How to avoid installation of Gozi through Office Depot email?

Also Known As: Gozi trojan
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

"Office Depot Email Virus" removal guide

What is "Office Depot Email Virus"?

There is a great number of spam campaigns that are used by cyber criminals who attempt to trick users into installing malware. They send emails that contain some malicious attachment of website link that is designed to download malicious file. They attempt to trick recipients into opening a malicious file that is designed to install malware by disguising their emails as important, official. In this case they spread an email which is disguised as a letter from Office Depot, a legitimate retail company and contains an archive file which has a malicious document designed to distribute Gozi (also known as Ursnif) in it.

Office Depot Email Virus malware-spreading email spam campaign

This email is disguised as a letter regarding shipment confirmation of some purchase order. Cyber criminals behind this email attempt to trick recipients into opening a document which supposed to contain some more detailed information related to the aforementioned order. That document (a malicious Microsoft Office document) can be extracted from the attached ZIP file. When opened, it asks for a permission to enable editing/enable content. Allowing this malicious MS Office document to enable content/editing equals giving it a permission to install Gozi. Gozi is a Trojan-type malware which is designed to steal sensitive information. This malicious program is capable of logging keystrokes, collecting login credentials, browsing data, system information and some other data. Cyber criminals behind this malware attempt to steal information that could be used for various malicious purposes, for example, to steal identities, accounts, credit card details. Therefore, Gozi's victims may become victims of identity theft, lose access to personal accounts, experience problems related to online privacy, browsing safety, suffer monetary loss, or other serious issues. Also, stolen accounts may be used to send spam campaigns (malspam, email scams), trick other people into transferring money and so on. For these reasons it is strongly recommended not to trust this email, besides, it has nothing to do with the actual office Depot company.

Threat Summary:
Name Gozi trojan
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Hoax This email is disguised as a letter from Office Depot regarding some purchase order
Attachment(s) ord_438 (4).zip (its name may vary)
Detection Names Avast (VBA:Downloader-EUY [Trj]), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.33908645), ESET-NOD32 (VBA/TrojanDownloader.Agent.MUV), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-Dropper.MSOffice.SDrop.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.
Payload Gozi
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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More examples of spam campaigns that are used to deceive recipients into infecting their computers with malware are "Polícia de Segurança Pública Email Virus", "U.S Department Of Labor Email Virus" and "BBVA Email Virus". What most emails of this type have in common is that they are disguised as letters regarding some important matter and sent from some well known, legitimate company. Although, when recipients open the attached, downloaded file, they cause installation of some high-risk malware (e.g., ransomware, Trojan-type software).

How did "Office Depot Email Virus" infect my computer?

Computers could be infected with Gozi through this spam campaign only if recipients would extract the contents of the attached ZIP file, open extracted malicious MS Office document and give it a permission to enable editing/content. It is worthwhile to mention that if malicious documents are opened with MS Office version which was developed before year 2010, then they install malware automatically (without asking to enable content/editing). It is because those versions do not include the "Protected View" mode. Some examples of other files that cyber criminals attach to their emails when they seek to trick recipients into installing malware are JavaScript files, executable files (.exe), PDF documents.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Attachments (and website links) should not be opened if they attached to emails that are irrelevant, sent from unknown, suspicious addresses. It should be done only when there is no reason to suspect that it may cause installation of malware or some other damage. It is worthwhile to mention that cyber criminals often disguise their emails as official, important, etc. Also, files and programs should be downloaded only from official pages and through direct links. Other channels like third party downloaders (and installers), unofficial websites, Peer-to-Peer networks (like torrent clients, eMule), free file hosting pages, etc., should not be trusted/used for that. It is common that cyber criminals use them as tools to distribute malware. Unofficial, fake software updating or activation tools should not be used too. Quite often they do not update or activate software, instead of doing that they install some malware. Besides, it is not legal to activate licensed programs with unofficial ('cracking') tools. Additionally, it is recommended to regularly scan a computer with a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software, such software should be always up to date. If you've already opened "Office Depot Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Office Depot Email Virus" email letter:

Subject: Office #******
Office DEPOT
OfficeMax

 

Call Us: 800.GO.DEPOT (800-231-6320)

 

Cargo shipment Confirmation
Thank you again for working with us.

 

We thought you would like to know for sure that your Office Depot
order has received, and this completes your purchase order.

 

For your reference,below is summary of your order:

 

Estimated delivery date: 05/21/2020 11:00 AM -
6:00 PM


Order #******

 

Order Made: 05/20/2020 4:34:42 AM   Status: In Process
Account ?:79856   Tracking: N/A
Payment Info: Credit Card   Delivering to: All Information Is ATTACHED
Customer Name: All Information is ATTACHED   Sending Method: Standart Shipping

 

All information is ATTACHED

Malicious attachment distributed via "Office Depot Email Virus" spam campaign:

Malicious attachment distributed through Office Depot Email Virus

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
Gozi trojan QR code
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