Empros Lines email virus removal guide
What is Empros Lines email virus?
In most cases, cybercriminals behind malspam attempt to trick recipients into providing sensitive information (e.g., credit card details or other banking-related information, login credentials), or installing malicious software on their computers via malicious link or attachment. It is important to remember that cybercriminals disguise their emails as urgent, official letters from legitimate, well-known companies. This particular phishing email is used to trick recipients into installing a Remote Administration Tool (RAT) called WebMonitor.
This email is disguised as a letter from Empros Lines Shipping Company (break-bulk liner operator), a legitimate company based in Greece. The main purpose of this phishing email is to trick recipients into believing that it is an overdue invoice reminder and opening the attachment (file named "JANUARY OVERDUE INVOICE.arj", its filename may be different in other email variants), which supposedly contains more detailed payment details. The file attached to this email is an ARJ Compressed file. It contains an executable file (.exe file) named "JANUARY OVERDUE INVOICE.pfd.exe" designed to install WebMonitor, a Remote Administration Tool. This RAT is advertised as a legitimate tool that allows users to access and control computers remotely. Although, research shows that this tool is often used by cybercriminals, and this phishing email proves it.
Cybercriminals behind WebMonitor can use it to run commands via Command Prompt, PowerShell, download, upload, execute, modify files, record microphone, webcam input, recover passwords from the mail, messengers, network and the system, log keystrokes (record data entered with the keyboard). Also, this RAT can be used to add, edit or remove registry entries, minimize and maximize windows, and much more. As a rule, cybercriminals use RATs like WebMonitor to steal sensitive information, for example, login credentials (email addresses, usernames, passwords), credit card details, social security numbers. Also, it is common that they use RATs to install unwanted software, malware on computers (e.g., ransomware, Trojans, cryptocurrency miners).
|Name||WebMonitor Remote Administration Tool|
|Threat Type||Remote Administration/Access Tool|
|Hoax||Attached invoice is overdue|
|Attachment(s)||JANUARY OVERDUE INVOICE.arj (its name may vary)|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:RATX-gen [Trj]), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.36643385), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of MSIL/Kryptik.AAHN), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.MSIL.Taskun.gen), Microsoft (Trojan:MSIL/Stealer.MS!MTB), 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.|
|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 Malwarebytes.
In conclusion, this malspam campaign is used to deliver WebMonitor so that cybercriminals behind it could use accessed computers to obtain sensitive information and use it to steal personal accounts, identities, make unauthorized purchases, transactions, etc., infect computers with other malware, or other malicious activities. Therefore, the file attached to this phishing email (or any other similar email) should not be downloaded opened. A couple of examples of malicious RATs that cybercriminals use to distribute malware, steal sensitive information, and for other purposes are JacksBot, Strigoi Master, and CinaRAT. Examples of phishing emails used to deliver malware are "Employee Retention Credit Email Virus", "I Have Obtained Document You Mailed Me Email Virus", "Federal Ministry Of Health Germany Email Virus".
How did Empros Lines email virus infect my computer?
How to avoid installation of malware?
Installed programs have to be updated and activated with tools, functions that their official developers have designed. It should never be done using third-party, unofficial tools. Both third-party updaters and 'cracking' tools (unofficial activation tools) often are bundled with malware. Also, it is against the law to activate licensed software with unofficial tools. Files attached to irrelevant emails received from unknown, suspicious senders should not be opened, unless there is no doubt about its safety. The same applies to website links in emails of this kind. The main reason why such emails should not be trusted is that cybercriminals use emails of this kind (website links and attachments in them) to deliver malware. Programs (and files) should be downloaded from official, trustworthy websites. It is not safe to use other channels, sources for that. Computers should be checked (scanned) for viruses regularly, virus scans should be performed using a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software. If you've already opened "Empros Lines email virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the Empros Lines phishing email:
Subject: RE: OVERDUE INVOICE
Why haven't you remitted the payment for the Invoice in attachment. This invoice is long overdue.
Empros Lines - Liner Dpt
dir: +30 210 8125535
mob: +30 694 898 0698
CONFIDENTIALITY. This email and any attachments are confidential and may also be legally privileged. It is intended solely for the stated addressee(s). If you are not the addressee, you must not disclose the contents to another person or use this email for any purpose whatsoever. Instead, please notify the sender by return email and delete this email (including any attachments) from your computer system
EMPROS LINES SHIPPING COMPANY S.A.
WebMonitor running as "Brett Tech OS" in Task Manager (its name may vary):
WebMonitor's installer detected as malicious on Virustotal:
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:
- What is Empros Lines email virus?
- STEP 1. Manual removal of WebMonitor RAT.
- STEP 2. Check if your computer is clean.
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:
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:
Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry, and file system locations:
Restart 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.
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.
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.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Extract the downloaded archive and run the Autoruns.exe file.
In 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.
Check 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".
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.
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.