THREAT REMOVAL

GANDCRAB 5.0.1 Ransom Virus – How to Remove It and Restore Data

This article has been created in order to show you how you can remove the GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware virus and how you can try and recover files, encrypted by GANDCRAB 5.0.1 without having to pay the ransom to the cyber-crooks.

The GANDCRAB v5.0 ransomware was just updated in a 5.0.1 version with some minor improvements in it. The virus’s main goal is to enter a victim PC while unnoticed and encrypt the files on the victimized machine, after which leave behind a random file extension. The virus then drops a ransom note, starting with 5 letters and looking like the following – {5 random symbols}-DECRYPT.txt, unlike the previous variant which used an .html file type for it’s note. The ransom note of GANDCRAB 5.0.1 aims to convince victims to pay ransom in order to get their encrypted files restored back to their working state. In the events that your computer has been infected by GANDCRAB 5.0.1 you should read this article. It aims to help you understand more about how GANDCRAB works and shows methods to erase this virus and try and recover files, encrypted by it without directly paying ransom.

Threat Summary

NameGANDCRAB 5.0.1
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionVersion of GandCrab ransomware. It encrypts valuable files in order to extrort a ransom payment from victims.
SymptomsCorrupted files are marked with an extension of five random letters. The access to them is restricted. Ransomware creators demand a ransom in DASH or Bircoin cryptocurrency.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

Download

Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss GANDCRAB 5.0.1.
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.

GANDCRAB 5.0.1 – Distribution Methods

The latest iteration of GANDCRAB ransomware does not cheat on the old method of being replicated. The malware may infect via comromised websites, the main idea behind which is to pretend that the program you are looking for online has a crack that is available for download. This fake WordPress download site URLs is become more and more common practice as we have detected over recent months. Here is how a fake crack URL from the previous GandCrab version appears like when you look for the cracks for several converters, system tools and other types of seemingly useful programs:

The full list of programs that are imitated by the GandCrab can be seen on the related story underneath:

Related: GandCrab 4 Ransomware Now Infects Via Software Cracks

But this is not the only main source of propagation used by GandCrab 5.0.1 ransomware, since the virus may also be spread via the most widely used method for spreading ransomware viruses and that is via e-mail spam messages. The previous GandCrab iteration often used spam e-mails that carried around malicious e-mail attachments, also known as malspam. This type of activity was used to trick the victims into clicking on “I am not a robot” after downloading a PDF file and then this results in a Microsoft Word file that opens up with malicious Macros. The e-mails may appear like the following:

From: “Brandon Clay” Brandon@cdkconstruction.org
Subject: Electricity bill Feb-6509
Attachment: Feb-10451.pdf
Body Text: Download the attached file.

The .PDF file may show the following after being opened:

After this, the user is misled to click on “Enable Content” on a new Microsoft Word file that derives from the .PDF file and after this is done, GANDCRAB may trigger the infection:

GANDCRAB 5.0.1 Ransomware – Analysis

When a victim PC becomes infected with the GANDCRAB ransomware virus, the 5.0.1 version drops and activates it’s main Binary file, which has different names and is located in a randomly named folder in the “USERS” profile:

→ C:\Users\{UserName}\Desktop\{GandCrab virus file name}.exe

After this has completed, the GANDCRAB ransomware may also drop it’s ransom note file, which appears like the following image:

Text from Image:

—= GANDCRAB V5.0.1 =—
Attention!
All your files, documents, photos, databases and other important files are encrypted and have the extension: {5 random letters}
The only method of recovering files is to purchase an unique private key. Only we can give you this key and only we can recover your files.
The server with your key is in a closed network TOR. You can get there by the following ways:

———————————————————————–
| 0. Download Tor browser – https://www.torproject.org/

| 1. Install Tor Browser
| 2. Open Tor Browser
| 3. Open link in TOR browser http://gandcrabmfe6mnef.onion/{victim’s unique ID}
| 4. Follow the instructions on this page

On our page you will see instructions on payment and get the opportunity to decrypt 1 file for free.

