Find Decryption Key for Files Encrypted by Ransomware
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How to Find Decryption Key for Files Encrypted by Ransomware

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fix-your-malware-problem-sensorstechforumCrypto-viruses are an increasing menace that aims to turn your day the other way around, making you pay to cyber-criminals for keys that were encrypted. And what is worse is that cyber-crooks constantly keep developing new and more sophisticated ways to increase the defense of their viruses, implementing combined encryption keys that travel safely to their servers. However, there still are those ransomware viruses that send unencrypted information, allowing you, the user to sniff out traffic from your computer and with luck to get the decryption key for your files. We have designed to make a tutorial which is as simple as possible to theoretically explain how could you detect your decryption key by sniffing out your web traffic using Wireshark.

Useful Advice: Before actually engaging in any network sniffing or other methods we have suggested below, it is urgently advisable to do it from a safe and secure computer system unaffected by any type of malware. If you want to make sure that your computer system is 100% safe while you are following these instructions, experts often advise to download an advanced anti-malware tool which is frequently updated and features next-gen active protection against viruses to see if your PC is safe:

Download

Malware Removal Tool


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

How It Works – Brief Explanation

Bear in mind that this solution is only theoretical since different ransomware viruses perform different activities on user PCs. To best clarify that, most ransomware viruses use encryption algorithm – a cryptic language replacing the original language code of the files, making them inaccessible. The two most widely used encryption algorithms are RSA and AES encryption algorithms. Both of them are extremely strong and impenetrable. In the past, most malware writers used only one encryption cipher in a special manner. The standard action for the ransomware virus was in the following consequence:

  • Drop it’s payload.
  • Modify the Windows Registry Editor to run on startup or after the specific action is done.
  • Delete backups and perform other activities.
  • Encrypt the files.
  • Send the decryption key in a file or as a communication directly to the command and control (C&C) center of the cyber-criminals.
  • Drop it’s ransom note and other support files that notify the user of this “complication”.

However, since malware researchers have united their resources and put a lot of effort to detect codes in the flaw or capture decryption keys and develop free decrypters, malware writers have also made quite the improvements themselves. One of those improvements is implementing a two-way encryption, using a combination of RSA and AES encryption algorithms.

In brief, they did not just encrypt your files with one of the ciphers, but now they also use a second encryption algorithm to encrypt the decryption key in a special file which is then sent to their servers. These files are impossible to decrypt, and users are hopelessly looking for alternative methods to decrypt them.

For more information on this encryption method, please visit:

Ransomware Encryption Explained – Why Is It So Effective?

Another tactic the cyber-crook “devs” started to use is a so-called cipher block chaining. This is a mode that briefly explained, breaks the file if you try to tamper with it, making any form of recovery completely impossible.

So, here is where we are. At this point, there are even new developments in the world of ransomware, which are yet to be revealed.

It is very difficult to stay ahead of ransomware, but despite all, we have decided to show you how to use Wireshark to your benefit and hopefully intercept HTTP traffic in the correct moment. However, bear in mind that these instructions are THEORETICAL, and there are a lot of factors that may prevent them from working in an actual situation. Still, it is better than not trying before paying the ransom, right?

Using Wireshark to Find Decryption Key

Before downloading and using Wireshark – one of the most widely used network sniffers out there, you should have the malware’s executable on standby and infect your computer once again. However, bear in mind that some ransomware viruses perform new encryption every time a computer is restarted as well, so you should also configure Wireshark to run automatically on startup. Let’s begin!

Step 1: Download Wireshark on your computer by clicking on the following buttons( for your version of Windows)

Download

Wireshark

Step 2: Run, configure and learn how to sniff packets with Wireshark. To learn how to start analyzing packets and check where your packets save the data, you should open Wireshark first and then choose your active network interface for analyzing packets. For most users, that would be the interface with traffic bouncing up and down on it’s right. You should choose it and click twice fast to start sniffing:

1-decrypt-files-wireshark-sensorstechforum

Step 3: Sniffing packets. Since ransomware viruses communicate via HTTP traffic, you should filter all the packets first. Here is how the packets look initially after you choose your interface and sniff traffic from it:

