WannaMine virus (Removal Guide) - Tutorial

WannaMine virus Removal Guide

What is WannaMine virus?

WannaMine virus is used for mining Monero cryptocurrency

Image of WannaMine malware

WannaMine is a fileless malware which is used for mining cryptocurrency. The malicious program was first detected in October 2017 exploiting NSA EternalBlue exploit kit to infect computers.[1] Such functionality makes malware detection, removal, and prevention quite complicated.

WannaMine virus uses the same exploit National Security Agency’s kit that was leaked by Shadow Brokers hackers group in April 2017. However, in May and June, it was used to launch a worldwide WannaCry and NotPetya attacks. Hence, malware targets and infects unpatched Windows OS computers.

Additionally, WannaMine malware uses “living off the land” techniques,[2] meaning that cyber criminals are using and exploiting specific programs or tools that are already installed on the affected computer. In this case, the malware uses Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) permanent event subscriptions and PowerShell to get persistence and operate on the affected system.

WannaMine works as a computer worm. Thus, once it affects one machine, it continues spreading via the whole network. Therefore, within a short amount of time, all computers on the targeted company or organization might become unusable due to the CPU overuse.

The main purpose of the WannaMine malware is to mine Monero cryptocurrency. The virus tries to take the maximum of computer’s processor’s and RAM’s power to make digital money. According to some reports, malware can use up to 80-100% of computer’s CPU.

Due to the high computer resource’s usage, the affected machine becomes nearly unusable. Hence, immediate WannaMine removal is needed. However, this task may not be simple. Regular antivirus programs might not be capable of detecting the virus. Virus elimination requires using next-generation tools.

In order to remove WannaMine, you can try using ReimageIntego or Malwarebytes. However, it’s also important to disconnect a computer from the network as soon as you notice its infiltration. It helps to stop the virus from spreading and affecting devices connected to the same network.

The picture of WannaMine virusWannaMine virus is a fileless malware that is used for Mining monero cryptocurrency.

Malware uses EternalBlue exploit kit

The virus takes advantage of EternalBlue exploit kit which uses Windows OS vulnerabilities. Nevertheless, Microsoft patched these security flaws and provided updates. However, many computer users and companies did not install them. Hence, they become victims of malware.

To avoid WannaMine hijack, users are advised to:

  • install Windows patches;
  • regularly install software updates;
  • stay away from illegal, corrupted or suspicious downloads;
  • not open unknown email attachments and suspicious links received from contacts;
  • install reputable antivirus software that provides real-time protection from sophisticated cyber threats.

Researchers from utanvirus.se[3] also remind that fileless malware is hard to detect and eliminate. Thus, it’s better to take precautions than getting infected with cryptocurrency miner.

Remove WannaMine from the system

WannaMine is a fileless malware. Hence, it’s impossible to remove it manually. As soon as malicious components are executed on the system, malware hides its traces. Thus, basic security programs cannot protect a computer from the attack but are unable to delete the virus too.

To remove WannaMine from the device, you can try using ReimageIntego, Malwarebytes or other malware removal software. Next-generation tools should be capable of cleaning your computer from the system.

After WannaMine removal, you should take care of computer’s or network’s security. Upgrade to the latest Windows OS, install available updates, and follow general security tips when browsing the web.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of WannaMine virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

To run security program and eliminate WannaMine malware easier, you should reboot the system to Safe Mode with Networking as shown below:

Important! →
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
  1. Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
  2. 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.
  3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list. Windows 7/XP
Windows 10 / Windows 8
  1. Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
    Settings
  2. Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
    Update and security
  3. On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
  4. Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
  5. Click Restart now.
    Reboot
  6. Select Troubleshoot. Choose an option
  7. Go to Advanced options. Advanced options
  8. Select Startup Settings. Startup settings
  9. Press Restart.
  10. Now press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking. Enable safe mode

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:

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details.
    Open task manager
  3. Scroll down to Background processes section, and look for anything suspicious.
  4. Right-click and select Open file location.
    Open file location
  5. Go back to the process, right-click and pick End Task.
    End task
  6. Delete the contents of the malicious folder.

Step 3. Check program Startup

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Go to Startup tab.
  3. Right-click on the suspicious program and pick Disable.
    Startup

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:

  1. Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
    Disk cleanup
  2. 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).
  3. Scroll through the Files to delete list and select the following:

    Temporary Internet Files
    Downloads
    Recycle Bin
    Temporary files

  4. Pick Clean up system files.
    Delete temp files
  5. You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):

    %AppData%
    %LocalAppData%
    %ProgramData%
    %WinDir%

After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.

Remove WannaMine using System Restore

System Restore method might also help to get rid of WannMine with malware removal software:

  • 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 WannaMine. 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 ReimageIntego and make sure that WannaMine removal is performed successfully.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from WannaMine and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

How to prevent from getting malware

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.

 

Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

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References