What is BlackEnergy?
The BlackEnergy virus was discovered in 2007 and has since evolved to be even more powerful. Just by name, the virus is frightening and there is indeed much to be frightened of. This malware is a Trojan, and its primary purpose is to prevent any reboot of the operating system of the computer it attacks.
If your computer is infected, this malware can erase your data, destroy your hard drive, access the system and take complete control of it. What you need to know is that the main targets are among the world’s energy companies, but we don’t know what BlackEnergy is capable of so whatever your situation, you still have to be careful.
This Trojan horse is used to conduct DDoS attacks, information destruction attacks and cyber espionage. If ever your computer is infected, you absolutely must act and remove BlackEnergy.
What is BlackEnergy capable of? Cyber attack in Ukraine
Wondering what BlackEnergy virus is capable of? Well what that this Trojan caused on December 23, 2015 was something never happened before. BlackEnergy cybercriminals caused a blackout in Ukraine, putting more than 1.4 million people in chaos for several hours. By the power of malware, hackers have shut down Ukraine’s industrial power generation machines in a single click.
The attack was allegedly carried out by sending attachments containing infected Microsoft Office documents by e-mail to the targets. The e-mails sent seemed to come from parliament and that is how the target audience was fooled.
The power of this virus is such that it is difficult to get rid of it, so it is highly recommended to protect your computer and be extremely vigilant, installing the best software removal.
How BlackEnergy get installed on your PC?
The process is very simple, but very effective. BlackEnergy installs itself by sending infected e-mail attachments (in Excel or Microsoft Word format) to several target computers, and when one of them is infected, the virus joins the network and can then spread until it finds the most interesting job.
- Name: BlackEnergy
- Targeted Operating System: plant’s system
- Category: Trojan
- Symptoms: unnatural network activities, slow and unusual computer behavior, changing browser settings, slow internet access, unwanted websites that open in your browser.
How to remove BlackEnergy?
This powerful malware is very dangerous and can infiltrate any PC very easily, which is why you have every interest in protecting your device by installing best malware protection. If your computer is already infected, you should delete BlackEnergy Trojan by following these steps:
Step A: Remove the malicious program from Control Panel’
Note: Before we begin, try to remember how the extension got downloaded on your computer system. Generally, these programs come bundled with free applications that we download off the internet. It is a good practice to locate and uninstall such programs while removing the Browser Hijacker/ Extensions.
- Right click on the “Windows logo” on the lower left side of the computer screen. From the drop down menu, select and click on “Control Panel”.
- The “Control Panel” window will be displayed. From this window select “Uninstall a program” option form the “Programs” category.
- A list will populate on the screen displaying all the programs.
- Select the programs related to BlackEnergy and click on the “Uninstall” button.
- In the confirmation box, click on the box that reads “OK” to save changes.
Step B: Show hidden files and folders.
- Left click on the Organize button on the Windows Explorer. A drop down menu will appear.
- On this menu left click on the option that reads “Folder and search options” as shown above. A folder options dialogue box will appear.
- On the View tab under the Advanced settings, Check the option that reads “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” and uncheck the option that reads “Hide protected operating system files“.
- Click on the “OK” button to save your changes. This will make all the hidden files and folders visible to you.
Windows 8 and 10
- On the file explorer toolbar, click on the View
- In the Show/hide section, Click on the “Hidden items” checkbox.
- Click on the options button.
- Under folder options, click on the “View” tab.
- Uncheck the “Hide protected operating system files” option.
- Click the “OK” button to save your changes.
Step C: Remove the malicious browser extension
- Open Google Chrome and click on the three vertical dots ( ) i.e.Menu option which are located at the upper right corner of the Chrome Window.
- Find and click on More tools from the drop down menu that is displayed & select Extensions or you can open a Chrome window and type “chrome://extensions” in the address bar.
- Check the developer mode option which is located opposite to extensions heading on the top of the Chrome window. By enabling the developer mode, additional details and option related to all the installed extensions will be displayed. One of the details that will be displayed is the ID. ID is the folder name created by the extension at the location “C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions”.
- Locate the extension you want to uninstall or delete. Copy and paste the folder name opposite to the ID Tag of that extension into a notepad file. In this case the folder name is “XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX”
- Now, uncheck the enabled option next to the extension in question. Make sure you also click the trash icon to delete the extension from the browser. It is important to note that even after uninstalling and deleting the extensions from the browser, the extension might not uninstall properly. Thus, it is a good practice to make sure that we have deleted the folder as mentioned in step 3.
