How to Remove Crown Ransomware (Dharma) and Restore Files
THREAT REMOVAL

Crown Virus (Dharma Ransomware) Removal Guide

In this article, you will find more information about Crown ransomware as well as a step-by-step guide on how to remove malicious files from the infected system and how to potentially recover encrypted .crown files.

crown-ransomware-virus-ransom-message

Crown Ransomware Virus

In the unfortunate event, that you find all your valuable files locked and renamed with the malicious extension .crown then we have some bad news for you. Your PC has been infected with Dharma ransomware. The name of the threat – Crown ransomware comes from the associated extension. As a typical data locker ransomware, it interferes with essential computer system settings in order to encrypt personal files and extort a ransom fee from its victims. The threat is lurking across the web in active spread campaigns. Its malicious payload file may appear in the form of a software update, software package, email attachment, advertisement, or link on social media posts.

When started on a target computer operating system, Crown ransomware initiates a complex attack that seriously damages system security. One of the main goals of the ransomware is to reach personal files so that it can encrypt them. By doing this Crown limits users’ access to their valuable data. Another purpose of Crown virus is to request a ransom fee for the recovery of .crown files. That’s why it drops a ransom message and alters certain registry entries that load the message on the screen.

Threat Summary

NameCrown
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionA data locker ransomware designed to damage computer systems and encrypt valuable personal fles.
SymptomsImportant files are locked and renamed with a string of a few extensions. The last extension is .crown
Ransom message insists on ransom payment.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by Crown

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Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss Crown.
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.

Crown Ransomware – Distribution and Impact

The Crown ransomware is a newly discovered cryptovirus based on the code of Dharma ransomware. Similar to its predecessors, the threat has been released in the wild with the help of shady techniques like malspam, malvertising, freeware installers, fake software update notifications, and corrupted web pages. The most preferred spread method is malspam. It is realized via massive email spam campaigns that attempt to deliver malicious code on targeted PCs.

You should look for specific traits that will help you catch a malicious spam email before it gets too late. Trait number one – attachment. Trait number two – URL address, in-text link or another clickable form that will open a tab in your browser. Trait number three – strange email address accompanied by the name of a representative of a well-known company. If any of the email elements seem unusual or suspicious, you should refrain from any interactions. A quick security check of the attached files and presented links in online services like VirusTotal can help you prevent your PC from being infected with nasty malware like Crown.

What happens when the activation file of Crown virus starts on the computer operating system is a long sequence of malicious processes. The completion of these processes enable the ransomware to evade detection, misuse main system functionalities and eventually encode valuable personal files.

As a part of Dharma ransomware family, Crown virus encrypts target files by utilizing the strong cipher algorithm AES. The encryption process is done via a built-in cipher module that scans all drives for certain types of target files.

Due to the complexity of applied changes, encrypted files remain inaccessible until their code is reverted back to its original state. Unfortunately, you may not be able to view the information stored by the following files of yours:

  • Audio files
  • Video files
  • Document files
  • Image files
  • Backup files
  • Banking credentials, etc

Each encrypted file receives the extension .crown appended to its original name. Additionally, you could see the email address crown_desh@aol.com as an extension. This email address is associated with cybercriminals who stand behind Crown ransomware attacks. It could be also noticed in the ransom message that appears at the end of the infection process:

YOUR FILES ARE ENCRYPTED
Don’t worry,you can return all your files!
If you want to restore them, follow this link:email crown_desh@aol.com YOUR ID 1E857D00
If you have not been answered via the link within 12 hours, write to us by e-mail:crown_desh@aol.com
Attention!
Do not rename encrypted files.
Do not try to decrypt your data using third party software, it may cause permanent data loss.
Decryption of your files with the help of third parties may cause increased price (they add their fee to our) or you can become a victim of a scam.

Another text file named FILES ENCRYPTED.txt is dropped on the system as well. Its content reads:

all your data has been locked us
You want to return?
write email crown_desh@aol.com

We know that you need to restore .crown files but we recommend that you refrain from transferring money to cybercriminals. Otherwise, you risk losing both your valuable files and money.

For the sake of your security, it is advisable to clean your infected computer from present malicious files and consider the help of alternative data recovery methods.

Remove Crown Virus (Dharma Ransomware)

The so-called Crown ransomware virus is a threat with highly complex code that heavily damages both essential system settings and valuable data. So the only way to use your infected system securely again is to remove all malicious files and objects created by the ransomware. For the purpose, you could follow our step-by-step removal guide.

In the event that you want to attempt to restore .crown files with the help of alternative data recovery methods, do check step four – Try to Restore files encrypted by Crown. We remind you to back up all encrypted files to an external drive before the recovery process.

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana has completed a bachelor degree in Marketing from the University of National and World Economy. She has been with the STF team for four years, researching malware and reporting on the latest infections.

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