ATTENTION!
IN ORDER TO PREVENT DATA DAMAGE:
• DO NOT MODIFY ENCRYPTED FILES
• DO NOT CHANGE DATA BELOW

The ransom note then leads the victim to visit a Tor-based web page, which is similar to the other GandCrab versions, appearing like the image below shows:

To make sure that the victim does not miss out on the notification, GANDCRAB 5.0.1 also sets the wallpaper to the following:

In addition to making sure the victim knows of it’s presence, GANDCRAB 5.0.1 does way more than just that. The virus may also perform other activities on the user PC, such as adding registry values in many Windows registry sub-keys. So far, GANDCRAB 5.0.1 is reported to access the following sub-keys in the Windows Registry database:

→ HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\International
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\keys_data\data
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\HARDWARE\DESCRIPTION\System\CentralProcessor\0
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Wbem\CIMOM
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\ex_data\data
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\Tcpip\Parameters

The GANDCRAB 5.0.1 also creates the following mutexes on the infected computer:

→ Global\8A5BA8BEE36925045F5C.lock
Global\XIAKFoxSKGOfSGOoSFOOFNOLPE

But the main indicators of compromise are the connections which are made by this iteration of GandCrab ransomware, which are reported at VMRay to be the following IP addresses:

IP addresses, related to GANDCRAB 5.0.1
52.29.192.136
178.33.233.202
92.53.96.201
87.236.16.31
77.104.171.238
146.66.72.87
69.73.180.151
87.236.16.29
173.247.242.133
188.165.53.185
107.178.113.162
188.64.184.90
213.186.33.3
50.87.58.165
80.77.123.23
178.238.37.162
223.26.62.72
77.104.144.25
191.252.51.37
104.28.30.160
202.43.45.181
87.236.16.208
103.27.238.31
89.252.187.72
179.188.11.34
104.24.104.13
51.68.50.168
50.63.202.79
104.27.163.241
104.28.29.142
213.186.33.186
194.58.56.95
66.96.147.67
67.227.236.96
104.31.76.95
171.244.34.167
217.174.149.130
70.40.197.96
93.125.99.121
94.231.109.239
137.74.238.33
185.135.88.105
103.107.17.102
95.213.173.173
104.27.187.113
104.24.102.153
213.186.33.17
186.202.153.158
45.33.91.79
87.236.19.135
94.73.148.18
209.182.208.245
217.160.0.27
217.160.0.234
157.56.120.207
157.56.120.208
13.107.3.128
40.121.213.159

GANDCRAB 5.0.1 Ransomware – Encryption Process

The 5.0.1 version of GANDCRAB ransomware virus is believed to utilize the Salsa20 encryption algorithm. Unlike the previous versions of GandCrab, this encryption mode is much faster in its encryption process so that it is more difficult to be halted. The GANDCRAB ransomware may perform the infection process in the following chronological steps:

Step 1: The virus scans the computer for the files it wants encrypted. Usually those files are:

  • Documents.
  • Videos.
  • Audio files.
  • Images.
  • Archives.
  • Databases.
  • The virus skips scanning in important Windows directories, which may result in breaking your OS.

Step 2: GANDCRAB V5.0.1 then encrypts the files by first creating copies of the files and then encrypting the copies after which the ransomware virus may delete the original files.

Step 3: After the encryption process has finished, the ransomware virus creates a unique decryption key that is concealed and may have either the .KEY or the .lock extension. The file itself may also be encrypted and cannot be opened.

Step 4: The GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware adds a random 5 letter extension to the encrypted files, making them to start appearing like the following:

Step 5: The GANDCRAB 5.0.1 malware likely hides it’s tracks by deleting any backups and shadow copies it might encounter. This happens by executing the following commands in Windows Command Prompt as an administrator:

→ sc stop VVS
sc stop wscsvc
sc stop WinDefend
sc stop wuauserv
sc stop BITS
sc stop ERSvc
sc stop WerSvc
cmd.exe /C bcdedit /set {default} recoveryenabled No
cmd.exe /C bcdedit /set {default} bootstatuspolicy ignoreallfailures
C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe” /C vssadmin.exe Delete Shadows /All /Quiet

Remove GANDCRAB 5.0.1 Ransomware and Restore Your Encrypted Files

If you have become a victim of the 5.0.1 iteration of GANDCRAB ransomware, then you have three choices – to pay the ransom and hope for the best (not recommended), to pay a lot of money to a file recovery expert or to follow the instructions underneath this article and remove the virus yourself. The instructions below have been divided in manual and automatic removal methods. If manual removal does fail, then be advised that most experts would run a scan, using a specific anti-malware software. Such programs are usually designed to fully detect and remove all files and objects otherwise difficult to spot manually and in the same time they aim to protect your PC against any threats that might appear in the future too.

