Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A virus (Removal Guide)

If AVG Antivirus or AVG Internet Security has found a Luhe.Sirefef.A virus, then your computer is infected with a ZeroAccess rootkit.
[Image: Luhe.Sirefef.A virus]
The Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan is a dangerous threat that has been circulating for several years.
In the time that Luhe.Sirefef.A has been in the wild there have been a number of revisions, with modifications to its functionality, infection strategy and its persistence mechanisms on an infected machine. However, the core purpose has remained: to assume full control of the machine by adding it to the ZeroAccess botnet and to monetize the new asset by downloading additional malware.

Primarily, Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan is a kernel-mode rootkit, similar in ethos to the TDL family of rootkits. It uses advanced techniques to hide its presence, is capable of functioning on both 32 and 64-bit flavors of Windows from a single installer, contains aggressive self defense functionality and acts as a sophisticated delivery platform for other malware.

The Luhe.Sirefef.A virus remains hidden on an infected machine while downloading more visible components that generate revenue for the botnet owners. Currently the downloaded malware is mostly aimed at sending spam and carrying out click fraud, but previously the botnet has been instructed to download other malware and it is likely that this will be the case again in the future.

Luhe.Sirefef.A virus has been observed being distributed by exploits and programs that promote software-piracy, such as ‘keygens’ and ‘cracks’ (programs designed to bypass software licensing).

Variants of  Luhe Sirefef trojan may also be dropped or installed by other malware, including variants of the Trojan:Win32/Necurs family. The most popular variants of Luhe Sirefef are Luhe.Sirefef.A, Luhe.Sirefef.B, Luhe.Sirefef.B.dropper

In the wild, newer Luhe Sirefef variants have been observed dropping the following two files to a chosen directory, for example, C:\recycler\s\:

  • “@” – this file contains information that Luhe.Sirefef.A can use to find other infected computers
  • “n” – this file contains the malicious code for peer-to-peer (P2P) communication

These newer variants then make the following changes to the registry to ensure that Luhe.Sirefef.A runs each time you start your computer:

In subkey: HKLM\Software\Classes\clsid\{5839fca9-774d-42a1-acda-d6a79037f57f}\InprocServer32
Modifies value: “(Default)”
From data: “\wbem\wbemess.dll”
With data: “” (for example, “c:\recycler\s\\n”)

Luhe.Sirefef.A is a dangerous threat that uses advanced stealth techniques in order to hinder its detection and removal. As a consequence of being infected with this threat, you may need to repair and reconfigure some Windows security features.
Because the malware removal process for the Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan is very complex, we recommend that you backup your personal files and folders before starting to remove this infection.

Luhe.Sirefef.A – Virus Removal Guide

This page is a comprehensive guide, which will remove the Luhe.Sirefef.A infection from your your computer. Please perform all the steps in the correct order. If you have any questions or doubt at any point, STOP and ask for our assistance.
STEP 1: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A Master Boot Record infection with Kaspersky TDSSKiller
STEP 2: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A rootkit with Combofix
STEP 3: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A virus with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free
STEP 4: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan with RogueKiller
STEP 5:  Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A infection with HitmanPro
STEP 6:  Double-check for Luhe.Sirefef.A infection with Emsisoft and ESET Online Scanner

STEP 1:  Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan with Kaspersky TDSSKiller

As part of its self defense mechanism, Luhe.Sirefef.A virus will install a ZeroAccess rootkit on the infected computer.In this first step, we will run a system scan with Kaspersky TDSSKiller to remove this rookit.

  1. Please download the latest official version of Kaspersky TDSSKiller.
    KASPERSKY TDSSKILLER DOWNLOAD LINK(This link will automatically download Kaspersky TDSSKiller on your computer.)
  2. Before you can run Kaspersky TDSSKiller, you first need to rename it so that
    you can get it to run. To do this, right-click on the TDSSKiller.exe icon and select Rename.
    Edit the name of the file from TDSSKiller.exe to iexplore.exe, and then double-click on it to launch.
  3. Kaspersky TDSSKiller will now start and display the welcome screen and we will need to click on Change Parameters.
    Kaspersky TDSSKiller change settings
  4. In the new open window,we will need to enable Detect TDLFS file system, then click on OK.
    Kaspersky TDSSKiller Detect TDLFS file system
  5. Next,we will need to start a scan with Kaspersky, so you’ll need to press the Start Scan button.
    Kaspersky TDSSKiller start scan
  6. Kaspersky TDSSKiller will now scan your computer for Trojan Luhe.Sirefef.A infection.
    Kaspersky TDSSKiller scan
  7. When the scan has finished it will display a result screen stating whether or not the infection was found on your computer. If it was found it will display a screen similar to the one below.
    Kaspersky TDSSKiller results
  8. To remove the infection simply click on the Continue button and TDSSKiller will attempt to clean the infection.A reboot will be require to completely remove any infection from your system.

STEP 2 : Remove the Luhe.Sirefef.A rootkit with Combofix

Luhe.Sirefef.A may infect your Windows services, so we will need to run Combofix to replace these files.

