.ecc Files Virus (VV 0 Ransomware) – How to Remove + Restore Data

.ecc Files Virus (VV 0 Ransomware) – How to Remove + Restore Data

This article has been written in order to explain what is the VV 0 variant of the CryptoLocker ransomware family and how to remove this ransomware infection from your computer completely.

The .ecc files virus is the type of ransomware infection, known as the crypto virus kind, meaning that the malware attacks your files and makes them seem corrupt until you pay ransom to get them back. The .ecc files virus, also known as VV 0 according to it’s ransom note file is actually a variant of the well-known CryptoLocker ransomware virus, which was the first big ransomware to hit the world with hundreds of thousands of infections worldwide in 2013. Back then, the malware used a much less sophisticated encryption and a Trojan horse to infect over 250,000 computers. If you have been infected by the .ecc variant of the VV 0 ransomware, we advise that you read this article to learn how to remove this malware and how to try and restore RSA encrypted files with the .ecc file extension.

Threat Summary

Name.ecc File Ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionAims to encrypt the files on the infected computer after which leave behind the files non-openable until the victim pays ransom.
SymptomsThe encrypted files have the .ecc file extension added to them.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments, Executable files
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by .ecc File Ransomware


Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss .ecc File 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.

.ecc Files Virus – How Does It Spread

For the .ecc files virus to infect the maximum ammount of victims, the ransomware virus may be spread via spammed e-mail messages. Such e-mails may imitate DHL, FedEx, eBay and many other companies of this type. They may decieve you into clicking on a button or opening e-mail attachments, like the example fake DHL e-mail underneath:

In addition to via e-mail, the .ecc file ransomware may also be spread as a result of being masked like a seemingly legitimate setups of programs and other seemingly legitimate types of executable files. Such can be:

  • Fake installers of game or software.
  • Fake patches.
  • Fake software license activators.
  • Fraudulent key generators.

.ecc Files Virus – Activity

The .ecc files virus is a part of the CryptoLocker ransomware family which is the first major ransomware to hit the web. The virus aims to encrypt the files and ask for payment to make them usable again.

In order to reach it’s goal, the .ecc files virus uses privilege escalation in order to perform a set of malicious activities on the computer of the victim. But before actually dropping it’s payload files, the .ecc variant also known as VV 0 is the type of ransomware which checks if it has been ran in a virtual environment and if so, the malware shuts down and does not drop any payload. If it’s ran on an actual machine, the virus then drops it’s payload files in the following Windows directories:

  • %AppData%
  • %Local%
  • %LocalLow%
  • %Roaming%
  • %Temp%

After this has been done, the ransomware may also attack your Windows Registry Editor in order to create value strings with data, pointing out to the location of the virus file, responsible for encrypting your important files. The registry sub-keys in which the string is created may be the Run and RunOnce keys so that the virus file automatically runs when you start Windows and starts to encrypt files silently in the background. The sub-keys have the following locations:

→ HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

After the virus has done this, it may start to perform a set of different activities on the compromised computer, including to possibly run a script which triggers Windows Command prompt as an administrator and executes commands that lead to the deletion of backups and shadow copies on the infected computer:

→ “cmd.exe /c vssadmin.exe delete shadows /all /quiet & bcdedit.exe /set {default} recoveryenabled no & bcdedit.exe /set {default} bootstatuspolicy ignoreallfailures”

After this is done, the CryptoLocker .ecc variant may introduce a ransom note file, containing the ransom note VV 0, which looks like the following:

Your personal files are encrypted!
Your files have been safely encrypted on this PC: photos, videos, documents, etc.
Click “Show encrypted files” Button to view a complete list of encrypted files,
and you can personally verify this.
Encryption was produced using a unique public key RSA-2048 generated
for this computer. To decrypt files you need to obtain the private key.
The only copy of the private key, which will allow you to decrypt your files,
is located on a secret server in the Internet; the server will eliminate the key
Your private key will be after a time period specified in this window.
Once this has been done, nobody will ever be able to restore files…
In order to decrypt the files press button to open your personal page
File decryption site l and follow the instruction.
in case of “File decryption button” malfunction use one of our gates:
Time left:
Use your Bitcoin address to enter the site:
Click to copy address to clipboard I
if both button and reserve gate not opening, please follow the steps:
You must install this browser www.torproject.orgzprojectsltorbrowser.html.en
After instalation,run the browser and enter address 3lorwjihmkgibht25.onion
Follow the instruction on the web-site. We remind you that the sooner you do so,
the more chances are left to recover the files.
Any attempt to remove or corrupt this software will result in immediate elimination of the private key by the server.

In addition to this, the note also deploys what seems to be a deadline timer, which threatens victims that all hope for decrypting the files will be lost after 100 hours or so. But do not rely on that and do not pay the ransom because they may have already deleted the decryption key or may have permanently damaged your files indefinitely, and should not be trusted, since paying the fee is not a guarantee the decryption works.

.ecc Files Virus Encryption Process

In order for the encryption process of this version of CryptoLocker to be done without damaging Windows, the .ecc virus skips scanning to encrypt files that are system files of Windows. The files which the virus scans for are often used types of files, such as:

  • Documents.
  • Videos.
  • Music.
  • Images.
  • Archives.
  • Virtual Drive files.
  • Other often used types of files.

For the encryption itself, the .ecc files ransomware uses the RSA-2048 encryption algorithm which is the type of cipher you do not want to mess with, since it may also work with CBC (Cipher Block Chaining) mode. This means that not only each encryption key is unique for each of the files but the ransomware also used a lot of different types of encryption keys for each file, which further makes decryption more difficult. After encryption, the files appear corrupt and seem as if they can no longer be opened by any type of software. The files also begin to appear like the following:

Remove .ecc Ransomware and Restore Encrypted Files

In order to remove this ransomware virus from your computer, we advise that you follow the removal instructions underneath this article. They have been created to help you delete this ransomware either manually or automatically from your computer. In addition to this, the ransomware may also remain on your computer after manual removal since it does leave behind multiple objects which you might miss if you remove it manually. This is why be advised that security experts strongly recommend to remove the .ecc ransomware automatically from your computer automatically with the aid of advanced anti-malware software. It aims to scan for and remove all of the malware from your computer and make sure that future protection is also ensured in real-time against malware and intrusive software.

If you want to restore files that have been encrypted by this program on your PC, we recommend that you try out the alternative tools for file recovery we have suggested in step “2. Restore files, encrypted by .ecc File Ransomware”. They may not be 100% guaranteed to help you restore all of your files, but may help to restore as many encrypted files as possible.


Ventsislav Krastev

Ventsislav has been covering the latest malware, software and newest tech developments at SensorsTechForum for 3 years now. He started out as a network administrator. Having graduated Marketing as well, Ventsislav also has passion for discovery of new shifts and innovations in cybersecurity that become game changers. After studying Value Chain Management and then Network Administration, he found his passion within cybersecrurity and is a strong believer in basic education of every user towards online safety.

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