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Avoid installation of FormBook via Universal Medical Equipment emails

Also Known As: FormBook malware
Type: Trojan
Damage level: Severe

What is Universal Medical Equipment email virus?

Generally, malspam emails contain a malicious attachment or download link for a malicious file. To trick recipients into downloading and opening this file, cyber criminals disguise their malspam emails as official messages from legitimate companies.

If recipients download and open the malicious file that was sent to them via this type of email, they infect their computers with malware. This particular email is used to distribute FormBook.

Universal Medical Equipment email virus malware-spreading email spam campaign

This email is disguised as a message from a company named Universal Medical Equipment. Its main purpose is to trick recipients into opening the malicious attachment named "Medical Equipment Order.xlsx" (its name may vary), which supposedly contains items that the company intends to purchase from them.

In fact, the file attached to this malspam email distributes/installs FormBook, a malware infection that can be used to log keystrokes (record keyboard input), take screenshots, collect data saved on the system clipboard, steal logins/passwords saved on browsers, and other personal, sensitive information.

This malware can also execute commands received via a Command and Control (C2) server. Therefore, victims of FormBook might lose access to various accounts, suffer monetary loss, have their computers infected with other malware, become victims of identity theft, and encounter other serious issues related to privacy and browsing safety.

Threat Summary:
Name FormBook malware
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Hoax A company intends to purchase some items
Attachment(s) Medical Equipment Order.xlsx  (its name may vary)
Detection Names (Medical Equpment Order.xlsx) Avast (Other:Malware-gen [Trj]), BitDefender (Trojan.Phishing.AEX), ESET-NOD32 (Multiple Detections), Kaspersky (HEUR:Exploit.MSOffice.Generic), Symantec (Trojan.Gen.NPE), 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 FormBook
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.
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More examples of malspam campaigns are "Findomestic Email Virus", "Request For Payment Email Virus" and "MSC Email Virus". Most are designed to appear like official, important and urgent messages from legitimate companies, organizations, or other entities. Most also contain a malicious attachment or website link.

Some examples of malware distributed via malspam are Ursnif, Agent Tesla and Dridex.

How did "Universal Medical Equipment email virus" infect my computer?

This malspam email contains a malicious Excel document (named "Medical Equipment Order.xlsx", however, its name may vary in different emails). If opened and allowed to enable macros commands (editing/content), this file installs FormBook.

Note that malicious documents opened with Microsoft Office versions released before 2010 infect computers automatically, since those versions do not include "Protected View" mode.

More examples of files used to distribute malware via malspam emails are other Microsoft Office documents (such as Word documents), PDF documents, archive files like RAR, ZIP, executable files (.exe), and JavaScript files.

How to avoid installation of malware?

To avoid malware spread via spam mail, you are strongly advised against opening suspicious or irrelevant emails, especially those with any attachments or links present within them.

Additionally, use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010. Malicious programs also proliferate through untrusted download channels (e.g. unofficial and free file-hosting sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks and other third party downloaders), illegal software activation ("cracking") tools, and fake updaters.

Therefore, only download from official/verified sources and activate and update software with tools/functions provided by legitimate developers.

To ensure device integrity and user privacy, have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and kept updated. Furthermore, use these programs to run regular system scans and to remove detected/potential threats.

If you have already opened a "Universal Medical Equipment email virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the Universal Medical Equipment email:

Subject: Jan 21 Medical Equipments Order

Good Morning

We are Universal Medical Equipment. We have been to your website and would like to place other for the attached medical equipment samples.

Kindly get back to us with your best quote and possible shipment day, as for payment terms, we don't mind 100% advance because we need goods urgently.

Await your reply asap.

Best regards,

Jen Nahid
Office & Sales Administrator
Mobile: : +97366950668 (Whatsapp/Viber)

Universal Medical Equipments
E-mail: admin@ume-bh.com
Company Mobile: +973 33432556 (Whatsapp/Viber)
Tel: +973 17310118
Fax: +973 17310117
Skype: Universal Medical Equipments Bahrain

Malicious file ("Medical Equipment Order.xlsx") attached to the Universal Medical Equipment malspam email:

Malicious attachment distributed through Universal Medical Equipment malspam campaign

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:
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Quick menu:

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:

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 Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.

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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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