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.BTCWare File Virus (Restore Files)

Article created to help you remove BTCWare virus and restore .btcware encrypted files instead of paying 0.5 BTC to crooks.

A new ransomware virus, related to CrptXXX has been discovered, named BTCWare. The malware encrypts the files on the computers infected by it and makes them no longer able to be opened. After this it drops a ransom note which may lead to further instructions on how to send 0.5 BTC to the Bitcoin address of the cyber-criminals. From there, the virus gives additional instructions on how to type commands to decrypt the corrupted files. In case you have become a victim of BTCWare ransomware, we recommend you to read this article to remove the ransomware virus and try to restore files encrypted by this virus.

Threat Summary

Name

BTCWare

Type Ransomware
Short Description The malware encrypts users files using a strong encryption algorithm, making direct decryption possible only via a unique decryption key available to the cyber-criminals.
Symptoms The user may witness ransom notes and “instructions” linking to a web page and a decryptor. Changed file names and the file-extension .btcware has been used.
Distribution Method Via an Exploit kit, Dll file attack, malicious JavaScript or a drive-by download of the malware itself in an obfuscated manner.
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

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Malware Removal Tool

User Experience Join our forum to Discuss BTCWare.
Data Recovery Tool Windows 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.

.BTCWare Ransomware – Update May 2017

Update! A decryption tool is now available for all BTCWare ransomware variants (including .btcware)! The tool was created by the malware researcher Michael Gillespie. You can download the tool and read how to use it from the following article: Decrypt Files Encrypted by BTCWare Ransomware.

BTCWare Ransomware How Does It Infect

Once this ransomware virus is available out in the wild, it begins to spread via multiple different methods. One of those methods is for the cyber-criminals to use a combination of different tools to spread the virus files. One method to utilize infection tools is to conduct massive spam campaigns that spread infection files, pretending to be legitimate e-mail attachments. The attachments are usually contained in an archive and may pretend to be legitimate Windows documents. An example of a spam e-mail carrying a malicious attachment can be seen below:

Another way of spreading this virus is by uploading it on suspicious websites as a fake installer of a free program, like your favorite media player, torrent software or any other freeware. Usually some shady or infected websites upload malicious files as setups of programs.

But infection files can also be uploaded in multiple different forms as well, like uploading them on torrent websites along with cracked games or software.

BTCWare Ransomware – Malicious Activity

Once this virus is activated, one way or another, it begins to connect to a remote host and drop multiple malicious files on the computer of the user. One of those files is an executable, called biznet.exe, located in the %AppData% folder. Besides this file, there may be multiple other files that are malicious. They may be located in the usually used Windows folders:

  • %AppData%
  • %SystemDrive%
  • %Local%
  • %Roaming%
  • %System32%
  • %Startup%

After this, the virus may also drop a ransom note type of file, named _HOW_TO_FIX_!.hta. in this ransom note is the message aiming to notify the user on how to get back the files after the encryption process is complete.

The ransom note, may have or lead to the following instructions:

“If you want to restore files, use this instructions:
1.Run website {Tor-based link here}
2.In login panel, enter your personal ID:
{Unique ID only for the victim PC}
3.Follow next instructions on the website
Warning!
Do not try to decrypt your data using third-party software, it may cause permanent data loss.”

If the web page is visited, the user may witness the following instructions alongside which is a wallet of the cyber-criminals which is for BTC.

“Recovery files
To decrypt files, you will have to pay 0.5 BTC
1. You should register Blockchain wallet
2.
• LocalBitcoins.com
• PAXFUL.COM
• Coinmamacom
• Other exchanges
`>Buy bitcoins for your wallet.
3.Send 0.5 BTC to Bitcoin address:
{Cyber-crooks’ wallet}
4.Enter your transaction ID:
5.Press Win+R, type cmd and press Enter
In appeared consoled:
1)Enter cd %appdata%
2)Enter biznet.exe –d your_decrypt_key and wait for decryption
6.Finish. All the files decrypted”

In addition to scaring off the user, the BTCWare virus may also delete any backups and shadow copies on the infected computer by using the vssadmin command:

→ vssadmin.exe delete shadows /all /quiet

In addition to shutting down processes that may interefere with the encryption process, the BTCWare virus may also heavily modify the Run and RunOnce registry sub-keys in the Windows registry editor to make malicious files run on startup. Besides those, other registry sub-keys may be modified too.

