PUP.Optional.Catalina

Short bio

PUP.Optional.Catalina is Malwarebytes’ detection name for a family of adware related potentially unwanted programs published by Catalina Group Ltd. for Windows and MacOS.

Symptoms

Users my notice this type of screen during install:

installing Citrio

they may notice this type of entry in their list of installed Programs and Features:

installed Citrio

and they may notice these Scheduled Tasks:

Catalina Scheduled Tasks

Malicious behavior

PUP.Optional.Catalina gains persistence by installing Scheduled Tasks and a Run registry key. These processes are designed to “update” the application without user consent. Some of these updates were connected to privacy issues.

Type and source of infection

PUP.Optional.Catalina downloads and installs extensions on the affected system that have no benefit for the user.
PUP.Optional.Catalina comes bundled with the applications published by the Catalina Group like the Citrio browser (a Chromium project).

Citrio browser

Protection

Malwarebytes protects users from PUP.Optional.Catalina by using real-time protection.

block PUP.Optional.Catalina

Malwarebytes blocks PUP.Optional.Catalina

Remediation

Malwarebytes can detect and remove PUP.Optional.Catalina without further user interaction.

  1. Please download Malwarebytes to your desktop.
  2. Double-click mb3-setup-consumer-{version}.exe and follow the prompts to install the program.
  3. Then click Finish.
  4. Once the program has fully updated, select Scan Now on the Dashboard. Or select the Threat Scan from the Scan menu.
  5. If another update of the definitions is available, it will be implemented before the rest of the scanning procedure.
  6. When the scan is complete, make sure that all Threats are selected, and click Remove Selected.
  7. Restart your computer when prompted to do so.

Malwarebytes removal log

A Malwarebytes log of removal will look similar to this:

Malwarebytes
www.malwarebytes.com

-Log Details-
Scan Date: 2/13/19
Scan Time: 10:34 AM
Log File: 99374b67-2f72-11e9-8ffc-00ffdcc6fdfc.json

-Software Information-
Version: 3.6.1.2711
Components Version: 1.0.527
Update Package Version: 1.0.9238
License: Premium

-System Information-
OS: Windows 7 Service Pack 1
CPU: x64
File System: NTFS
User: {computername}\{username}

-Scan Summary-
Scan Type: Threat Scan
Scan Initiated By: Manual
Result: Completed
Objects Scanned: 236076
Threats Detected: 26
Threats Quarantined: 26
Time Elapsed: 4 min, 27 sec

-Scan Options-
Memory: Enabled
Startup: Enabled
Filesystem: Enabled
Archives: Enabled
Rootkits: Enabled
Heuristics: Enabled
PUP: Detect
PUM: Detect

-Scan Details-
Process: 1
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\1.3.25.225\CATALINACRASHHANDLER.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238

Module: 2
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\1.3.25.225\GOOPDATE.DLL, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\1.3.25.225\CATALINACRASHHANDLER.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238

Registry Key: 6
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\TREE\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\TASKS\{467A2CF4-D247-447D-9C6F-0F2E9E5F9BB6}, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\PLAIN\{467A2CF4-D247-447D-9C6F-0F2E9E5F9BB6}, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\TREE\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\TASKS\{18948E4E-B2F0-4193-BCD3-984AB9734C95}, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKLM\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS NT\CURRENTVERSION\SCHEDULE\TASKCACHE\PLAIN\{18948E4E-B2F0-4193-BCD3-984AB9734C95}, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238

Registry Value: 1
PUP.Optional.Catalina, HKCU\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\CURRENTVERSION\RUN|CatalinaGroup Update, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238

Registry Data: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Data Stream: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Folder: 0
(No malicious items detected)

File: 16
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\1.3.25.225\GOOPDATE.DLL, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\1.3.25.225\CATALINACRASHHANDLER.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\WINDOWS\TASKS\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core.job, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\TASKS\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\WINDOWS\TASKS\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA.job, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\TASKS\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\UPDATE\CATALINAUPDATE.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\DESKTOP\CATALINAUPDATESETUP.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\ROAMING\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\Citrio.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\ROAMING\MICROSOFT\INTERNET EXPLORER\QUICK LAUNCH\User Pinned\TaskBar\Citrio.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\ROAMING\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Citrio.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\DESKTOP\Chrome Web Store.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\DESKTOP\Citrio.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\DESKTOP\Facebook.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\DESKTOP\YouTube.lnk, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238
PUP.Optional.Catalina, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\CATALINAGROUP\CITRIO\APPLICATION\CITRIO.EXE, Quarantined, [500], [635491],1.0.9238

Physical Sector: 0
(No malicious items detected)

WMI: 0
(No malicious items detected)


(end)

Add an exclusion

Should users wish to keep this program and exclude it from being detected in future scans, they can add the program to the exclusions list. Here’s how to do it.

The Exclusions tab includes a list of items to be excluded from scans. The items may include files, folders, websites, or applications that connect to the Internet, as well as previously detected exploits.

To access the exclusions in Malwarebytes:

  • Click on the Settings tab in the left pane.
  • Click on the Exclusions tab.
  • Click the Add Exclusion button.
  • Select the exclusion type Exclude a File or Folder and use the Browse button to select the main folder for the software that you wish to keep.
  • Repeat this for any secondary folder(s) that belong to the software.
  • If you want to allow the program to connect to the Internet, for example to fetch updates, add an exclusion of the type Exclude an application that Connects to the Internet and use the Browse button to select the file you wish to grant access.

Traces/IOCs

You may see these entries in FRST logs:

HKCU\...\Run: [CatalinaGroup Update] => C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe [132104 2019-02-13] (Catalina Group Limited -> Catalina Group Ltd.) <==== ATTENTION
C:\Windows\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA.job
C:\Windows\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core.job
C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup
C:\Windows\System32\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA
C:\Windows\System32\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core
C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe

Task: {18948E4E-B2F0-4193-BCD3-984AB9734C95} - System32\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA => C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe (Catalina Group Limited -> Catalina Group Ltd.) [File not signed] <==== ATTENTION
Task: {467A2CF4-D247-447D-9C6F-0F2E9E5F9BB6} - System32\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core => C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe (Catalina Group Limited -> Catalina Group Ltd.) [File not signed] <==== ATTENTION
Task: C:\Windows\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}Core.job => C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe <==== ATTENTION
Task: C:\Windows\Tasks\CatalinaGroupUpdateTaskUserS-1-5-21-{userCLSID}UA.job => C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\CatalinaGroup\Update\CatalinaUpdate.exe <==== ATTENTION

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