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How to avoid installation of Dracarys malware

Also Known As: Dracarys spyware
Type: Trojan
Damage level: Severe

What kind of malware is Dracarys?

Dracarys is the name of Android spyware - malware that monitors activity and steals sensitive information. This spyware is distributed via fake websites by disguising it as legitimate applications. Trojanized apps have malicious code inserted into them to avoid detection.

Dracarys android malware

What are the capabilities of the Dracarys spyware

Dracarys/trojanized apps can access contacts and messages (and receive messages in trojanized apps), access the camera, call logs, and read the external storage contents. It also can record audio with the microphone, write and delete files to the external storage, initiate phone calls, and access the victim's location.

Additionally, it can obtain the list of installed applications and files present on the device, and capture screenshots. Its sends stolen data to its Command and Control server. The list of trojanized (fake) apps used to spy on victims includes Signal, Telegram, WhatsApp, and YouTube.

Threat actors behind Dracarys may use the stolen information to hijack online accounts, steal identities, blackmail victims, write malicious files to devices, and perform other malicious activities.

Threat Summary:
Name Dracarys spyware
Threat Type Android malware, spyware
Related Domain signalpremium[.]com
Detection Names (signalpremium[.]com) Avira (Malware), Combo Cleaner (Malware), ESTsecurity (Malicious), Sophos (Malware), Full List (VirusTotal)
Detection Names (Dracarys) Avast-Mobile (APK:RepMalware [Trj]), DrWeb (Android.Spy.1037.origin), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Android/Spy.Dracarys.A), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-Spy.AndroidOS.Dracarys.a), Full List (VirusTotal)
Symptoms The device is running slow, system settings are modified without user's permission, questionable applications appear, data and battery usage is increased significantly, browsers redirect to questionable websites, files are deleted.
Distribution methods Fake applications hosted by deceptive websites.
Damage Stolen personal information (private messages, call logs, etc.), decreased device performance, battery is drained quickly, decreased Internet speed, huge data losses, monetary losses, stolen identity.
Malware Removal (Android) To eliminate malware infections our security researchers recommend scanning your Android device with legitimate anti-malware software. We recommend Avast, Bitdefender, ESET or Malwarebytes.

More about Dracarys

Dracarys is malware created to spy on victims. It may have additional capabilities in the future (e.g., it may have the ability to log keystrokes, extract saved passwords, and other sensitive information). Its distribution methods may change as well. More examples of Android malware are DawDropper, Bahamut, and Coper.

How did Dracarys infiltrate my device?

Dracarys spyware is distributed via fake websites masquerading as legitimate websites. Users infect devices with this malware after downloading and installing fake/trojanized applications (e.g., fake Signal, Telegram, WhatsApp, or YouTube apps). A screenshot of a deceptive page distributing the fake Signal app is provided below.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Download applications from legitimate stores. Do not use unofficial pages, third-party stores, and similar sources to download apps. Read app reviews before downloading and installing apps. Do not trust apps with no (or few) reviews. Always have the Google Play Protect security service enabled.

Do not click links in suspicious SMSes and emails or advertisements on unofficial web pages. Keep the operating system and installed apps updated.

Screenshot of a website (signalpremium[.]com) used to promote Dracarys malware:

Dracarys malware-spreading website (signalpremium.com)

Quick menu:

Delete browsing history from the Chrome web browser:

Deleting web browsing history from Chrome in Android operating system (step 1)

Tap the "Menu" button (three dots on the right-upper corner of the screen) and select "History" in the opened dropdown menu.

Deleting web browsing history from Chrome in Android operating system (step 2)

Tap "Clear browsing data", select "ADVANCED" tab, choose the time range and data types you want to delete and tap "Clear data".

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Disable browser notifications in the Chrome web browser:

Disabling browser notifications in the Chrome browser in Android operating system (step 1)

Tap the "Menu" button (three dots on the right-upper corner of the screen) and select "Settings" in the opened dropdown menu.

Disabling browser notifications in the Chrome browser in Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you see "Site settings" option and tap it. Scroll down until you see "Notifications" option and tap it.

Disabling browser notifications in the Chrome browser in Android operating system (step 3)

Find the websites that deliver browser notifications, tap on them and click "Clear & reset". This will remove permissions granted for these websites to deliver notifications. However, once you visit the same site again, it may ask for a permission again. You can choose whether to give these permissions or not (if you choose to decline the website will go to "Blocked" section and will no longer ask you for the permission).

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Reset the Chrome web browser:

Resetting Chrome browser to default in Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Apps" and tap it.

Resetting Chrome browser to default in Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you find "Chrome" application, select it and tap "Storage" option.

Resetting Chrome browser to default in Android operating system (step 3)

Tap "MANAGE STORAGE", then "CLEAR ALL DATA" and confirm the action by taping "OK". Note that resetting the browser will eliminate all data stored within. This means that all saved logins/passwords, browsing history, non-default settings and other data will be deleted. You will also have to re-login into all websites as well.

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Delete browsing history from the Firefox web browser:

Delete browsing history from the Firefox in the Android operating system (step 1)

Tap the "Menu" button (three dots on the right-upper corner of the screen) and select "History" in the opened dropdown menu.

Delete browsing history from the Firefox in the Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you see "Clear private data" and tap it. Select data types you want to remove and tap "CLEAR DATA".

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Disable browser notifications in the Firefox web browser:

Disable browser notifications in the Firefox web browser in the Android operating system (step 1)

Visit the website that is delivering browser notifications, tap the icon displayed on the left of URL bar (the icon will not necessarily be a "Lock") and select "Edit Site Settings".