  1. Download Combofix from any of the below links.
    COMBOFIX DOWNLOAD LINK #1 (This link will automatically download Combofix on your computer)
    COMBOFIX DOWNLOAD LINK #2  (This link will automatically download Combofix on your computer)
  2. Before running this utiltiy,please follow the below instructions:
    • Close any open browsers.
    • Close/disable all anti virus and anti malware programs so they do not interfere with the running of ComboFix.
      Temporarily disable your anti-virusscript blocking and any anti-malware real-time protection beforeperforming a scan. They can interfere with ComboFix or remove some of its embedded files which may cause “unpredictable results”.
    • WARNING: Combofix will disconnect your machine from the Internet as soon as it starts
      Please do not attempt to re-connect your machine back to the Internet until Combofix has completely finished.
      If there is no internet connection after running Combofix, then restart your computer to restore back your connection.
  3. Start the Combofix scan:
    1. Double click on ComboFix.exe and then follow the prompts.
    2. Accept the disclaimer and allow to update if it asks.
    3. When finished, it shall produce a log for you.
    4. Restart your computer

    Additional Notes:

    • DO NOT mouse-click Combofix’s window while it is running. That may cause it to stall.
    • DO NOT “re-run” Combofix. If you have a problem, reply back for further instructions.
    • IF after the reboot you get errors about programs being marked for deletion then reboot, that will cure it.

STEP 3: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A virus with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware FREE

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free is a powerful on-demand scanner which will remove Luhe.Sirefef.A malicious files from your computer.

  1. You can download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free from the below link, then double-click on the icon named mbam-setup.exe to install this program.
    MALWAREBYTES ANTI-MALWARE DOWNLOAD LINK(This link will open a download page in a new window from where you can download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free)
  2. When the installation begins, keep following the prompts in order to continue with the setup process, then at the last screen click on the Finish button.
    [Image: Malwarebytes Anti-Malware final installation screen]
  3. On the Scanner tab, select Perform quick scan, and then click on the Scan button to start searching for the Luhe.Sirefef.A malicious files.
    [Image: Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Quick Scan]
  4. Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware will now start scanning your computer for Luhe.Sirefef.A virus as shown below.
    [Image: Malwarebytes Anti-Malware scanning for Luhe.Sirefef.A
  5. When the Malwarebytes Anti-Malware scan has finished, click on the Show Results button.
    [Image: Malwarebytes Anti-Malware scan results]
  6. You will now be presented with a screen showing you the computer infections that Malwarebytes Anti-Malware has detected. Make sure that everything is Checked (ticked), then click on the Remove Selected button.
    [Image: Malwarebytes Anti-Malwar removing Luhe.Sirefef.A virus]
  7. Once your computer will restart in Windows regular mode, open Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and perform a Full System scan to verify that there are no remaining threats.

STEP 4: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A rootkit with RogueKiller

RogueKiller is a utility that will scan for the Luhe.Sirefef.A rootkit, registry keys and any other malicious files on your computer.

  1. You can download the latest official version of RogueKiller from the below link.
    ROGUEKILLER DOWNLOAD LINK (This link will automatically download RogueKiller on your computer)
  2. Double click on RogueKiller.exe to start this utility and then wait for the Prescan to complete.This should take only a few seconds,  then click on the Scan button to perform a system scan.
    [Image: RogueKiller scaning for Luhe.Sirefef.A virus]
  3. After the scan has completed, press the Delete button to remove Luhe.Sirefef.A malicious registry keys or files.
    [Image: RogueKiller Detele button]

STEP 5: Remove Luhe.Sirefef.A infection with HitmanPro

HitmanPro is a cloud on-demand scanner, which will scan your computer with 5 antivirus engines (Emsisoft, Bitdefender, Dr. Web, G-Data and Ikarus) for the Luhe.Sirefef.A infection.

  1. You can download HitmanPro from the below link:
    HITMANPRO DOWNLOAD LINK (This link will open a web page from where you can download HitmanPro)
  2. Double-click on the file named HitmanPro.exe (for 32-bit versions of Windows) or HitmanPro_x64.exe (for 64-bit versions of Windows). When the program starts you will be presented with the start screen as shown below.
    HitmanPro scanner
    Click on the Next button, to install HitmanPro on your computer.
    HitmanPro installation
  3. HitmanPro will now begin to scan your computer for Luhe.Sirefef.A trojan.
    HitmanPro detecting for Luhe.Sirefef.A virus
  4. When it has finished it will display a list of all the malware that the program found as shown in the image below. Click on the Next button, to remove Luhe.Sirefef.A virus.
    HitmanPro scan results
  5. Click on the Activate free license button to begin the free 30 days trial, and remove all the malicious files from your computer.
    [Image: HitmanPro 30 days activation button]

STEP 6: Double check for Luhe.Sirefef.A infection on your computer

STEP A: Run a scan with Eset Online Scanner.

