The Azorult Trojan is a dangerous weapon used against computer users worldwide. It infects mainly via infected software installers. Our article gives an overview of its behavior according to the collected samples and available reports, also it may be helpful in attempting to remove the virus.
|Name||Azorult Trojan also known as Trojan.AZORult|
|Short Description||The Azorult Trojan is a computer virus that is designed to silently infiltrate computer systems.|
|Symptoms||The victims may not experience any apparent symptoms of infection.|
|Distribution Method||Software Vulnerabilities, Freeware Installations, Bundled Packages, Scripts and others.|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Azorult Trojan.|
Fake ProtonVPN Azorult Trojan Delivery
A group of security researchers uncovered a dangerous new attack campaign bearing the Azorult Trojan — it is not known if the hacking group is the same as the one in the previous infections. This time the criminals have been found to impersonate a popular privacy program called ProtonVPN. It is used to connect the users to a network which is located in a country of their choosing. VPN software aim to add a layer of privacy and protection as the network traffic is encrypted and is used to access content that may not be available in a certain region.
The files containing the Azorult Trojan are dangerous setup files or related packages which are branded as the VPN program. The hackers appear to be sending them mainly via various phishing campaigns — the main method is to include links to the files in affiliate networks and ads. This means that even legitimate and well-known sites can become proxies for Azorult Trojan deployment. The users are directed to pages that may impersonate download portals, software landing pages or update notifications. By being navigated to them the contents will drive them to download and install the virus-infected installer. Upon running these files the infection will start.
The Azorult Trojan in this version has been found to immediately start running its included sequence. The first command is the data harvesting action — the Trojan will start to collect sensitive information about the machines, including operating system conditions and the installed hardware parts. The main malware engine has also been found to harvest information from the web browsers — particularly for stored passwords, form data and specific strings. Some of the newer variants also have the capability of harvesting any found cryptocurrency wallet accounts — this is used to directly plan financial theft. From there on the usual components will be run as designated by the hackers.
Azorult Trojan – Distribution Methods
The Azorult Trojan, alternatively spelled as AZORult, is a dangerous malware which constantly shifts its distribution strategies. The latest release has been found to be released through malicious Google Update installers thus being spread via a payload carrier, in this case a modified application installer. This tactic relies on the acquisition of legitimate setup files of popular application (in this case a Google Product) which are to be modified with the Trojan code and then distributed via various mechanisms. Some of them include the following:
- Email Campaigns — The criminals can coordinate the sending of email messages that coerce the recipients into thinking that they are receiving legitimate notifications from services and companies. In these particular cases the emails may be designed with Google branding and motion the users into installing a newer version of the product. The virus files may be linked in the body contents or directly attached to the emails.
- Malicious Sites — The other strategy is to create and deploy sites that pose as legitimate search engines, product landing pages and etc. They can take various forms and in many cases use similar sounding domain names and security certificates.
- File-Sharing Networks — The installers can be uploaded to networks like BitTorrent which are widely used to distribute both legitimate and pirate content.
- Malicious Document Carriers — The same strategy as the application installers can be used to apply the virus installation commands into documents across all popular types: text documents, presentations, databases and spreadsheets. Whenever they are opened by the victims a prompt will be spawned requesting that they run the scripts in order to correctly view the contents of the file.
- Browser Plugins — The hackers can also create malicious plugins made for the most popular web browsers, alternatively known as “hijackers”. They are widely uploaded to the respective repositories of the browsers using fake developer credentials and user reviews. They will promise enhanced performance and the addition of new features.
Other tactics can be employed as the Azorult Trojan continues to be developed.
Azorult Trojan – Detailed Description
As soon as the Azorult Trojan is delivered to the system it will immediately start to modify the system. The first action that it does is to create a persistent state of execution — this means that it will automatically start with the operating system boot and will be very difficult to remove using manual recovery methods. In many cases malware that have achieved this state will block access to the recovery menus and boot options.
The main goal of the Azorult Trojan is to perform an in-depth information gathering process on the infected machines. It can scan a wide range of contents including the following:
- Personal Information — The engine can acquire information that can be used to directly reveal and expose the identity of the victim users. This is done by programming the Trojan to look for strings like the following: their name, address, phone number, interests and stored account credentials.
