Trojan.Poweliks

Trojan.Poweliks is a threat identified by Symantec and Norton security products. This is a typical malware that targets the core system of Windows in order to complete its tasks. Trojan.Poweliks was made to execute a series of commands once it gets inside the system. It will gather data like system settings, Windows version, network configuration, and so on. Collected data will be sent to remote attacker for analysis.

Threat behavior

Installation

In general, system will get infected with Trojan.Poweliks if malicious code is executed on the computer. Source of this trojan may vary due to the changing ways how it is deployed. Typically, spam email messages disguising as open letter from reputable institution are used to deceive recipients. Body of the message contains enticing phrases that tries to convince user into opening the attached file.

Malicious links from social media sites and instant messaging program are also seen as method used in distributing Trojan.Poweliks. Illegally distributed software and media materials may also contain code that can lead to the infection of this malware.

Payload

In order to run itself on Windows start-up, Trojan.Poweliks will make a copy of itself under system files. Then, registry entry is created to call the file on each Windows boot-up. Apart from that, this malware will also drop non-malicious files on various folders of the compromised PC.

Trojan.Poweliks occasionally connects to a remote host to execute tasks like the following:

  • Notify attacker on the new infection
  • Sends gathered data from the infected computer
  • Download and execute additional files including an updated version of the Trojan
  • Accept command from a remote attacker

Symptoms

There is not much obvious symptom from this malware. Trojan.Poweliks operates silently in the background. However, Symantec Anti-virus may alert you on the presence of this trojan.

How can you remove Trojan.Poweliks?

To totally remove Trojan.Poweliks from the computer and get rid of relevant viruses, please execute the procedures as stated on this page. Make sure that you have completely scan the system with suggested malware removal tools and virus scanners.

Execute the steps in exact order to ensure complete removal of Trojan.Poweliks. If you have locally installed anti-virus, you can also scan the computer with it. Just make sure to update first the security program to obtain the most recent database. In that way, the security application can properly identify all malicious files and objects that are infected with Trojan.Poweliks.

Instant Remover : Get rid of Trojan.Poweliks using Anti-malware Tool

1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware from the link below. Save the file on your hard drive.

2. Once the download completes, double-click on the file MBSetup.exe to run the program.

3. Select desired installation package whether for Personal Computer or Work Computer.

4. On next window, click Install button to proceed.

MBAM Default Install

5. Just proceed with the succeeding prompts until it start to execute the installation procedure.

6. Installation process will take less than a minute. It should run automatically after completing the setup.

7. When Malwarebytes Anti-Malware interface appears, please select Scan on the menu. The program will check for any available update before proceeding. Do not skip this step. Virus scan may take a while, please wait for the process to finish.

MBAM-threatscan

8. When scanning is done, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware will display the list of identified threats. Remove all and restart the computer to finalized the scan process.

Infection of ransom virus is dangerous to the system because it can inject files that runs each time Windows starts. To prevent the malicious files from loading, Windows operating system must run with minimal process and it can be done through SafeMode With Networking.

If there is still sign of infection, you may proceed to a more complex removal guide below. Be sure to follow the steps in exact order to completely eliminate the threat.

Stage 1 : Start Windows in Safe Mode With Networking

Windows 8 Guide

1. Click Windows Start icon at the lower left section of the screen.

2. Open Search window and type Advanced in the field. It will open General PC Settings.

3. Click on Advanced Startup and then, click on Restart Now button.

4. Once the computer starts in Advanced Startup option menu, select Troubleshoot.

5. Next, click on Advanced Options to reveal the next section.

6. Click Startup settings and then, click Restart button to boot the PC in Startup Settings.

7. Use function key F5 or number key 5 to Enable Safe Mode with Networking.

Windows 10 Guide

1. Click on Windows logo and select Power icon when options pop-ups.

2. Select Restart from the options while pressing Shift key on the keyboard.

3. Choose an Option window will appear, select the Troubleshoot button.

4. On next window, please choose Advanced Option.

5. On Advanced Option window, click on Startup Settings and then, click Restart button to reboot the computer.

6. When Windows boot on Startup Settings, press function key F5 or number 5 on keyboard.

Stage 2 :Scan with Norton Power Eraser

1. Download Norton Power Eraser from the link below. Save the file on your hard drive.

2. Once the download completes, double-click on the file NPE.EXE to run the program.

3. You will be prompted with End User License Agreement. Please click on Accept to continue.

4. Norton Power Eraser will check for the most recent version. Then, the main window will appear. Click on Scan for Risks to the scan and removal process for Trojan.Poweliks.

NPE-Main

5. By default, Norton Power Eraser was configured to perform rootkit scan. This is essential to get rid of Trojan.Poweliks or other relevant malware. To accomplish this, you will need to restart the computer. Please click Restart button.

