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How do I know if my PC has been hacked through an RCE exploit?


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I have played an old game and have found out there is an exploit that lets an attacker gain remote access to my PC. I fear someone could have used this to install malware on my PC.

I have run full scans with MBAM, Windows Defender and SuperantiSpyware, and have not detected anything except some tracking cookies.

How likely is it that all of these scans would have missed something?

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  • Root Admin

Hello @dpsht and :welcome:

 

 

Let's get the info to get the process started. Be aware it will take many steps and scans to fully remove malware.

Please respond to all future instructions from your helper in a timely manner.

 

Let's go ahead and run a couple of scans and get some updated logs from your system. Please read the entire post below before starting so that you're more familiar with the process

Then follow each step in the order provided. Unless otherwise asked, please attach all logs

 

Please make the following system changes:  Please pay close attention the the instructions in all of the following links.

  • If you have not done so already - Enable System Protection and create a NEW System Restore Point
  • Temporarily disable your antivirus real-time protection or other security software first only if it blocks or interferes with the scans or downloads.. Make sure to turn it back on once the scans are completed
  • Temporarily disable Microsoft SmartScreen to download software below only if needed. Make sure to turn it back on once the downloads are completed
  • Disable-Fast-Startup
  • Show-Hidden-Folders-Files-Extensions

Please run the following scans:  Please pay close attention the the instructions in all of the following links.

  1. Click the following link and run a  Scan with AdwCleaner
  2. Click the following link and run a  Scan with Malwarebytes 
       RESTART the computer
  3. Click the following link and run a  Scan with Farbar Recovery Scan Tool 
     

Example image of where to click to attach files when posting your reply

image.thumb.png.e208c182ff570799c53bcf57

 

Thank you

 

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Please run the following

 

Please run the following ESET Online Scanner and perform a Full Scan

 

Click the following link to save the installer for ESET Online Scanner

https://download.eset.com/com/eset/tools/online_scanner/latest/esetonlinescanner.exe

  • It will start a download of "esetonlinescanner.exe"
  • Save the file to your system, such as the Downloads folder, or else to the Desktop.
  • Go to the saved file, and double click it to get started. 
  • When presented with the initial ESET screen, click on "Get Started". Read and accept the Terms of use
  • On the "Before we start..." screen chose if you want to send anonymous data and if you want to provide feedback or not, then click Continue
  • When prompted for scan type, Click on the Full Scan button
  • Enable  ( select )   the radio selection "Enable ESET to detect and quarantine potentially unwanted applications"   and click the Start scan button.
  • Have patience.  The entire process may take a few hours or more.
  • When the scan is completed, if something was found, it will show a screen with the number of detected items.  If so, click the button marked “View detected results”.
  • Click The blue “Save scan log” to save the log and give it a name and location you remember.
  • If something was removed and you know it is a false postive, you may click on the blue ”Restore cleaned files”  ( in blue, at the bottom).
  • Press Continue when all done.  You should click to turn off the offer for “periodic scanning”.
  • Enable "Delete application data on closing" - You do not need to submit feedback unless you want to. Simply ignore and close the program.

 

Note: If you do need to do a File Restore from ESET please follow the directions below

[KB2915] Restore files quarantined by the ESET Online Scanner version 3

https://support.eset.com/en/kb2915-restore-files-quarantined-by-the-eset-online-scanner

 

Please attach the ESET scan log you saved at the end to your next reply

 

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Let's go ahead and run another AV scanner and see if it can detect anything wrong

 

 

Dr.Web CureIt!

Please download the Dr.Web CureIt! anti-virus utility
https://free.drweb.com/

 

You will need to send them an email to obtain a link to download the scanner, please do so

  • The downloaded file will normally have a unique name such as:  q7a9tr4p.exe
  • Close all open applications and locate the downloaded file and double-click to run it
  • The program will take a moment to launch and bring up the License and Update screen
  • Place a check mark to agree to the terms and then click on the Continue button
  • Click the underlined link Select objects for scanning
  • On the top left click the Scanning objects that should automatically check all objects
  • Click the small wrench and make sure there is a check on Automatically apply actions to threats
  • Then click the large button on bottom right Start scanning
  • Once the scan has completed there will be a link named Open report click that and a log named cureit.log should open in Notepad
  • The log is saved in the folder named Doctor Web in the top of your user profile folders
  • Please attach that log on your next reply

 

 

 

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I ended up doing the scan twice, as I chose 'Cancel' at the end of the scan. I also lost internet connection on the first scan cureit2.txtif that matters.