2-ransomware-decryption-keys-mixed-sensorstechforum

To intercept only HTTP traffic, you should type the following into the display filter bar:

http.request – to intercept the requested traffic

Once filtered it should look like this:

http-traffic-sensorstechforum-filtered

You can also filter the source and destination IP addresses by scrolling up and down and choosing one address, then right clicking on it and navigating to the following feature:

filter-host-dest-sensorstechforum

Step 4: Configure Wireshark to run automatically. To do this, first, you should go to the command prompt of your computer by typing cmd on your Windows search and running it. From there, type the following command with capital “-D” setting to get the unique key for your interface. The keys should look like the following:

wireshark-keys-sensorstechforum

Step 5: Copy the key for your active connection and create a New Text Document and in it write the following code:

→ wireshark -i 13MD2812-7212-3F21-4723-923F9G239F823(<= Your copied key) –k

You can additionally modify the command by adding the –w letter and creating a name for the file that will save it onto your computer, allowing you to analyze the packets. The result should look similarly to this one:

wireshark-sensorstechforum-text-file

Step 6: Save the newly created text document as a .bat file, by going to File>Save As… and choosing All Files after which typing .BAT as a file extension, like the picture below shows. Make sure the name of the file and the location where you save it are easy to find:

sensorstechforum-pic-wireshark-save-as-all-files

Step 7: Paste the .bat file in the Windows startup folder. The original location of the folder is:

→ C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup,/p>

To easily access it, press Windows Button + R key combination and in the Window box type – shell:startup, like the picture below shows and click OK:

shell-startup-bat-file-sensorstechforum
wireshark-startup-sensorstechforum

After your computer is restarted, if the ransomware virus encrypts your files after which generates a key and sends it to the cyber-criminals’ servers, you should be able to intercept the communication packets and analyze them.

Step 8: How to analyze the traffic?

To analyze the traffic of a given packet, simply right-click it and then click on the following to intercept the traffic:

intercept-traffic-sensorstechforum-ransomware

After doing this, a Window will appear with the information. Make sure to inspect the information carefully and look for keywords that give away the encryption keys, like encrypted, RSA, AES, etc. Take your time and check the packets’ size, make sure that they are similar to the size of a key file.

intercept-stream-sensorstechforum-intercepted

Sniffing Ransomware Decryption Keys – Things You Need To Know

Like mentioned before, this tutorial is fully theoretical and in case you cannot cope with it and sniff out the keys, we strongly advise you to remove the ransomware that has infected you and attempt restoring your files using the step-by-step instructions below. Also, if you are going to attempt this method, we strongly advise you to test it out first on your computer and see the traffic. An example of how researchers have identified traffic by ransomware is the research, performed by PaloAlto network experts on Locky ransomware, which we also advise you to check.

Avatar

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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24 Comments

  1. AvatarWATERCHILD

    I have tried to follow your recommendations about wireshark and somehow I get to find several lines that contain the following description in “info”:

    “Server Hello, Certificate, Certificate status, Server key exchange, Server Hello done”
    “Client key exchange, Change Cipher Spec, Encrypted Handshake message”
    Then Application Data……

    And this goes on and on all the time between one source and one destination (always the same).

    I can do a right click on the line, then “follow” and “TCP” : it opens a window with a dialogue but i don’t know if I could find in it a “key” and I don’t know either how to recognize it. It doesn’t look like a common text, but includes a mix between words, net adresses, symbols…

    Let’s assume it’s possible ang I find it, how then coul I use it? I wouldn’t know how to build my own working decryptor.

    Is there anyone here who knows more about all of this and tried the way of wireshark sniffing and would have some advice to help me use the software and get to discover my “key”?

    Thank you for your time

    Reply
    1. AvatarVencislav Krustev

      Hello, please see the following filters which you can use on the filter box on top of where the packets are of your Wireshark software:

      1. ip.addr ==10.0.0.1 [Sets a filter for any packet with 10.0.0.1, as either the
      source or dest]

      2. ip.addr==10.0.0.1 && ip.addr==10.0.0.2 [sets
      a conversation filter between the two defined IP addresses]

      3. http or dns [sets
      a filter to display all http and dns]

      4. tcp.port==4000
      [sets a filter for any TCP packet with 4000 as a source or dest port]

      5. tcp.flags.reset==1
      [displays all TCP resets]

      6. http.request
      [displays all HTTP GET requests]

