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Discard malware-spreading "Your address is invalid" fake FedEx emails

Also Known As: Qakbot virus
Type: Trojan
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

"Your address is invalid email virus" removal guide

What is "Your address is invalid" scam email?

"Your address is invalid" is the name of a malware-proliferating spam campaign. This term defines a mass-scale operation during which deceptive emails are sent by the thousand. The letters distributed through this campaign - are disguised as notifications from FedEx - an American multinational delivery services company. These fake emails state that delivery has failed due to an incorrect address. The errors can be rectified by submitting corrected documentation. However, upon opening, the document attached to the scam letters - begins download/installation of the Qakbot trojan.

Your address is invalid malware-spreading email spam campaign

The "Your address is invalid" scam emails (subject/title "Delivery status update"; may vary) inform recipients' that their shipping address is invalid. The delivery status is stated as "failed". Specifically, the letters claim that there is a wrong value in the shipping address. To resume with the shipping/delivery process, the fake FedEx emails request recipients to review the attached document, fill out the form, and then send it back. It must be emphasized that these letters are in no way associated with the real FedEx, and all of the information provided by them is false. Hence, instead of containing the stated forms, the attachment initiates Qakbot malware's infection chain - upon opening.

Qakbot is classified as a banking trojan due to targeting information relating to online banking. This malicious program's primary goal is stealing victims' bank account credentials, i.e., their IDs, email addresses, usernames, and passwords. The trojan can extract the following data: browsing activity (visited URLs, viewed webpages, searched queries, etc.), Internet cookies, IP addresses/ geolocations, personally identifiable details, log-in credentials, etc. This malware can also take screenshots and record keystrokes (keylogging). Another heinous functionality of Qakbot is causing chain infections. In other words, this trojan can download/install additional malware (e.g., ransomware, cryptocurrency miners, etc.). Therefore, the threats posed by Qakbot are extensive. To summarize, by trusting the "Your address is invalid" fake emails, users can experience multiple system infections, severe privacy issues, significant financial losses, and identity theft. If it is known/suspected that Qakbot has already infected the system - an anti-virus must be used to remove it immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name Qakbot virus
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Hoax Scam emails state that a delivery has failed due to an incorrect shipping address.
Disguise Scam emails are disguised as notifications from FedEx.
Attachment(s) 11521271633-05192021.xlsm (filename may vary)
Detection Names Avast (Script:SNH-gen [Trj]), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.46323457), ESET-NOD32 (Multiple Detections), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.MSOffice.Generic), Microsoft (TrojanDownloader:O97M/EncDoc.VISAI!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.
Payload Qakbot
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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"CARGO ARRIVAL NOTICE", "Bank Payment Copy", and "NOTICE OF ACCOUNT CLOSURE FOR AUDIT" are a couple examples of malware-spreading spam campaigns. The emails sent through these large-scale operations - are usually presented as "official", "urgent", "important", and similar; they may be disguised as messages from genuine companies, organizations, authorities, service providers, and other entities. Aside from distribution of malicious software, deceptive letters are also used for phishing and other scams. Scammers and cyber criminals widely employ spam mail; therefore, it is strongly advised to exercise caution with incoming emails.

How did "Your address is invalid" email infect my computer?

Systems are infected via malicious files distributed through spam campaigns. These files can be attached to the emails, and/or the letters can contain download links of such content. Virulent files can be in various formats, e.g., Microsoft Office and PDF documents, archive and executable files, JavaScript, etc. When infectious files are executed, run, or otherwise opened - the infection process (i.e., malware download/installation) is jumpstarted. For example, Microsoft Office documents cause infections by executing malicious macro commands. This process begins the moment a document is opened in Microsoft Office versions released before 2010. Newer versions have "Protected View" mode that prevents automatic execution of macros. Instead, users can manually enable macro commands (i.e., editing/content), and they are warned of the potential risks.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Suspicious and irrelevant emails must not be opened, especially any attachments or links present in them. It is recommended to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010. Malware is also proliferated through dubious download channels (e.g., unofficial and free file-hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, and other third-party downloaders), illegal activation tools ("cracks"), and fake updates. Therefore, it is important to download only from official and verified sources. Additionally, all programs must be activated and updated using 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 and updated. Furthermore, this software has to be used to run regular system scans and remove detected threats and issues. If you've already opened "Your address is invalid email virus" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Your address is invalid" scam email letter:

Subject: Delivery status update

 

FedEx


Your address is invalid.


Tracking ID: 7974720929
Date: 5.19.21
Email : -
Status: Failed
Reason: Your shipping address contains a bad value.

 

Please, check the attached document, fill out the form and send it back.

 

FedEx 1995-2021 Copyright, All rights reserved.

Malicious attachment distributed via "Your address is invalid" spam campaign ("11521271633-05192021.xlsm"):

Your address is invalid email virus attachment (11521271633-05192021.xlsm)

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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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.

QR Code
Qakbot virus QR code
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