Free removal tool for new Palevo.FP version invading IM windows

Windows-based platforms at high risk of exploits

Our older acquaintance, Palevo, just gave birth to a new offspring, which has already begun to spread, just as its older brothers, by large waves of automatically generated IM spam. The current messages are similar to those displayed in the previous distribution campaigns: a link functioning as an invitation for IM users to enjoy an alleged “must-see” photo, apparently available in the gallery of a very popular social network.

Worm Palevo

Figure 1 – The link purporting to reveal an interesting photo

Instead of the promised image, the user receives the freshly born Worm.P2P.Palevo.FP. Once it gets into the operating system, this new Palevo variant changes the firewall settings by adding itself as an authorized program, which enables attackers to control unhindered the compromised computers.

Compared to its siblings, this version is perhaps more hazardous. Palevo.FP adds to its malicious arsenal the capacity to disable Microsoft® Windows® Automatic Updates Service, thus exposing the OS to the risk of being additionally exploited by breaches, glitches and backdoors left unpatched.

To check whether or not your system is infected, run a QuickScan.

To make sure your system is clean, download and execute the new free Palevo removal tool that my colleagues from the labs recently crafted.

Safe surfing, everybody!

The technical description and the removal tool referenced in this article are available courtesy of Daniel Chipiristeanu, BitDefender Threats Researcher.

All product and company names mentioned herein are for identification purposes only and are the property of, and may be trademarks of, their respective owners.

About the author


With a humanities passion and background (BA and MA in Comparative Literature at the Faculty of Letters, University of Bucharest) - complemented by an avid interest for the IT world and its stunning evolution, I joined in the autumn of 2003 the chief editors' team from Niculescu Publishing House, as IT&C Chief Editor, where (among many other things) I coordinated the Romanian version of the well-known SAMS Teach Yourself in 24 Hours series. In 2005 I accepted two new challenges and became Junior Lecturer at the Faculty of Letters (to quote U2 - "A Sort of Homecoming") and Lead Technical Writer at BluePhoenix Solutions.

After leaving from BluePhoenix in 2008, I rediscovered "all that technical jazz" with the E-Threat Analysis and Communication Team at BitDefender, the creator of one of the industry's fastest and most effective lines of internationally certified security software. Here I produce a wide range of IT&C security-related content, from malware, spam and phishing alerts to technical whitepapers and press releases. Every now and then, I enjoy scrutinizing the convolutions of e-criminals' "not-so-beautiful mind" and, in counterpart, the new defensive trends throughout posts on

Balancing the keen and until late in night (please read "early morning") reading (fiction and comparative literature studies mostly) with Internet "addiction", the genuine zeal for my bright and fervid students with the craze for the latest discoveries in science and technology, I also enjoy taking not very usual pictures (I'm not a pro, but if you want to see the world through my lenses, here are some samples, messing around with DTP programs to put out some nifty book layouts and wacky t-shirts, roaming the world (I can hardly wait to come back in the Big Apple), and last but not least, driving my small Korean car throughout the intricacies of our metropolis's traffic.