Cerber3 ransomware virus is already a fact, as accountable by several tweets by security researchers. The crypto virus is most likely appending the .cerber3 extension to victims’ encrypted files. The ransom note is titled # HELP DECRYPT #.txt. Not too long ago, the Cerber2 virus was reported to target and encrypt at least 50 file types, giving the victim 5 days to pay the ransom in the size of $175 in Bitcoin. If the victim crosses the given time, the amount is said to double. It’s still not known if Cerber3 continues the “tradition” established by its predecessor Cerber2, but we will provide new information as soon as it is available.
Cerber3 Virus Campaign – How Did It Start?
Cerber2 is still active in the wild but it’s expected for cyber criminals to terminate the operation and delete encrypted files of victims who haven’t paid the ransom.
The Cerber virus is also part of the ransomware-as-a-service scheme, which means that somebody may have bought and updated its code, hence the emergence of Cerber3. A vast report by security firm CheckPoint indicates that Cerber is definitely a quickly evolving RaaS operation. The highly profitable business of ransomware is no longer reserved only for skilled attackers who can write sophisticated encryption schemes and establish a steady infrastructure, researchers say. Particularly with Cerber3, non-professional cyber criminas may have connected with developers in closed forums. This is how the attackers could have obtained an undetected ransomware variant. This may be how the Cerber3 version emerged.
Researchers also report that Cerber affiliates currently operate 161 active campaigns, infecting 150,000 victims. The profit of the operation is said to be $195,000 for July 2016 alone. The worst part is that each campaign runs separately and uses a different distribution method and unique packer. According to CheckPoint, the most notable campaign primarily targets users in China and South Korea (Republic of Korea) and deployed the Magnitude Exploit Kit. Exploit kits have proven to be the best way to distribute ransomware. Cerber3 may be currently sold bundled with an exploit, be it Magnitude or some other, which means that the attack level may quickly reach a new high.
[CheckPoint] first discovered Cerber’s ecosystem thanks to an advertisement published by a threat actor named ‘crbr’ in February 2016, offering potential actors the opportunity to join the Cerber affiliates program. The ad was last edited in June 2016, indicating the ransomware is still available for purchase and that the information is up-to-date. The ad includes an extensive and accurate explanation about the malware itself, the landing pages, the partnership program through which the malware is sold, and the estimated profit.
Here is a translated version of crbr’s ad:
Q: Can I Encrypt .cerber3 Virus Files?
A: Having in mind that Cerber2’s encryption was quite successful and undecryptable, files encrypted by Cerber3 may also be impossible to decrypt.
However, we have already written a detailed tutorial for victims of Cerber, explaining how to decrypt files encrypted by the Cerber ransomware virus.
Users who are affected by Cerber3 are strongly advised to remove the ransomware from their systems. It is highly recommended to use an advanced anti-malware software because the ransomware may self-delete itself after encryption, but the exploit kit may still be residing on the computer. For maximum effectiveness, we recommended you to use the step-by-step removal below. Alternative file restoration methods are also available in the accordion below.
- Guide 1: How to Remove Cerber3 Virus from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of Cerber3 Virus from Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove Cerber3 Virus from Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase Cerber3 Virus from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall Cerber3 Virus from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove Cerber3 Virus from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate Cerber3 Virus from Internet Explorer.
How to Remove Cerber3 Virus from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Cerber3 Virus
Step 2: Uninstall Cerber3 Virus 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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Cerber3 Virus on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by Cerber3 Virus there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
Get rid of Cerber3 Virus from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall Cerber3 Virus and remove related files and objects
1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:
- 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 Cerber3 Virus 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:
You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove malware from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts, programs and malware, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. Combo Cleaner offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Remove Cerber3 Virus from Google Chrome.
Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu
Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"
Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Erase Cerber3 Virus from Mozilla Firefox.
Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window
Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.
Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Uninstall Cerber3 Virus from Microsoft Edge.
Step 1: Start Edge browser.
Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.
Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".
Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.
Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.
Remove Cerber3 Virus from Safari.
Step 1: Start the Safari app.
Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.
Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the Cerber3 Virus will be removed.
Eliminate Cerber3 Virus from Internet Explorer.
Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.
Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'
Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.
Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.
Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.