NetSupport Manager (Virus Removal Guide) - Improved Instructions
NetSupport Manager Removal Guide
What is NetSupport Manager?
NetSupport Manager is a legitimate remote management tool that can be used as a RAT by cybercriminals
NetSupport Manager is a RAT malware that uses multi-stage infection and obfuscation techniques
NetSupport Manager is a cross-platform commercial application that was developed by NetSupport Limited. Initially, it used as a Remote Administration Tool for admins to access clients' computers remotely. However, just like many other RATs, this application can also be misused by bad actors to gain illegal access to victims' machines. NetSupport Manager would allow hackers to remotely control the affected device, i.e., install additional malware, harvest banking details or account credentials, gain access to the camera, take screenshots, and much more. The malicious version of the app is being spread with the help of fake updates, such as Flash Player, Chrome or Firefox.
|Type||Remote Administration Tool (RAT)|
|Distribution||Fake updates, The HoeflerText font wasn’t found scam|
|Risk factors||Loss of valuable information, other malware infection, identity theft, data loss, etc.|
|Symptoms||Usually no symptoms|
|Termination||Download an install reputable security software that can detect the malicious payload|
|Recovery||To fully recover from the infection and fix virus damage, scan your device with RestoroIntego|
Additionally, some versions are found being distributed with the help of the infamous HoeflerText Pop-up scam, which was also involved in GandCrab ransomware campaigns. In this article, we will explain how to remove NetSupport Manager virus safely and how to avoid consequences related to the infection. In the detailed research study by FireEye experts, it was reported that NetSupport Manager malware is mostly infecting users from the USA, Netherlands, and Germany, although other countries might be affected as well.
After downloading the payload, NetSupport Manager establishes a contact with a C&C server controlled by hackers. At this point, the malware sends the current date set on the system – and information that is sent encrypted. Next, the virus will collect a variety of information, such as:
- User name
- Computer name
- OS version
- Details of anti-malware software installed
- MAC address
- Process list, etc.
The remote server responds with a download of another JS file – Update.js, which will download and execute the final payload. The malware then utilizes PowerShell commands to download a password-protected 7zip file, which contains a NetSupport Manager. Additionally, the malware also creates a NetSupport client on the system for the remote access feature to be available.
NetSupport Manager is a legitimate tool developed to allow administrators to access computers remotely. However, it is often abused by cyberciminals to steal valuable information from victims
In addition to establishing NetSupport Manager RAT, the malicious payload also modifies Windows registry, disables Windows Error Reporting function, adds an exception in the firewall, and hides a variety of files on the system. Unfortunately, but the latter means that system files are infected as well, so even after NetSupport Manager removal, the OS might experience a variety of malfunctions. For that reason, we suggest you download and install RestoroIntego to recover from malware infection.
Be aware that NetSupport Manager virus might not let you terminate it due to the interference with security software. In such a case, enter Safe Mode and then thoroughly scan your device using reputable security software, such as SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes.
Fake updates might deliver the worst kind of infections on your device
Fake updates are among one of the most prominent malware delivery methods used in the wild. Adobe Flash Player updates are one of those which you should be especially worried about, as this outdated plugin is not only known to have a variety of security flaws, but is also used by criminals to initiate fake updates.
Therefore, you should always make sure that the update prompt is legitimate. To avoid any type of confusion, experts recommend setting automatic mode for updates. Alternatively, downloading new patches from the official websites only is a good idea as well. In general, do not trust any update prompts that come from your browser on various sites (always check the URL bar – you will most likely see some dodgy domain name).
To improve the overall security of your device, you should keep the security application running at all times, apply system updates, avoid spam email attachments or links, and most certainly stay away from software cracks or keygens.
Terminate NetSupport Manager RAT from your device using powerful anti-malware software
You should even attempt manual NetSupport Manager removal, as the malicious payload performs a variety of changes within the system, and only trained IT professionals can revert the damages without any automated tools. Such a task should always be left for anti-malware applications that are specifically designed to detect and terminate parasites like NetSupport Manager.
If you do not have a security application installed yet, download SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner, Malwarebytes, or another tool (be aware that AV vendors use different databases for malware detection, so not all engines might be able to detect the threat). Before you remove NetSupport Manager virus, you should access the Safe Mode environment which would temporarily stop the malicious tasks from running.
After that, you should make sure you reset and change passwords on all your accounts, as hackers might be able to access it due to stolen data from your PC.
Getting rid of NetSupport Manager. Follow these steps
Manual removal using Safe Mode
To remove NetSupport Manager RAT from your machine, you should enter Safe Mode with Networking. This way, you stop the malware from tampering with your security software:
Manual removal guide might be too complicated for regular computer users. It requires advanced IT knowledge to be performed correctly (if vital system files are removed or damaged, it might result in full Windows compromise), and it also might take hours to complete. Therefore, we highly advise using the automatic method provided above instead.
Step 1. Access Safe Mode with Networking
Manual malware removal should be best performed in the Safe Mode environment.
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
- When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
- Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
- Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
- On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
- Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
- Click Restart now.
- Select Troubleshoot.
- Go to Advanced options.
- Select Startup Settings.
- Press Restart.
- Now press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking.
Step 2. Shut down suspicious processes
Windows Task Manager is a useful tool that shows all the processes running in the background. If malware is running a process, you need to shut it down:
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
- Click on More details.
- Scroll down to Background processes section, and look for anything suspicious.
- Right-click and select Open file location.
- Go back to the process, right-click and pick End Task.
- Delete the contents of the malicious folder.
Step 3. Check program Startup
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
- Go to Startup tab.
- Right-click on the suspicious program and pick Disable.
Step 4. Delete virus files
Malware-related files can be found in various places within your computer. Here are instructions that could help you find them:
- Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
- Select the drive you want to clean (C: is your main drive by default and is likely to be the one that has malicious files in).
- Scroll through the Files to delete list and select the following:
Temporary Internet Files
- Pick Clean up system files.
- You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):
After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.
Remove NetSupport Manager using System Restore
System Restore might also be used as an option to terminate NetSupport Manager infection
Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Click Start → Shutdown → Restart → OK.
- When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
- Select Command Prompt from the list
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
- Now select Troubleshoot → Advanced options → Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
- Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt in Startup Settings window.
Step 2: Restore your system files and settings
- Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter.
- Now type rstrui.exe and press Enter again..
- When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of NetSupport Manager. After doing that, click Next.
- Now click Yes to start system restore.
Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from NetSupport Manager and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as RestoroIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes
How to prevent from getting remote administration tools
Do not let government spy on you
The government has many issues in regards to tracking users' data and spying on citizens, so you should take this into consideration and learn more about shady information gathering practices. Avoid any unwanted government tracking or spying by going totally anonymous on the internet.
You can choose a different location when you go online and access any material you want without particular content restrictions. You can easily enjoy internet connection without any risks of being hacked by using Private Internet Access VPN.
Control the information that can be accessed by government any other unwanted party and surf online without being spied on. Even if you are not involved in illegal activities or trust your selection of services, platforms, be suspicious for your own security and take precautionary measures by using the VPN service.
Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack
Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.
When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.
- ^ Jake Doevan. How to remove Remote Administration Tools. 2-spyware. Cybersecurity news and articles.
- ^ Sudhanshu Dubey. Fake Software Update Abuses NetSupport Remote Access Tool. FireEye. Cyber Security Experts & Solution Providers.
- ^ Margaret Rouse. Command-and-control server (C&C server). WhatIs.com. IT website.
- ^ Flash Player : Security Vulnerabilities. CVE Details. The ultimate security vulnerability database.