  1. Download ESET Online Scanner utility.
    ESET Online Scanner Download Link (This link will automatically download ESET Online Scanner on your computer.)
  2. Double click on the Eset installer program (esetsmartinstaller_enu.exe).
  3. Check Yes, I accept the Terms of Use
  4. Click the Start button.
  5. Check Scan archives
  6. Push the Start button.
  7. ESET will then download updates for itself, install itself, and begin scanning your computer. Please be patient as this can take some time.
  8. When the scan completes, push Finish

STEP B: Run a scan with Emsisoft Emergency Kit.

  1. Please download the latest official version of Emsisoft Emergency Kit.
    EMSISOFT EMERGENCY KIT DOWNLOAD LINK (This link will open a download page in a new window from where you can download Emsisoft Emergency Kit)
  2. After the download process will finish , you’ll need to unpack EmsisoftEmergencyKit.zip and then double click on EmergencyKitScanner.bat
  3. A pop-up will prompt you to update Emsisoft Emergency Kit , please click the “Yes” button.After the Update process has completed , put the mouse cursor over the “Menu” tab on the left and click-on “Scan PC“.
  4. Select “Smart scan” and click-on the below “SCAN” button.When the scan will be completed , you will be presented with a screen showing you the malware infections that Emsisoft Emergency Kit has detected.Make sure that everything is Checked (ticked) and click on the ‘Quarantine selected objects‘ button.

Your computer should now be free of the Luhe.Sirefef.A infection. If your current anti-virus solution let this infection through, you may want to consider purchasing the PRO version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware to protect against these types of threats in the future, and perform regular computer scans with HitmanPro.
If you are still experiencing problems while trying to remove Luhe.Sirefef.A from your machine, please start a new thread in our Malware Removal Assistance forum.

IT’S YOUR TURN TO HELP!

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ABOUT STELIAN PILICI

I am the creator and owner of MalwareTips.com.
My area of expertise includes malware removal and computer forensics. I'm active in the various online anti-malware communities where I do researches for new malware threats as they are released.
I live in Bucharest (Romania), where I run my own local computer repair shop.
I repair both hardware and other operating systems related issues, however most of my business is malware related problems.

You can follow me on Google+ , and I will keep you up-to-date with the latest computer infections and malware threats.

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  • Ruby Ren

    still at this point

    • http://malwaretips.com/ Stelian Pilici

      Hello,
      How is your computer running ? Did you mana to remove this infection?

  • Ruby Ren

    Hello i have now run through all of your steps and im still having problems. you have already helped so much…. any further suggestions? xxx

  • Big Leg

    Hi,

    Thanks so much for these detailed instructions.

    I downloaded the virus unwittingly. AVG then kept raising the alram and each time I selected all elements and removed the threats, then rebooted. This happened again once I rebooted so I went through the same process again and on reboot that time found no issue. I found your instructions and ran stage 1 and it comes up with no threat found. Am I good to assume my PC is ok?

    Thanks again,

    • http://malwaretips.com/ Stelian Pilici

      Hello,
      Just to be on the safe side, you should run a scan with HitmanPro and Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free.
      Stay safe!

      • Big Leg

        Thanks!

  • Starr

    I ran the first two programs and it said its gone do I still need to follow all the steps
    Thanks again
    Starr Strong

    • http://malwaretips.com/ Stelian Pilici

      Hello,
      You should run all the scans just to be on the safe side!
      Stay safe! ;D

  • DrakeSign

    Man, you’ve just saved my life…

  • http://malwaretips.com/ Stelian Pilici

    Hello,
    Can you please run a scan with Combofix and post the logs here so that I can get an idea on what’s going on:

    You can download ComboFix from here: http://download.bleepingcomputer.com/sUBs/ComboFix.exe

    VERY IMPORTANT !!! Save as Combo-Fix.exe during the download.ComboFix must be renamed before you download to your Desktop

    Close any open browsers.

    Very Important!!!> Temporarily disable your anti-virus, script blocking and any anti-malware real-time protection before performing a scan. They can interfere with ComboFix or remove some of its embedded files which may cause “unpredictable results”.

    WARNING: Combofix will disconnect your machine from the Internet as soon as it starts

    Please do not attempt to re-connect your machine back to the Internet until Combofix has completely finished.

    If there is no internet connection after running Combofix, then restart your computer to restore back your connection.

    1. Double click on ComboFix.exe & follow the prompts.

    2. Accept the disclaimer and allow to update if it asks

    3. When finished, it shall produce a log for you.

    Notes:

    Do not mouse-click Combofix’s window while it is running. That may cause it to stall.

    Do not “re-run” Combofix. If you have a problem, reply back for further instructions.

    If after the reboot you get errors about programs being marked for deletion then reboot, that will cure it.

    Please post the Combofix, so that I can get an idea on what’s going on.
    Next, please run a scan with HitmanPro and Malwarebytes, then let me know how is your computer running.

  • whoadaddy

    Would it be best to do this while in safe mode?

    • http://malwaretips.com/ Stelian Pilici

      Hello,
      If you cannot run these in Windows regular mode, then you can use the Safe Mode with Networking. However I would recommend that you first try to run these tools in normal mode, and if it fails, you can then try the Safe mode.
      Stay safe!

  • cloo

    Thanks