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IceID Trojan – How to Remove It and Protect Your Network

This article has been created in order to explain what is the IcedID Trojan and how to remove this malware completely from your computer.

The IceID Trojan is an advanced banking Trojan that is being used in large-scale attacks across the world. It is being operated by two experienced criminal groups, one of which is responsible for TrickBot. Active infections modify the target victim targets in such a way that it is impossible to remove the strains with the ordinary manual instructions. Refer to our removal instructions for a detailed instruction on recovering your PC.

Threat Summary

Name IceID Trojan
Type Trojan Horse Virus
Short Description Silently infects the target machines and modifies key applications and system services.
Symptoms The user may not experience any signs of infiltration.
Distribution Method Malicious web links, Malicious Files, Malicious E-Mails
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware


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User Experience Join Our Forum to Discuss IceID Trojan.

IcedID – How Does It Infect

The IceID Trojan is being distributed at computer users worldwide in targeted attacks. The security analysis reveals that the hacker-controlled campaigns are specifically customized in order to affect as many targets as possible. The first instances of the threat were spotted last year by security researchers when the first attacks happened.

The initial attacks make use of the Emotet payload downloader using bulk email messages that contain social engineering elements. As one of the primary strategies overall this has allowed the IceID to be bundled with other malicious threats. A distinct characteristic of the IceID Trojan attacks is that it appears that the current attack seem to be organized with the criminal collective behind TrickBot. The two groups are working together in order to infect as many hosts as possible. This is evident from the fact that the newer attacks seem to use shared infrastructure resources.

The email SPAM messages use advanced social engineering tactics to manipulate the users into thinking interacting with the IceID Trojan. A common tactic is the creation of counterfeit email messages that are customized with the legitimate text and graphics hijacked from real-world financial institutions or popular Internet services. The messages may be either personalized or contain no names and appear as being sent using an automated engine.

Email messages by themselves are also among the primary techniques for distributing infected payloads. There are two primary types:

  • Infected Documents — The criminals behind the IceID Trojan can embed virus code into documents such as rich text files, spreadsheets or presentations. Once they are opened by the victims a notification prompt will appear asking them to enable the built-in macros. When this is done the IceID Trojan infection will follow.
  • Software Installers — In a similar way the criminals can embed the dangerous scripts in popular applications. This is done by taking the legitimate installers from the official download sites and modifying them with the virus code. Popular examples are system utilities, creativity suites, productivity and office apps and etc.

Such payloads can also be found on hacker-controlled sites that pose as legitimate portals. They may use text and graphics (a classic form of social engineering) to attract potential users. In the last few years we have seen an increase in malware distribution through file sharing networks such as BitTorrent.

We expect to see other distribution tactics in future campaigns as an attempt to increase the infection ratio. Trojans can also attempt to infect target computers by exploiting vulnerabilities. This is done by using automated scripts and hacking platforms that are loaded with exploit code. They are launched in an automated manner and can impact many hosts at once.

The IceID Trojan has been found to include a sophisticated stealth protection engine. It scans the victim computer for signs of anti-virus software, virtual machine hosts and debug environments. When such are found the relevant real-time engines can be disabled or the application can be completely removed from the host system. Advanced banking Trojans can be configured into deleting themselves in order to evade detection.

IcedID — Behavior Analysis

The IceID Trojan has been found to include a sophisticated stealth protection engine. It scans the victim computer for signs of anti-virus software, virtual machine hosts and debug environments. When such are found the relevant real-time engines can be disabled or the application can be completely removed from the host system. Advanced banking Trojans can be configured into deleting themselves in order to evade detection.

Following the IceID Trojan installation the criminals can then launch a data harvesting module. The engine is programmed by the hackers in advance to search for specific strings. There are two primary categories:

  • Personal Data — Sensitive information about the victims and associated devices. In most cases the hijacked strings can be used to extract data that can directly expose the identity of the users. Example content includes their name, address, telephone number, location, interests, passwords and account credentials.
  • Campaign Metrics — The acquired data can also be used to optimize the attacks by creating a profile of the installed hardware components along with certain user-set values taken from the operating system.

