How to eliminate Dragsteal malware from the operating system?

Also Known As: Dragsteal virus
Type: Trojan
Damage level: Severe

What is Dragsteal?

Dragsteal is a malicious program designed to steal data from infected systems. This piece of malicious software specifically targets Grand Theft Auto (GTA) video game related content. However, stealer-type malware often has a wide variety of information-stealing abilities. Therefore, infections of this type can lead to a broad range of serious issues.

Dragsteal malware detections on VirusTotal

Dragsteal malware overview

There are three variants of Dragsteal; they target ASI, LUA, and CLEO formats, respectively. This allows the malicious program access to the Grand Theft Auto (GTA) modification and Dynamic Link (.DLL) libraries.

Malware of this type commonly has various functionalities to steal information. In general, stealers can extract data from specific browsers and other installed applications.

Targeted information includes (but is not limited to): browsing activity, autofill data, IP addresses, account credentials (i.e., usernames/ email addresses and passwords), personally identifiable details, and finance-related data (e.g., banking account and credit card numbers, etc.).

Some stealers also have other abilities, such as keylogging (keystroke recording), taking screenshots, live-streaming/recording desktop or audio/video via microphones and cameras, and so forth.

In summary, system infections of this kind can result in severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft. If it is suspected that Dragsteal (or other malware) has already infected the system - an anti-virus must be used to eliminate it immediately.

Threat Summary:
Name Dragsteal virus
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Detection Names (ASI) Avast (Win32:Trojan-gen), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.GenericKD.46830788), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Agent.UNK), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-GameThief.Win32.GrandSteal), Microsoft (Trojan:Win32/Mamson.A!ac), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Detection Names (LUA) Arcabit (Trojan.Generic.D242E9F0), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.GenericKD.37939696), Emsisoft (Trojan.GenericKD.37939696 (B)), Lionic (Trojan.UKP.Generic.4!c), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Detection Names (CLEO) Arcabit (Trojan.Generic.D242EA05), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.GenericKD.37939717), DrWeb (Trojan.PWS.Stealer.30617), Lionic (Trojan.UKP.Generic.4!c), 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 Combo Cleaner.
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Malware in general

PasswordStealer, Bloody, BluStealer, Kuukostealer, and Mars are some examples of other malicious software capable of exfiltrating data.

Malware can have various harmful functions, which can be in different combinations. Trojan is a broad term defining malicious programs that may be able to steal information, download files, cause chain infections, spy (e.g., record keystrokes, audio/video, etc.), enable remote access and control (RATs - Remote Access Trojans), and so on.

Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts data and/or locks the device's screen - to demand ransoms for the decryption/ access recovery. Cryptominers are designed to generate cryptocurrency by abusing system resources.

Regardless of how malware operates, it endangers device and user safety. Therefore, all system infections must be eliminated immediately upon detection.

How did Dragsteal infiltrate my computer?

Dragsteal malware has been noted being sold online; hence, how it is proliferated depends on the cyber criminals using it at the time.

The most popular distribution methods include dubious download channels, e.g., Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, unofficial and freeware websites, and other third-party downloaders. Illegal activation ("cracking") tools and fake updates are also used in distribution. "Cracks" can cause infections instead of activating licensed products. Fake updaters infect systems by abusing outdated software flaws and/or by installing malicious programs.

Spam campaigns are also used to spread malware. Spam emails can have malicious files attached to and/or linked inside them. These files can be in various formats, e.g., executables (.exe, .run, etc.), archives (RAR, ZIP, etc.), Microsoft Office and PDF documents, JavaScript, and so forth. When the files are opened - the infection chain is triggered.

How to avoid installation of malware?

It is recommended to only download from official and verified sources. Additionally, all programs must be activated and updated with tools provided by legitimate developers. Dubious and irrelevant emails should not be opened. The attachments and links found in such mail - must not be opened/clicked, as they can cause system infections.

It is crucial to have a reputable anti-virus installed and updated. This software has to be used to run regular system scans and to remove detected threats. If you believe that your computer is already infected, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Screenshot of Dragsteal malware's official website:

Dragsteal malware website

Appearance of Dragsteal malware being promoted on hacker forums (GIF):

Dragsteal malware promoted on hacker forum (GIF)

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:

Malware process running in the Task Manager

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:

Autoruns application appearance

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.

Run Windows 7 or Windows XP in 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.

Run Windows 8 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.

Run Windows 10 in 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 archive and run Autoruns.exe application

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.

Refresh Autoruns application results

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".

Delete malware in Autoruns

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.

Search for malware and delete 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 Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

My computer is infected with Dragsteal malware, should I format my storage device to get rid of it?

No, there is no need for such drastic measures. Malware like Dragsteal can be removed without formatting.

What are the biggest issues that Dragsteal malware can cause?

The threats a malicious program poses depend on its abilities and the cyber criminals' modus operandi. Dragsteal is a data-stealing malware; malicious software of this type can potentially lead to severe privacy issues, financial losses, and identity theft.

What is the purpose of Dragsteal malware?

There are various reasons why malware is released; primarily, it is due to financial motivations. However, aside from generating revenue, cyber criminals may use malicious programs: for their own amusement, political or geopolitical reasons, to target specific victims, or to disrupt/damage certain processes (e.g., websites, services, companies, etc.).

How did Dragsteal malware infiltrate my computer?

Malware is often proliferated using social engineering (e.g., phishing, fake system alerts, and other scams) and dubious distribution methods. For example, malicious software can be spread via Peer-to-Peer sharing networks; deceptive, unofficial, and freeware websites; illegal software activation tools ("cracks"); spam emails (malspam); fake updates; and so on. Some malware can even self-proliferate through local networks and removable storage devices (e.g., USB flash drives, external hard drives, etc.).

Will Combo Cleaner protect me from malware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and eliminate practically all known malware infections. However, it is crucial to perform a full system scan since high-end malware tends to hide deep within the system.

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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.

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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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