      7. tcp contains
      traffic [displays all TCP packets that contain the word ‘traffic’.
      Excellent when searching on a specific string or user ID]

      8. !(arp or icmp or
      dns) [masks out arp, icmp, dns, or whatever other protocols may be
      background noise. Allowing you to focus on the traffic of interest]

      9. udp contains
      33:27:58 [sets a filter for the HEX values of 0x33 0x27 0x58 at any
      offset]

      10. tcp.analysis.retransmission
      [displays all retransmissions in the trace. Helps when tracking down slow
      application performance and packet loss]

      I have extracted those useful filters from:

      http://www.lovemytool.com/blog/2010/04/top-10-wireshark-filters-by-chris-greer.html

      You can also find other useful recommendations there. Also, bear in mind that you should focus on the POST traffic when an infection takes place. If you have the malware sample, try to reinfect a testing computer while monitoring the packets. This may help you gain a deeper understanding on how the malware communicates.

      In addition to this, when you “Follow TCP Stream” of a given packet, Wireshark has the so-called “SSL Dissector” which in some cases can be used to decipher some of the data in there and make sense of it. Ransomware is constantly evolving, however and may not also directly send the decryption key, but instead upload a .KEY file to the cyber-criminals’ command servers which is also encrypted with a strong algorithm. So if you are using WIreshark, first make sure the virus does not create such a file and directly sends the information via TCP or other form.

      Reply
  2. AvatarAriel santos

    Is it work with Cerber ransomware?

    Reply
  3. AvatarCalin

    I have been infected by spora. I have the html file with my ID and a lot of pairs with encripted and non encripted files. Can you extract the encription keys from all of these in order to decript the rest of my files? Or do you know somebody who can do it? Thanks.
    calin.huidu@gmail.com

    Reply
  4. AvatarThomas KAltenstadler

    Tolle Methode. Manchmal geht es auch einfacher wenn man die Lücken von Dharma kennt. Wir werden diese nicht posten, da wir sonst die Programmierer darauf aufmerksam machen.

    Reply
  5. AvatarCarlos Tapia

    Hi, Is it possible to decrypt files encrypted with the Rapid Ramsomware virus?

    Hello, has anyone managed to successfully decrypt files encrypted with the Rapid Ransomware?

    Reply
  6. AvatarCarlos Tapia

    Hello, has anyone managed to successfully decrypt files encrypted with the Rapid Ransomware?

    Reply
  7. AvatarCarlos Q

    Me infectó mis archivos un virus que agrega la extension .krab, cómo puedo desencriptar los archivos.

    Reply
  8. AvatarKevin

    Hey I just got infected by Hermes 2.1 available on the net

    Reply
  9. AvatarAllan

    Bonjour l’odinateur de mon patron est infecté que faire cela contient de nombreux document sensible et important. Il est infecté par Grandcrab V4 je peut avoir une clé qui fonctionne pour ton débloquer et supprimer ce malware s’il vous plait.

    Reply
  10. AvatarAayush Rohan

    Please help me the .moresa virus extention is not decrypted by the Stop Decrypter from my computer all my files have been decrypted with this moresa virus
    No key for ID: PBADSc0wL8KOzd5eGIaVThjIPeGxRqrsQgvU3qt1 (.moresa )
    No key for ID: thCga3VaHug7jcvBWukhPrjC7a214iSfVCsbRuQi (.moresa )
    Unidentified ID: PBADSc0wL8KOzd5eGIaVThjIPeGxRqrsQgvU3qt1 (.moresa )
    Unidentified ID: thCga3VaHug7jcvBWukhPrjC7a214iSfVCsbRuQi (.moresa )
    Proof is below
    —————————————-
    STOPDecrypter v2.0.2.3
    OS Microsoft Windows NT 6.2.9200.0, .NET Framework Version 4.0.30319.42000—————————————-

