BlackRouter Ransomware
Ransomware | 01/24/2019

How to Remove BlackRouter Ransomware?

About: Ransomware attacks continue to dominate the cyber security landscape, with businesses paying millions of dollars to unlock encrypted files. With the recent influx of ransomware stories seemingly every week, it's hard to keep track of the different st...  Read More  

| Ransomware | How to Remove BlackRouter Ransomware?

Ransomware attacks continue to dominate the cyber security landscape this year, with businesses paying millions of dollars to unlock encrypted files. Research reveals that almost 40% of successful malware based attacks involve Ransomware. Moreover, when it comes to Ransomware & its distribution, the threat intelligence strategy is not much needed making it popular among threat actors.

Ransomware

The world has seen its fair share of Ransomware attacks- the WannaCry being the deadliest of all. Ransomware is a ubiquitous security threat with one aim- extract payments from victims. Its impact continues to be significant with global organizations held to ransom every day.

 

There are many variants of Ransomware with new strains appearing with regularity denying users access to important files until ransom is paid. Recently researchers discovered a new Ransomware called BlackRouter being promoted as a Ransomware-as-a-service in a hacking channel on telegram by an Iranian Developer. Originally spotted in May 2018, a new version of BlackRouter was found that exhibits same traits with slightly different characteristics, for instance a better looking GUI (Graphical user Interface) & the addition of a timer.

 

A complete malicious kit capable of launching BlackRouter ransomware attack is available in the hacking channel.  Availability of these packages reduces the need to code malware. Subscription to this malicious model allows even a novice cyber criminal to launch a ransomware attack without much difficulty. Once the attack is successful, the ransom money is shared among attackers & developers in the ratio of 4:1 respectively.

 

The threat actor in addition to promoting BlackRouter is also promoting a remote access Trojan called BlackRat that allegedly includes features such as AV evasion, encrypted communications, the ability to enable RDP, steal cryptocurrency wallets, keylogging, password stealing and a lot more.

 

BlackRouter Ransomware Distribution

BlackRouter Ransomware is distributed via:

  1. Well-known remote desktop tool called AnyDesk: Cybercriminals abuse AnyDesk Remote desktop tool to distribute the new BlackRouter Ransomware program in the system. Moreover, by using remote desktop access, threat actors can deploy specialized tools to:
  • Elevate their privileges
  • Leave Backdoors for future use
  • Gain control over wider parts of the infiltrated network
  • Deploy the Ransomware & leave payment instructions
  1. Keyloggers on victim’s computers: Keylogger refers to a malicious computer program that secretly records every keystroke made by a computer user. The pernicious program can be leveraged to trick users into clicking malicious link to download the Ransomware package.
  2. Malicious Payload: BlackRouter Ransomware payload is bundled with legitimate tools & applications to evade the security software detection & hence successfully infiltrate in the system.

BlackRouter Ransomware- Infection process

BlackRouter Ransomware after infiltration drops two different pernicious files in the system to perform the malicious activities.

  1. ANYDESK.exe: An old version of AnyDesk application file is dropped to establish communication channel between the victim & the threat actors, to perform file transfers & log sessions.
  2. BLACKROUTER.exe: This is used to encrypt important user files. These include files with the following extensions: .gif, .mp4, .pdf, .xls, .doc etc.

 

After completing the encryption process, a ransom note is displayed that contains detailed information. It demands to pay $300 to the victims in two wallets: $100 in one & $200 in another in bitcoin to gain access to the locked files.

BlackRouter ransomware

However victims are recommended not to agree to pay the ransom to the threat actors in any case as it’s a mere trick to fool them. Moreover, once the ransom is paid they are often ignored. Hence, there is no way they are going to get the encrypted files from victims. Users rather should follow the steps given below to recover the lost files.

Threat Summary

Name: BlackRouter

Targeted Operating System: Windows

Category: Ransomware
Symptoms: User’s files are encrypted. A ransom note is displayed that demands a ransom of $300.

 

How to avoid BlackRouter Ransomware infiltration in the System?

Step A: Remove the Services Installed By BlackRouter Ransomware from the 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.

 

Once the system starts, ensure to use an account with administrative privilege to access Safe Mode with Command Prompt.

After the user enters admin credentials, Command prompt window is displayed wherein you are entitled to enter the below commands:

  1. Type the command “sc delete BlackRouter Ransomware ” in the command prompt and press Enter.
  2. Type “exit” to exit the command prompt and restart the system in safe mode with command prompt.

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 BlackRouter 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 BlackRouter ransomware.

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 BlackRouter 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 BlackRouter ransomware.

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 your computer system from getting infected –

  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 Sophos 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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