- Make sure that you have made the hidden files and folders visible.
- Open My Computer and go to “C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions”. Now, look for folder with the name as specified in Step 4 i.e. “XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX”. Delete the folder if present.
- Close and reopen the browser. It is also advisable to restart your computer once done.
- Open Mozilla Firefox, click on three horizontal lines ( ) at the top right corner of the Firefox Window and select the Add-ons option.
- On the Add-ons manger page, select and click on the Extensions tab as shown below.
- Find the extensions related to BlackEnergy and click on the remove button.
- In addition, try to remember how the extension got downloaded on your computer system. If this extension was bundled with some other software, then make sure to delete that as well.
- On your Mac Desktop, click on the option that reads “Safari”.
- A drop down menu will appear as shown below. From this menu chose the option that reads “Preferences”.
- The Preferences window will appear on the screen, where the list of all your safari extensions will be shown.
- On the list displayed at the left side of the screen, select the Extension you want to uninstall.
- Click on the Uninstall button to get rid of the extension.
Step D: Restore the Browser settings changed by BlackEnergy
- Open Mozilla Firefox and click on the three horizontal lines () which are at the top right corner of the computer screen.
- A Drop down menu will be displayed. On this menu click on the “Help” () button as shown in the image below. The Help menu will be displayed on the screen.
- From this menu click the option that reads “Troubleshooting information“. A new tab will open up with the <strong”>Troubleshooting information.
- On the Troubleshooting Information page, click on the button that reads “Refresh Firefox” as shown in the image below.
- The “Refresh Firefox” message box will pop up on the screen. On this message box click on the “Refresh Firefox” button.
- After this Firefox will close itself and a new window will be displayed which will list the information that is imported. Click on the option that reads “Finish” to complete the task.
- Open Google chrome and click on the three vertical dots ( ) which is at the top right corner of the computer screen. A drop down menu will appear on the screen. From this menu choose the option that reads “Settings”.
- The Chrome’s settings window will be displayed on the screen. On this screen scroll through the bottom of the page and click on the option that reads “Advanced option” as shown below.
- The Advanced setting options will be displayed on the screen. Scroll through the list of options till you find the “ Reset browser settings” section. Click on the icon as shown below.
- The reset dialogue box will pop up on the screen. From this dialogue box click on the button that reads “Reset”.
- Open Internet Explorer and click on the gear icon ( ) which is at the top right corner of the browser screen. A drop down menu will be displayed on the screen. From this drop down menu, click on the option that reads “Internet options”.
- The “Internet options” dialogue box will be displayed. Click on the “Advanced” tab. In the Advanced tab click on the button that reads “Reset” as shown in the image below. The “Reset Internet Explorer Settings” section will be displayed on the screen. Now click on the button that reads “Reset” .Precautions: In this dialogue box make sure to uncheck the “Delete Personal settings” option to save your passwords and other important data.
- When it’s done, click on the button that reads “Close” to complete the task. Now close and reopen your browser.
Tips to prevent your computer system from getting infected –
- Keeping the Operating System Updated- In order to remain protected and avoid such infections, it is recommended to keep your Operating System updated by enabling the automatic update on your system. The systems with outdated or older versions of Operating System become an easy target for the attackers.
- Resist clicking on spam emails – One of the major techniques used for malware distribution is forwarding spam emails to the user. The system gets infected as soon as the user clicks on the attachment. These mails appear to be genuine, so be aware and resist falling for these tricks.
- Keep an eye on third party installations- It is quite important that you take due care while installing any third party applications for they are major source of such infections. Such malware programs come bundled with the free applications thereby requiring the user to remain cautious.
- Regular periodical backup- In order to keep your data and files safe, it is recommended to take regular back up of all your data and files either on an external drive or cloud.
- Use Anti-Virus Protection- We strongly recommend the use of antivirus protection/internet security in your PC like Bull Guard Internet Security and Vipre so that it remains safe.
- Enable the Ad Blocker/Popup Blocker in your browser- Enabling the popup blocker/ ad blocker in your chosen browser will help you to stay protected from annoying adware.