What Is Goaq Virus?
The Goaq virus is a highly dangerous STOP/DJVU variant that seeks to encrypt your files and demand a ransom in Bitcoin. You should be aware of this virus, as it is a severe threat that can cause serious damage to your device. In this article, you will learn more about the Goaq virus, its .Goaq files, the _readme.txt note, and how to respond if your computer is infected.
Goaq Virus – Why Is My Windows Infected?Goaq ransomware is typically contracted by opening suspicious emails, downloading software from insecure sources, interacting with malicious online ads and links, or connecting an infected external device such as a USB drive. Its obfuscation capabilities make it difficult to detect and stop from infiltrating your device.
Goaq Virus – How Did I Get Infected?
The ransomware known as “Goaq” is commonly distributed through malicious email attachments, dubious websites, and downloads from unverified sources. It can even be disseminated through legitimate websites that have been compromised. The following ways are the most often utilized for infection:
- If it is sent to you as an e-mail attachment or a URL.
- By being downloaded from a shady site.
Goaq Virus – What Does It Do?Goaq ransomware is a malicious virus that infiltrates a computer and encrypts all of its files, changing their file extensions to “.Goaq”. It then demands a ransom in order to decrypt the files. This virus may be located in the following Windows directories:
This ransomware may also drop its payload files and leave behind it’s ransom note, containing the extortion message, and called _readme.txt:
Among the virus activities of this infection is to also modified or Windows Registries, where it may add multiple types of value entries.
Goaq Virus – Details
|Name||Goaq virus, also known as UDS:Trojan.Win32.Chapak.gen, Ransom:Win32/StopCrypt.KM!MTB, Win32:PWSX-gen [Trj], Win32:PWSX-gen [Trj], A Variant Of Win32/GenKryptik.FHJB – more detections of this virus on VirusTotal|
|Short Description||The ransomware encrypts files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.|
|Symptoms||The Goaq Virus ransomware will encrypt your files by appending the .Goaq extension to them.|
|Ransom Demanding Note||_readme.txt|
|Distribution Method||Spam Emails, Email Attachments|
See If Your Mac Has Been Affected by Goaq
Malware Removal Tool
What Are .Goaq Files
Files encrypted with the AES encryption algorithm may be vulnerable to attack from viruses. These files are secured and kept private by a combination of symmetric-key algorithms and public-key cryptography. It is possible for viruses to target and encrypt the following files:
- Videos (.mp4, .avi, etc.).
- Audio (.mp3, .wav, etc.).
- Picture file kinds (.jpg, .png, .etc).
- Archive file formats (.zip, .rar, etc).
- Documents of different types (.docx, .pptx, etc.).
After the files are encoded, they start to appear, like the following figure shows:
How to Open .Goaq Files
It is not advisable to purchase a decryption key from the ransomware authors. However, there is no guaranteed way to open .Goaq virus encrypted files without one. You can try using a data recovery software or system backup in an effort to recover your files, as the ransomware may not have completely destroyed the original files. Additionally, you can contact the ransomware authors for a free decryption key, though this is not guaranteed to work.
What To Do If My Files Are .Goaq?
The best solution to the encrypted files by this ransomware attack is to first remove the malicious software from your computer. If you have a backup of your .Goaq files, you should restore them from there. If you do not have a backup, you can try to use a reliable decryption tool to attempt to decrypt your files. Unfortunately, since DJVU is a new ransomware, there is no free tool available for breaking its encryption cipher, unless you have the decryption key offline.
How To Protect Windows from Goaq In The Future?
To protect your system from DJVU ransomware and other malicious software, it is essential to regularly update your system with the latest security updates and keep an up-to-date antivirus program installed. Additionally, it is wise to be aware of safe methods to safely store your files to protect them from ransomware.
How to Remove Goaq Virus?
In order to effectively eliminate the Goaq virus, it is recommended to use a reliable anti-malware program. If you have advanced knowledge and skills, you can manually delete any suspicious or malicious files associated with it. After you have completed the removal process, remember to update your security software and change all of your passwords. Additionally, creating regular backups of your data is an effective way to protect yourself from future attacks.
How to Decrypt / Fix .Goaq Files?
To attempt to decrypt the .Goaq files, you can refer to the instructions for STOP Ransomware decryption steps linked here, which involve obtaining either an online or offline decryption key.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Goaq
Step 2: Uninstall Goaq and related malware 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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by Goaq on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by Goaq there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
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 Goaq with SpyHunter Anti-Malware Tool
Ransomware Automatic Removal - Video Guide
Step 5 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by Goaq.
Ransomware infections and Goaq 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.
Simply click on the link and on the website menus on the top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.
What is Goaq Ransomware?
Goaq 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 algorithms 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.
