Home > Ransomware > .lckd Files Virus (l0cked Ransomware) – Remove and Decrypt Encrypted Data

.lckd Files Virus (l0cked Ransomware) – Remove and Decrypt Encrypted Data

This article has been created in order to explain what is the l0cked ransomware infection and how to remove it plus how to restore files, encrypted with the .lckd file extension appended to them.

A new ransomware virus, believed to be a version of the L0cked ransomware family of viruses has been reported by malware researchers to encrypt the files on the computers that have been infected by it. The malware, which leaves behind the file extension .lckd, also drops a ransom note, asking to contact decryptorsoon301@aol.com and gives a deadline to pay the sum of $250 in BitCoin to get the cyber-criminals to decrypt your files and make them openable again. The virus otherwise threatens to delete the files on your computer system. If your computer has been infected by the .lckd files virus, we recommend that you read the following article in order to learn how to remove this ransomware virus and restore files that have been encrypted by it on your PC.

Threat Summary

Name .lckd Files Virus
Type Ransomware, Cryptovirus
Short Description Believed to be a variant of the “l0cked” family of ransomware viruses. Encrypts your files and holds them hostage until a ransom is paid in BitCoin.
Symptoms The files are encrypted and the .lckd file extension is added. The wallpaper on the infected computer is changed and a ransom note is automatically opened.
Distribution Method Spam Emails, Email Attachments, Executable files
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware


Malware Removal Tool

User Experience Join Our Forum to Discuss .lckd Files Virus.
Data Recovery Tool Windows 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.

.lckd Files Virus – How Did I Get It

There are two primary methods via which the .lckd ransomware virus may have infected your computer system. These methods are believed to be either passive or active. If active methods are used, the cyber-criminals may send you the malicious infection object which is often an e-mail attachment or a malicious web link via chat. If sent by e-mail, the virus may resemble legitimate documents, for instance:

  • Invoices.
  • Receipts.
  • Purchase documents.
  • Car tickets and fees.
  • Banking information.

Usually, the cyber-criminals spamming you with such e-mails aim to mask them and make them appear as if they come from big companies, like:

  • PayPal.
  • DHL.
  • FedEx.
  • Amazon.
  • Banking information.
  • eBay.
  • AliExpress.

The e-mails may contain cunning statements in their body as well, for example:

In addition to malicious e-mails, the virus may also be passively uploaded on suspicious sites or torrent trackers. The malware is usually hidden as:

  • A driver or a setup of a free program.
  • A game patch.
  • Crack for programs or games.
  • Key generator.
  • Any other form of software license activators.
  • Fake cheats for games.

The .lckd Files Virus – Analysis

The .lckd files virus is from the cryptoviruses whose primary purpose is to encrypt files on your computer and make them seem corrupt and no longer able to be opened. As soon as it has infected your computer, the .lckd files virus aims to perform various different activities, starting with dropping it’s malicious payload on your computer. The payload may consist of one or more files and they may be located in the following Windows Directories:

  • %AppData%
  • %Local%
  • %LocalLow%
  • %Roaming%.
  • %Temp%

As soon as the malicious files of the .lckd ransomware infections are dropped on the victim’s computer, the malware may begin to create mutexes and may also copy itself under different names. The ransomware may also check if it’s running on a Virtual Drive and if this is the case, the .lckd files virus may delete itself.

The .lckd files virus may also delete the shadow volume copies on your PC by running commands in the Windows Command prompt as an administrator. The commands may be ran in the background of your computer system, without you even being able to stop them or notice them. This procedure may result in you not being able to restore the encrypted files on your PC via Windows backup. The commands are believed to be the following:

→ vssadmin delete shadowstorage /for={drive}: [/on={drive}{:] [/quiet] bcdedit /set bootstatuspolicy ignoreallfailures
bcdedit /set recoveryenabled No
bcdedit /set {default} bootstatuspolicy ignoreallfailures
bcdedit /set {default} recoveryenabled No

In addition to this, the .lckd ransomware may also set custom registry value strings with data in them that points to the actual name and location of the malicious files. The data is located in the Run and RunOnce registry sub-keys, which have the following locations:

→ HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\

After the .lckd files virus has modified your Windows Registries, the malware may also change your wallpaper to the following Image:

Text from Image:
Your Pc is hacked!

Files are encrypted, if you decrypt the files
contact us!

Email address : decrytorsoon301©aol.com.

As soon as the .lckd files virus has done this, the malware may also automatically open it’s ransom note, which appears like the following:

After this has been done, the .lckd files ransomware may begin to perform different types of activities, which eventually lead to your files being encrypted.