 

The first scan detected SuperAntispyware, which it apparently has removed. Is this a false positive, or might a virus have infected the program?

 

Dr. Web did not detect anything else.

cureit.log

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The log indicates it did find 1 infected object and neutralized it.

 

 

Let's go ahead and run a couple of scans and get some updated logs from your system. Please read the entire post below before starting so that you're more familiar with the process

[ 1 ]

Please make the following system changes.

  • Temporarily disable your antivirus real-time protection or other security software first only if it blocks or interferes with the scans or downloads.. Make sure to turn it back on once the scans are completed.
  • Temporarily disable Microsoft SmartScreen to download software below only if needed. Make sure to turn it back on once the scans are completed.
  • Disable-Fast-Startup
  • Show-Hidden-Folders-Files-Extensions

[ 2 ]

I suggest a new scan for viruses & other malware. This may take several hours, depending on the number of files on the system and the speed of the computer.

The Microsoft Safety Scanner is a free Microsoft stand-alone virus scanner that can be used to scan for & remove malware or potentially unwanted software from a system. 

The download links & the how-to-run-the tool are at this link at Microsoft 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security/threat-protection/intelligence/safety-scanner-download

 

Look on the Scan Options & select the FULL scan.

Then start the scan. Have lots of patience. It may take several hours.

  • Once you see it has started, take a long long break;  walk away.  Do not pay credence if you see some intermediate early flash messages on the screen display.  The only things that count are the End result at the end of the run.
  • The scan will take several hours.  Leave it alone. It will remove any other remaining threats as it goes along.  Take a very long break, do your normal personal errands .....just do not use the computer during this scan.

This is likely to run for many hours as previously mentioned  ( depending on the number of files on your machine & the speed of the hardware.)

The log is named MSERT.log  and the log will be at C:\Windows\debug\msert.log

Please attach that log with your next reply.

 

It is normal for the Microsoft Safety Scanner to show detections during the scan process.

It is scanning for basically all bread crumbs or traces of files and registry entries that "might" be or have been part of some infection or previous infection.

That DOES NOT mean the computer is infected. Once the scan has been completed it uploads the log to their Cloud service which then uses Artificial Intelligence to determine if in fact any of the traces are an infection or not.

Then it writes into the log on your computer what it found.

 

Thank you

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  • Root Admin

It is normal for the Microsoft Safety Scanner to show detections during the scan process.

Let's run one more AV scanner to double-check the system. @dpsht2

 

 

 

 

Please download and run the following Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool 2020 and save it to your Desktop.

(Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool version 20.0.10.0 was released on November 9, 2021)

Download: Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool

https://devbuilds.s.kaspersky-labs.com/devbuilds/KVRT/latest/full/KVRT.exe

How to run a scan with Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool 2020
https://support.kaspersky.com/15674

How to run Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool 2020 in the advanced mode
https://support.kaspersky.com/15680

How to restore a file removed during Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool 2020 scan
https://support.kaspersky.com/15681

 


Select the  image.png  Windows Key and R Key together, the "Run" box should open.

user posted image

Drag and Drop KVRT.exe into the Run Box.

user posted image

C:\Users\{your user name}\DESKTOP\KVRT.exe will now show in the run box.

image.png

add -dontencrypt   Note the space between KVRT.exe and -dontencrypt

C:\Users\{your user name}\DESKTOP\KVRT.exe -dontencrypt should now show in the Run box.
 
image.png


That addendum to the run command is very important, when the scan does eventually complete the resultant report is normally encrypted, with the extra command it is saved as a readable file.

Reports are saved here C:\KVRT2020_Data\Reports and look similar to this report_20210123_113021.klr
Right-click direct onto that report, select > open with > Notepad. Save that file and attach it to your reply.

To start the scan select OK in the "Run" box.

A EULA window will open, tick all confirmation boxes then select "Accept"

image.png

In the new window select "Change Parameters"

image.png

In the new window ensure all selection boxes are ticked, then select "OK" The scan should now start...

user posted image

When complete if entries are found there will be options, if "Cure" is offered leave as is. For any other options change to "Delete" then select "Continue"

user posted image

When complete, or if nothing was found select "Close"

image.png

Attach the report information as previously instructed...
 
Thank you
 
 

 

 

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We've now run a few with no issues found. Please go ahead and run the following again

 

 

Let's get the info to get the process started. Be aware it will take many steps and scans to fully remove malware.

Please respond to all future instructions from your helper in a timely manner.