- Machine Identification — Each individual computer can be assigned an unique ID which is composed by an algorithm that takes its input values from the list of installed hardware components, user settings, regional preferences and operating system data.
- Financial Assets — Advanced variants of the Azorult Trojan may also scan the browser’s memory in order to search for events related to online banking activities. The Trojan will harvest the entered credentials and transfer them to the hacker operators. The local hard drive, removable storage devices and network shares can also be scanned for any wallets containing digital currencies.
Additionally the main Trojan will install itself in a system location by masking as a legitimate application. The analysis reveals that it also creates entries for itself in the Windows Registry. Potential modification of operating system and third-party apps values can lead to severe performance issues and the inability to use the computer under normal conditions.
Like other Troajns Azorult will establish a secure connection to a hacker-controlled server allowing the hacking group to spy on the victims, take over control of their machines and also acquire sensitive data.
As the virus is based on a modular platform any future versions can include other modules as well. Common ones include the following:
- Data Removal — The Trojan can identify data that if deleted can make recovery very difficult. This includes System Restore Points, Backups and etc.
- Additional Payload Delivery — The Azorult Trojan can be used to download other threats to the compromised computers such as miners and ransomware.
- Botnet Recruitment — Advanced malware threats will reconfigure the machines by recruiting them to a global network of infected machines. Their combined resources can be used to take down designated targets down via the execution of distributed denial-of-service attacks (DDoS) — they are especially useful against large companies or government agencies.
As this threat has seen several versions of development we presume that a different behavior pattern and distribution method will be used in the future.
Remove Azorult Trojan Trojan
If your computer system got infected with the Azorult Trojan Trojan, you should have a bit of experience in removing malware. You should get rid of this Trojan as quickly as possible before it can have the chance to spread further and infect other computers. You should remove the Trojan and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.
Note! Your computer system may be affected by Azorult Trojan and other threats.
Scan Your PC with SpyHunter
SpyHunter is a powerful malware removal tool designed to help users with in-depth system security analysis, detection and removal of Azorult Trojan.
To remove Azorult Trojan follow these steps:
Use SpyHunter to scan for malware and unwanted programs
- Guide 1: How to Remove Azorult Trojan from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of Azorult Trojan on Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove Azorult Trojan in Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase Azorult Trojan from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall Azorult Trojan from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove Azorult Trojan from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate Azorult Trojan from Internet Explorer.
- Guide 8: Disable Azorult Trojan Push Notifications in Your Browsers.
How to Remove Azorult Trojan from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Azorult Trojan
Step 2: Uninstall Azorult Trojan 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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Azorult Trojan on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by Azorult Trojan there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
Get rid of Azorult Trojan from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall Azorult Trojan and remove related files and objects
1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:
- 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 Azorult Trojan 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:
You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove Azorult Trojan files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as Azorult Trojan, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. SpyHunter for Mac offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Remove Azorult Trojan 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.
Erase Azorult Trojan 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.
Uninstall Azorult Trojan 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.
Remove Azorult Trojan 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".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the Azorult Trojan will be removed.
Eliminate Azorult Trojan 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.
Remove Push Notifications caused by Azorult Trojan from Your Browsers.
Turn Off Push Notifications from Google Chrome
To disable any Push Notices from Google Chrome browser, please follow the steps below:
Step 1: Go to Settings in Chrome.
Step 2: In Settings, select “Advanced Settings”:
Step 3: Click “Content Settings”:
Step 4: Open “Notifications”:
Step 5: Click the three dots and choose Block, Edit or Remove options:
Remove Push Notifications on Firefox
Step 1: Go to Firefox Options.
Step 2: Go to “Settings”, type “notifications” in the search bar and click "Settings":
Step 3: Click “Remove” on any site you wish notifications gone and click “Save Changes”
Stop Push Notifications on Opera
Step 1: In Opera, press ALT+P to go to Settings
Step 2: In Setting search, type “Content” to go to Content Settings.
Step 3: Open Notifications:
Step 4: Do the same as you did with Google Chrome (explained below):
Eliminate Push Notifications on Safari
Step 1: Open Safari Preferences.
Step 2: Choose the domain from where you like push pop-ups gone and change to "Deny" from "Allow".