Can Goaq Ransomware Damage My Computer?
Yes, ransomware can damage your computer. Ransomware is a malicious software that is designed to block access to your computer or files until a ransom is paid. It can encrypt your files and make them inaccessible, preventing you from using your computer or accessing your data. Ransomware can also damage your system, corrupt data and delete files, resulting in the permanent loss of important files.
Should I Ignore Ransomware, like Goaq?
No, you should never ignore ransomware. Ransomware can encrypt your data and block access to your computer, making it impossible to access your files until you pay a ransom. Ignoring ransomware could lead to the permanent loss of your data, as well as the potential for the ransomware to spread to other computers on your network. Additionally, paying the ransom does not guarantee that your data will be recovered. The best way to protect yourself is to invest in robust cyber security measures, such as backup solutions and anti-malware software.
How Does Goaq Ransomware Infect My Computer?
Via several ways.Goaq Ransomware infects computers by being sent via phishing emails, 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 Goaq 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 .Goaq files?
You can't. At this point, the .Goaq files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted.
What to Do If Ransomware Decryptor Does Not Work?
Do not panic, and backup the files. If a decryptor did not decrypt your .Goaq files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
One way to restore files, encrypted by Goaq ransomware is to use a decryptor for it. But since it's a new virus, be 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.
Can I Restore ".Goaq" Files (Other Methods)?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .Goaq files.
These methods are in no way 100% guaranteed 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 Goaq Ransomware Virus?
The safest way and the most efficient one for the removal of this ransomware infection is the use a professional anti-malware program. It will scan for and locate Goaq ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .Goaq files.
Also, keep in mind that viruses like Goaq ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts. Scanning your computer with 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 I Cannot Recover Ransomware Encrypted Files?
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.
How to Report Ransomware to Authorities?
In case your computer got infected with a ransomware infection, you can report it to the local Police departments. It can help authorities worldwide track and determine the perpetrators behind the virus that has infected your computer. Below, we have prepared a list with government websites, where you can file a report in case you are a victim of a cybercrime:
Cyber-security authorities, responsible for handling ransomware attack reports in different regions all over the world:
Germany - Offizielles Portal der deutschen Polizei
United States - IC3 Internet Crime Complaint Centre
United Kingdom - Action Fraud Police
France - Ministère de l'Intérieur
Italy - Polizia Di Stato
Spain - Policía Nacional
Netherlands - Politie
Poland - Policja
Portugal - Polícia Judiciária
Greece - Cyber Crime Unit (Hellenic Police)
India - Mumbai Police - CyberCrime Investigation Cell
Australia - Australian High Tech Crime Center
Reports may be responded to in different timeframes, depending on your local authorities.
Can You Prevent Goaq Ransomware from Encrypting Your Files?
Yes, you can prevent ransomware. The best way to do this is to ensure your computer system is updated with the latest security patches, use a reputable anti-malware program and firewall, backup your important files frequently, and avoid clicking on malicious links or downloading unknown files. In addition, it is also important to keep your passwords secure and to avoid visiting websites or downloading applications from untrusted sources. Finally, ensure you have adequate backup and recovery procedures in place to restore your system to its pre-attack state, should a ransomware attack occur.
Can Goaq Ransomware Steal Your Data?
Yes, in most cases ransomware will steal your information. It is a form of malware that steals data from a user's computer, encrypts it, and then demands a ransom in order to decrypt it. In many cases, the malware authors or attackers will threaten to delete the data or publish it online unless the ransom is paid. This means that if a user is infected with ransomware, their data can be stolen and held for ransom. It is important to be aware of this threat and take precautions to protect yourself and your data.
Can Ransomware Affect WiFi?
Yes, ransomware can affect WiFi networks, as malicious actors can use it to gain control of the network, steal confidential data, and lock out users. If a ransomware attack is successful, it could lead to a loss of service and/or data, and in some cases, financial losses.
Should I Pay Ransomware?
No, you should not pay ransomware extortionists. Paying them only encourages criminals and does not guarantee that the files or data will be restored. The better approach is to have a secure backup of important data and be vigilant about security in the first place.
What Happens If I Don't Pay Ransom?
If you don't pay the ransom, the hackers may still have access to your computer, data, or files and may continue to threaten to expose or delete them, or even to use them to commit cybercrimes. In some cases, they may even continue to demand additional ransom payments.
Why Is the Ransom Paid in Crypto?
Cryptocurrency is a secure and untraceable form of payment, making it the ideal choice for ransom payments. It is difficult to trace, and the transactions are almost instantaneous. This means it is nearly impossible for authorities to track the payment and recover the money.
Can Ransomware Be Detected?
Yes, ransomware can be detected. Anti-malware software and other advanced security tools can detect ransomware and alert the user when it is present on a machine. It is important to stay up-to-date on the latest security measures and to keep security software updated to ensure ransomware can be detected and prevented.
