Research Report on Zcrypt Ransomware
Recently, PC security researchers from Google and the Universities of Illinois and Michigan dropped around 300 USBs and measured how many of these were plugged onto students’ PCs and got infected. They found 48 percent of USBs were infected with Zcrypt Ransomware. The sample file that was analyzed knowns as d1e75b274211a78d9c5d38c8ff2e1778 inside Invoice-order.exe. Zcrypt Ransomware uses a very asymmetric encipher standard to encode your files and displays a ransom note demanding 1.2 BTC ($500) in order to decode your files. It has also been mentioned that ransom fee might increase upto 5 BTC and after 7 Working days specific private key (decryption key) will be deleted even from C&C server with no other way to recover your encoded files.
On this circumstances, researchers suggest victims not to make any payment to those anonymous Hackers because they don’t provide any guarantee that if you pay to them, they will give you a working decryption key and as you know they are like a ghost none can track them down, even you can not file any lawsuit against them. Either ways its your loss. Hence, it is recommended to use some alternative method in oder to recover your files instead paying them such a huge amount.
Furthermore, researchers revealed some truth about its fatal behaviors like it is programmed to hook its code into a various legitimate programs time by time to avoid being detected by security software like it may attach its code into Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Adobe Flash Player etc. Hence, during scanning Antivirus scans these programs folders, it communicate as a legitimate program and bypass the scanning process easily. Even, it is programmed to install other spyware programs like iSpy Keylogger, PWSteal in order to stead your credentials like login details of online banking system like PayPal, Bitcoin and social/emails accounts.
Highlights of Zcrypt Ransomware
Upon execution, this ransomware leaves a copy of itself into following directory:
C:\Users\current user\AppData\Roaming\zcrypt.exe including btc.addr file that contains Bitcoin address, CID.ztxt contains Computer ID and public.key file containing public key. These files couldn’t be seen by inexperienced PC users because these files are dropped with hidden file attributes.
To display ransom note upon startup, Zcrypt Ransomware drops two files named – how to decrypt file.html and zCrypt.lnk files on following location as well :
The most common way that Attackers use to distribute is through Malspam. You may receive an unsolicited email message that look like an official email from shipping/currier companies. These kind of emails contain embedded link or attachment file. When you execute/open them, your PC gets infected. Infected computers can infect USB Flash Drives instantly because it has ability to replicate itself on other devices immediately. Though, if your plug in infected USBs then you might become a victim early.
Therefore, to protect your PC against the infection, we recommend you to install a Multi-layered security software on your PC and Home-computers as well. As of now, it is strongly advised to remove Zcrypt Ransomware and recover your files using following methods:
What To Do If Your PC Get Infected By Zcrypt Ransomware
The ransomware infection has been mainly designed with the purpose to scare users and trick their money. It take your files on hostage and demand ransom to return your important data. But now the question is what you can do when your system got infected by Zcrypt Ransomware virus? Here are some option that you can use to get rid of this nasty infection.
Don’t Panic – Well the first thing is Don’t panic and then completely check out your system for any working files. If you got any working files then copy it to USB drive.
Pay Ransom – Other option is you can pay the ransom and wait to get your files back. (really a bad option)
Use Backup – Clean you entire system files, remove the infection completely from your PC and restore your files with any backup.
Remove Infection – You can also delete Zcrypt Ransomware virus using malware removal tool and remove all the infected files. You can later recover all your data by using any data recovery tool. (In case you don’t have backup of your files.) – Recommended Method.
Reinstall Windows – The last option is reinstall your Windows OS. It will completely remove all your data as well as infection. You will get a completely new infection free PC.
How To Remove Zcrypt Ransomware Virus From Your PC
Step 1 – Boot your computer in Safe mode.
Step 2 – Remove the infected registry entry files.
- Click Windows Flag and R button together.
- Type “regedit” and click OK button
- Find and delete following entries.
HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftInternet ExplorerMain “Default_Page_URL”
Step 3 – Remove From msconfig
- Click Windows + R buttons simultaneously.
- Type msconfig and press Enter
- Go to Startup tab and uncheck all entries from unknown manufacturer.
Step 4 – Restart your computer normally.
Check your computer now. If the virus has gone then you can start using your computer. If the infection still remains then head to the next step.
Step 5 – System Restore
- Insert Windows installation disk to CD drive and restart your PC.
- While system startup, keep pressing F8 or F12 key to get boot options.
- Now select the boot from CD drive option to start your computer.
- Then after you will get the System Recovery Option on your screen.
- Select the System Restore option from the list.
- Choose a nearest system restore point when your PC was not infected.
- Now follow the option on your screen to Restore your computer.
If the above manual methods didn’t removed Zcrypt Ransomware virus then you have only option to remove infection using a malware removal tool. It is last and the only option that can easily and safely remove this nasty threat from your computer.
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