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SocketPlayer Trojan Removal — Restore Your PC From Infections

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

The SocketPlayer Trojan is a newly discovered virus that is incorporated into two variants. An extensive code analysis reveals that it does include advanced components capable of causing extensive damage to the infected hosts. Read more about it in our removal guide.

Threat Summary

Name SocketPlayer
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


Malware Removal Tool

User Experience Join Our Forum to Discuss SocketPlayer.

SocketPlayer Trojan – How Does It Infect

The SocketPlayer Trojan is being distributed in a small-sized attacks which doesn’t allow the researchers to identify the main infections. method. Many similar threats use such cases in their test releases. This gives us a reason to believe that the criminals behind it may use resort into using the most popular delivery tactics.

A preferred method is the use of SPAM email messages that rely on social engineering techniques. They attempt to impersonate well-known companies by taking text, images and other elements from official sites and creating messages that implement them. In the most typical case the associated SocketPlayer Trojan is delivered aither as a file attachment or hyperlinked in the body contents. These messages can also server as the primary payload delivery mechanism. There are two common types that are being used the most by virus creators:

  • Software Installers — The hackers can embed the virus code into application installers of different types. This is done by taking the legitimate installer from the vendor’s official site and modifying it with the associated virus code.
  • Documents — The SocketPlayer Trojan can be embedded in document files of various types: text, spreadsheets, presentations and etc. Once the victims open the relevant files they will be greeted by a notification prompt asking them to enable the built-in scripts (macros). If this is done the associated payload trigger function will be executed. This leads to the virus infection.

The hackers may also create counterfeit download pages that are modeled after the templates used by popular Internet services. Another strategy is to create malicious scripts such as pop-ups,banners, in-line hyperlinks, redirects and etc.

SocketPlayer Trojan – More Information and Analysis

The SocketPlayer Trojan has been analyzed to include several modules that are launched after the virus infections has infected the machines. It institutes itself as a persistent threat which makes it very hard to remove using manual methods. Several techniques are used at once in order to produce an effective installation. It renames itself as a music player or another user-installed applications and installs itself in a system folder. The malware engine also creates Windows registry entries which made it automatically start each time the computer boots.

The other component that it has been found to execute is the stealth protection module. It scans the system for any security software that can interfere with the malware’s correct execution.

At the moment there are two variants of the SocketPlayer Trojan that have been detected by the security researchers:

  • Variant 1 — The first discovery of this version was submitted in the end of March 2018. It appears that this particular threat is to be delivered using phishing messages.
  • Variant 2 — This version differs from the former by using a slightly different infection behavior. It also communicates with the hacker-controlled severs using the associated module.

The SocketPlayer Trojan connects to a hacker-controlled server in order to report the infections. The security analysis also reveals that it does include an elaborate set of available commands that the hacker operators can trigger:

  • fdrive — Iterates through all drives that are ready and returns the name, the total size and again, the name. If a drive isn’t ready, only the name is returned.
  • fdir — If the specified directory isn’t on the system, false is returned. Otherwise the path of the subdirectories, the creation date of those, all files within the current directory, the file size and the creation date of those is returned.
  • mfdir — Returns the filename, file size, creation time and the full name of all the extensions that were specified recursively using the sndflesi method.
  • f1 — If the specified parameter is longer than 3 and contains “:\\” it will return “f1|drive”. Otherwise it will return the name of the parent directory.
  • strtsgnl — Returns the uid of the current running program.
  • fdowl — Using the sndfle function, a file is uploaded to the c2 using the path /cl/upld/.
  • fexc — Executes a file if it exists.
  • fdel — fdel Deletes a directory or file if it exists.
  • procs — Returns information about currently running processes like the process name, whether the process responds, the window title and the process id.
  • prockill — Kills a running process by id. After that the same information as in procs is returned(to check if the process is terminated).
  • Gtscreen — A screenshot is made and returned.
  • upld — A specified file from the /uploads/ folder of the c2 is downloaded and stored to the temporary directory. After that it’s executed.
  • upldex — Similar to upld but with specified location in the temporary directory and an autostart entry for it as well.
  • kylgs — Reads the contents of the file “klsetup.txt” in the temporary directory and returns them.
  • destt — Kills the active socket connection, removes the autostart key,removes the created file and the path from the initial routine andexits itself.

As a consequence we expect that future versions of the SocketPlayer Trojan will include an extensive keylogger and backdoor component. It is also expected that a much larger infection camapign will be executed by the criminals. The full report about the Socket Player Trojan can be downloaded from G Data Software.

Remove SocketPlayer Trojan 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 SocketPlayer Trojan 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 SocketPlayer Trojan 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 SocketPlayer.

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 SocketPlayer 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 SocketPlayer 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 SocketPlayer 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 SocketPlayer 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.

SocketPlayer FAQ

What Does SocketPlayer Trojan Do?

The SocketPlayer 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.

Can Trojans Steal Passwords?

Yes, Trojans, like SocketPlayer, 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 SocketPlayer 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. Bear in mind, that there are more sophisticated Trojans, that leave backdoors and reinfect even after factory reset.

Can SocketPlayer 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 SocketPlayer Research

The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this SocketPlayer 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 SocketPlayer?

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 SocketPlayer 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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