BitCoin Miner Virus - How to Detect and Remove It from your PC

BitCoin Miner Virus – How to Detect and Remove It

This article aims to help you detect and remove the newly emerged fileless BitCoin miner software and protect your computer in the future.

Fileless malware is shaping up to be the next big thing in cyber-security, and it will not go away soon. One such virus is the latest discovered BitCoin mining malware. This infection has the only purpose to mine BitCoin, Monero or other cryptocurrencies on the computer it has infected. For cryptocurrency mining to occur, the malware may run processes on the infected machine that may result in the significant over-usage of its resources, and it’s slowing down. And the worst part is that there are no files on your computer, meaning it is very difficult to detect it. If you believe you are infected with this BitCoin miner malware, we advise you to read this article to learn how to remove it from your computer and protect yourself in the future as well.

Threat Summary

NameBitCoin Miner
TypeCryptoCurrency Miner
Short DescriptionAims to infect your computer and use it’s CPU, GPU and other resources to turn it into a miner for cryptocurrencies.
SymptomsHightened CPU and GPU usage and overheating. The victim PC may break if this virus mines for longer periods of time.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments, Executable files
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BitCoin Miner Virus – Update July 2018

The latest developments, regarding BitCoin Miner viruses is that Google Chrome has made an announcement to block the web browser extensions that have JavaScript miner codes in them. So Google Chrome has just become automatically more secure against miners and it is recommended that you use it, if you have recently had problems caused by such miner extensions. But be advised that, this move by Google does not eliminate miner viruses, since they are still very active via Trojan Horses and on other browsers’ extensions as well.

How Does BitCoin Miner Infect

At this point, it is not clear as to what the exact infection method of this mining malware is. However, it may appear on your computer as a result of executing multiple different types of malware previously executed on your computers, such as Trojans, Worms, and others. The methods of distribution and infection vary, but they may be conducted via:

  • Malicious web links posted as a spam message online.
  • Web links that exist In various forms, as fake buttons or altered banners on a website as a result of having a PUP on your computer.
  • Via malicious e-mail spam attachment with a convincing message to open it.

The infection process itself is conducted with the aid of one of the exploits used in the WannaCry and NotPetya ransomware outbreaks which came out earlier this year. The exploit is known by the name EternalBlue and is a zero-day type of exploit for Windows versions from Windows XP up to Windows 10. Fortunately, Microsoft has released patches for the exploit, so anyone who has a legitimate Windows installation should immediately:

  • Disable the WMI service.
  • Disable SMB and Download the latest security patches from Microsoft.

Analysis of BitCoin Miner

The primary region affected by this ransomware, also dubbed by TrendMicro researchers as COINMINER.QO trojan is the Asia-Pacific region with the largest percentage of infected devices to be detected in Japan, followed by Indonesia and Taiwan.

As stated before, the BitCoin miner uses the Windows Management Instrumentation service (WMI), which has an application, called scrcons.exe, used to execute scripts. Altogether, the malware becomes completely invisible, because it does not drop any types of files on the computers infected by it.

The malicious activity of the virus is comprised of executing multiple malicious scripts on the infected PC by a backdoor which the BitCoin miner malware runs beforehand. These scripts have the purpose to connect the virus to a control and command server.

Furthermore, besides connecting to one command and control server, the virus also connects to a C&C server again, most likely used for communication. It then uses different classes to execute further scripts that allow for various actions to take place:

  • Remove control of the virus.
  • Download the cryptocurrency mining software and execute it filelessly.
  • Add the victim PC to a mining pool network in which all infected computers are also added.

Update December 2017 – New BitCoin Miners Detected

As of recent months, new miners for BitCoin have emerged out in the wild. The miners are spread via multiple different methods and the most likely that may be encountered are if they are embedded on websites via malicious JavaScript code on the websites of victims. In addition to this, some of the miners are embedded in Trojan Horse viruses, whose primary purpose is to remain unnoticed on your computer for as long as possible. So here are some of the most notorious BitCoin miner viruses which have made the most impact out of all.

Bitcoinminer.sx Malware

Being very similar to one of the Adylkuzz Trojan, the Bitcoinminer.sx may come on your computer via malicous e-mails sent over the web, that deceive you into thinking you are receiving an invoice, banking statement, receipt or a purchase letter for a product. The miner malware may even have advanced capabilities, like to update itself or install other miners on the computer of the victim a s well as collect keystrokes and other crucial data.

Related Story: How to Remove Bitcoinminer.sx from Your Computer

Upup.exe BitCoin Miner

Similar to Bitcoinminer.sx, the Upup.exe malware also aims to use the CPU and GPU resources on the computer of the victim by connecting the computer to a mining pool. In addition to this, the malware also modifies the registry sub-keys, responsible for the Certificats in order to obtain certain permissions later on, like network information, system details, passwords and other data.

Related Story: How to Remove Upup.exe BitCoin Miner from Your Computer

Service.exe Virus Process

This malware is of unknown origins and most of what is known about it is that it uses a fake Service.exe process in order to perform the mining operation. The virus used to infect victims by posing as a fake document, program setup, patch or software license activator and it was primarily spread via malicious e-mail spam messages. It was also reported by experts to have Trojan capabilities, meaning that it may steal your login information, like passwords, user names and may also update itself and remotely control your PC.

Related Story: How to Remove Service.exe BitCoin Miner from Your Computer

WDF.EXE CryptoMiner Trojan

The WDF.exe is one of two processes which are dropped on a newly created folder, named “wdf”. The folder of this miner Trojan horse is located in the %Windows% directory and it also contains the taskmon.exe malicious file, which may also install other miners on the victim’s computer, such as a miner, reported to activate a process, named NvProfileUpdater64.exe.

Related Story: How to Remove WDF.exe BitCoin Miner from Your Computer

How to Detect and Remove BitCoin Miner Malware

Since this is malware from the fileless type, meaning it does not drop any files on your computer, your best bet is to manually interact with the following root classes:

ActiveScriptEventConsumer
__EventFilter
__IntervalTimerInstruction
__AbsoluteTimerInstruction
__FilterToConsumerBinding

Since those classes are used to trigger the malicious script, they cannot be interacted with by simply disabling WMI as shown above. So this is why manual removal of BitCoin miner may be a challenging process.

The best practice to detect the malicious processes running in the background of your computer and associated with BitCoin miner is to automatically scan for them with malware-specific removal software. This will also ensure that these malicious objects are removed safely, without risking to damage critical Windows Components by manually removing them. For more information and an option on how to remove BitCoin fileless miner, one method is to follow the instructions below.

Manually delete BitCoin Miner from your computer

Note! Substantial notification about the BitCoin Miner threat: Manual removal of BitCoin Miner requires interference with system files and registries. Thus, it can cause damage to your PC. Even if your computer skills are not at a professional level, don’t worry. You can do the removal yourself just in 5 minutes, using a malware removal tool.

1. Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove BitCoin Miner files and objects
2. Find malicious files created by BitCoin Miner on your PC

Automatically remove BitCoin Miner by downloading an advanced anti-malware program

1. Remove BitCoin Miner with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool
Optional: Using Alternative Anti-Malware Tools
Boyana Peeva

Boyana Peeva

Believes that the glass is rather half-full and that nothing is bigger than the little things. Enjoys writing, reading and sharing content – information is power.

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