How to avoid activating malware via "Rooming List For The Group" malspam campaign

Also Known As: Rooming List For The Group malspam campaign
Damage level: Severe

What is "Rooming List For The Group"?

Upon reviewing the email, we have identified it as a fraudulent message generated by cybercriminals impersonating hotel administration or a similar entity. The intent behind this email is to deceive recipients into unwittingly installing and activating malware on their devices. Therefore, recipients must disregard this email and refrain from opening the attached file.

Rooming List For The Group malware-spreading email spam campaign

"Rooming List For The Group" malspam campaign overview

The email presents itself as a group reservation. Despite a seemingly innocuous subject line referencing a group inquiry, the body of the email lacks personalization, addressing the recipient with a generic "Dear". It urgently requests the recipient to open an attachment purportedly containing a rooming list for a forthcoming group stay at the hotel.

This attachment request is a common tactic used by cybercriminals to distribute malware, posing a significant risk to unsuspecting recipients. Moreover, the email includes several suspicious elements aimed at manipulating the recipient into complying with fraudulent instructions.

It offers flexibility regarding group details such as the number of persons and arrival times, likely to create a veneer of authenticity. Additionally, it emphasizes specific payment instructions, including cash payments upon arrival, requests for new invoices with VAT, and peculiar directives regarding invoice handling, such as sending the final invoice exclusively to "Victoria Travel" via email.

The primary objective of this email is to entice recipients to open and execute the contents of the attached file labeled "Booking information.7z" (although its name may vary). Within this archive file lies GuLoader malware, utilized as a vehicle to deliver Remcos, a remote access Trojan (RAT).

Remcos enables attackers to remotely gain complete control over the infected computer. This grants them access to sensitive personal information, financial data, and credentials stored on the system, leading to potential identity theft, financial fraud, or unauthorized access to online accounts.

Also, cybercriminals can use Remcos to inject other malware, monitor the victim's screen, and perform other malicious activities.

Threat Summary:
Name Rooming List For The Group malspam campaign
Threat Type Trojan, password-stealing virus, banking malware, spyware.
Hoax The attachment contains a rooming list for a forthcoming group stay
Attachment(s) Booking information.7z (its name may vary)
Detection Names (GuLoader)
Avast (Win32:Malware-gen), Combo Cleaner (Trojan.GenericKD.71783038), ESET-NOD32 (NSIS/Injector.CJK), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Makoob.gen), Microsoft (Trojan:Win32/Znyonm), 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 GuLoader, Remcos
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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In conclusion, emails remain one of the most prevalent vectors for delivering malware due to their widespread use and the ease with which attackers can craft convincing phishing messages. The scenario exemplified by the distribution of malware through email attachments underscores the importance of exercising caution and employing robust cybersecurity measures.

More examples of malspam campaigns are "Order List Email Virus", "MINISTÉRIO PUBLICO PORTUGAL Email Virus", and "Missing Invoice".

How did "Rooming List For The Group" infect my computer?

The attachment included with this email is an archive file intended to deploy malicious software onto computers using GuLoader through its contents. Upon activation, GuLoader initiates the delivery of its payload, Remcos, a remote access Trojan. This infection process begins by accessing the contents enclosed within the attached archive file labeled "Booking information.7z".

Also, malware can be unknowingly downloaded and executed when visiting compromised or malicious websites, clicking malicious advertisements, installing pirated software (or using cracking tools), connecting infected USB drives, downloading from P2P networks, third-party downloaders, or similar sources. Using outdated software or operating systems can also result in computer infections.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Be cautious when opening email attachments or clicking links, especially from unknown or suspicious senders. Keep software and the operating system updated. Use a reliable security tool (antivirus or anti-malware software). Only download files from trusted sources (official websites or app stores).

Do not interact with ads, pop-ups, links, and similar content on suspicious pages or download pirated software, cracking tools, or key generators. If you've already opened "Rooming List For The Group" attachment, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Rooming List For The Group" email letter:

Subject: GROUP ENQUIRY 12744^127441^212533


Please find in the attachment the rooming list for the group 18.07.- 22.07.2024.
The number of persons can be changed!

Arrival time:
Our groups arrive often in the hotel at 23.00, sometimes even after 23.00 oclock

Important! Rooms in option!
Please hold additional 05x twin rooms in option for this group

1. The group will be paid cash by check in by the guide.
2. Please send us new current proforma invoice with VAT (TVA) according to the rooming list now
3. City tax will be paid cash at the reception by the guide.
4. Please send the final invoice to VIctoria Travel by email only. Dont give the final invoice to guide or bus driver.

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Quick menu:

Types of malicious emails:

Phishing email icon Phishing Emails

Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.

Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.

After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.

Email-virus icon Emails with Malicious Attachments

Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.

In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.

If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.

While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.

Sextortion email icon Sextortion Emails

This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.

To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.

How to spot a malicious email?

While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:

  • Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
  • Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
  • Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
  • Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.

To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows

Example of a spam email:

Example of an email spam

What to do if you fell for an email scam?

  • If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
  • If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
  • If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
  • If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
  • Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why did I receive this email?

Threat actors send identical emails to thousands of recipients, banking on the chance that someone will be deceived by their content (and open links or attachments). These spam messages lack personalization and are mass-produced in hopes of reaching vulnerable targets.

I have downloaded and opened a file attached to this email, is my computer infected?

The attachment in this email harbors a malicious file engineered to implant GuLoader malware onto computers. Activation of this malware likely results in the infection of your computer with Remcos.

I have read the email but didn't open the attachment, is my computer infected?

Merely opening an email poses no threat on its own. However, engaging with the content within the attached files can trigger a system infection.

Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections that were present in email attachment?

Combo Cleaner can identify and eradicate nearly all malware infections. It is essential to note that sophisticated malware often conceals itself deep within the system. Consequently, conducting a comprehensive system scan is imperative to ensure thorough detection and removal.

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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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