    Error on file ‘E:\autorun.inf\lpt3.Drive_is_protected_against_flash_viruses_by_RegRun’: System.ArgumentException: FileStream will not open Win32 devices such as disk partitions and tape drives. Avoid use of “\\.\” in the path.
    at System.IO.FileStream.Init(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access, Int32 rights, Boolean useRights, FileShare share, Int32 bufferSize, FileOptions options, SECURITY_ATTRIBUTES secAttrs, String msgPath, Boolean bFromProxy, Boolean useLongPath, Boolean checkHost)
    at System.IO.FileStream..ctor(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access)
    at STOPDecrypter.Decrypter.FileIsSupported(String filepath)
    at STOPDecrypter.MainForm.DecryptDirectory(String location, Boolean delete)
    Error on file ‘E:\comment.htt\lpt3.Drive_is_protected_against_flash_viruses_by_RegRun’: System.ArgumentException: FileStream will not open Win32 devices such as disk partitions and tape drives. Avoid use of “\\.\” in the path.
    at System.IO.FileStream.Init(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access, Int32 rights, Boolean useRights, FileShare share, Int32 bufferSize, FileOptions options, SECURITY_ATTRIBUTES secAttrs, String msgPath, Boolean bFromProxy, Boolean useLongPath, Boolean checkHost)
    at System.IO.FileStream..ctor(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access)
    at STOPDecrypter.Decrypter.FileIsSupported(String filepath)
    at STOPDecrypter.MainForm.DecryptDirectory(String location, Boolean delete)
    Error on file ‘E:\desktop.ini\lpt3.Drive_is_protected_against_flash_viruses_by_RegRun’: System.ArgumentException: FileStream will not open Win32 devices such as disk partitions and tape drives. Avoid use of “\\.\” in the path.
    at System.IO.FileStream.Init(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access, Int32 rights, Boolean useRights, FileShare share, Int32 bufferSize, FileOptions options, SECURITY_ATTRIBUTES secAttrs, String msgPath, Boolean bFromProxy, Boolean useLongPath, Boolean checkHost)
    at System.IO.FileStream..ctor(String path, FileMode mode, FileAccess access)
    at STOPDecrypter.Decrypter.FileIsSupported(String filepath)
    at STOPDecrypter.MainForm.DecryptDirectory(String location, Boolean delete)
    Error: System.UnauthorizedAccessException: (5) Access is denied: [E:\System Volume Information]
    at Alphaleonis.Win32.NativeError.ThrowException(UInt32 errorCode, String readPath, String writePath) in C:\Users\jjangli\Documents\GitHub\AlphaFS\AlphaFS\NativeError.cs:line 121
    at Alphaleonis.Win32.Filesystem.FindFileSystemEntryInfo.ThrowPossibleException(UInt32 lastError, String pathLp) in C:\Users\jjangli\Documents\GitHub\AlphaFS\AlphaFS\Filesystem\FindFileSystemEntryInfo.cs:line 409
    at Alphaleonis.Win32.Filesystem.FindFileSystemEntryInfo.FindFirstFile(String pathLp, WIN32_FIND_DATA& win32FindData, Boolean suppressException) in C:\Users\jjangli\Documents\GitHub\AlphaFS\AlphaFS\Filesystem\FindFileSystemEntryInfo.cs:line 297
    at Alphaleonis.Win32.Filesystem.FindFileSystemEntryInfo.d__88`1.MoveNext() in C:\Users\jjangli\Documents\GitHub\AlphaFS\AlphaFS\Filesystem\FindFileSystemEntryInfo.cs:line 466
    at STOPDecrypter.MainForm.DecryptDirectory(String location, Boolean delete)
    ———————————————–

    Dear Sir my Computer has completely Damaged by newest Ransomware virus extention
    ” .moresa “. This extention has been attached with all of my computer files pictures videos pdf software. Though virus has removed after using SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool. But now my all personal data is not decrypting due to this ” .moresa ” extention virus. Please help me thanks. I received the following data from the hackers:
    ATTENTION!

    Don’t worry my friend, you can return all your files!
    All your files like photos, databases, documents and other important are encrypted with strongest encryption and unique key.
    The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.
    This software will decrypt all your encrypted files.
    What guarantees you have?
    You can send one of your encrypted file from your PC and we decrypt it for free.
    But we can decrypt only 1 file for free. File must not contain valuable information.
    You can get and look video overview decrypt tool:
    https://we.tl/t-aSdhfTOs1G
    Price of private key and decrypt software is $980.
    Discount 50% available if you contact us first 72 hours, that’s price for you is $490.
    Please note that you’ll never restore your data without payment.
    Check your e-mail “Spam” or “Junk” folder if you don’t get answer more than 6 hours.