Do Ransomware Criminals Get Caught?
Yes, ransomware criminals do get caught. Law enforcement agencies, such as the FBI, have been successful in tracking down and prosecuting ransomware criminals in the US and other countries. As ransomware threats continue to increase, so does the enforcement activity.
What is a File Virus and How Do You Remove it?
A "file virus" (ransomware) is a type of malicious software that infects a computer system and encrypts its files and data, preventing the user from accessing them unless they pay a ransom. The virus is usually spread through malicious links, emails, and downloads from untrusted websites. To remove such a virus, it is best to use professional security software to detect and remove it, as well as to restore any encrypted files. It is also important to practice safe computing by avoiding suspicious links, emails, and downloads, and keeping your computer and software up to date with the latest security patches.
Different Types of File Viruses and How to Understand Them?
File viruses are a type of malicious software that can attach themselves to files, such as documents, spreadsheets, and images, and then spread themselves to other computers. The most common types of file viruses are boot sector, macro, file-infecting (ransomware), and multipartite. Each type of virus has its own set of characteristics and behaviors, which can help users identify them and take the necessary steps to protect their data from infection.
What Steps Should You Take to Protect Your Computer from File Viruses?
To protect your computer from file viruses, the first step is to install up-to-date antivirus software. Make sure you keep the software updated and run regular scans to detect and remove any viruses. Additionally, you should be careful when downloading and opening files from unknown sources. If you receive an email with an attachment, be sure to scan the file before opening it. Finally, you should back up all of your important data regularly in case a virus wipes out your files.
How to Identify and Remove Common File Viruses?
Identifying and removing common file viruses can be a tricky process. The first step is to ensure you have an up-to-date anti-virus program installed on your computer. This will help to identify any malicious software on your system. Once identified, it is important to remove the virus as soon as possible.
To do this, you can use a variety of tools such as anti-virus scanners, malware removal programs and system restore points. It is also important to keep your computer up-to-date with the latest security patches to protect your system from future infections.
How to Diagnose and Treat File Viruses?
Ransomware file viruses are a type of malicious software that can cause serious damage to a computer system. To diagnose and treat a ransomware file virus, you must first identify the type of virus and its source. Once identified, you can then use an antivirus program to scan the system and remove the malicious files. Finally, you should create a backup of your system in case the virus returns and update your system's security settings to prevent future infections.
What is the Most Common File Virus?
The most common ransomware virus is called CryptoLocker. It is a malicious software that encrypts files on a computer and demands a ransom in order to unlock them. It is spread through malicious emails, malicious attachments and links, and other malicious websites. CryptoLocker is considered one of the most dangerous ransomware viruses because it can encrypt important documents and data, making them inaccessible unless the ransom is paid.
What Causes File Viruses and How Can They Be Prevented?
File viruses are malicious software that infect computers and encrypt data until a ransom is paid. These viruses are typically spread through malicious emails, websites, and software downloads. To prevent them, it is important to only download software and documents from trusted sources, keep your operating system and applications up to date, and use a reliable anti-malware program.
How to Repair Corrupted Files Due to File Viruses?
Repairing corrupted files due to file viruses is possible, but it requires the use of specialized file recovery or decryptor software. The first step is to scan the system for malicious files and then use the software to repair any affected files. Additionally, it is important to ensure that the system is regularly updated and scanned for any new threats. Finally, it is important to ensure that the system is regularly backed up so that any lost files can be recovered.
How To Avoid File Viruses When Downloading Files From the Internet?
To protect yourself from file viruses when downloading from the web, firstly, only download files from trusted websites or sources. Additionally, use anti-virus software or firewalls to help protect your system from malicious software. Before downloading a file, always make sure to scan it with an anti-malware program to check for any viruses. It is also important to keep your operating system up to date with the latest security patches. Finally, make sure to backup your important files regularly to ensure you can restore them in the event of a ransomware attack.
About the Goaq Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this Goaq how-to removal guide included, is the outcome of extensive research, hard work and our team’s devotion to help you remove the specific malware and restore your encrypted files.
How did we conduct the research on this ransomware?
Our research is based on an independent investigation. We are in contact with independent security researchers, and as such, we receive daily updates on the latest malware and ransomware definitions.
Furthermore, the research behind the Goaq ransomware threat is backed with VirusTotal and the NoMoreRansom project.
To better understand the ransomware threat, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.
1. How to Recognize Spam Emails with Ransomware
2. How Does Ransomware Encryption Work?
3. How to Decrypt Ransomware Files
4. Ransomware Getting Greedier and Bigger, Attacks Increase by 40%
5. 1 in 5 Americans Victim of Ransomware
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.