Stealer, NetWire, Hancitor, Emotet and many others.
How did "Coronavirus Face Mask Email Virus" infect my computer?
Systems are infected through the files attached to deceptive/scam emails or the content can be spread using download links in the messages.
For example, Microsoft Office docs begin the infections process after macro commands are enabled. When opened, MS documents request editing to be enabled. If this is done, download/installation of malicious software starts. Note that this process only begins automatically upon opening dangerous documents in Microsoft Office programs released prior to 2010.
How to avoid installation of malware
Do not open suspicious or irrelevant emails, especially those received from unknown or suspicious senders (addresses). Any attachments or links found in dubious mail must not be opened, as this can result in high-risk infection. Additionally, you are advised to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010.
The newer versions have "Protected View" mode, which prevents malicious macros from infecting the system once the document is opened. Spam campaigns are just one malware proliferation method. It also spreads via illegal activation ("cracking") tools, fake updaters and untrusted download channels.
Therefore, activate and update programs with tools/functions provided by genuine developers only. All downloads should be performed from official and verified sources. To ensure device and user safety, have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and kept up to date.
Use this software to perform regular system scans and to remove detected/potential threats. If you have already opened "Coronavirus Face Mask Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the "Coronavirus Face Mask" email message:
This is Bella Huang from Fujian Joy Solar Technology Corporation.
Currently, the Coronavirus has spread all over the world.
In order to fight against the epidemic, our company has developed and established two production lines for disposable face mask and forehead thermometer.
Now we have started mass production but demand exceeds supply so kindly contact us if interested.
Attached are the item FYR.
Thanks and best regards,
Fujian Joy Solar Technology Corporation
Taihua Road, Licheng Hi-Tech Industrial Zone, Quanzhou, Fujian, China.
P :(86)-595-68236093 M: (86)-18965871681
E: firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.jeeyeepe.net
Screenshot of detections on VirusTotal of the malicious attachment distributed via the "Coronavirus Face Mask" spam campaign ("Face Mask Quotation.rar" containing "Face Mask Quotation.exe"):
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is "Coronavirus Face Mask Email Virus"?
- STEP 1. Manual removal of Agent Tesla malware.
- STEP 2. Check if your computer is clean.
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 Combo Cleaner Antivirus 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:
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:
Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry, and file system locations:
Restart 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.
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.
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.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Extract the downloaded archive and run the Autoruns.exe file.
In 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.
Check 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".
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.
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 Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.