Threat description




The Poweliks trojan installs its malicious code in a registry key in the Windows registry. Depending on the variant, the trojan may download additional malware onto the affected machine, perform clickfraud or carry out additional instructions from a remote attacker.


Automatic action

Depending on the settings of your F-Secure security product, it will either automatically delete, quarantine or rename the suspect file, or ask you for a desired action.

Manually removing the affected registry keys

Caution: Manual removal is recommended only for advanced users. Otherwise, please seek professional technical assistance.

To manually remove the registry keys created by earlier Poweliks variants, we recommend using the removal tool provided by our trusted partner, BitDefender:

Before starting, we recommend backing up all important files.

Contact Support

F-Secure customers can contact our Support service for further assistance.

More scanning & removal options

More information on the scanning and removal options available in your F-Secure product can be found in the Help Center.

You may also refer to the Knowledge Base on the F-Secure Community site for more assistance.

Technical Details

The executable file containing the installer for the Poweliks trojan is typically distributed through spam email campaigns or by exploit kits . When delivered via an exploit kit, F-Secure products may identify the exploit attempting to gain access to a targeted device with the detection name, "Exploit.Poweliks.Gen".

When the installer is launched on the device, the trojan's malicious code is not saved in a file (as is typical of most other malware), but in a registry key in the Windows Registry. This behavior makes it much harder for the user to recognize the presence of a malicious program on their system. Once the code is installed, the Poweliks installer deletes itself to leave even less evidence on the device.

Depending on the specific variant of the Poweliks trojan installed, the malware may:

  • Harvest system information and forward it to a remote server
  • Perform clickfraud (also known as clickjacking)
  • Download additional malware onto the device
  • Contact a remote server to obtain additional instructions from the attacker

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