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News | 12/04/2017

Scarab Ransomware – Removal Tool and Protection Guide

About : After havoc created by Necurs botnet, which is one of the devastating botnets in the recent times. It is known for playing a major role in distributing Locky ransomware and Dridex banking trojan. Over the course of this year, Necurs has evolved with a new strain called Scarab ransomware and this operates with sending out bulk emails.
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What is Scarab ransomware?

The Scarab ransomware came to limelight first on 2rd November, it is being sent primarily to .com addresses, followed by co.uk inboxes. It was sent to 12.5 million email addresses in the first four hours alone, according to Forcepoint.In the recent development, Necurs botnet is being used to spread a spam campaign with Scarab ransomware. F-Secure security firm was the first ones to discover this attack campaign which had malicious VBScript downloaders compressed with 7zip. The script also contains several ‘Game of Thrones’ references, including JohnSnow and Samwell. Scarab, it’s a relatively new ransomware, based on open source ransomware proof-of-concept named HiddenTear. It was discovered in June by Michael Gillespie, according to Forcepoint.

Also read-How to remove Youradexchange.com virus?

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The Modus Operandi Of Scarab ransomware?

The unwelcome emails in question come with the malicious heading “Scanned from {printer company name}” subject line and contain a 7zip attachment with a VBScript downloader. The download domains being used are similar to its preditor Necurs-based attacks, the vendor claimed.“Once installed [the ransomware] proceeds to encrypt files, adding the extension ‘.[suupport@protonmail.com].scarab’ to affected files. A ransom notes with the filename ‘IF YOU WANT TO GET ALL YOUR FILES BACK, PLEASE READ THIS.TXT’ is dropped within each affected directory. Forcepoint revealed “Unusually, the note does not specify the amount being demanded, instead simply stating that ‘the price depends on how fast you write to us’. This note automatically gets opened by the malware after execution. ” Although payment is required in Bitcoins, email is set as the primary communication mechanism. This was the case with NotPetya earlier in the year, but as Forcepoint explains, it can be an unreliable tactic if providers move quickly to shut the domain down. That’s why an alternative BitMessage contact is also given. Forcepoint explained that using large botnets like Necurs can give smaller ransomware actors the global reach they need to punch above their weight. It remains a question whether this is a temporary campaign, as was the case with Jaff, or if we will see Scarab increase in prominence through Necurs-driven campaigns,” it concluded. Fortunately, despite its wide distribution, Scarab is detected by most anti-malware vendors, according to Chris Doman, security researcher at AlienVault.“Scarab looks less sophisticated than some other ransomware like Locky, and the usage of an e-mail based ransom payment system is very simple in contrast to its wide distribution,” he added.

 How does Scarab ransomware "Virus" get on to your computer? 

  1. It gets inside your system along with the installation of any new software applications which the user does without completely reading license agreements or reading without terms and condition. Most of these cases are sharing files like music, photos and many more in networking environment, visiting various adult websites are also liable behind the insertion of this threat inside your system.
  2. Attachments send via emails or Facebook, Skype messages. This trap is genuinely old, however it is always getting enhanced. The most recent hit is to influence it to look an associate sent you that email and it will also incorporate what seem, by all accounts, to be business related documents inside. Make sure to search for the file attachment before you take a gander at the document name. If it closes with .exe or it is .exe file then it’s most likely an infection!
  3. Bundling: Through third party installers by concealing itself in freeware installation. It comes bundled with free application hosted from unreliable site. When user install those free application then this infection also gets installed automatically. 
  4. It can also get attached with on your PC, if you frequently visit unsafe site like Porn sites or betting sites which contain illegal stuff. In addition, user should also avoid clicking on misleading ads and random links which redirects the victim to social media site.  
  5. Spam emails: This browser hijacker gets into your computer through malicious email attachments in the spam emails tab. malicious infected attachments and download links in an unknown email.
  6. Carelessness-It gets installed when you click unintentionally on any infected link. Always pay attention while clicking on unsafe links or unknown links. 
  7. Torrents & P2P File Sharing: Online Ads are another common culprit. Torrent sites especially are well known for their tricks involving multiple fake download buttons. If you click on the wrong button you’ll get a file to download that is named exactly like the file you want. Unfortunately, what’s inside is actually the virus.
  8. Fake download websites are another wellspring of this programs. These websites have worked in calculations, which enable them to duplicate your search queries and influence the search engines to trust they have an ideal match for your search. When you endeavor to download a file from such a webpage the name will fit, but the file that you have downloaded are really going to be loaded with infections, viruses, malwares and other threats. So it is never a smart thought to open documents got from arbitrary sources without scanning them for infections first. Always keep an anti-virus program on your machine.

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 Tips to prevent "Scarab ransomware joins with Necurs botnet for faster spread " from entering your computer :

1. Enable your popup blocker: Pop-ups and ads in the websites are the most adoptable tactic used by cybercriminals or developers with the core intention to spread malicious programs. So, avoid clicking uncertain sites, software offers, pop-ups etc.

2. Keep your Windows Updated: To avoid such infections, we recommend that you should always keep your system updated through automatic windows update. By doing this you can keep your device free from virus. According to the survey, outdated/older versions of Windows operating system are an easy target.

3. Third-party installation: Try to avoid freeware download websites as they usually install bundled of software with any installer or stub file.

4. Regular Backup: Regular and periodical backup helps you to keep your data safe in case the system is infected by any kind of virus or any other infection. Thus always backup important files regularly on a cloud drive or an external hard drive.

5. Always have an Anti-Virus: Precaution is better than cure. We recommend that you install an antivirus like  McAfee or a good Malware Removal Tool like Download Free Virus RemovalTool

6. Install a powerful ad- blocker for  ChromeMozilla,and   IE.

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