Using code snippets taken from TrickBot the hackers behind the IceID Trojan is installed as a persistent threat. It will interact with the system in order to make it almost impossible to remove using manual methods. This is done by modifying the Windows Registry entries and certain operating system values. To make recovery more difficult the hackers disable the access to the boot recovery menu and other options. The IceID Trojan is made to execute every time the computer is booted and the victims have no way of evading this behavior.

The victim computers can have the associated Shadow Volume Copies of sensitive files removed. As a result the users will have to use a professional-grade data recovery software to recover the affected data. Our in-depth removal guide includes a product that is both easy to use and very effective in such cases.

As a banking Trojan it can hook both to the operating system services and the user-installed applications. The virus code is made compatible with the most popular web browsers as they are the most common tool to access the online banking services: Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari and Microsoft Edge. The typical banking Trojan behavior is the following:

  1. IceID Trojan Infection — As soon as the virus file is loaded onto the target system the infection is started along with the complex behavior pattern.
  2. IceID Trojan Preparation — All preparatory actions are performed so that the main infection engine can inject itself to the target software.
  3. IceID Trojan Execution — The IceID Trojan starts to monitor the installed applications for signs of online banking use. When the victims enter their credentials to online banks they are automatically hijacked and sent to the hacker controllers.

To this date we have seen several different behavior types. The malicious code can directly harvest the account credentials, including any used two-factor authentication passcodes. Another strategy would be to manipulate the browsers into using other recipients addresses. This is done in a way that is practically invisible to the victims.

Once the online banking data has been harvested they are passed on to the hacker collective. The money is not directly transferred to the hackers but to rogue accounts that are specifically made using fake ID’s (money mules). The fraud accounts are usually made in the same financial institution and geographic location. This is a stealth action that doesn’t raise as many warning signs as international transactions.

Like other advanced banking bots it establishes a network connection with the hacker-controlled servers. It is used for various purposes, but the primary one is the information delivery of the harvested information and banking credentials. This connection is also used for deployment of additional threats. If configured properly its surveillance function can be enabled which allows the criminals to spy on the victims in real-time. They can also overtake control of the computers at any point during the Trojan’s activity. The infected hosts can be recruited into a large botnets that can in turn infect other networks. According to the released analysis the hackers use the XMPP protocol which is used by the Jabber messenger service. As a result it allows the hackers to download the recorded message, as well as receive real-time notifications when certain events have executed on the infected hosts. The security experts note that advanced Trojans also make use of advanced log parsers. They allow the hackers to execute smart algorithms that can extract additional information through behavior analysis.

The dangerous characteristic of active IceID Trojan infections is the fact that two experienced hacker collectives have joined forces. Active infections are very hard to remove as the IceID Trojan manipulates the victim system in a complex manner.

Remove IcedID Effectively from Windows

In order to fully get rid of this Trojan, we advise you to follow the removal instructions underneath this article. They are made so that they help you to isolate and then delete the IcedID Trojan either manually or automatically. If manual removal represents difficulty for you, experts always advise to perform the removal automatically by running an anti-malware scan via specific software on your PC. Such anti-malware program aims to make sure that the IcedID is fully gone and your Windows OS stays safe against any future malware infections.

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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Preparation before removing IceID Trojan.

Before starting the actual removal process, we recommend that you do the following preparation steps.

  • Make sure you have these instructions always open and in front of your eyes.
  • Do a backup of all of your files, even if they could be damaged. You should back up your data with a cloud backup solution and insure your files against any type of loss, even from the most severe threats.
  • Be patient as this could take a while.
  • Scan for Malware
  • Fix Registries
  • Remove Virus Files

Step 1: Scan for IceID Trojan 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.

SpyHunter 5 Scan Step 1

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

SpyHunter 5 Scan Step 2

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 Scan Step 3

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

Step 2: Clean any registries, created by IceID Trojan 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 IceID Trojan there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.
Remove Virus Trojan Step 6

2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.
Remove Virus Trojan Step 7

3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Remove Virus Trojan Step 8 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.

Step 3: Find virus files created by IceID Trojan on your PC.

1.For Windows 8, 8.1 and 10.

For Newer Windows Operating Systems

1: On your keyboard press + R and write explorer.exe in the Run text box and then click on the Ok button.

