The HawkEye Trojan is a dangerous malware threat which is designed mainly for Microsoft Windows computers. It can be acquired from various sources, every attack campaign can focus on one specific tactic. Usually virus infections like this one are made by interacting with an infected file — this can be either a macro-infected document or a hacker-made software installer. They are often made by taking the legitimate files from their official sources and modifying them with the necessary virus code. Other data can also be affected. All kinds of other data may be used as well — this includes malicious plugins for web browsers and etc. In other cases the hackers can use a direct attacks that will look for system vulnerabilities and weaknesses. If any are found then the HawkEye Trojan will be installed.
This particular threat is known for being spread using a multitude of weaknesses. It is set against both end users and servers. After the infection has been made the HawkEye Trojan can download other threats, launch multiple dangerous modules and install a cryptocurrency miner which will run a sequence of performance-demanding tasks.
|Type||Malware, Trojan, Miner|
|Short Description||A dangerous malware which can launch a miner and start a Trojan module.|
|Symptoms||The victims may notice performance issues and can get infected with other malware.|
|Distribution Method||Common distribution tactics and direct web attacks.|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by HawkEye Trojan |
Malware Removal Tool
|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss HawkEye Trojan.|
HawkEye Trojan March 2020
The HawkEye Trojan is currently being spread in an ongoing phishing email campaign — the hackers are impersonating the World Health Organization. The fake messages appear as official notifications that have been sent by the Director-General of the organization and they are used as payload carriers for the Trojan. The emails contain an attached archive which includes a file called Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) CURE.exe — this file is advertised as containing information on common drugs which can be taken for the prevention of the disease. The phishing emails ask the recipients into opening attached files and following the included instructions. They are also asked to forward the email messages to their friends and relatives.
However instead of instructions regarding the Coronavirus disease infection the file will deploy the HawkEye Trojan code loader. Along with the necessary main engine the threat will run with an security bypass option. This means that the Trojan will find out if there are any running processes associated with security programs: anti-virus programs, sandbox environments, firewalls and intrusion detection systems. The security analysis will also turn off the Windows Defender feature via the Windows Registry and PowerShell commands.
HawkEye Trojan — How Did I Get It
The HawkEye Trojan is a popular hacking tool which can be launched against a variety of targets by different hacking groups. Throughout the years it has received numerous updates and is highly sought by both beginner and experienced collectives as it can be customized to support a lot of modules.
The attacks can be caused through different tactics. In most cases this includes the sending of phishing techniques which include the sending of email messages and hosting malware web sites. They are designed to look like popular web services and companies. They include dangerous contents or directly present the virus files to the recipients.
Another popular technique relies on the creation of malware files which can be macro-infected documents of all popular file formats: text files, presentations, spreadsheets and databases. The creation of malware application installers is the other technique which takes advantage of the fact that users often download popular software. When executed the virus infection will be started.
In many cases the hacking group can also craft malware browser hijackers which are dangerous plugins made for the most popular web browsers. They are commonly uploaded to their relevant repositories and use fake or hacked developer accounts and user reviews.
All malware files can be easily uploaded to file-sharing networks which distribute both pirate and legitimate data. Other techniques can also be considered.
HawkEye Trojan — Capabilities
The HawkEye Trojan follows the typical infection sequence by first launching a module responsible for data gathering — the engine will acquire personal user information and also machine information. This is done in order to extract sensitive data that can be used for other crimes as well. The security research shows that the following information is acquired:
- All installed anti-virus software
- Operating System Information
- Name of the Computer User
- Computer Name
If configured so this will allow the virus to remove all identified security programs. It can also steal the contents of the users clipboard and even manipulate it. This is particularly useful when it comes to online banking activities — the virus can automatically sense if the victims are browsing a bank and manipulate the fields in order to hijack their funds.
The commands that are sent from the hacker-controlled servers allows for other malware to be deployed onto the infected machines. In addition the Trojan can mask itself as popular apps including Spotify and other commonly accessed software. Some of the system changes that are performed include the following:
- Persistent Installation — The HawkEye Trojan can be installed as a persistent threat by automatically launching as soon as the computer is powered on. It can block access to the recovery boot options and also bypass some system services.
- Passwords Theft — The engine will automatically harvest sensitive data including passwords and account credentials.
- Other System Changes — This can include the manipulation of the Windows Registry, system configuration files and etc. The consequences include performance issues, the inability to launch certain commands and services and unexpected errors that can be paired with data loss.
- Data Removal — The Trojan engine can remove data such as backups, restore points and other related files.
Like other familiar Trojans it can also be used to install various malware threats such as ransomware and cryptocurrency miners. This is particularly important as they will be able to able to fully compromise the systems without worrying that any installed security software will block their deployment sequence.
How to Remove HawkEye Trojan
In order to fully remove HawkEye from your computer system, we recommend that you follow the removal instructions underneath this article. If the first two manual removal steps do not seem to work and you still see HawkEye or programs, related to it, we suggest what most security experts advise – to download and run a scan of your computer with a reputable anti-malware program. Downloading this software will not only save you some time, but will remove all of HawkEye files and programs related to it and will protect your computer against such intrusive apps and malware in the future.