SLoad

Posted: April 29, 2019

SLoad Description

SLoad is both spyware and a Trojan downloader that often is in use in campaigns associated with e-mail phishing lure and the Ramnit banking Trojan. Although its configuration suggests a high level of interest in banking activities, SLoad's features are broad enough to cause other security issues. Windows users can protect their PCs by keeping anti-malware products available for removing SLoad automatically or blocking an installation exploit.

A Load of Financial Trouble for Your Computer

Trojan downloaders have their name thanks to their narrow focus on downloading other threats, usually, which are changeable according to whatever their instructions are from their Command & Control servers. SLoad, who includes both those ‘vanilla’ functions and other ones that are far out of its category, is bucking this specialty. Resultingly, it's a tool that lets threat actors identify their victims more cleanly and target data and accounts for theft with even greater efficiency than before.

SLoad has associations with a threat actor that uses variants of Ramnit banking Trojans especially, which SLoad downloads and installs. These campaigns begin their attacks with e-mail messages with contents that reference the victim by name and use the regionally-appropriate language. Opening the corrupted attachment activates a series of PowerShell scripts that end with SLoad.

SLoad can, of course, download and install other threats besides Ramnit, up to and including nearly any file that the threat actor specifies via an URL. Malware experts also confirm a self-updating feature, screenshot-taking capabilities, and a data-hunting search that targets online banking activity and Citrix files (possibly, for identifying cloud-based business operations). It conducts most of its behavior in a semi-constant loop that it intersperses with a brief hibernating feature and a regular 'checkup' for any command updates from the C&C.

Shrugging the Trojan Loader Off Your Shoulders

The top infection strategies for SLoad all tend towards geography-specialization, including technical support (such as geo-fencing checks at multiple stages), in addition to the social engineering-based content. Users can assume that attacks will pretend that they're highly-relevant to them as individuals, including company and personal references where appropriate. Many, but not all e-mail attachments carrying a Trojan dropper for SLoad use ZIP-compressed formats that pretend that they're documents.

Even though it conducts a much more generous set of attacks than most Trojan downloaders (see, for an example of the contrast, the Swort Trojan), none of SLoad's attacks offer symptoms for the user's observation. Systems protected by anti-malware services should identify the relevant PowerShell exploits or SLoad without letting the payloads finish triggering. If you require anti-malware services for removing a SLoad infection, change passwords and other credentials afterward and re-verify the integrity of your bank account.

SLoad can do more than 'only' deliver other Trojans to your PC. Whether this multiple-purpose toolkit approach to downloader-themed threats stays around or becomes a fad, only future Trojan attacks can tell.

Use SpyHunter to Detect and Remove PC Threats

If you are concerned that malware or PC threats similar to SLoad may have infected your computer, we recommend you start an in-depth system scan with SpyHunter. SpyHunter is an advanced malware protection and remediation application that offers subscribers a comprehensive method for protecting PCs from malware, in addition to providing one-on-one technical support service.

Download SpyHunter's Malware Scanner

Note: SpyHunter's free version is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware tool to remove the malware threats. Learn more on SpyHunter. If you would like to uninstall SpyHunter for any reason, please follow these uninstall instructions. To learn more about our policies and practices, visit our EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.

Why can't I open any program including SpyHunter? You may have a malware file running in memory that kills any programs that you try to launch on your PC. Tip: Download SpyHunter from a clean computer, copy it to a USB thumb drive, DVD or CD, then install it on the infected PC and run SpyHunter's malware scanner.

Use SpyHunter to Detect and Remove PC Threats

If you are concerned that malware or PC threats similar to SLoad may have infected your computer, we recommend you start an in-depth system scan with SpyHunter. SpyHunter is an advanced malware protection and remediation application that offers subscribers a comprehensive method for protecting PCs from malware, in addition to providing one-on-one technical support service.

Download SpyHunter's Malware Scanner

Note: SpyHunter's free version is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware tool to remove the malware threats. Learn more on SpyHunter. If you would like to uninstall SpyHunter for any reason, please follow these uninstall instructions. To learn more about our policies and practices, visit our EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.

Why can't I open any program including SpyHunter? You may have a malware file running in memory that kills any programs that you try to launch on your PC. Tip: Download SpyHunter from a clean computer, copy it to a USB thumb drive, DVD or CD, then install it on the infected PC and run SpyHunter's malware scanner.

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