Karl Virus Files (.karl Ransomware) – How to Remove and Restore Data

Karl Virus Files (.karl Ransomware) – How to Remove and Restore Data


The article presents detailed information about Karl virus as well as a step-by-step guide on how to remove associated malicious files from the infected system and how to potentially recover .karl encrypted files.

The name Karl virus is given to a vicious crypto infection that is part of the infamous STOP ransomware family. This ransomware infection aims to disrupt system security so it can unnoticeably reach personal files and encode them with the help of two strong cipher algorithms. To make encrypted files more recognizable Karl virus appends the suffix .karl to their names. When Karl virus reaches its final attack stage, it drops a ransom message file named _readnme.txt and attempts to blackmail you into paying ransom to hackers. According to this message hackers demand a ransom of $490 for the first 72 hours or $980 after this period. It should be paid in cryptocurrency like (Bitcoin, Monero, Dash, etc.) Beware that the completion of this step does not guarantee the successful recovery of your .karl files.

Threat Summary

TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionA version of the STOP/DJVU ransomware that is designed to encrypt valuable files stored on infected computers and then extort a ransom from victims.
SymptomsImportant files are encrypted and renamed with the extension .karl
A ransom message forces victims to contact hackers in order to receive instructions on how to pay a ransom ($490 – $980).
Distribution MethodSpam Emails; Email Attachments; Corrupted Websites; Software Installers
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by Karl


Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss Karl.
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.

Karl Virus (STOP Ransomware) – More About the Infection

According to the latest infromation shared by security researchers the so-called Karl virus is a malicious software based on the popular

STOP ransomware. Usually spam emails, malicious email attachments, hacked web pages, corrupted freeware installers, and fake software installersFor are used for the spread of threats like STOP Karl ransomware.

The emails that deliver malicious code represent a technique called malspam. The technique appears to be the most convenient way for the spread of ransomware on a large scale. So hackers often bet on it. Hence, it is very likely that

virus is mainly delivered via malspam. The malicious code of this new STOP ransomware strain may have landed on your computer after a download of a file that was attached to a legitimate-like email message. Emails that contain malicious files usually attempt to convince you that the attached files contain important information. Hence, they present the files as:

  • Invoices coming from reputable sites, like PayPal, eBay, etc.
  • Documents from that appear to be sent from your bank.
  • An online order confirmation note.
  • Receipt for a purchase.
  • Others.
Related: Most Popular Windows File Types Used by Malware

When the infected file is opened on a target device, it triggers Karl ransomware virus and sets the beginning of the attack. At first, the ransomware creates several additional malicious files and places them in folders like %AppData% and %LocalAppData%. With the help of these malicious files Karl ransomware interferes with essential system settings. If it manages to complete all initial infection stages, it will reach target files and modify their code with the help of two strong cipher algorithms.

The encryption phase is realized after the activation of a built-in cipher module. This module scans certain folders that are most likely to be used for the storage of personal files. When it detects a target file it applies changes to its original code. As a result, the encrypted file remains inaccessible until its code is revered back to the original state. In addition, it appears with the suffix .karl at the end of the name.

Unfortunately, Karl virus is likely to corrupt all files that are likely to store valuable information such as:

  • Audio files
  • Video files
  • Document files
  • Image files
  • Backup files
  • Banking credentials, etc

In fact, the purpose of Karl ransomware virus is to blackmail you into paying a ransom fee to hackers. That’s why when it completes all infections stages, it drops a ransom message with instructions on how to continue with a ransom payment process.

Here is a copy of Karl ransomware ransom message which is named _readme.txt:


Don’t worry, 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:
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:

Reserve e-mail address to contact us:

Our Telegram account:

Your personal ID:


You should NOT under any circumstances pay any ransom sum to cybercriminals. This action does not guarantee the recovery of your .karl files.

How to Remove Karl Virus

The so-called Karl virus is a threat with a highly complex code that disrupts system security in order to encrypt personal files. Hence the infected system could be used in a secure manner again only after the complete removal of all malicious files and objects created by Karl ransomware. That’s why it is recommendable that all steps presented in the Karl virus removal guide below should be completed. Beware that the manual ransomware removal is suitable for more experienced computer users. If you don’t feel comfortable with the manual steps navigate to the automatic part of the guide.

How to Recover .karl Files

There are several alternative methods that may be efficient for the recovery of .karl files. You could find them listed under Step 5 from our Karl ransomware removal guide. Beware that you should make copies of all encrypted files and save them on a flash drive for example. This additional step will prevent the permanent loss of encrypted .karl files.

Fix Computer Infected by Karl Ransomware

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana has completed a bachelor degree in Marketing from the University of National and World Economy. She has been with the STF team for four years, researching malware and reporting on the latest infections.

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  1. Avatarsamir

    salut cv mais fichiers sont toute affecté par le virus karl est ce que il y a un moyen pour les récupéré aidé moi sil vous plait et merci infiniment.

    1. AvatarMilena Dimitrova

      Hi there, you can try to recover your files with the STOPDecrypter: https://sensorstechforum.com/remove-stop-ransomware/

  2. Avatarsamir

    milena dimitrova le prblm que je n’est pas la clé d’activation de ce logiciel


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