BTCWare Virus – The Encryption Process

The file encoding process of BTCWare is supposedly related to CrptXXX ransomware infection and it may employ the very same Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) cipher to render the files no longer openable. Among the files encrypted by BTCWare after it infects your computer, may be the following:

→ .1c, .3fr, .accdb, .ai, .arw, .bac, .bay, .bmp, .cdr, .cer, .cfg, .config, .cr2, .crt, .crw, .css, .csv, .db, .dbf, .dcr, .der, .dng, .doc, .docm, .docx, .dwg, .dxf, .dxg, .eps, .erf, .gif, .htm, .html, .indd, .iso, .jpe, .jpeg, .jpg, .kdc, .lnk, .mdb, .mdf, .mef, .mk, .mp3, .mp4, .mrw, .nef, .nrw, .odb, .ode, .odm, .odp, .ods, .odt, .orf, .p12, .p7b, .p7c, .pdd, .pdf, .pef, .pem, .pfx, .php, .png, .ppt, .pptm, .pptx, .psd, .pst, .ptx, .r3d, .rar, .raw, .rtf, .rw2, .rwl, .sql, .sr2, .srf, .srw, .tif, .wb2, .wma, .wpd, .wps, .x3f, .xlk, .xls, .xlsb, .xlsm, .xlsx, .zip

For the encryption process, BTCWare ransomware may also utilize what is known in the trade as CBC (Cipher Block Chaining) mode which can break the files if a third-party decryptor attemps to decode them.

After the encryption, the files are appended the .btcware file extension and may appear like the following:

After the encryption process has completed, the virus may send the decryption keys via a remote connection to the malicious server of the cyber-criminals.

Remove BTCWare Ransomware and Restore .btcware Encrypted Files

Before attempting any removal and restoration, we strongly urge you to backup the files that have been encrypted by this ransomware infection.

After having done this, we recommend following the instructions below to help you remove the malicious objects of BTCWare. In case you are having difficulties or feel unsure that manual removal can be done, experts advise using an advanced anti-malware program which will automatically delete all files that are associated with this infection.

For the recovery of your encrypted files, we advise using the alternative methods below (2. Restore files encrypted by BTCWare) on copies of the encrypted files. They are not 100% effective but these methods may help recover at least some of your encrypted data.

Avatar

Ventsislav Krastev

Ventsislav is a cybersecurity expert at SensorsTechForum since 2015. He has been researching, covering, helping victims with the latest malware infections plus testing and reviewing software and the newest tech developments. Having graduated Marketing as well, Ventsislav also has passion for learning new shifts and innovations in cybersecurity that become game changers. After studying Value Chain Management, Network Administration and Computer Administration of System Applications, he found his true calling within the cybersecrurity industry and is a strong believer in the education of every user towards online safety and security.

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Attention! SensorsTechForum strongly recommends that all malware victims should look for assistance only by reputable sources. Many guides out there claim to offer free recovery and decryption for files encrypted by ransomware viruses. Be advised that some of them may only be after your money.

As a site that has been dedicated to providing free removal instructions for ransomware and malware since 2014, SensorsTechForum’s recommendation is to only pay attention to trustworthy sources.

How to recognize trustworthy sources:

  • Always check "About Us" web page.
  • Profile of the content creator.
  • Make sure that real people are behind the site and not fake names and profiles.
  • Verify Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter personal profiles.


OFFER

REMOVE IT NOW (PC)
with Anti-Malware
We recommend you to download SpyHunter and run free scan to remove all virus files on your PC. This saves you hours of time and effort compared to doing the removal yourself.
SpyHunter 5 free remover allows you, subject to a 48-hour waiting period, one remediation and removal for results found. Read EULA and Privacy Policy


Windows Mac OS X

How to Remove BTCWare from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove BTCWare

OFFER

Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your PC with SpyHunter

Keep in mind, that SpyHunter’s scanner is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware removal tool to remove the malware threats. Read our SpyHunter 5 review. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria

1. Hold Windows key() + R


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
Tip: Make sure to reverse those changes by unticking Safe Boot after that, because your system will always boot in Safe Boot from now on.


4. When prompted, click on "Restart" to go into Safe Mode.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall BTCWare and related software from Windows

Here is a method in few easy steps that should be able to uninstall most programs. No matter if you are using Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP, those steps will get the job done. Dragging the program or its folder to the recycle bin can be a very bad decision. If you do that, bits and pieces of the program are left behind, and that can lead to unstable work of your PC, errors with the file type associations and other unpleasant activities. The proper way to get a program off your computer is to Uninstall it. To do that:


1. Hold the Windows Logo Button and "R" on your keyboard. A Pop-up window will appear.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


3. This will open a window with all the programs installed on the PC. Select the program that you want to remove, and press "Uninstall"
Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


Step 3: Clean any registries, created by BTCWare on your computer.

The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by BTCWare there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.


