Avoid installation of Agent Tesla via the Mundinter malspam campaign
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on (updated)
What is Mundinter email virus?
In most cases, cyber criminals behind malspam campaigns disguise their messages as official and important, and sent from legitimate companies and organizations. Their main goal is to trick recipients into opening a malicious file attached to the email (or that can be downloaded through a link in the email) - the file installs malicious software.
This malspam campaign is disguised as a message from a Portuguese health and beauty shop called Mundinter and is sent to proliferate Agent Tesla, a Remote Access Trojan (RAT).
Cyber criminals behind this malspam campaign send emails disguised as messages regarding an "Urgent Enquiry". The messages have the "Urgent Enquiry_002.img" file (its name may vary in different variants of this malspam campaign) attached.
This image file contains a malicious executable file named "Urgent Enquiry_002.exe" (its name may also vary), which, if executed, installs Agent Tesla. This RAT has capabilities of a keystroke logger - it can record keyboard input.
Therefore, cyber criminals can use Agent Tesla to steal login credentials (usernames, email addresses, passwords), credit card details and other sensitive information. They could sell stolen information to other cyber criminals, steal personal accounts, identities, make fraudulent purchases and transactions, and/or misuse it for other malicious purposes.
New variants of Agent Tesla are now targeting Wi-Fi credentials as well - they can be used to steal Wi-Fi profiles and their passwords to spread this malware on other devices via an identical wireless network.
Therefore, executing the malicious file attached to this email can result in serious problems (such as monetary loss, identity theft, loss of access to personal accounts, etc.).
|Threat Type||Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.|
|Hoax||This email is disguised as a message from Mundinter regarding an urgent enquiry.|
|Attachment(s)||Urgent Enquiry_002.img (its name may vary).|
|Detection Names||AVG (FileRepMalware), BitDefenderTheta (Gen:NN.ZemsilF.34196.1m0@ameRRBh), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of MSIL/Kryptik.XGM), Kaspersky (UDS:DangerousObject.Multi.Generic), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal).|
|Malicious Process Name(s)||갅:0갬1갟개_갘4%갬갚갭3@간!갩2갋9~갆갎} (its name may vary).|
|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.
More examples of similar malspam campaigns are "Swedish Energy Agency Email Virus", "INPS Email Virus" and "COELECSA Email Virus". Most are are disguised as official messages from legitimate companies/organizations and sent to trick recipients into opening a malicious file designed to infect systems with malware.
Examples of malicious programs that cyber criminals spread in this way are Ursnif, HawkEye and TrickBot.
How did "Mundinter Email Virus" infect my computer?
In this particular case, Agent Tesla RAT is installed on the operating system only if recipients mount the attached IMG file and execute the malicious file, which is stored within it. Malware distributed via malspam campaigns cannot be installed on computers unless users execute downloaded malicious files.
Note that malicious MS Office documents infect systems only when users enable content/editing (macros commands), however, documents opened with MS Office versions released before 2010, infect computers without having to gain any permission (these versions do not include "Protected View" mode).
How to avoid installation of malware?
Files or website links in received emails that are irrelevant, sent from unknown, suspicious addresses should not be opened. Software should be downloaded from official websites and via direct download links.
All other sources such as unofficial pages, third party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks (e.g., torrent clients, eMule), freeware download pages can be used to distribute malicious files/software. Furthermore, it is important to update and activate installed software with tools or implemented functions that are provided by the official developers.
Third party updating, activation tools are often designed to install malware. Unofficial activation tools also activate licensed software illegally. Use reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software to scan the computer for threats (this should be performed regularly).
Keep this software up to date. If you have already opened a "Mundinter Email Virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Appearance of the email message (GIF):
Text presented in this email:
Subject: Re: Mundinter Urgent Enquiry
As per our client inquiry, would you please kindly quote me for the total sets as arranged in the attached order.
You can include the brochure, shipping, and handling cost as it will be easier to make a decision for us.
We await your feedback soon.
Melhores cumprimentos / Kind Regards,
Directora de Unidade de Negócio / Business Unit Manage
M : + 351 914 038 262 | email: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.mundinter.pt
Estrada das Sesmarias, 25 – Porto Alto
2135-042 Samora Correia | Portugal
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
This mail and/or attachments are confidential and may also be legally privileged. If you are not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified, that any review, dissemination, distribution or copying of this email and/or attachments is strictly prohibited.
Please notify us immediately by email and delete this message and all its attachments.
Agent Tesla running in Task Manager as "갅:0갬1갟개_갘4%갬갚갭3@간!갩2갋9~갆갎}" (its name may vary):
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 Mundinter spam?
- Types of malicious emails.
- How to spot a malicious email?
- What to do if you fell for an email scam?
Types of malicious emails:
Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.
Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.
After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.
Emails with Malicious Attachments
Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.
In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.
If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.
While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.
This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.
To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.
How to spot a malicious email?
While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:
- Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
- Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
- Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
- Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.
To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
Example of a spam email:
What to do if you fell for an email scam?
- If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
- If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
- If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
- If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
- Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.
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