Remove Virus Trojan Step 9

2: Click on your PC from the quick access bar. This is usually an icon with a monitor and its name is either “My Computer”, “My PC” or “This PC” or whatever you have named it.

Remove Virus Trojan Step 10

3: Navigate to the search box in the top-right of your PC's screen and type “fileextension:” and after which type the file extension. If you are looking for malicious executables, an example may be "fileextension:exe". After doing that, leave a space and type the file name you believe the malware has created. Here is how it may appear if your file has been found:

file extension malicious

N.B. We recommend to wait for the green loading bar in the navigation box to fill up in case the PC is looking for the file and hasn't found it yet.

2.For Windows XP, Vista, and 7.

For Older Windows Operating Systems

In older Windows OS's the conventional approach should be the effective one:

1: Click on the Start Menu icon (usually on your bottom-left) and then choose the Search preference.

Remove Virus Trojan

2: After the search window appears, choose More Advanced Options from the search assistant box. Another way is by clicking on All Files and Folders.

Remove Virus Trojan Step 11

3: After that type the name of the file you are looking for and click on the Search button. This might take some time after which results will appear. If you have found the malicious file, you may copy or open its location by right-clicking on it.

Now you should be able to discover any file on Windows as long as it is on your hard drive and is not concealed via special software.

IceID Trojan FAQ

What Does IceID Trojan Trojan Do?

The IceID Trojan Trojan is a malicious computer program designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorized access to a computer system.

It can be used to steal sensitive data, gain control over a system, or launch other malicious activities.

What Damage Can IceID Trojan Trojan Cause?

The IceID Trojan Trojan is a malicious type of malware that can cause significant damage to computers, networks and data.

It can be used to steal information, take control of systems, and spread other malicious viruses and malware.

Is IceID Trojan Trojan a Harmful Virus?

Yes, it is. A Trojan is a type of malicious software that is used to gain unauthorized access to a person's device or system. It can damage files, delete data, and even steal confidential information.

Can Trojans Steal Passwords?

Yes, Trojans, like IceID Trojan, can steal passwords. These malicious programs are designed to gain access to a user's computer, spy on victims and steal sensitive information such as banking details and passwords.

Can IceID Trojan Trojan Hide Itself?

Yes, it can. A Trojan can use various techniques to mask itself, including rootkits, encryption, and obfuscation, to hide from security scanners and evade detection.

Can a Trojan be Removed by Factory Reset?

Yes, a Trojan can be removed by factory resetting your device. This is because it will restore the device to its original state, eliminating any malicious software that may have been installed.

Can IceID Trojan Trojan Infect WiFi?

Yes, it is possible for a Trojan to infect WiFi networks. When a user connects to the infected network, the Trojan can spread to other connected devices and can access sensitive information on the network.

Can Trojans Be Deleted?

Yes, Trojans can be deleted. This is typically done by running a powerful anti-virus or anti-malware program that is designed to detect and remove malicious files. In some cases, manual deletion of the Trojan may also be necessary.

Can Trojans Steal Files?

Yes, Trojans can steal files if they are installed on a computer. This is done by allowing the malware author or user to gain access to the computer and then steal the files stored on it.

Which Anti-Malware Can Remove Trojans?

Anti-malware programs such as SpyHunter are capable of scanning for and removing Trojans from your computer. It is important to keep your anti-malware up to date and regularly scan your system for any malicious software.

Can Trojans Infect USB?

Yes, Trojans can infect USB devices. USB Trojans typically spread through malicious files downloaded from the internet or shared via email, allowing the hacker to gain access to a user's confidential data.

About the IceID Trojan Research

The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this IceID Trojan how-to removal guide included, is the outcome of extensive research, hard work and our team’s devotion to help you remove the specific trojan problem.

How did we conduct the research on IceID Trojan?

Please note that our research is based on an independent investigation. We are in contact with independent security researchers, thanks to which we receive daily updates on the latest malware definitions, including the various types of trojans (backdoor, downloader, infostealer, ransom, etc.)

Furthermore, the research behind the IceID Trojan threat is backed with VirusTotal.

To better understand the threat posed by trojans, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.

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