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Panda Protection

Virus Encyclopedia

Welcome to the Virus Encyclopedia of Panda Security.

Gaobot.NQT

Threat LevelHigh threatDamageSevereDistributionNot widespread
Common name:Gaobot.NQT
Technical name:W32/Gaobot.NQT.worm
Threat level:Medium
Type:Worm
Effects:   It spreads and affects other computers.
Affected platforms:

Windows 2003/XP/2000/NT/ME/98/95

First detected on:July 16, 2006
Detection updated on:July 16, 2006
StatisticsNo
Proactive protection:
Yes, using TruPrevent Technologies

Brief Description 

    

Gaobot.NQT is a worm that spreads by copying itself, without infecting other files.

 

It captures certain information entered or saved by the user, with the corresponding threat to privacy: passwords saved by certain Windows services; keystrokes, in order to obtain information for accessing online banking services, passwords and other confidential information.

It sends the gathered information to a remote user by any available means: email, FTP, etc.

 

It affects productivity, preventing tasks from being carried out:

  • In the affected computer: it converts the computer into a platform for taking malicious action surreptitiously: spam sending, launch of Denial of Service attacks, malware distribution, etc.
  • In the local network: it generates a large amount of network activity and consumes bandwidth.

 

It reduces the security level of the computer: it terminates processes belonging to security tools, such as antivirus programs and firewalls, leaving the computer defenseless against attacks from other malware; it opens one or more ports to allow remote access to the computer and takes action that compromises user confidentiality; it awaits remote-control orders received through IRC; it changes system permissions, decreasing the security level.

 

Gaobot.NQT prevents access from programs to websites of several companies related with security tools (antivirus programs, firewalls, etc.).

 

It uses stealth techniques to avoid being detected by the user:

  • It uses techniques included in its code to hide itself while it is active.
  • It terminates processes corresponding to several security tools, such as antivirus programs and firewalls, to prevent detection.
  • It deletes the original file from which it was run once it is installed on the computer.

 

It uses several methods in order to avoid detection by antivirus companies:

  • It terminates its own execution if it detects that it is being executed in a virtual machine environment, such as VMWare or VirtualPC.
  • It terminates its own execution if it detects that a memory dump program is running, such as Procdump.

 

Gaobot.NQT uses the following propagation or distribution methods:

  • Exploiting vulnerabilities with the intervention of the user: exploiting vulnerabilities in file formats or applications. To exploit them successfully it needs the intervention of the user: opening files, viewing malicious web pages, reading emails, etc.
  • Email: sending emails that include a copy of itself as an attachment. The computer is infected when the attachment is run.
  • IRC: It sends a copy of itself to all users connected to the channel to which the infected user is connected.