3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Tip: To find a virus-created value, you can right-click on it and click "Modify" to see which file it is set to run. If this is the virus file location, remove the value.

IMPORTANT!
Before starting "Step 4", please boot back into Normal mode, in case you are currently in Safe Mode.
This will enable you to install and use SpyHunter 5 successfully.

Step 4: Scan for BTCWare with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.


It is recommended to run a scan before purchasing the full version of the software to make sure that the current version of the malware can be detected by SpyHunter. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.


2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


4. After SpyHunter has finished scanning your PC for any files of the associated threat and found them, you can try to get them removed automatically and permanently by clicking on the 'Next' button.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

If any threats have been removed, it is highly recommended to restart your PC.

Step 5 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by BTCWare.

Ransomware infections and BTCWare aim to encrypt your files using an encryption algorithm which may be very difficult to decrypt. This is why we have suggested a data recovery method that may help you go around direct decryption and try to restore your files. Bear in mind that this method may not be 100% effective but may also help you a little or a lot in different situations.

1. Download the reccomended Data Recovery software by clicking on the link underneath:

Simply click on the link and on the website menus on top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.


Windows Mac OS X

Get rid of BTCWare from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall BTCWare and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy


1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to BTCWare:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to BTCWare. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.


6: Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to BTCWare. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7: Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • Go to Finder.
  • In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
  • Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
  • If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.

In case you cannot remove BTCWare via Step 1 above:

In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as BTCWare. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Click the button below below to download SpyHunter for Mac and scan for BTCWare:


Download

SpyHunter for Mac



Step 3 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by BTCWare.

Ransomware infections and BTCWare aim to encrypt your files using an encryption algorithm which may be very difficult to decrypt. This is why we have suggested a data recovery method that may help you go around direct decryption and try to restore your files. Bear in mind that this method may not be 100% effective but may also help you a little or a lot in different situations.

1. Download the reccomended Data Recovery software by clicking on the link underneath:

Simply click on the link and on the website menus on top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.


BTCWare FAQ

What is BTCWare ransomware and how does it work?

BTCWare is a ransomware infection - the malicious software that enters your computer silently and blocks either access to the computer itself or encrypt your files.

Many ransomware viruses use sophisticated encryption algorithm how to make your files inaccessible. The goal of ransomware infections is to demand that you pay a ransom payment to get access to your files back.

How does BTCWare ransomware infect my computer?

Via several ways.BTCWare Ransomware infects computers by being sent via phishing e-mails, containing virus attachment.

This attachment is usually masked as an important document, like an invoice, bank document or even a plane ticket and it looks very convincing to users.

After you download and execute this attachment, a drive-by download occurs and your computer is infected with the ransomware virus.

Another way, you may become a victim of BTCWare is if you download a fake installer, crack or patch from a low reputation website or if you click on a virus link. Many users report getting a ransomware infection by downloading torrents.

How to open .BTCWare files?

You can't. At this point the .BTCWare files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted.

Decryptor did not decrypt my data. What now?

Do not panic and backup the files. If a decryptor did not decrypt your .BTCWare files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.

One way to restore files, encrypted by BTCWare ransomware is to use a decryptor for it. But since it's a new virus, advised that the decryption keys for it may not be out yet and available to the public. We will update this article and keep you posted as soon as this decryptor is released.

How Do I restore ".BTCWare" files (Other Methods)?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .BTCWare files.

These methods are in no way 100% guarantee that you will be able to get your files back. But if you have a backup, your chances of success are much greater.

How do I get rid of BTCWare ransomware virus?

The safest way and the most efficient one for the removal of this ransomware infection is the use a professional anti malware software. It will scan for and locate BTCWare ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .BTCWare files.

Also, keep in mind that viruses like BTCWare ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts. Scanning your computer with an anti-malware software will make sure that all of these virus components are removed and your computer is protected in the future.

What to Do If nothing works?

There is still a lot you can do. If none of the above methods seem to work for you, then try these methods:

  • Try to find a safe computer from where you can can login on your own line accounts like One Drive, iDrive, Google Drive and so on.
  • Try to contact your friends, relatives and other people so that they can check if they have some of your important photos or documents just in case you sent them.
  • Also, check if some of the files that were encrypted it can be re-downloaded from the web.
  • Another clever way to get back some of your files is to find another old computer, a flash drive or even a CD or a DVD where you may have saved your older documents. You might be surprised what will turn up.
  • You can also go to your email account to check if you can send any attachments to other people. Usually what is sent the email is saved on your account and you can re-download it. But most importantly, make sure that this is done from a safe computer and make sure to remove the virus first.

More tips you can find on our forums, where you can also asks any questions about your ransomware problem.

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