The .locked virus is categorized as a data locker ransomware that belongs to the HiddenTear family. The threat is also dubbed Ultimo ransomware by security researchers. It is designed to utilize the strong cipher algorithm AES for encryption of valuable data stored on the infected host. The extension .locked could be seen at the end of all corrupted files which remain unusable until victims pay the ransom of 0.022 BTC to hackers.
This article reveals more details about .locked file virus (Ultimo ransomware) and provides easy-to-follow ransomware removal instructions. By following the steps, users can prevent ransom payment and recover .locked files with the help of alternative data recovery methods.
|Short Description||The ransomware encrypts files on your computer and displays a ransom message afterward.|
|Symptoms||The ransomware will encrypt your files and put the extension .locked to them after it finishes its encryption process.|
|Distribution Method||Spam Emails, Email Attachments|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss .Locked 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.|
.Locked File Virus – Infection Spread
The .locked virus infection can be triggered by a single file that just needs to be started on the system. This file is usually embedded email attachment that is presented as a legitimate important document. Cyber criminals carefully craft the message to make users more prone to download and open the attachment on the PC. The .locked virus may also be distributed via corrupted web links. The web pages contain the malicious ransomware payload and are set to auto download it once you land on them. Such links can be again part of spam email campaigns or send via social media channels or displayed as online advertisements.
.Locked File Virus – Detailed Overview
The attack is triggered by Weaternunion MTCN.exe file after it is started on the PC. The .locked file virus aims to ensure its persistent presence on the system so it creates new malicious values in the Windows Registry. The threat is likely to attack Run and RunOnce registry keys that control the execution of all Windows startup processes. By creating new values in these keys the ransomware set the automatic execution of all malicious files on each Windows start. Some of registry modifications are connected with a file called READ_IT.txt. The .locked file virus (Ultimo ransomware) drops the file on the Desktop and displays it automatically by setting values in the keys mentioned above. Once the file that appears on the screen shows the following ransom message to victims:
Oooopppsss Your Files Has Been Encrypted
Your Unique GUID for Decrypt: j43as8fk-29gp-61da-3671-h03c83472r74
SEND ME SOME 0.022 Bitcoin on Adress: 1CCnFhbLT1VSMUqXaSqsYUAwcGU4evkbJo
After Confirming The Payment, ALL YOUR FILES CAN BE DECRYPTED.
If you do not make payment within 48 Hrs, you will lose the ability to decrypt them.
Make your Bitcoin Wallet on: xxxxs://www.coinbase.com/ or xxxx://blockchain.info”.
How to buy /sell and send Bitcoin :
After the payment, enter the wallet from which paid, and email, in which contact you. firstname.lastname@example.org”,
After receiving the payment, we will contact you.
The message aims to blackmail victims into paying the ransom as soon as possible by setting 48 hours dead line. However, it is better not to trust cyber criminals that making the payment will potentially decrypt .locked files. There is always a chance that the ransomware code is broken and doesn’t generate working decryption keys. Furthermore, cyber criminals may not contact victims after ransom payment.
.Locked Virus – Encryption Process
As .locked file virus is a HiddenTear variant it could be programmed to encrypt files with the following file extensions:
→.txt, .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .pdf, .pps, .ppt, .pptx, .odt, .gif, .jpg, .png, .db, .csv, .sql, .mdb.sln.php, .asp, .aspx, .html, .xml, .psd, .frm, .myd, .myi, .dbf, .mp3, .mp4, .avi, .mov, .mpg, .rm, .wmv, .m4a, .mpa, .wav, .sav, .gam, .log, .ged, .msg, .myo, .tax, .ynab, .ifx, .ofx, .qfx, .qif, .qdf, .tax2013, .tax2014, .tax2015, .box, .ncf, .nsf, .ntf, .lwp
Being based on HiddenTear open-source ransomware project, .locked file virus is utilizing the AES cipheralogorithm to modify the original code of target files. Each encrypted file will receive an extension appended to it, which is .locked.
Furthermore, the ransomware may erase all the Shadow Volume Copies from the Windows operating system with the help of the following command:
→vssadmin.exe delete shadows /all /Quiet
The command makes the encryption process more efficient as it will eliminate one of the ways for restoring .locked files.
Remove .Locked File Virus and Restore Data
The .locked file virus (Ultimo ransomware) should be removed as soon as possible from the infected computer because it endangers private files and the overall system security. Beware that it has a complex code that modifies various system settings and processes so some malicious files may remain well hidden. For the best removal results, security experts recommend the assistance of professional anti-malware tool.
What is .Locked Virus Ransomware?
.Locked 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.
Can .Locked Virus Ransomware Cayse Damage?
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.
Ransomware can also damage your system, corrupt data and delete files, resulting in the permanent loss of important files.
Should I Ignore Viruses, Like .Locked Virus?
No, you should never ignore ransomware. It 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.
How Does .Locked Virus Infect?
Via several ways..Locked 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.
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 .Locked 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 ..Locked Virus files?
You can't. At this point, the ..Locked Virus files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted using a specific decryptionkey 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 ..Locked Virus files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
Can I Restore "..Locked Virus" Files?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore ..Locked 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 .Locked 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 .Locked Virus ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important ..Locked Virus files.
Also, keep in mind that viruses like .Locked Virus ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts.
What to Do If I Cant Get The Files Back?
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 can be re-downloaded from the web.
- Another clever way 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 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 .Locked 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.
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.
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 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 .Locked Virus Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this .Locked 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.
To better understand the ransomware threat, please refer to the following articles which provide knowledgeable details.
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