Avoid getting scammed by the "Propuesta comercial" emails

Also Known As: possible malware infections
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

"Propuesta comercial" email scam removal guide

What is the "Propuesta comercial" scam email?

"Propuesta comercial" is the title/subject of scam emails, targeting Spanish-speaking users. The letters claim that recipients have been tracked for a long time and if they refuse to pay a certain amount of money, they will experience unspecified yet serious problems. It must be emphasized that all of the information provided by "Propuesta comercial" emails is false and they are merely using scare-tactics to trick recipients into paying the scammers.

Propuesta comercial email spam campaign

According to a rough translation, the "Propuesta comercial" scam emails state that the senders are a group of professionals, which have been following the recipient for a while. Allegedly, the senders are aware of the recipient's browsing activity, habits and exact address. The recipient is alerted that within seven days, on a random day of the week, the senders will come to their home and cause "chaos". To prevent this from happening, the deceptive emails instruct recipients to pay a ransom of 500 USD in Bitcoin cryptocurrency. The recipient is warned that if they do not meet the ransom demands and contact the authorities, the demanded payment will only increase as will the "chaos". As mentioned in the introduction, the "Propuesta comercial" letters are a scam and none of the threats made by them will be carried out. Therefore, these emails must simply be ignored.

Threat Summary:
Name Propuesta comercial Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Emails claim recipients have been watched for a long time and unless a ransom is paid - they will experience serious problems.
Ransom Amount 500 USD in Bitcoin cryptocurrency
Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Address 1CztB875CtMqexctx16JhTmnzb96PPG3B5 (Bitcoin)
Symptoms Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.
Distribution methods Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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"Your device was not properly secured", "Server Notification", "2020 EU/COMMONWEALTH LOTTO" and "Suspicious Sign-In Attempt Prevented" are some examples of other deceptive emails. These letters are sent by the thousand, during large-scale operations called "spam campaigns". This mail is typically disguised as "important", "official", "urgent" and similar. Scam emails can make various claims, requests, offers or demands. They are used not only to make ransom demands but also for phishing and malware (e.g. ransomware, trojan, etc.) proliferation. Regardless of the purpose of deceptive letters, the end-goal is the same - to generate revenue to the scammers / cyber criminals behind them.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Systems are infected via virulent files distributed through spam campaigns. The files can be attached to the emails and/or contain download links of infectious content. Malicious files can be in various formats, such as: archives (RAR, ZIP, etc.), executables (.exe, .run, etc.), Microsoft Office and PDF documents, JavaScript, and so forth. When these files are executed, run otherwise opened - the infection process/chain is initiated. In other words, once a virulent file is opened - malware download/installation is triggered. For example, Microsoft Office documents infect systems by executing malicious macro commands. In MS Office versions released before 2010 - macros are executed the moment a document is opened. However, later Microsoft Office versions have "Protected View" mode that prevents automatic execution of macro commands. In these versions, when a document is opened - users are asked to enable macros (i.e. to enable editing/content); therefore, infection processes are only jumpstarted after macro commands are enabled manually.

How to avoid installation of malware?

To avoid infecting systems with malware distributed via spam campaigns, it is strongly advised against opening suspicious and/or irrelevant emails. Any attachments or links found in dubious mail - must not be opened, as they are sources of potential infections. Additionally, it is recommended to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010. However, malicious content is proliferated using various techniques. Popular distribution methods include: untrustworthy download channels (e.g. unofficial and free file-hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks and other third party downloaders), illegal activation ("cracking") tools and fake updaters. Therefore, it is important to only download from official/verified sources, as well as activate and update programs with tools/functions provided by legitimate developers. To protect device integrity and user safety, it is crucial to have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed. Furthermore, this software must be kept up-to-date, used to run regular system scans and to remove detected threats. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Propuesta comercial" email letter:

Subject: Propuesta comercial

 

¡Hola!
No se sorprenda de recibir esta carta.
Somos un grupo profesional

 

Te hemos estado siguiendo por mucho tiempo.
Ya conocemos todos sus datos personales, lo que hace en Internet, sus acciones, hábitos y la dirección completa de su estadía.


¡Estamos enviando esto para alertarlo! Nuestro grupo vendrá a su hogar y causará caos.
¡Durante los próximos 7 días con un tiempo desconocido para usted, actuaremos en uno de estos días!

 

Si no desea que esto suceda, debe pagar el rescate tanto como queramos.
Esto es 500 dólares estadounidenses en bitcoin.
Si no sabe cómo usar bitcoin, busque una guía en Google para enviar bitcoin y envíela a nuestra dirección.

 

Nuestra dirección de Bitcoin: 1CztB875CtMqexctx16JhTmnzb96PPG3B5


Nota:
* solo envía dinero y no pasará nada. Vivirás y te olvidarás de este incidente.
* si escribe una declaración a las autoridades, no cambiará nada. El caos vendrá a una escala aún mayor, y aún obtendremos más dinero de usted.

 

Reiteramos que el caos no sucederá si pagas el rescate.
Si no, solo espera hasta que ocurra el caos, ¡no seremos tímidos!

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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