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Removing the Trochilus RAT (Remote Access Trojan) from your operating system

Also Known As: Trochilus remote access trojan
Type: Trojan
Damage level: Severe

What is Trochilus?

Trochilus is a piece of malicious software classified as a RAT (Remote Access Trojan). This type of malware operates by enabling remote access/control over infected devices.

Trochilus has been around for a while, and it was even available on the GitHub software repository. However, new and updated versions of this RAT have been discovered. There is evidence suggesting that this trojan is in use by a Chinese threat actor for cyber-espionage purposes.

Trochilus malware detections on VirusTotal

Trochilus malware overview

As mentioned previously, Trochilus is a RAT - a type of malware designed to allow remote access and control over compromised machines. These trojans tend to be multifunctional and pose a wide variety of threats. Trochilus is capable of executing shell commands and managing files (e.g., edit, move, delete, etc.).

This malicious program can also extract system and user data (which includes downloading files). Additionally, Trochilus can cause chain infections. It can infiltrate and execute files; hence, it could theoretically inject trojans, ransomware, cryptominers, and other malware into systems.

In summary, the presence of software like Trochilus on devices may lead to multiple system infections, decreased system performance, data loss, serious privacy issues, financial losses, and identity theft.

If you suspect that your system is infected with the Trochilus RAT (or other malware), we strongly advise using an anti-virus to remove it without delay.

Threat Summary:
Name Trochilus remote access trojan
Threat Type RAT, Remote Access Trojan, Remote Administration Trojan, Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Trochil-B [Trj]), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.Agent.BPOZ), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Generik.BBHOFPE), Kaspersky (Trojan.Win32.Trochil.a), Microsoft (Trojan:Win32/Trochil.A), 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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To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. 7 days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

Remote Access Trojan examples

We have analyzed thousands of malware samples; 9002 RATMagicRATBobik, and VanillaRAT are merely some of our newest RAT finds.

Remote Access Trojan infections are considered especially dangerous, as they usually have a broad range of capabilities. However, regardless of how malware operates - its presence on a system endangers device/user safety. Therefore, all threats must be eliminated immediately upon detection.

How did Trochilus infiltrate my computer?

Malware is typically presented as or bundled with ordinary software/media. Infectious files can be in various formats, e.g., archives (ZIP, RAR, etc.), executables (.exe, .run, etc.), Microsoft Office and PDF documents, JavaScript, and so forth. Once a malicious file is executed, run, or otherwise opened - the infection chain (i.e., malware download/installation) is triggered.

The most widely used proliferation techniques include: drive-by (stealthy/deceptive) downloads, online scams, malicious attachments/links in spam emails and messages, dubious download channels (e.g., unofficial and free file-hosting websites, P2P sharing networks, etc.), malvertising, fake updaters, and illegal program activation tools ("cracks").

How to avoid installation of malware?

We strongly recommend downloading only from official and verified sources. It is just as important to activate and update software using functions/tools provided by legitimate developers, as illegal activation tools ("cracks") and third-party updaters may contain malware.

We advise being vigilant with incoming mail. The attachments and links present in suspicious/irrelevant emails and messages - must not be opened, as they can be malicious and cause infections. Another recommendation is to be cautious when browsing since fraudulent and harmful content usually looks ordinary and innocuous.

We must stress the importance of having a reputable anti-virus installed and kept up-to-date. Security programs must 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.

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:

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 Trochilus malware, should I format my storage device to get rid of it?

No, most malicious programs can be removed without resorting to such drastic measures.

What are the biggest issues that Trochilus malware can cause?

The threats posed by malware depend on its abilities and the cyber criminals' aims. Trochilus is a RAT - a type of malware capable of enabling remote access/control over devices. This program can also download/install additional malware - hence, its infections pose a wide variety of threats.

Generally, the presence of malware on devices may lead to decreased system performance or failure, data loss, severe privacy issues, hardware damage, financial losses, and identity theft.

What is the purpose of Trochilus malware?

While malicious programs operate differently, they are typically used for the same purpose - to generate revenue. However, cyber criminals may also use malware for their own amusement or to disrupt processes (e.g., websites, services, companies, etc.), carry out personal vendettas, or even launch politically/geopolitically motivated attacks.

It is worth mentioning that new variants of Trochilus are believed to be used in cyber-espionage committed by a Chinese threat actor.

How did Trochilus malware infiltrate my computer?

Malware is mainly distributed through drive-by downloads, spam emails and messages, online scams, dubious download channels (e.g., unofficial and freeware websites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, etc.), illegal program activation tools ("cracks"), fake updaters, and malvertising.

Some malicious programs are also capable of self-proliferating via local networks and removable storage devices (e.g., external hard drives, USB flash drives, etc.).

Will Combo Cleaner protect me from malware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and eliminate nearly all known malware infections. It has to be mentioned that running a complete system scan is paramount - since sophisticated malicious programs usually hide deep within systems.

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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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