 

Let's go ahead and run a couple of scans and get some updated logs from your system. Please read the entire post below before starting so that you're more familiar with the process

Then follow each step in the order provided. Unless otherwise asked, please attach all logs

 

Please make the following system changes:  Please pay close attention the the instructions in all of the following links.

  • If you have not done so already - Enable System Protection and create a NEW System Restore Point
  • Temporarily disable your antivirus real-time protection or other security software first only if it blocks or interferes with the scans or downloads.. Make sure to turn it back on once the scans are completed
  • Temporarily disable Microsoft SmartScreen to download software below only if needed. Make sure to turn it back on once the downloads are completed
  • Disable-Fast-Startup
  • Show-Hidden-Folders-Files-Extensions

Please run the following scans:  Please pay close attention the the instructions in all of the following links.

  1. Click the following link and run a  Scan with AdwCleaner
  2. Click the following link and run a  Scan with Malwarebytes 
       RESTART the computer
  3. Click the following link and run a  Scan with Farbar Recovery Scan Tool 
     

Example image of where to click to attach files when posting your reply

image.thumb.png.e208c182ff570799c53bcf57

 

Thank you

 

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Thank you for the logs. Please run the steps below.

[ 1 ]

Your DNS Servers: 192.168.0.1   

Please consider changing your default DNS server settings. Please choose one provider only

DNS is what lets users connect to websites using domain names instead of IP addresses

Pick just one of these 5 providers. And be aware that you need to modify 1 time for IPv4 & a 2nd pass for IPv6

  • Quad 9 Public DNS  IPv4  9.9.9.9 and 149.112.112.112  IPv6  2620:fe::fe  and  2620:fe::9  (one of the best for most users)
  • Google Public DNSIPv4   8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4   IPv6   2001:4860:4860::8888 and 2001:4860:4860::8844
  • CloudflareIPv4   1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1   IPv6   2606:4700:4700::1111 and 2606:4700:4700::1001
  • OpenDNSIPv4   208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220  IPv6  2620:119:35::35 and 2620:119:53::53
  • DNSWATCHIPv4   84.200.69.80 and 84.200.70.40   IPv6  2001:1608:10:25::1c04:b12f and 2001:1608:10:25::9249:d69b


The Ultimate Guide to Changing Your DNS Server
https://www.howtogeek.com/167533/the-ultimate-guide-to-changing-your-dns-server/

Here is a YouTube video on Changing DNS settings if needed

 

[ 2 ]

Please make the following change in Malwarebytes if you're using the Premium or Trial version

  • Please open Malwarebytes. Click on the small gear icon to open the Settings and go to the Security tab.
  • Then turn off "Always register Malwarebytes in the Windows Security Center"
  • Restart the computer

 

It is highly unlikely that you need to setup exclusions for Windows Defender, however if you experience any issues, please see the following article and setup exclusions
between Malwarebytes and Windows Defender

Malwarebytes for Windows antivirus exclusions list
https://support.malwarebytes.com/hc/en-us/articles/360038522974-Malwarebytes-for-Windows-antivirus-exclusions-list

 

[ 3 ]

Please run the following fix

 

NOTE: Please read all of the information below before running this fix.

  • NOTICE: This script was written specifically for this user, for use on this particular machine.
  • Running this on another machine may cause damage to your operating system that cannot be undone.

Once the fix has been completed, please attach the file FIXLOG.TXT to your next reply

Farbar program:   FRSTEnglish.exe

Save the attached file:  FIXLIST.TXT to this folder C:\Users\Benja\Desktop\

NOTE. It's important that both files, FRSTEnglish.exe, and fixlist.txt are in the same location or the fix will not work.

Please make sure you disable any real-time antivirus or security software before running this script. Once completed, make sure you re-enable it.

 

 

Run the Farbar program with Admin rights and press the Fix button just once and wait.

The fix may possibly take up to 60 minutes to complete

If the tool needs a restart please make sure you let the system restart normally and let the tool complete its run after restart.
The tool will make a log named Fixlog.txt in the same folder you ran the Farbar program from. Please attach that log on your next reply.

 

  1. NOTE:  This fix will run a scan to check that all Microsoft operating system files are valid and not corrupt and attempt to correct any invalid files. It will also run a disk check on the restart to ensure disk integrity.
  2. NOTE: As part of this fix all temporary files will be removed. If you have any open web pages that have not been bookmarked please make sure you bookmark them now as all open applications may be automatically closed.
                Also, make sure you know the passwords for all websites as cookies may possibly be removed in some cases, but not all cases.
  3. NOTE: As part of this fix, it will also reset the network to default settings including the firewall. If you have custom firewall rules you need to save please export or save them first before running this fix.

