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Prometei botnet

Category: Malware

Type: Botnet, worm

Platforms affected: Windows and Linux

Variants: Prometei v3

Damage potential: Depleting resources by mining cryptocurrency, data theft, downloading and executing additional malware, spreading to other systems.


The Prometei botnet was first identified in 2016. Its primary function is to deploy Monero cryptocurrency mining operations on infected systems. Prometei is particularly dangerous because of its worm-like nature, which allows it to infect other systems and makes it particularly difficult to remove in large networks.

As of November 2022, an updated version of the Prometei botnet has infected more than 10,000 systems worldwide. While these infections affected users in 155 countries, Prometei notably avoided striking Russia, leading some researchers to believe that the cybercriminals behind it are based in the country.

Prometei’s latest improvements include enhanced modules and expanded capabilities on its Linux versions, proving it to be a significant and evolving threat.

Possible symptoms

  • Your device slows down drastically overnight.
  • Your electricity bill increases unexpectedly.
  • Your device constantly overheats.
  • Your laptop battery starts draining very fast.
  • Your device shuts down because it doesn’t have enough processing power left for even the simplest tasks.
  • You start seeing unrecognized processes or services running on the system.
  • Your network is always busy because of the constant data transmissions.


Try to ensure that the botnet doesn’t get onto your device in the first place. So be careful when you get unsolicited emails, especially if they have files or links attached. You can use NordVPN’s Threat Protection to make your browsing safer and help you avoid malware like Prometei. It will block your access to malicious websites and scan the files you’re downloading and delete them if malware is found.

Here are some more things you can do:

  • Regularly update your software and operating system to close security loopholes.
  • Educate yourself on recognizing phishing attempts and learn about safe browsing practices.
  • Businesses can use network segmentation and access controls to limit the lateral movement of malware.

Prometei botnet removal

  • Disconnect infected devices or systems from the network to prevent further spread.
  • Use an updated and reputable paid antivirus software to scan your device and remove malicious components.
  • Manually check for and remove unrecognized services or processes.
  • Consider doing a full system restoration — delete everything on your device, restore factory settings, and start fresh.
  • After removal, change passwords and review security settings to prevent reinfection.