Avoid installation of malware through Instagram password hacking tool

Also Known As: Instagram password hacking malware
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Severe

Instagram password hacking virus removal guide

What is Instagram password hacking tool?

Cyber criminals attempt to trick users into installing malware on their computers in various ways. In most cases they disguise some malicious file or program as legitimate and hope that users will open, launch it. In this particular case cyber criminals claim that there is a tool which is capable of hacking Instagram accounts. Their main goal is to trick users into launching/executing an installer which supposed to install the aforementioned tool. Although, that installer is malicious/designed to infect operating systems with some malware.

Instagram password hack malware

The installer for this Instagram password hacking tool can be downloaded through a certain PDF document which contains a download link. It downloads a malicious executable file named "setup_instagram password setup app_7217427490.exe" (its name may vary) which is designed to install some malware. It is unknown what malicious software it installs, although, it is very likely that it is designed to infect a computer with some ransomware, Remote Administration Trojan (or other type of Trojan), cryptocurrency miner, or other malicious software that would help cyber criminals to generate revenue in one or another way. It is common that they attempt to deceive users into installing malware that is designed to steal sensitive information, encrypt files, mine cryptocurrency using computer resources. Therefore, by launching the aforementioned installer users may become victims of identity theft, suffer monetary, data loss, lose access to various personal accounts (like email, banking, social media accounts), experience problems related to online privacy, browsing safety, etc. Therefore, it is strongly recommended not to execute files that supposed install illegal software like the Instagram password hacking tool.

Threat Summary:
Name Instagram password hacking malware
Threat Type Trojan, ransomware, Remote Access Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Detection Names Arcabit (Trojan.Adware.Barys.DD3A1), BitDefender (Gen:Variant.Adware.Barys.54177), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/DownloadAssistant.Y Potentially Unwanted), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:Downloader.Win32.Generic), Full List (VirusTotal)
Payload This malicious executable file can be designed to install various malicious software
Symptoms Quite often malicious programs 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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Some examples of malware that cyber criminals distribute in similar ways are Fob (ransomware), FRAT (Remote Access Trojan) and CollectorStealer (information stealer). These are the malicious programs that are distributed with different malicious intents. Although, all these three malware types can be the culprit of serious problems. Examples of how cyber criminals distribute such malicious programs are described in the next paragraph.

How did Instagram password hacking malware infiltrate my computer?

In this particular case a computer would be infected with malware only after opening a malicious executable file that was downloaded through a website link in a PDF document. In other cases it could happen when cyber criminals would distribute malware such software via spam campaigns, untrustworthy file and/or software download channels, Trojans, fake software updaters and unofficial activators. It is common that cyber criminals attempt to infect computers with malware via email by sending emails that contain malicious attachments or website links designed to download malicious files. They attach files such as MS Office or PDF documents, JavaScript files, executable files like .exe., archive files like ZIP, RAR. When recipients open/execute those files, they cause installation of some malicious software. Untrustworthy file and/or software download channels are used to trick users into downloading and opening malicious files that are disguised as regular, legitimate. When users download and open those files, they infect their computers. Examples of download channels that can be used to distribute malware are third party downloaders, installers, Peer-to-Peer networks (e.g., torrent clients, eMule), unofficial pages, free file hosting and freeware download pages. Trojans are malicious programs that often are designed to cause chain infections - they open backdoors for other malicious software. Simply said, whena computer is infected with a Trojan, then it very likely that it will get infected with some other malware. Fake updaters infect operating systems by installing malicious programs instead of updating already installed, legitimate ones, or by exploiting bugs, flaws of installed software that is out of date. Third party (unofficial) activators operate quite similarly: instead of activating installed, licensed software for free they infect computers with malware.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Software (and files) should not be downloaded through third party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks or any other tools that we mentioned above. Third party installers cannot be trusted too. Files and programs should be downloaded only from official, trustworthy websites and via direct links. Attachments (or website links) in irrelevant emails that are received from unknown, suspicious addresses should not be opened. Such emails often are sent by cyber criminals who seek to proliferate various malware. Also, installed software must be activated and/or updated with tools that are designed by official software developers and not some third party updaters, activators. Additional problem with 'cracking' tools is that it is not legal to activate any software with them. One more way to keep operating systems safe is to regularly scan them for threats with a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software. If you believe that your computer is already infected, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Appearance of a PDF document used to distribute malicious executable disguised as Instagram password hacking tool (GIF):

Malicious document distributing Instagram password hack malware

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
Instagram password hacking malware QR code
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