Disable browser notifications in the Firefox web browser in the Android operating system (step 2)

In the opened pop-up opt-in the "Notifications" option and tap "CLEAR".

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Reset the Firefox web browser:

Resetting Firefox browser in the Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Apps" and tap it.

Resetting Firefox browser in the Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you find "Firefox" application, select it and tap "Storage" option.

Resetting Firefox browser in the Android operating system (step 3)

Tap "CLEAR DATA" and confirm the action by taping "DELETE". Note that resetting the browser will eliminate all data stored within. This means that all saved logins/passwords, browsing history, non-default settings and other data will be deleted. You will also have to re-login into all websites as well.

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Uninstall potentially unwanted and/or malicious applications:

Removing unwanted/malicious applications from the Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Apps" and tap it.

Removing unwanted/malicious applications from the Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you see a potentially unwanted and/or malicious application, select it and tap "Uninstall". If, for some reason, you are unable to remove the selected app (e.g., you are prompted with an error message), you should try using the "Safe Mode".

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Boot the Android device in "Safe Mode":

The "Safe Mode" in Android operating system temporarily disables all third-party applications from running. Using this mode is a good way to diagnose and solve various issues (e.g., remove malicious applications that prevent users you from doing so when the device is running "normally").

Booting Android device in Safe Mode

Push the "Power" button and hold it until you see the "Power off" screen. Tap the "Power off" icon and hold it. After a few seconds the "Safe Mode" option will appear and you'll be able run it by restarting the device.

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Check the battery usage of various applications:

Checking the battery usage of various applications in the Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Device maintenance" and tap it.

Checking the battery usage of various applications in the Android operating system (step 2)

Tap "Battery" and check the usage of each application. Legitimate/genuine applications are designed to use as low energy as possible in order to provide the best user experience and to save power. Therefore, high battery usage may indicate that the application is malicious.

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Check the data usage of various applications:

Checking data usage of various applications in the Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Connections" and tap it.

Checking data usage of various applications in the Android operating system (step 2)

Scroll down until you see "Data usage" and select this option. As with battery, legitimate/genuine applications are designed to minimize data usage as much as possible. This means that huge data usage may indicate presence of malicious application. Note that some malicious applications might be designed to operate when the device is connected to wireless network only. For this reason, you should check both Mobile and Wi-Fi data usage.

Checking data usage of various applications in the Android operating system (step 3)

If you find an application that uses a lot of data even though you never use it, then we strongly advise you to uninstall it as soon as possible.

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Install the latest software updates:

Keeping the software up-to-date is a good practice when it comes to device safety. The device manufacturers are continually releasing various security patches and Android updates in order to fix errors and bugs that can be abused by cyber criminals. An outdated system is way more vulnerable, which is why you should always be sure that your device's software is up-to-date.

Installing software updates in the Android operating system (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Software update" and tap it.

Installing software updates in the Android operating system (step 2)

Tap "Download updates manually" and check if there are any updates available. If so, install them immediately. We also recommend to enable the "Download updates automatically" option - it will enable the system to notify you once an update is released and/or install it automatically.

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Reset the system to its default state:

Performing a "Factory Reset" is a good way to remove all unwanted applications, restore system's settings to default and clean the device in general. However, you must keep in mind that all data within the device will be deleted, including photos, video/audio files, phone numbers (stored within the device, not the SIM card), SMS messages, and so forth. In other words, the device will be restored to its primal state.

You can also restore the basic system settings and/or simply network settings as well.

Resetting the Android operating system to its default (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "About phone" and tap it.

Resetting the Android operating system to its default (step 2)

Scroll down until you see "Reset" and tap it. Now choose the action you want to perform:
"Reset settings" - restore all system settings to default;
"Reset network settings" - restore all network-related settings to default;
"Factory data reset" - reset the entire system and completely delete all stored data;

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Disable applications that have administrator privileges:

If a malicious application gets administrator-level privileges it can seriously damage the system. To keep the device as safe as possible you should always check what apps have such privileges and disable the ones that shouldn't.

Disabling Android applications that have administrator privileges (step 1)

Go to "Settings", scroll down until you see "Lock screen and security" and tap it.

Disabling Android applications that have administrator privileges (step 2)

Scroll down until you see "Other security settings", tap it and then tap "Device admin apps".

Disabling Android applications that have administrator privileges (step 3)

Identify applications that should not have administrator privileges, tap them and then tap "DEACTIVATE".

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the biggest issues that malware can cause?

It can encrypt files, steal sensitive information (e.g., credit card details, passwords, ID card information), use a device to mine cryptocurrency, delete files, and more. It depends on the type of malware.

What is the purpose of Dracarys malware?

Dracarys is spyware. It can collect call logs and messages (and receive messages in trojanized messaging apps), capture screenshots, record audio, access the camera, delete and write files, get the list of installed applications, and more. A more detailed description is provided in our article.

How Dracarys is distributed?

Cybercriminals use fake websites hosting trojanized (fake) applications to trick users into downloading and installing malware. They use fake YouTube, Signal, Telegram, WhatsApp, and possibly other apps to trick users into infecting their devices.

Will Combo Cleaner protect me from malware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and remove malware. It can find almost all known malware. However, it is important to know that high-end malware can hide deep in the operating system. Thus, the device must be scanned fully (using a full scan feature) to remove malware of this kind.

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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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