If your files were encrypted and you have no idea how to get them back, then we strongly suggest that you refrain from paying ransom to the cyber-crooks behind GANDCRAB 5.0.1. Doing this is not a guarantee that they will decrypt your files afterwards. Do not despair, however, because you still haven’t ran out of options. We have summed up several alternative recovery methods that you can try below in the step “2. Try to restore files, encrypted by GANDCRAB 5.0.1”. They are not a 100% guarantee of successful file recovery, but with their assistance, you can restore some or most of your files, depending on your situation.

Avatar

Ventsislav Krastev

Ventsislav is a cybersecurity expert at SensorsTechForum since 2015. He has been researching, covering, helping victims with the latest malware infections plus testing and reviewing software and the newest tech developments. Having graduated Marketing as well, Ventsislav also has passion for learning new shifts and innovations in cybersecurity that become game changers. After studying Value Chain Management, Network Administration and Computer Administration of System Applications, he found his true calling within the cybersecrurity industry and is a strong believer in the education of every user towards online safety and security.

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Attention! SensorsTechForum strongly recommends that all malware victims should look for assistance only by reputable sources. Many guides out there claim to offer free recovery and decryption for files encrypted by ransomware viruses. Be advised that some of them may only be after your money.

As a site that has been dedicated to providing free removal instructions for ransomware and malware since 2014, SensorsTechForum’s recommendation is to only pay attention to trustworthy sources.

How to recognize trustworthy sources:

  • Always check "About Us" web page.
  • Profile of the content creator.
  • Make sure that real people are behind the site and not fake names and profiles.
  • Verify Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter personal profiles.


OFFER

REMOVE IT NOW (PC)
with Anti-Malware
We recommend you to download SpyHunter and run free scan to remove all virus files on your PC. This saves you hours of time and effort compared to doing the removal yourself.
SpyHunter 5 free remover allows you, subject to a 48-hour waiting period, one remediation and removal for results found. Read EULA and Privacy Policy


Windows Mac OS X

How to Remove GANDCRAB 5.0.1 from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove GANDCRAB 5.0.1

OFFER

Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your PC with SpyHunter

Keep in mind, that SpyHunter’s scanner is only for malware detection. If SpyHunter detects malware on your PC, you will need to purchase SpyHunter's malware removal tool to remove the malware threats. Read our SpyHunter 5 review. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria

1. Hold Windows key() + R


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
Tip: Make sure to reverse those changes by unticking Safe Boot after that, because your system will always boot in Safe Boot from now on.


4. When prompted, click on "Restart" to go into Safe Mode.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall GANDCRAB 5.0.1 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. To do that:


1. Hold the Windows Logo Button and "R" on your keyboard. A Pop-up window will appear.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


3. This will open a window with all the programs installed on the PC. Select the program that you want to remove, and press "Uninstall"
Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


Step 3: Clean any registries, created by GANDCRAB 5.0.1 on your computer.

The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by GANDCRAB 5.0.1 there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


2. When you open it, you can freely navigate to the Run and RunOnce keys, whose locations are shown above.


3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
Tip: To find a virus-created value, you can right-click on it and click "Modify" to see which file it is set to run. If this is the virus file location, remove the value.

IMPORTANT!
Before starting "Step 4", please boot back into Normal mode, in case you are currently in Safe Mode.
This will enable you to install and use SpyHunter 5 successfully.

Step 4: Scan for GANDCRAB 5.0.1 with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool

1. Click on the "Download" button to proceed to SpyHunter's download page.


It is recommended to run a scan before purchasing the full version of the software to make sure that the current version of the malware can be detected by SpyHunter. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter's EULA, Privacy Policy and Threat Assessment Criteria.


2. After you have installed SpyHunter, wait for it to update automatically.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


3. After the update process has finished, click on the 'Malware/PC Scan' tab. A new window will appear. Click on 'Start Scan'.

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


4. After SpyHunter has finished scanning your PC for any files of the associated threat and found them, you can try to get them removed automatically and permanently by clicking on the 'Next' button.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

If any threats have been removed, it is highly recommended to restart your PC.

Step 5 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by GANDCRAB 5.0.1.

