How-To-Remove-Locky-Ransomware
Ransomware | 06/03/2019

Beware of the harmful effects of Locky Ransomware

About: Once, the Locky Ransomware has infected the system, it will make your data inaccessible. To restore your files, you will have to pay the ransom mandatorily.

| Ransomware | Beware of the harmful effects of Locky Ransomware

Guide To Remove Locky Ransomware

Locky ransomware has been making its presence felt since February 2016 in the digital world. The Locky ransomware emerged with advanced features.Domain generation algorithm, complex spam email campaigns, server-side encryption and generic PE packers are a few destructive attributes of it. With the frequent polishing, the creator make the detection of Locky Ransomware, difficult than ever before.

locky-ransomware

We provide you a brief description about the destructive infection of the cyber world.

Threat Summary

Name Locky
Type Ransomware
Category Malware
Targeted Operating System Windows
Targeted Browsers Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox

Understanding the Locky Ransomware

This disastrous ransomware made its presence felt on 18th February, 2016 by infiltrating the system of Hollywood Prebyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles. It encrypted all the data on the hospital’s computer systems. Eventually, the hospital paid a sum of $17,000 Bitcointo get the decryption key.Locky, gains access to your system bythe malicious Microsoft Word Document attached with Emails.

This strain of ransomware gained popularity in no time. By November, the Locky ransomware was one of the most common threats in cyber world.The harmful ransomware, after encrypting the files, generates a private key on the server.This process makes the manual decryption impossible. Hence, the victim is bound to pay the ransom in order to restore the lost files.

Generally, emails with malicious attachments are the gateway for this ransomware. It is next to impossible to detect Locky ransomware, as its source looks almost legitimate. The fake email may have subject line – ‘Upcoming payment – 1 month notice’ or ‘ATTN: Invoice J – 12345678’followed by an invoice in it, which is actually a destructive word document.

Once infected, it is not possible to recover Locky encrypted files. Ransom is the only way out! The new extensions on the encrypted files are named after the gods of Norse and Egyptian mythology. They might be as –.osiris, .odin, .thor, .aesir or .locky. 

Threat Behavior 

Once your system gets infected, it uses RSA-2048 and AES-1024 encryption algorithm. The changed extensions make the files inaccessible for the users. Below are the points which will help you to understand the threat behavior of Locky ransomware at a glance:

  1. Symptoms:

Once the Locky virus encrypts your files, it will change their extensions. The current extension used for encryption by this ransomware is ‘.osiris’. The changed extensions make your files’ data inaccessible.The only way to get back your files is by paying the asked ransom amount.

  1. Payment Method:

There are several ransom payment methods used by the hackers. Litecoin, Zcash, Dash, Bitcoin are a few mentions. Among all the available payment methods, Bitcoin is the most preferred one.

  1. Ransom Amount:

Cyber criminals, ask for large amount of money as ransom in order to provide the decryption key. In case of Locky ransomware, the ransom may vary from 0.5 bitcoins to 1 bitcoin. It is to be noted that, there is no guarantee, that you will be able to restore your file even after paying the asked amount.

  1. Ransom Note:

A pop – up ransom note will be displayed on your system’s screen, once, this ransomware has infected the data. The note will appear as shown in the image below:

Ransome Note - Locky Ransomware

Distribution Techniques

There are several ways that Locky will propagate in your system. Following are some of them:

First and foremost is via malicious attachments. Spammed emails containing harmful Microsoft Word Documents are the primary gateway for this ransomware. Such emails will containacatchy subject line.

Other propagation methods may include:

  • Torrent Websites
  • Malicious Ads
  • Infected network file sharing services

Removal Guidelines of Locky Ransomware

STEP A: Restart System using Safe mode with Command Prompt

Windows 7/ Vista/ XP

  1. Click on Windows icon present in the lower left corner of the computer screen.
  2. Select and click Restart.
  3. When the screen goes blank, keep tapping F8 key until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
  4. With the help of arrow keys on keyboard, Select Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list and press the Enter Key. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
  5. Click on the username and enter the password (if any).

Windows 10 / Windows 8

  1. Press and hold the Shift Key and simultaneously click on the windows icon present in the lower left corner of your computer screen.
  2. While the Shift key is still pressed click on the Power button and then click on Restart.
  3. Now select Troubleshoot → Advanced options → Startup Settings.
  4. When the Startup Settings screen appears which is the first screen to appear after restart, select and click on Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt. The system will then restart to Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
  5. Click on the username and enter the password.

STEP B: Restore your system files and settings

Method 1 using Control Panel

  1. Click on the ‘Start’ button on the taskbar. This will open the Start menu.
  2. Click on the ‘Control Panel’ button in the Start menu. This will open the control panel window.
  3. In the Control Panel window, click on the ‘View by:’ button on the top right. Select the Large Icon option
  4. In the control Panel window click on the ‘Recovery Icon’. This will open a window that will ask ‘Restore the computer to an earlier point in time’.
  5. Click on the ‘Open system restore’ button. This will open the ‘system restore ’window where you need to click on the Next Button.
  6.  Select the restore point that is prior the infiltration of Locky Ransomware. After doing that, click Next.
  7. This will open the ‘Confirm your restore point’ dialog box. Click on Finish button. This will restore your system to a previous restore point before your system was infected by Locky Ransomware.

OR

Method 2 using Command Prompt

  1. Type cmd in the search box and click on the command prompt to open the Command Prompt window. box and clicking on it.
  2. Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter.(Ensure that you in the system32 directory of Windows folder in C Drive)
  3. Now type rstrui and press Enter again.
  4. When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Locky Ransomware. After doing that, click Next.
  5. This will open the ‘Confirm your restore point’ dialog box. Click on Finish button. This will restore your system to a previous restore point before your system was infected by Locky Ransomware.

 

OR

Method 3 : Directly type 'rstrui' in the search box

  1. Type ‘Rstrui’ in the search box present on the task bar. This will open the System restore dialog box.

Continue to follow steps 4 & 5 of Method 2 to restore the System Files and settings.

Tips to prevent Locky Ransomware from infecting your system

  1. Keeping the Operating System Updated- In order to remain protected and avoid such infections, it is recommended to keep your Operating System updated by enabling the automatic update on your system. The systems with outdated or older versions of Operating System become an easy target for the attackers.
  2. Resist clicking on spam emails – One of the major techniques used for malware distribution is forwarding spam emails to the user. The system gets infected as soon as the user clicks on the attachment. These mails appear to be genuine, so be aware and resist falling for these tricks.
  3. Keep an eye on third party installations- It is quite important that you take due care while installing any third party applications for they are major source of such infections. Such malware programs come bundled with the free applications thereby requiring the user to remain cautious.
  4. Regular periodical backup- In order to keep your data and files safe, it is recommended to take regular back up of all your data and files either on an external drive or cloud.
  5. Use Anti-Virus Protection- We strongly recommend the use of antivirus protection/internet security in your PC like Vipre and Hitman so that it remains safe.
  6. Enable the Ad Blocker/Popup Blocker in your browser- Enabling the popup blocker/ ad blocker in your chosen browser will help you to stay protected from annoying adware.

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