THREAT REMOVAL

Harvest Miner — How to Detect and Remove It from Your Computer

Harvest Miner imageThis blog post has been created to explain what is Harvest Miner cryptocurrency miner and show how to remove it from your computer plus protect your PC against future infections as well.

The Harvest Miner is a new cryptocurrency miner that is currently in development. Another example of such malware is the infamous Bitcoin miner virus. Its creators have created it as an open-source alternative to the popular CoinHive script. We suspect that it will gain a very large popularity once it is ready.

Threat Summary

Name Harvest Miner
Type CryptoCurrency Miner Malware
Short Description Aims to mine for different cryptocurrencies on the victim’s computer after which may begin to
Symptoms The Harvest Miner miner may begin to slow down your computer by using over 90% of both your CPU and GPU. This may result in your cooling fans to work at higher speeds.
Distribution Method Via bundled installers, fake setups or via other PUP that has already been installed on your PC.
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Harvest Miner Virus – Distribution Methods

The Harvest Miner is usually deployed to the victim computers via a web-based infection. This is done by placing a malware script into hacker-controlled sites. They are usually made using templates that pose as legitimate web services: download portals, web search engines and etc.

Such threats can also be pushed through spam email messages that contain interactive and rich text elements. A popular way of integrating coinminer scripts is to use various social engineering tactics in order to fool the victims into interacting with the malware component.

Another example would be the integration of the dangerous code in web scripts such as ads, banners, pop-ups and redirects. They are widely used on different sites and easily forwarded to the victims. In the last few months there has been a noticeable surge in the development of spam messages in the social networks. The criminals use hacked or stolen user credentials and post messages and posts that attempt to redirect the victims.

Harvest Miner Malware – Malicious Activity

The Harvest Miner follows the usual infection strategy used by other similar threats. Upon invocation it is loaded into memory and begins to take advantage of the available hardware resources to perform complex and intensive operations that result in the generation of cryptocurrency value that is sent to the criminal operators. At the moment it supports the Monero currency which is one of the well-known alternatives to Bitcoin. It has several distinct advantages over it, among which is its privacy-centric workflow. Instead of the public nature of Bitcoin’s blockchain the one used in Monero keeps the amount of transactions private. It is also difficult to pinpoint the transaction senders and receivers unless specific values are known. Monero is also known for having significantly lower transaction fees.

The Harvest Miner can be loaded into the browsers and can run efficienty once loaded into memory. At the moment the testing samples still do not match the performance ratings of more mature miners, however development is ongoing. The fact that the dangerous applications can run from a simple script makes it very dangerous. The compact size means that it can be executed from a variety of different types of pages.

The developers note that it is written using WebAssembly which means that browser-based attacks can directly invoke low-level byte code. The current implementation depends on several components:

  • Miner — Vanilla Javascript code.
  • JobThread — WebWorker Dispatcher.
  • WebWorker — Bundled WebAssembly/Assembly.js.
  • CryptoNote — Hashing Algorithm.

The code analysis shows that the Miner is used by the attackers to dispatch the malware commands to the JobThreads module. Its functions are to handled the requests and present the mining statistics: hash rate, total average, throttle and etc. The JobThread module is the part of the malware that is actually assigned with the task of controlling the miner threads. It interfaces with the CryptoNote algorithm specifications. All resulting operations are reported to the Miner instance which reports to the hacker operators via a network connection.

At the moment a final version is still not available however we suspect that once this is done the Harvest Miner will be adopted by the masses. The reason for this being is the fact that it is advertised as the open-source alternative to CoinHive which is one of the most popuar ways to deploy cryptocurrency miners. The main distinction and advantage of the Harvest Miner is the fact that it does not require a developers fee. All proceedings would go to the site operators.

Remove Harvest Miner Virus and Protect Your PC

Q: How Do I Remove Harvest Miner and How Do I Protect Myself In the Future?

A: In order to remove the Harvest Miner miner, you should first stop the malicious processes of the malware by entering Windows Task Manager and stopping the malicious task by right-clicking on the Harvest Miner process and clicking on End Process or End Process tree. This results in the virus stopping to mine. After doing so, you may want to remove the malware preferably by following the automatic or manual removal instructions below, if you have removed malware manually and have the experience. Be advised that security experts strongly recommend to remove the Harvest Miner miner malware automatically by downloading an advanced anti-malware software, that aims to scan for and erase all malware from your system plus protect it against future infections as well.

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Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

How to Remove Harvest Miner from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Harvest Miner

OFFER

Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your PC with SpyHunter

Keep in mind, that SpyHunter’s scanner is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware removal tool to remove the malware threats. Read our SpyHunter 5 review. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria

1. Hold Windows key() + R


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
Tip: Make sure to reverse those changes by unticking Safe Boot after that, because your system will always boot in Safe Boot from now on.


4. When prompted, click on "Restart" to go into Safe Mode.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall Harvest Miner and related software from Windows

Here is a method in few easy steps that should be able to uninstall most programs. No matter if you are using Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP, those steps will get the job done. Dragging the program or its folder to the recycle bin can be a very bad decision. If you do that, bits and pieces of the program are left behind, and that can lead to unstable work of your PC, errors with the file type associations and other unpleasant activities. The proper way to get a program off your computer is to Uninstall it. To do that:


1. Hold the Windows Logo Button and "R" on your keyboard. A Pop-up window will appear.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


3. This will open a window with all the programs installed on the PC. Select the program that you want to remove, and press "Uninstall"
Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Harvest Miner on your computer.

The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by Harvest Miner there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.


3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Tip: To find a virus-created value, you can right-click on it and click "Modify" to see which file it is set to run. If this is the virus file location, remove the value.

IMPORTANT!
Before starting "Step 4", please boot back into Normal mode, in case you are currently in Safe Mode.
This will enable you to install and use SpyHunter 5 successfully.

Step 4: Scan for Harvest Miner with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.


It is recommended to run a scan before purchasing the full version of the software to make sure that the current version of the malware can be detected by SpyHunter. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.


2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


4. After SpyHunter has finished scanning your PC for any files of the associated threat and found them, you can try to get them removed automatically and permanently by clicking on the 'Next' button.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

If any threats have been removed, it is highly recommended to restart your PC.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer

Get rid of Harvest Miner from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall Harvest Miner and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy


1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to Harvest Miner:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to Harvest Miner. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.


6: Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to Harvest Miner. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7: Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • Go to Finder.
  • In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
  • Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
  • If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.

In case you cannot remove Harvest Miner via Step 1 above:

In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as Harvest Miner. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Step 2: Scan for and remove malware from your Mac

When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts, programs and malware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. Combo Cleaner offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove Harvest Miner from Google Chrome.


Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu


Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"


Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Erase Harvest Miner from Mozilla Firefox.

Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window


Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.


Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"


Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Uninstall Harvest Miner from Microsoft Edge.


Step 1: Start Edge browser.


Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.


Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".


Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.


Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.



Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Remove Harvest Miner from Safari.


Step 1: Start the Safari app.


Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.


Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".

stf-safari preferences


Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.

stf-safari-extensions


Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.


Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.

stf-safari uninstall

A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the Harvest Miner will be removed.


How to Reset Safari
IMPORTANT: Before resetting Safari make sure you back up all your saved passwords within the browser in case you forget them.

Start Safari and then click on the gear leaver icon.

Click the Reset Safari button and you will reset the browser.


Windows Mac OS X Google Chrome Mozilla Firefox Microsoft Edge Safari Internet Explorer


Eliminate Harvest Miner from Internet Explorer.


Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.


Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'


Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.


Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.


Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.


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