Fortunately, researchers at TrendMicro have successfully created a decryptor for Cerber ransomware. Unfortunately, the cyber-criminals have anticipated this move, immediately and mockingly enough releasing a second variant of this nasty cyber-threat. The war against Cerber continues, leaving many victims of this nasty malware string wherever it passes. For those who are unfamiliar, Cerber ransomware is a crypto-virus which uses an extremely strong encryption to encode the files, making them no longer readable. The virus then drops a ransom note scaring of users to pay the ransom. But do not become desperate, because a decryptor is now available for free and in this update we aim to show you how to use it to start decrypting files that have been encrypted by Cerber.
|Short Description||The malware encrypts users’ files after force restarting their PC, dropping ransom messages, named “# DECRYPT MY FILES #”|
|Symptoms||The user may witness ransom messages and “instructions” and a sound message all linking to a web page and a decryptor.|
|Distribution Method||Via an Exploit kit.|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by Cerber |
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|User Experience||Join our forum to Discuss Cerber Ransomware.|
Cerber Ransomware – Background
When its initial variant came out, Cerber demanded affected users to pay the sum of 500 USD to decrypt their files. The sum was be paid in BitCoins, and the cryptovirus did not start out strongly and massively at its initial state. However, with new spam campaigns being released, Cerber quickly escalated and continued encrypting files with a strong AES encryption cipher and adding the .cerber file extension to them.
Users, being affected by this virus were advised to wait for a decryptor instead of funding the cyber-criminals. However, some users have paid the ransom and this “return of investment” gave the cyber-criminals who are most likely the same people, to create Cerber2 ransomware, that is at this state undecryptable.
Decrypting Files Encrypted by Cerber Effectively
To best display to you, the reader how to successfully decrypt your files for free, we need you to be focused while reading this and keep in mind that this process may take a lot of time, so be prepared.
We have divided this process into two stages:
Stage 1: Preparation
If you wish to decode data it all depends on factorizing the algorithm. This is why this process takes different time. Since this is usually so, you are obliged to leave your PC to work for a long time and not interrupt it in any way while it is decrypting files. Since these are the circumstances, you should be prepared for the situation by modifying your computer’s Power Options. Since most PC’s on Windows are usually configured to hibernate or sleep after some time, here is how to make them never to sleep again:
Step 1: Click on the battery icon in your system tray (next to the digital clock) in Windows and then click on More Power Options.
Step 2:The mighty Power options menu will appear. In your power plan click on Change Plan Settings.
Step 3: In your plan’s settings make sure you set “Turn off the display” and “Put computer to sleep” to “Never” from the drop down minutes menu.
Step 4: Click on “Change Advanced Plan Settings” and click to expand the “Hard Disk” option in the list there.
Step 5: From there, set the power settings (On Battery and Powered On) to “Never”.
Now, you should configure your PC to start decrypting Cerber ransomware’s files. Bear in mind that the process may take a lot of time so arm yourself with patience.
Stage 2: Decryption
Step 1: To begin decryption, download TrendMicro’s decrypter by clicking on the button below:
Step 2: After downloading, open the archive (you should have an archive reader, like WinRar) by clicking on the download icon of your browser and clicking on the file:
Step 3: After the archive is open, extract the decrypter on your Desktop by dragging it out of the archive.
Step 4: Open the decrypter. Make sure it is done as an administrator and click on the “I agree” when a pop-up box appears. After this is complete, you should see the following:
Step 5: Click on the “Select” button to select the ransomware name as shown under the step 1 from the picture above.
Step 6: Select Cerber and then click on OK:
Step 7: Go ahead and click on the second step (Select and Decrypt) button which will open a file explorer. From there choose one encrypted file by Cerber. Preferably choose a smaller file:
Step 8: From there, the TrendMicro scanning process should begin. The program should be able to find other encrypted files as well and try to decrypt them if it has decrypted one file:
Cerber Ransomware Decryption – Conclusion and Recommendations
Since the decryption process may take some time, we strongly recommend staying protected in the meantime and in the future from other threats as well. This is why you should follow several simple steps to greatly increase ransomware protection shortly at least:
1. Follow these general protection tips.
2. Download an advanced malware protection program.
Spy Hunter scanner will only detect the threat. If you want the threat to be automatically removed, you need to purchase the full version of the anti-malware tool.Find Out More About SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool / How to Uninstall SpyHunter
3. Download a relevant ransomware protection program.
4. Download a relevant cloud backup program that backups copies of your files on a secure server and even if your computer is affected you will stay protected.