2019 Xorist Ransomware — How to Remove It
THREAT REMOVAL

2019 Xorist Ransomware — How to Remove It

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This article will aid you to remove 2019 Xorist Ransomware. Follow the ransomware removal instructions provided at the end of the article.

2019 Xorist Ransomware is one that encrypts your personal data with a strong cipher and demands money as a ransom to get it restored. The 2019 Xorist Ransomware will leave ransomware instructions as text file. Keep on reading the article and see how you could try to potentially recover some of your locked files and data.

Threat Summary

Name2019 Xorist Ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionThe ransomware encrypts sensitive user files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.
SymptomsThe ransomware will encrypt your files and leave a ransom note with payment instructions.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by 2019 Xorist Ransomware

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User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss 2019 Xorist Ransomware.
Data Recovery ToolWindows Data Recovery by Stellar Phoenix Notice! This product scans your drive sectors to recover lost files and it may not recover 100% of the encrypted files, but only few of them, depending on the situation and whether or not you have reformatted your drive.

2019 Xorist Ransomware – Distribution Techniques

A new 2019 Xorist ransomware has been released in the wild and captured in the wild. The attack campaigns carrying this threat have still not reached a critical mass however the captured samples have allowed the criminals to run a complete code analysis. The collected samples have been found to be within payload carriers of which there are two main types:

  • Infected Documents — The attackers can embed the necessary infection scripts in documents ranging across all popular formats: spreadsheets, presentations, text documents and databases. This is done by placing the necessary macros in them which will prompt the users to enable the built-in scripts when the files are opened. As soon as this is done the virus installation will commence.
  • Application Setup Files — The other popular alternative is to create dangerous setup files of well-known applications. This is done by acquiring the legitimate software from their official sources and adding in the necessary new virus code. The criminals typically choose applications that are popularly downloaded by end users such as creativity suites, system utilities, productivity and office apps and even games.

Usually payload carriers have double extensions, by default most systems will display only the first one. An example virus file name that has been identified as a 2019 Xorist ransomware sample is called “recibo.pdf.exe” — the user may only see the “recibo.pdf” name and assume that it is a safe document that can be opened.

The virus files, whatever their type may be, can be spread using a variety of tactics. One of the most popular ones depend on the sending of email phishing messages — they are designed in order to resemble legitimate notifications which are sent by services or famous companies. The messages will use body elements, signatures and content that may be directly copied over from legitimate emails. The files can either be attached directly or linked in the body contents.

Malicious Web Sites may be created in order to confuse the visitors into thinking that they have reached a legitimate site, usually the criminals will construct download portals, landing pages, ad networks, search engines and other places which are likely to receive user interactions. To make them appear as potentially safe they are hosted on similar sounding domain names as popular addresses and may even include self-signed or stolen security certificates.

The virus infections can be caused by the installation of browser hijackers — dangerous plugins which are made compatible with the most popular web browsers. They are uploaded to the relevant repositories using fake developer credentials and user reviews. Their descriptions will read elaborate descriptions offering new feature additions or performance optimizations. However as soon as they are installed the virus will automatically be delivered. Usually extensions like this one will modify the browser settings in order to redirect the victims to a preset hacker-controlled page. The values that are changed include the following: default search engine, home page and new tabs page.

2019 Xorist Ransomware – Detailed Analysis

As soon as the 2019 Xorist ransomware has infected the target computers it will start a complex behavior pattern. As extracted from the captured samples the engine will run many components that are all controlled from a modular main engine. This allows the hacker collective to dynamically change how the virus operates depending on the compromised machines. The fact that this particular release is based on Xorist ransomware shows that the criminals may have enough experience in order to create this complex threat. The other possibility behind its origins is that this is based on an order in the underground markets. The hacker collective only needs to find the necessary coder that can produce the customized threat.

We have discovered that upon infection the 2019 Xorist ransomware will start an anti-analysis component which will attempt to discover all installed security software that can block the virus infection. The list of target apps includes the following: ant-virus programs, firewalls, sandbox/debug environments, intrusion detection systems and virtual machine hosts.

This is related to another component which is run in the beginning of infection called used to harvest sensitive data. Usually the criminals seek information that can be categorized into two main types:

  • Personal Information — The criminals can program the engine to look for strings that can directly expose the identity of the victims. Examples ones include a person’s name, address, stored account credentials, interests, phone number and etc.
  • Machine Identification — The relevant 2019 Xorist ransomware can create an unique ID that can be associated with each individual machine. It is generated by an algorithm that takes its input values from things like the list of installed hardware components, system preferences and regional settings.

The data collection module can extract data from web browsers as well and if configured so it can also interact with the Windows Volume Manager thereby making it possible to access available network shares and removable storage devices.

The 2019 Xorist ransomware will have the ability to launch its own processes, including ones with administrative privileges. At this point it will have the ability to access the Windows Registry thereby making entries for itself and modifying already existing ones. When strings that belong to the operating system itself are modified the users might experience severe performance issues to the point of turning it completely unusable unless removed. If values that are used by third-party applications are affected then unexpected errors and shutdown may come up.

This virus may be modified further into starting a Trojan instance which would allow the criminals to take over control of the machines. This is very dangerous as it can be used to harvest files before they are encrypted and deploy other malicious threats. This is done so as the security has already been bypassed. Other addons can be interactively added via updates by the hackers.

2019 Xorist Ransomware – Encryption Process

Like previous Xorist-based threats this virus will encrypt sensitive data according to a built-in list of target file extensions. An example one is the following:

  • Archives
  • Backups
  • Databases
  • Music
  • Videos
  • Images

Instead of ordering the addition of an unique extension the virus will add a single dot to the extensions. The associated ransomware note will be crafted in a file called “HOW TO DECRYPT FILES.txt”.

Remove 2019 Xorist Ransomware and Try to Restore Data

If your computer system got infected with the 2019 Xorist ransomware virus, you should have a bit of experience in removing malware. You should get rid of this ransomware as quickly as possible before it can have the chance to spread further and infect other computers. You should remove the ransomware and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.

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Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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