    To get this software you need write on our e-mail:
    vengisto@firemail.cc

    Reserve e-mail address to contact us:
    vengisto@india.com

    Support Telegram account:
    @datarestore

    Your personal ID:
    069OspdywaduiShdktrecthCga3VaHug7jcvBWukhPrjC7a214iSfVCsbRuQi

    Now my personal Files are in the following shape:
    .cdr, .pdf, .jpeg. etc etc

    Reply
  11. Avatarelkhaldi

    HI,
    I have also the same trouble since april 22nd
    I have tried several methods but in vain
    need help

    Reply
  12. Avatarsam

    anyone has encountered “stone” encryption? i definitely need a solution, it has affected pictures of my late father and brother.

    Reply
  13. AvatarNiyal Nagar

    Hello,
    Actaully my files are infected with encryption and asking me for money and i can’t afford his asking price.
    my Files are infected with the extension of .recuz
    please help me to retrieve my files.
    Here this is the guy who is calling us friend but he is stigma on the human being.
    and this is the readme text file lines.

    ATTENTION!

    Don’t worry my friend, you can return all your files!
    All your files like photos, databases, documents and other important are encrypted with strongest encryption and unique key.
    The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.
    This software will decrypt all your encrypted files.
    What guarantees you have?
    You can send one of your encrypted file from your PC and we decrypt it for free.
    But we can decrypt only 1 file for free. File must not contain valuable information.
    You can get and look video overview decrypt tool:
    https://we.tl/t-P9I5e3nXb8
    Price of private key and decrypt software is $980.
    Discount 50% available if you contact us first 72 hours, that’s price for you is $490.
    Please note that you’ll never restore your data without payment.
    Check your e-mail “Spam” or “Junk” folder if you don’t get answer more than 6 hours.

    To get this software you need write on our e-mail:
    bufalo@firemail.cc

    Reserve e-mail address to contact us:
    gorentos@bitmessage.ch

    Our Telegram account:
    @datarestore

    Your personal ID:
    091hushF63iUYSFDsdf7ULShpYyln4fiZkjMaQ6NbXD5vUCTYp5ieGdNCcq4

    Reply
    1. AvatarNiyal Nagar

      Sorry it was not .RECUZ but it is .REZUC
      As Nabin’s data is infected, same my data is infected with this .REZUC

      Reply
  14. Avatarvasidir

    Bonjour,
    je suis infecté par le virus .radman qui a decrypté tout mes fichiers. y’a t’il une solution pour decrypter mes fichiers?
    j’ai essayé:
    – Stopdecrypter
    – Rakhnidecryptor
    – …etc
    mais rien de positif.
    Merci

    Reply
  15. AvatarTA

    my system is ransome ware phobos. how can I descript my files.

    Reply
    1. Gergana IvanovaGergana Ivanova

      Hi, TA!

      Currently, no decrypter for Phobos ransomware is available. However, we recommend that you save your encrypted files and wait for a decrypter. Security researchers may be able to crack its code soon. Meanwhile, you can try alternative data recovery software as suggested in Step 5 from this how-to guide.

      Reply
  16. Avatarsamnawi

    Is anyone has experience with .tocue ransomware? I try to use STOPDecryptor, but seems like there is no offline ID.
    Then I looking for the ID, follow this guidance, but feel confuse in the step number 8. how to choose or which the appropriate packet that we should follow the stream?

    Reply
  17. Avataratrisa

    HERAD Extension File Ransom Virus

    Hi,
    All my computer files have been infected and the .heard extension has been added to all files.
    Please help to resolve the problem.
    Thank you

    Reply
  18. AvatarJummadon

    How to decrypt “RSALIVE” extension ransomware infected file?

    Reply
    1. Gergana IvanovaGergana Ivanova

      Hi Jummadon,

      Here you can read more about the ransomware here – https://sensorstechforum.com/rsalive-virus-remove/
      Unfortunately, at this point no free decryption tool for Scarab ransomware versions is available. So back up your .RSALIVE encrypted files and wait for a solution. While you are waiting you can try to restore .rsalive files with the help of the alternative methods mentioned in Step 5 form the removal guide above.

      Reply
  19. AvatarCaio

    How to decrypt MTOGAS extension ransomware infected files? I got so many troubles, please i need help!

    I tried STOPDecryptor, restore the operational system and another things.

    Reply

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