The following directories are emptied:

  • Windows Temp
  • Users Temp folders
  • Edge, IE, FF, Chrome, and Opera caches, HTML5 storages, Cookies and History
  • Recently opened files cache
  • Discord cache
  • Java cache
  • Steam HTML cache
  • Explorer thumbnail and icon cache
  • BITS transfer queue (qmgr*.dat files)
  • Recycle Bin

Important: items are permanently deleted. They are not moved to quarantine. If you have any questions or concerns please ask before running this fix.

The system will be rebooted after the fix has run.

fixlist.txt

Thanks

 

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Here is the log from the Farbar fix.

 

Just to make sure I have gotten everything right, when you say "be aware that you need to modify 1 time for IPv4 & a 2nd pass for IPv6" is this a reminder to make the modifications for both IPv4 and IPv6?

 

Many thanks

 

Fixlog.txt

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It means don't try to use different providers. In Windows 10 you can't do them at the same time like you can in Windows 11 as well.

 

The fix ran well and also found and fixed some other Windows issues

Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files and successfully repaired them.

 

Please get me some new, fresh logs. I'm off work so I may not reply again till tomorrow.

 

Scan with SecurityCheck by glax24
https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/307301-scan-with-securitycheck-by-glax24/

 

Scan with FSS Farbar Service Scanner
https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/306736-scan-with-fss-farbar-service-scanner/

 

Scan with Farbar Recovery Scan Tool
https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/306601-scan-with-farbar-recovery-scan-tool/

 

 

Thanks

 

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Thank you for the logs @dpsht2

 


Please uninstall, update, or otherwise address the following as appropriate for your computer.


Then download a new installer for Google Chrome and reinstall to correct some issues:   https://www.google.com/chrome/

 

Then RESTART the computer and check for Windows Updates and install any updates found

 

Once the above has been completed, let me know how the computer is running now and if there are still any signs of infection or any other unresolved issues.

Thank you

 

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I have uninstalled it all. The computer does seem to be running fine, but are there any particular signs I should look for? If no signs are present, can I be relatively certain the PC is clean?
 

Thank you so much!

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  • Root Admin

All look good @dpsht2

I'll go ahead and give you some clean up instructions and information to help you keep the computer clean.

 

Excellent, glad to hear all is well again. I'll go ahead and close your topic now and wish you well.

Please follow the directions below to remove the logs and tools we've used. If any are still left after that you can manually uninstall or delete them.

Take care and stay safe out there. Try to follow as much of the advise below as you can as well.

 

Let's go ahead and do some clean-up work and remove the tools and logs we've run.

Please download KpRm by kernel-panik and save it to your desktop.

  • right-click kprm_(version).exe and select Run as Administrator.
  • Read and accept the disclaimer.
  • When the tool opens, ensure all boxes under Actions are checked.
  • Under Delete Quarantines select Delete Now, then click Run.
  • Once complete, click OK.
  • A log will open in Notepad titled kprm-(date).txt. You can close it.

 

We're glad that we were able to assist you.

 

The following information will help you to keep your computer and data safer as well as improve your overall privacy

  1. Recommend using a Password Manager for all websites, etc. that require a password. Never use the same password on more than one site.
    https://www.howtogeek.com/780233/best-password-manager/
  2. Make sure you're backing up your files https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/136226-backup-software/
  3. Keep all software up to date - PatchMyPC - https://patchmypc.com/home-updater#download     https://patchmypc.com/about-us
  4. Keep your Operating System up to date and current at all times - https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-update-faq-8a903416-6f45-0718-f5c7-375e92dddeb2
  5. Further tips to help protect your computer data and improve your privacy: https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/258363-tips-to-help-protect-from-infection/ 
  6. Please consider installing the following Content Blockers for your Web browsers if you haven't done so already. This will help improve overall security

Malwarebytes Browser Guard

uBlock Origin

 

Cybersecurity basics & protection
Everything you need to know about cybercrime
https://www.malwarebytes.com/cybersecurity

 

Further reading if you'd like to keep up on the malware threat scene: Malwarebytes Blog  https://blog.malwarebytes.com/

Hopefully, we've been able to assist you with correcting your system issues.

Thank you for using Malwarebytes. Please tell your friends and family if they too need assistance with malware removal

 

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