Ahihi Ransomware – How To Remove Infections

Ahihi Ransomware – How To Remove Infections

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

Ahihi Ransomware is one that encrypts your data and demands money as a ransom to get it restored. The Ahihi 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

NameAhihi Ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionThe ransomware encrypts 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 Ahihi Ransomware


Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss Ahihi 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.

Ahihi Ransomware – Distribution Techniques

The Ahihi ransomware is a newly released threat which is alternatively known as the BangLuongThang02 virus. The first attacks with it have been reported in January 2019 and they appear to target all English-speaking users. The number of collected samples is low which indicates that no particular delivery method is used, we assume that several ones may be trialed in order to judge which would be the most effective.

A popular tactic is the coordination of SPAM email messages which use a combination of social engineering tactics and a large number of sent messages. They are designed as being sent by legitimate companies or services that the users might use. The Ahihi ransomware code can be either directly attached as files or inserted as hyperlinks or rich content in the body contents. Examples include text links, images and videos.

A similar strategy is the creation of fake web sites which have the same intention of tricking the users into believing that they are accessing a legitimate domain: vendor landing pages, download portals or other web content.The hackers will use similar sounding domain names and security certificates as additional measures.

The files associated with this threat can be found on file-sharing networks like BitTorrent which are often used to spread both legitimate and pirate content. All of these three methods are widely used to deploy Asihi ransomware payload carriers, two popular examples are the following:

  • Malicious Documents — The hackers can craft documents containing malicious scripts and embed them into the most popular file formats: text documents, spreadsheets, presentations and databases. Once they are opened by the victims a prompt will be spawned asking them to enable the built-in macros in order to correctly view the file. If this is done the ransomware infection will be triggered.
  • Setup Files — The other possibility is the creation of infected installers of popular software: system utilities, creativity suites, office applications and etc. This is done by taking the original files from their official sources and modifying them with the required scripts. Upon merely launching the installation process the infections will be done.

Larger attacks can be done by using browser hijackers which are malicious plugins made for the most popular web browsers. They are regularly uploaded to the relevant repositories making use of hacked or hacker-made developer credentials and reviews. Whenever they are installed changes to the browser settings will be made along with the virus infection: redirection to a hacker-controlled page by means of setting it up as the default new tabs page, search engine and home page.

Ahihi Ransomware – Detailed Analysis

The captured strains according to the available information is the base version which appears to only contain the relevant encryption module. As such it is expected that future versions of it may be updated to include other components. We anticipate that a standard behavior pattern will be considered by the attackers. The Ahihi ransomware appears to contain some source code from the Hidden Tear malware family along with other samples from different viruses. This gives the researchers reasons to believe that the released samples are probably early releases or test versions.

One of the first modules that are run with advanced infections is the one associated with data acquisition. The virus will be programmed in a way which will search for strings related to the identity of the victims: their real name, address, phone number, interests, location data and even stored account credentials. Other possible information that is harvested is the one related to the installed hardware components and software configuration. It is used to generate an unique ID to each compromised host. Both of these data types can be used not only for addressing the victim users, but also for crimes such as identity theft and financial abuse.

When a large enough footprint of information related to the computer’s configuration is collected it can be used to bypass security measures which are capable of stopping the virus infection — anti-virus engines, firewalls, sandbox environments and virtual machine hosts.

The Ahihi ransomware has the ability to reconfigure the whole system by impacting important areas — configuration files, the Windows Registry and boot options. As such it can become very difficult to remove, this is often referred to as a persistent infection. This includes possible restrictions to the boot and recovery menus, this makes many manual user removal guides useless. In this case only an advanced anti-spyware solution can remedy the virus intrusion.

Hooking up to already existing services and processes will allow the ransomware to read what the users is doing. Creating its own processes sand services is also possible with the option of obtaining administrative privileges.

Changes to the Windows Registry can cause additional damage, if third-paprty applications values are changed then the programs may quit unexpectedly and not run the way they are intended. Modifications to strings used by the operating system can cause overall performance issues and sometimes a complete lockdown.

One of the most dangerous types of ransomware infections of which the Ahihi ransomware can also become part of is the deployment of other payloads. Examples include the following:

  • Cryptocurrency Miners — These infections take advantage of the available system resources and perform complex calculations. Every completed task will result in the income generation for the hacker operators — they will receive cryptocurrency directly into their digital wallets.
  • Trojans — The malware can download Trojan horses that will establish a persistent connection to a hacker-controlled server. This will enable them to spy on the users, steal their data and also overtake control of the machines at any given time.
  • Web Browser Hijackers — The browsers can be reconfigured in order to install a dangerous plugin, known as hijacker. They server the same function as described in the distribution paragraph — to redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled landing page by changing the browser settings.

Ahihi Ransomware – Encryption Process

The encryption module will be launched after all other operations have completed running. It has been confirmed that the AES cipher is used to target files according to a built-in list of target file types. An example would probably feature the following data:

  • Archives
  • Documents
  • Backups
  • Music
  • Videos
  • Images

To differentiate itself from other similar ransomware the present versions do not assign a malware extension to the compromised files. The associated ransomware note is created in a file called README.txt which reads the following message:

Your files have been encrypted. If you want to get your files back, please visit http://ripyon.me/decrypt and provide us the following information
Your computer name: ***
Your username: ***
Your token: ***
CAUTION: DO NOT run this app again or your files will be encrypted permanently

Remove Ahihi Ransomware and Try to Restore Data

If your computer system got infected with the Ahihi 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.


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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