.GBLOCK Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections
THREAT REMOVAL

.GBLOCK Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections

This article will aid you to remove .GBLOCK Ransomware. Follow the ransomware removal instructions provided at the end of the article.

.GBLOCK Ransomware is one that encrypts your data and demands money as a ransom to get it restored. Files will receive the .GBLOCK extension. The .GBLOCK Ransomware will leave ransomware instructions as a desktop wallpaper image. Keep on reading the article and see how you could try to potentially recover some of your locked files and data.

Threat Summary

Name.GBLOCK ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionThe ransomware encrypts files by placing the .GBLOCK extension on the files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.
SymptomsThe ransomware will encrypt your files and leave a ransom note with payment instructions.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by .GBLOCK ransomware

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Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss .GBLOCK 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.

.GBLOCK Ransomware – Distribution Techniques

The .GBLOCK ransomware is a new sample that originates from the Matrix family of malware threats. As a representative of this type of viruses its development is probably tied to one of these two possibilities:

  • Own Creation — The sample may have been created by the same hackers as the ones that are behind its distribution. This is done by by taking the original Matrix ransomware engine and modifying it in order to produce this new virus.
  • Custom Order — The hacker team behind this particular threat can order its creation on the underground hacker markets. Customization orders are one of the most common services that are available in these communities.

Popular methods for spreading such viruses rely on several well-known mechanisms that have proven successful for delivering large-scale ransomware infections. A prime example is the coordination of email phishing messages that aim to impersonate notifications that have been sent in by companies or services. They are recreated by the criminals to contain the exact same layout and contents of the real ones which makes them very difficult to distinguish.

Another tactic relies on the creation of malicious web sites that aim to copy legitimate and well-known Internet sites: download portals, search engines, product landing pages and etc. They are hosted on domains that have a similar name to the legitimate sites and often use stolen or self-signed security certificates.

The virus files can also be spread on file-sharing networks like BitTorrent which is a widely used platform for sharing both pirate and legitimate files.

The .GBLOCK ransomware engine can be installed via scripts that can be embedded in infected documents. They can be of all popular types (text files, presentations, databases and spreadsheets) and will spawn a notification message asking the users to enable the built-in code in order to correctly view the file. If this si done the infection will be caused.

A similar strategy is the creation of dangerous application installers which are modified version of popular software. The criminals typically choose those ones that are most likely to be downloaded by end users: system utilities, creativity suites, productivity and office products and others. They are created by embedding the necessary code in the files and then spreading them through over the Internet.

Another popular method that is used by many viruses is the use of browser hijackers which represent malicious plugins made for the most popular web browsers. They are mostly found on the relevant repositories posted with elaborate descriptions offering performance optimizations and new features. A large percentage of them will utilize fake or stolen developer credentials and user reviews. Once installed they will immediately deploy the .GBLOCK ransomware. The traditional behavior pattern is to change the default settings in order to redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled site.

.GBLOCK Ransomware – Detailed Analysis

The .GBLOCK ransomware as a representative of the Matrix malware family can follow the traditional behavior as observed by previous samples. It is built on a modular platform which allows the hackers to customize each individual attack.

Usually these type of attacks begin with an information gathering component that will be started. It will harvest information that can be categorized into two main groups:

  • Personal Information — The engine can search for information that can directly expose the identity of the victims: a person’s name, address, interests, phone number and even any stored account credentials.
  • Machine Information — An unique infection ID can be assigned to every single computer by using an algorithm that will output based on gathered information. The input values are usually system settings, user preferences and the list of installed hardware parts.

The collected information can be used for another purpose as well — the security bypass procedure. Based on the made analysis of the machines the engine can search for and bypass services and applications that can block the virus: anti-virus software, firewalls, sandbox and debug environments and virtual machine hosts.

Most Matrix ransomware engines can also be programmed to make changes to the Windows Registry. This can be either the creation of strings for the ransomware itself or modifications to operating system entries or those that are used by third-party applications. This can result in severe performance issues, the inability to start certain functions and unexpected shut downs and error messages.

The ransomware engine can also modify the boot options thereby setting itself as a persistent threat. This means that it will start automatically when the computer boots and make it impossible to access the recovery menus. This renders most of the manual user recovery guides non-working. In addition the engine can delete important system data such as backups, restore points and shadow volume copies. In this case the victims will need to use a combination of a quality anti-spyware solution and a data recovery program.

Matrix ransomware strains such as the .GBLOCK virus samples can also be programmed to deliver other threats as the security barriers have already been penetrated. This is especially dangerous concerning Trojan horse infections that allow the victims to take over control of the affected machines, hijack user files and cause all sorts of malicious actions.

.GBLOCK Ransomware – Encryption Process

Like other popular malware samples the .GBLOCK ransomware will launch the encryption engine once all prior modules have finished running. It will probably use a built-in list of target file type extensions which are to be processed by a strong cipher. An example list can include the following data types:

  • Backups
  • Databases
  • Archives
  • Images
  • Music
  • Videos

All affected files will receive the .GBLOCK extension. The associated ransomware is crafted in a file called !GBLOCK_INFO.rtf.

Remove .GBLOCK Ransomware and Try to Restore Data

If your computer system got infected with the .GBLOCK ransomware virus, you should have a bit of experience in removing malware. You should get rid of this ransomware as quickly as possible before it can have the chance to spread further and infect other computers. You should remove the ransomware and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.

Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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