NPE-Rootkit

6. After restarting Windows, the program will check for possible database update and then, proceeds with the scan. It may take a while, please wait for the scan process to complete.

NPE-Scanning

7. Once scanning is done, Norton Power Eraser will display a list of threats including Trojan.Poweliks. Review identified threats and remove/repair them from the PC by clicking on Fix Now button.

8. If you are prompted to restart the computer in order to complete the virus removal process, please click on Restart Now.

Stage 3 :Run Sophos Virus Remover to ensure that no more Trojan.Poweliks is left on the PC

1. Download Sophos Virus Removal Tool from the link below. Save the file to your Desktop so that we can access the file easily.

2. After downloading, navigate to the file location and double-click it. This will start the instllation procedure. User Account Control will prompt if you want to run the program, click Yes to continue.

3. On initial launch of the program, it will display a Welcome Screen as shown in the image below. Click Next to start the installation procedure.

sophos-welcome

4. Next, you need to accept the license agreement before Sophos Virus Removal Tool can be installed onto the computer. Choose 'I accept the terms in the license agreement'. Then, click Next button.

sophos-license

5. On the next prompts, please click appropriate button to proceed. At the end of the installation process, it will display InstallShield Wizard Completed. Just leave the Launch Sophos Virus Removal Tool with a check mark. Then, click Finish.

6. The tool will download necessary updates so Internet connection is required at this point. Lastly, Sophos Virus Removal Tool displays the welcome screen.

7. Click on Start Scanning button to begin checking the system for presence of rootkit and virus. The tool reveals items that were found linked to Trojan.Poweliks. It also detects and removes other malicious files.

sophos-startscan

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24 thoughts on “Trojan.Poweliks”

  1. I did all those steps and it is still infected. both apps say I am clear but I keep getting the Dllhost com surrogate memory chewing processes that signal Poweliks. Any other ideas?

  2. Download power eraser and MSE load both onto a jump drive as a file do not install yet.
    Shut down and disconnect your internet.. Restart in safe mode with networking. Once up insert jump drive, load and run windows security scanner. This will take time program is slow it took me almost 2 hours. It found 25 issues after a full day of other removal software trying. It will solve what it can then ask to restart.. do so… start in normal mode once up and running reattach internet and run power eraser from jump drive, update and scan do as asked restart and you should be free of the issues.

    The micro scanner looks for changes in the windows files and fixes them and the power eraser should clean up anything left behind… It worked for me.. good luck

  3. My infection consisted of a registry entry. I used the Farbar recovery scan tool to find it and delete it.

  4. Just like Ellen Thuss, same issue. Keeps coming up clean and keeps restarting the Dllhost Com surrogate every time i connect to the internet, scan again and it’s found. Went through the registry manually as well to make sure there was nothing left. Have run, RoguekKller, Malwarebytes, Search and Destroy, Power Eraser, Sophos, and Adwcleaner and none have gotten rid of it permanently!

  5. Download Rogue killer from bleeping computer. Also download Process Explorer from the Microsoft site.

    Run Rogue killer and follow the removal instructions.

    Worked for me.

  6. Robert Williams

    After days of aggravation and running every anti-virus anti-malware tool that I knew, only 1 tool actually killed the “Poweliks” virus. This virus seems to exist only in the registry, and one of its notable features is that it keeps running lots and lots of dllhost.exe processes, gradually using more memory and cpu cycles until it renders your PC almost useless. On my PC it also kept on creating \temp directories and filling them with useless garbage, so much so that CCleaner could hardly delete all the trash.

    Anyhow, the tool that finally worked for me was Rogue Killer at Adlice software. Its a free tool and they actually have a writeup on how to use it to get rid of the Poweliks software. You will have to boot up in Safe mode with networking for it to work.

    Good luck, Poweliks was the most annoying virus I had to deal with in the past 10 years.

  7. Symantec alerted to the presence of AdClicker, and PoweLik, ran a full scan with Symantec, cleaned up a little trash that it usually gleans during the weekly scheduled scan, but left me with AdClicker and Powelik, and the Com.Surrogate issue remained. I scanned with ComboFix 24-hours ago, and the Com.Surrogate issue seems resolved.

  8. I’m in the same situation as Ellen. After NPE.EXE ran it found nothing but my Norton virus protection was still blocking attacks. Since it is trying to send data, I unplugged the Internet cable until I find a solution.

  9. Download the RogueKiller executable, run it once. You won’t be able to fix anything but it needs to register itself. Then, reboot in safe mode, run the executable again. After the pre-scan is done, hit scan and wait. Get Task Manager running. After the scan is done, check the boxes for everything that is red or orange under the registry tab. After you’ve check the boxes, marking the items for deletion, use task manager to “end process” on every instance of dllhost.exe and then QUICKLY hit “DELETE” on RogueKiller (dllhost.exe processes will start running again if you wait too long, and you want to hit “DELETE” while none of them are running). Re-boot. You’re done and everything is back to normal.

