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Trochilus virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Julie Splinters - - | Type: Remote Administration Tools

Trochilus virus is a dangerous Remote Access Trojan that was used in Myanmar's political cyber-espionage campaign

Trochilus virus
Trochilus virus is a malicious remote access trojan that was used in a espionage campaign against Myanmar and other countries

Trochilus virus is a type of malware that enters the device without any signs, gains access to it, and allows hackers to execute various malicious activities remotely, all while harvesting sensitive data from the device. These type of infections are called Remote Access Trojans and are usually heavily obfuscated, which prevents the detection from many anti-virus engines. Trochilus RAT was first spotted back in 2015 and made headlines in 2016 when attackers, who later turned out to be a hacking group by the name “Group 27,” injected the malicious code into Myanmar's governmental website.[1] The group of hackers responsible for the threat also used several other RAT tools like EvilGrab or PlugX in a sophisticated campaign against South East Asian countries. Later same year, bad actors attacked multiple organizations in Thailand using Trochilus virus as well as MoonWind malware.[2]

Name Trochilus
Type Remote Access Trojan
First spotted October 2015
Developers Group 27
Infiltration Spam emails, hacked websites
Related campaigns “Seven Pointed Dagger”
Symptoms  Almost undetectable visually
Elimination Use sophisticated security software
Recovery Download Reimage to recover from virus damage

Initially, Trochilus malware was spread with the help of the phishing emails that included the malicious .rar attachment. However, hackers managed to compromise Myanmar's governmental website where they inserted the malware, increasing the infection rate drastically. Because the threat does not write any data on the disk, Trochilus virus removal proves to be a difficult task for many anti-malware programs.

Once the Trochilus virus compromises the system, it establishes the connection to a remote Command & Control server that only threat actors have access to. The trojan is capable of the following:

  • Read and send system information;
  • Manage system files;
  • Interact with Shellcode;
  • Execute arbitrary commands;
  • Download and upload files;
  • Uninstall programs remotely.

This functionality allows Trochilus RAT to become extremely adaptive and execute any actions that are initiated by hackers. Additionally, the malware can spread laterally on the network, targeting vulnerable machines. For that reason, Trochilus virus threat is particularly dangerous.

The worst part is that the Trochilus virus does not emit any signs or symptoms and generally acts like legitimate programs. Therefore, threat detection might become particularly difficult. However, some anti-virus programs can detect and remove Trochilus virus safely.

Once you get rid of the malware, we suggest you scan your computer with Reimage to repair the damage done by the virus.

Beware of hacked websites and spam emails

Hackers are often using multiple propagation methods for malware to spread. Perhaps the most common distribution tactic used by cybercriminals is spam emails. From ransomware to trojans – the most malicious viruses are often enclosed within an innocent-looking, a few hundred kilobytes in size, attachment. Additionally, the malware can be downloaded from a malicious domain that users get redirected to with the help of hyperlink that is disguised inside the email or online site.

To avoid infiltration, you should be extremely wary when it comes to checking emails. What starts as a good day to check what's new in your inbox might end up with the complete corruption of your system. Therefore, experts[3] recommend following these safety tips:

  • Keep an updated security software enabled on your computer at all times;
  • Patch your system and installed programs to ensure no vulnerabilities are exploited by hackers;
  • Prepare some backups of your personal files;
  • Never download cracks or keygens;
  • When dealing with emails, make sure you know who the sender is;
  • Scan all newly-obtain files with tools like Virus Total;
  • Use program that can block malicious ads (not optimal).

Delete Trochilus RAT with the help of anti-malware software

As we already mentioned, Trochilus malware does not install any files into the hard disk but instead uses memory for the task. For that reason, threat's detection might be impossible for some weaker security programs.

To remove Trochilus virus from your device, you will have to employ multiple anti-virus engines and perform a full system scan in Safe Mode with Networking. The safe environment can disable most of the malware's functionality and allow the security tool to perform its job.

In case Trochilus virus removal fails using one security application, we suggest trying another one until you succeed. After the elimination, we suggest you scan the computer with Reimage to repair virus damage.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove Trochilus virus, follow these steps:

Remove Trochilus using Safe Mode with Networking

To ensure a safe environment where Trochilus RAT would be temporarily disabled, enter Safe Mode with networking and perform system scan:

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Networking

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Networking'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Networking in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Networking'
  • Step 2: Remove Trochilus

    Log in to your infected account and start the browser. Download Reimage or other legitimate anti-spyware program. Update it before a full system scan and remove malicious files that belong to your ransomware and complete Trochilus removal.

If your ransomware is blocking Safe Mode with Networking, try further method.

Remove Trochilus using System Restore

An alternative method to remove Trochilus is to try System Restore:

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Command Prompt from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Command Prompt'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt'
  • Step 2: Restore your system files and settings
    1. Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter. Enter 'cd restore' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    2. Now type rstrui.exe and press Enter again.. Enter 'rstrui.exe' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    3. When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Trochilus. After doing that, click Next. When 'System Restore' window shows up, select 'Next' Select your restore point and click 'Next'
    4. Now click Yes to start system restore. Click 'Yes' and start system restore
    Once you restore your system to a previous date, download and scan your computer with Reimage and make sure that Trochilus removal is performed successfully.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Trochilus and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes

About the author

Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Malware removal specialist

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References