.lckd Files Virus – Encryption Process

In order for the .lckd files virus to encrypt the files on your PC, the malware may firstly scan your computer for specific files, while excluding system files, located in your %SystemDrive%. These files are usually documents, images, archvies, videos and other important data. The .lckd virus looks for the files based on a pre-configured file extensions. These file extensions are believed to be following:


In addition to this, the .lckd files virus may alter the header or blocks of data from the original files and then add it’s distinctive .lckd file extension. This may eventually result in the malware beginning to change your files to the following appearance:

Remove .lckd Files Virus and Restore Your Encrypted Files

In order to delete the .lckd ransomware from your computer, recommendations are to follow the manual or automatic removal instructions underneath this article. They are specifically created in order to help you to get rid of .lckd files virus based on how much experience you have with malware removal. Naturally, for maximum effectiveness, security researchers strongly advise victims to use an anti-malware software with advanced removal capabilities to automatically get rid of this ransomware infection and protect your computer against future infections.

If you want to restore files that have been encrypted by this infection on your PC, reccomendations are to follow the file recovery instructions in step “2. Restore files, encrypted by .lckd Files Virus” underneath. First try the decryptor and if this virus is a part of the l0cked family of ransomware infections, the program may work. If not however, do not despair and try the alternative methods in red underneath. These methods may not be a 100% guarantee you will be able to get .lckd files to open again but they may help you restore at least some of the encoded files.

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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Step 1: Scan for .lckd Files Virus 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.

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 2

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

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 3

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.

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 4

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

Ransomware Automatic Removal - Video Guide

Step 2: Uninstall .lckd Files Virus 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. To do that:

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

2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.
delete ransomware from windows step 2

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"
delete ransomware from windows step 3Follow the instructions above and you will successfully delete most unwanted and malicious programs.

Step 3: Clean any registries, created by .lckd Files Virus 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 .lckd Files Virus there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.
delete ransomware virus registries step 1

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

3. You can remove the value of the virus by right-clicking on it and removing it.
delete ransomware virus registries step 3 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.

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: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove .lckd Files Virus


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.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 1

2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 2

3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
remove ransomware in safe mode step 3
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.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 4

5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 5

Step 5: Try to Restore Files Encrypted by .lckd Files Virus.

Method 1: Use STOP Decrypter by Emsisoft.

Not all variants of this ransomware can be decrypted for free, but we have added the decryptor used by researchers that is often updated with the variants which become eventually decrypted. You can try and decrypt your files using the instructions below, but if they do not work, then unfortunately your variant of the ransomware virus is not decryptable.

Follow the instructions below to use the Emsisoft decrypter and decrypt your files for free. You can download the Emsisoft decryption tool linked here and then follow the steps provided below:

1 Right-click on the decrypter and click on Run as Administrator as shown below:

stop ransomware decryptor step 1

2. Agree with the license terms:

stop ransomware decryptor step 2

3. Click on "Add Folder" and then add the folders where you want files decrypted as shown underneath:

stop ransomware decryptor step 3

4. Click on "Decrypt" and wait for your files to be decoded.

stop ransomware decryptor step 4

Note: Credit for the decryptor goes to Emsisoft researchers who have made the breakthrough with this virus.

Method 2: Use data recovery software

Ransomware infections and .lckd Files Virus 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 recommended Data Recovery software by clicking on the link underneath:

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.

.lckd Files Virus-FAQ

What is .lckd Files Virus Ransomware?

.lckd Files Virus 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.

What Does .lckd Files Virus Ransomware Do?

Ransomware in general is a malicious software that is designed to block access to your computer or files until a ransom is paid.

Ransomware viruses can also damage your system, corrupt data and delete files, resulting in the permanent loss of important files.

How Does .lckd Files Virus Infect?

Via several ways..lckd Files Virus 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.

Another way you may become a victim of .lckd Files Virus 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 ..lckd Files Virus files?

You can't without a decryptor. At this point, the ..lckd Files Virus files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted using a specific decryption key for the particular algorithm.

What to Do If a Decryptor Does Not Work?

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

Can I Restore "..lckd Files Virus" Files?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore ..lckd Files Virus 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 To Get Rid of .lckd Files Virus 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 .lckd Files Virus ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important ..lckd Files Virus files.

Can I 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 Stop 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.

Can .lckd Files Virus 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.

Can Ransomware Infect WiFi?

Yes, ransomware can infect 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 use them to commit cybercrimes. In some cases, they may even continue to demand additional ransom payments.

Can a Ransomware Attack 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, Interpol and others 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.

About the .lckd Files Virus Research

The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this .lckd Files Virus 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 .lckd Files Virus 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.

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.

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