Ransomware infections and GANDCRAB 5.0.1 aim to encrypt your files using an encryption algorithm which may be very difficult to decrypt. This is why we have suggested a data recovery method that may help you go around direct decryption and try to restore your files. Bear in mind that this method may not be 100% effective but may also help you a little or a lot in different situations.

1. Download the reccomended Data Recovery software by clicking on the link underneath:

Simply click on the link and on the website menus on top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.


Windows Mac OS X

Get rid of GANDCRAB 5.0.1 from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall GANDCRAB 5.0.1 and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy


1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to GANDCRAB 5.0.1:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to GANDCRAB 5.0.1. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash”.


6: Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference. Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to GANDCRAB 5.0.1. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7: Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • 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 GANDCRAB 5.0.1 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:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as GANDCRAB 5.0.1. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Click the button below below to download SpyHunter for Mac and scan for GANDCRAB 5.0.1:


Download

SpyHunter for Mac



Step 3 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by GANDCRAB 5.0.1.

Ransomware infections and GANDCRAB 5.0.1 aim to encrypt your files using an encryption algorithm which may be very difficult to decrypt. This is why we have suggested a data recovery method that may help you go around direct decryption and try to restore your files. Bear in mind that this method may not be 100% effective but may also help you a little or a lot in different situations.

1. Download the reccomended Data Recovery software by clicking on the link underneath:

Simply click on the link and on the website menus on top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.


GANDCRAB 5.0.1 FAQ

What is GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware and how does it work?

GANDCRAB 5.0.1 is a ransomware infection - the malicious software that enters your computer silently and blocks either access to the computer itself or encrypt your files.

Many ransomware viruses use sophisticated encryption algorithm how to make your files inaccessible. The goal of ransomware infections is to demand that you pay a ransom payment to get access to your files back.

How does GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware infect my computer?

Via several ways.GANDCRAB 5.0.1 Ransomware infects computers by being sent via phishing e-mails, containing virus attachment.

This attachment is usually masked as an important document, like an invoice, bank document or even a plane ticket and it looks very convincing to users.

After you download and execute this attachment, a drive-by download occurs and your computer is infected with the ransomware virus.

Another way, you may become a victim of GANDCRAB 5.0.1 is if you download a fake installer, crack or patch from a low reputation website or if you click on a virus link. Many users report getting a ransomware infection by downloading torrents.

How to open .GANDCRAB 5.0.1 files?

You can't. At this point the .GANDCRAB 5.0.1 files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted.

Decryptor did not decrypt my data. What now?

Do not panic and backup the files. If a decryptor did not decrypt your .GANDCRAB 5.0.1 files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.

One way to restore files, encrypted by GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware is to use a decryptor for it. But since it's a new virus, advised that the decryption keys for it may not be out yet and available to the public. We will update this article and keep you posted as soon as this decryptor is released.

How Do I restore ".GANDCRAB 5.0.1" files (Other Methods)?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .GANDCRAB 5.0.1 files.

These methods are in no way 100% guarantee that you will be able to get your files back. But if you have a backup, your chances of success are much greater.

How do I get rid of GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware virus?

The safest way and the most efficient one for the removal of this ransomware infection is the use a professional anti malware software. It will scan for and locate GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .GANDCRAB 5.0.1 files.

Also, keep in mind that viruses like GANDCRAB 5.0.1 ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts. Scanning your computer with an anti-malware software will make sure that all of these virus components are removed and your computer is protected in the future.

What to Do If nothing works?

There is still a lot you can do. If none of the above methods seem to work for you, then try these methods:

  • Try to find a safe computer from where you can can login on your own line accounts like One Drive, iDrive, Google Drive and so on.
  • Try to contact your friends, relatives and other people so that they can check if they have some of your important photos or documents just in case you sent them.
  • Also, check if some of the files that were encrypted it can be re-downloaded from the web.
  • Another clever way to get back some of your files is to find another old computer, a flash drive or even a CD or a DVD where you may have saved your older documents. You might be surprised what will turn up.
  • You can also go to your email account to check if you can send any attachments to other people. Usually what is sent the email is saved on your account and you can re-download it. But most importantly, make sure that this is done from a safe computer and make sure to remove the virus first.

More tips you can find on our forums, where you can also asks any questions about your ransomware problem.

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