  10. I have a subscription to Norton AV. I had to call them. I was on the phone with someone in the Philippines for 4 hours. He finally got rid of the virus and said it was a Trojan Powelicks. I go into the mildest of websites. Parenting and cooking, that’s all. And I pay bills. My first computer was infected so badly I had to get rid of it and lost all my pictures. ( I didn’t have Norton then) All I got on the processes was dllhost.exe and they would multiply. I couldn’t get rid of it. Got a brand new computer 10/10 and by 10/22 it was infected. I am beside myself. Now all seems well but I’d like to know what to do to avoid it. How do I know it won’t happen again next week? What site am I going to that I am getting it? Someone please advise me. What do these people want anyway?

  11. I’m with Ellen Thuss on this one I’ve used several different removers and everything says I’m clean but the Dllhost com surrogate replicates to the point of a blue screen crash.

  12. Keep the system OFFLINE This little shit tries to contact a server in Russia with the domain f0fff0 [dot] com. You need to know your way around your registry to get rid of this little shit. RK will find it but won’t necessarily get rid of it. Use ComboFix. I ran into this today and CF was my last resort. It’ll probably list under Other Deletions if not show a bunch of registry entries getting deleted.

  13. Robert Williams, thank you so much for recommending RogueKiller, after struggling with this virus for 3 days and various utilities, that is the the only one that got rid of it!!! Thank you

  14. I have blocked the Russian IPs, used Malwarebytes, NPE and Combo Fix multiple times… none of which worked.

  15. This virus is very difficult to remove, I’ve run NPE, Malwarebytes, etc. None of them find it. Farbar at least identified the offending key, but can’t do anything with it. In order to get the com surrogate processes to stop replicating, you have to find the key and at the very least delete the values inside of it, that’s the only way I could get it to stop taking over all the system resources.

  16. I tried Power Eraser to get rid of it and it didn’t work. It crashed at the end of the scan twice. Then I tried a program called ComboFix. I was warned that it could possibly delete something needed because it was very aggressive. I gave it a shot and it worked–BUT. Internet Explorer Browser is not working. Chrome works fine. I’ll wait just a little longer before overwriting the whole computer. Overall, my laptop is useable now without the incredible slow-down that the virus causes

  17. Hey BEEZ… you are the bee’s knees… Rogue Killer works wonders… If you made it to this discussion then look no further, after many days of struggle, Roguekiller fixed the Powelik when done just as Beez describes

    in reply to

    Download the RogueKiller executable, run it once. You won’t be able to fix anything but it needs to register itself. Then, reboot in safe mode, run the executable again. After the pre-scan is done, hit scan and wait. Get Task Manager running. After the scan is done, check the boxes for everything that is red or orange under the registry tab. After you’ve check the boxes, marking the items for deletion, use task manager to “end process” on every instance of dllhost.exe and then QUICKLY hit “DELETE” on RogueKiller (dllhost.exe processes will start running again if you wait too long, and you want to hit “DELETE” while none of them are running). Re-boot. You’re done and everything is back to normal.

  18. Hi. I have this virus too. I have tried to run the RogueKiller but it tells me that the publisher could not be verified. I click run anyway and then get RogueKiller x64 .exe is not a valid WIN32 application. I am running Windows 7b 64 bit. Can anyone help me?

  19. Hi again. I just downloaded it for about the 10th time. I think I will be able to run. thanks.

  20. First virus I’ve had in a long time and this one is nasty. It even infected my restore points. My advice. Keep regular backups of your documents (cloud or removable drive that isn’t connected). Wipe the drives and start fresh and load your backups.

    Word of caution, if you are connected to a corporate network, working from home or whatever, this will also infect any drives you are sharing on the corporate network. Be careful!

    Anyone have thoughts on where they picked this up? Clicked on an e-mail attachment? Downloaded a bad file? I’d like to avoid this again if I can.

  21. Followed the advice of Beez (30 October 2014 post) and it worked on our Win7/32-bit computer. Thank you, Beez, for taking the time to write up the step-by-step procedures for us.

  22. Norton provided Trojan.Poweliks Removal Tool. To get rid of this threat, please follow these steps:

    1. Login to your PC using Administrator account.

    2. Download Trojan.Poweliks removal tool from the link. Choose which version matches your system.
    FixPoweliks64 (for 64-bit computers)

    3. Save the file to a location on your hard drive.

    4. Once you have downloaded the file, please close all running applications.

    5. Locate the downloaded Trojan.Poweliks Removal Tool and double-click to run the program.

    6. When it prompts for EULA, please click I Accept.

    7. Once you are on the Trojan.Poweliks Removal Tool console, click on Start to begin the scan.

    8. Restart Windows once scanning has finished.

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