Threat Explorer

The Threat Explorer is a comprehensive resource consumers can turn to for daily, accurate, up-to-date information on the latest threats, risks and vulnerabilities.

Adware.EasySearch

Adware.EasySearch

Updated:
February 13, 2007
Risk Impact:
High
File Names:
Runwin32.exe
Systems Affected:
Windows

Behavior


Adware.EasySearch modifies the Internet Explorer settings and may download programs onto the infected computer.

Symptoms


The files are detected as Adware.EasySearch.

Behavior


This file must be manually installed.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version October 02, 2014 revision 022
  • Latest Rapid Release version March 23, 2017 revision 037
  • Initial Daily Certified version August 11, 2004
  • Latest Daily Certified version March 23, 2017 revision 041
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date August 11, 2004
Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

When Adware.EasySearch runs, it does the following:

  1. Downloads a program from a predetermined site and installs it as:

    %Windir%\iau.exe

    Note: %Windir% is a variable that refers to the Windows installation folder. By default, this is C:\Windows or C:\Winnt.

  2. Copies the above program to the following files:
    • %Windir%\stisvsq.exe
    • %Windir%\svshost.exe
    • %Windir%\msqdevl.exe
    • %Windir%\lssas.exe
    • %Windir%\mservice.exe

  3. Adds the value:

    "Start Page"="[URL on the domain easy-search.biz]"

    to the registry keys:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main

    to redirect the Internet Explorer start page.

  4. Adds the values:

    "ProxyServer"="127.0.0.1:8080"
    "ProxyOverride"="local"

    to the registry key:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings

    to set Adware.EasySearch as a proxy server that Internet Explorer uses to access the Internet.

  5. Adds the values:

    "Microsoft Internet Acceleration Utility"="iau.exe"
    "Internet Connection Wizard"="stisvsq.exe"
    "Games Acceleration"="svshost.exe"
    "Internet Mail and News"="msqdevl.exe"
    "Microsoft Management Console"="lssas.exe"
    "Multimedia extensions"="mservice.exe"

    to the registry keys:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

    so that Adware.EasySearch runs when Windows starts.

  6. Runs on port 8080 on the infected computer as a proxy to Internet Explorer.

  7. Periodically redirects the user to one of the following domains:
    • worldtracker.biz
    • pornlandz.com



The following instructions pertain to all Symantec antivirus products that support Security Risk detection.
  1. Update the definitions.
  2. Restart the computer in Safe mode.
  3. Run a full system scan.
  4. Delete the value that was added to the registry.
  5. Reset the Internet Explorer home page.
For specific details on each of these steps, read the following instructions.

1. To update the definitions
To obtain the most recent definitions, start your Symantec program and run LiveUpdate.

2. To restart the computer in Safe mode
Shut down the computer and turn off the power. Wait for at least 30 seconds, and then restart the computer in Safe mode. For instructions, read the document, "How to start the computer in Safe Mode ."

3. To run the scan
  1. Start your Symantec antivirus program, and then run a full system scan.
  2. If any files are detected as Adware.EasySearch and depending on which software version you are using, you may see one or more of the following options:

    Note: This applies only to versions of Norton AntiVirus that support Security Risk detection. If you are running a version of Symantec AntiVirus Corporate Edition that supports Security Risk detection, and Security Risk detection has been enabled, you will only see a message box that gives the results of the scan. If you have questions in this situation, contact your network administrator.
    • Exclude (Not recommended): If you click this button, it will set the threat so that it is no longer detectable. That is, the antivirus program will keep the security risk on your computer and will no longer detect it to remove from your computer.

    • Ignore or Skip: This option tells the scanner to ignore the threat for this scan only. It will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

    • Cancel: This option is new to Norton Antivirus 2005. It is used when Norton Antivirus 2005 has determined that it cannot delete a security risk. This Cancel option tells the scanner to ignore the threat for this scan only, and thus, the threat will be detected again the next time that you run a scan.

      To actually delete the security risk:
      • Click its file name (under the Filename column).
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

    • Delete: This option will attempt to delete the detected files. In some cases, the scanner will not be able to do this.
      • If you see a message, "Delete Failed" (or similar message), manually delete the file.
      • Click the file name of the threat that is under the Filename column.
      • In the Item Information box that displays, write down the full path and file name.
      • Then use Windows Explorer to locate and delete the file.

4. To delete the value from the registry

Important:
Symantec strongly recommends that you back up the registry before making any changes to it. Incorrect changes to the registry can result in permanent data loss or corrupted files. Modify the specified keys only. Read the document, "How to make a backup of the Windows registry ," for instructions.
  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type regedit

    Then click OK.

  3. Navigate to the keys:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

  4. In the right pane, delete the values:

    "Microsoft Internet Acceleration Utility"="iau.exe"
    "Internet Connection Wizard"="stisvsq.exe"
    "Games Acceleration"="svshost.exe"
    "Internet Mail and News"="msqdevl.exe"
    "Microsoft Management Console"="lssas.exe"
    "Multimedia extensions"="mservice.exe"

  5. Navigate to the key:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings

  6. In the right pane, delete the following values:

    "ProxyServer"="127.0.0.1:8080"
    "ProxyOverride"="local"

  7. Exit the registry editor.

5. To reset the Internet Explorer home page
  1. Start Microsoft Internet Explorer.
  2. Connect to the Internet, and then go to the page that you want to set as your home page.
  3. Click Tools > Internet Options.
  4. In the Home page section of the General tab, click Use Current > OK.

For additional information, or if this procedure does not work, read the Microsoft® Knowledge Base article, "Home Page Setting Changes Unexpectedly, or You Cannot Change Your Home Page Setting, Article ID 320159 ."