This article will aid you to remove the .MOLE03 File Virus completely. Follow the ransomware removal instructions given at the end of this article.
MOLE03 is the latest variant of Mole ransomware and is named after the extension it places on encrypted files, namely the .MOLE03 extension. Malware researchers believe that the code of the virus is based on the CryptoMix ransomware. The distribution can happen via spam e-mails and malvertising chains prompting you to download and update things or with malicious domains loading its payload. Once that payload is triggered after downloading it from any location, your data will get encrypted and the virus will leave a ransom note with instructions. Read on to see how you might try to potentially restore some of your files.
|The ransomware virus is still believed to be a variant of CryptoMix. After encryption, it will display a detailed ransom note with payment instructions.
|The ransomware will encrypt your files and then place the extension .MOLE03 on each encrypted file.
|Spam Emails, Email Attachments, Executable files
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|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.
.MOLE03 File Virus – Distribution
The .MOLE03 file virus can distribute its infection through different methods. For now, one of the main distribution methods is via spam e-mails. Such an e-mail will pretend to be regarding some sort of a shipping notification and in most cases that a package has failed to be delivered. If you open the attached fake Word file, it will show that you have to download a plugin or something similar. If you do download that file, your PC will become infected with the cryptovirus.
Malware researchers have detected .MOLE03 file virus to distribute its payload file with the help of a Google Chrome pop-up message. Here is how that pop-up looks like:
If you open the malicious domain spreading it and namely, “one-hour.fr” you will see a fake Google Font Installer. If you open that with the Internet Explorer browser, you will see a tech support scam loaded on your browser that looks like this:
Refrain from downloading and opening files from suspicious websites like the examples portrayed above. You should always scan your computer system with a security tool. You should read the ransomware prevention tips written in our forum.
.MOLE03 File Virus – Details
The .MOLE03 file virus is dubbed like that due to the fact that it encrypts files while appending the .MOLE03 extension to them. Malware researchers claim that the ransomware is a variant of the CryptoMix ransomware virus.
After you have downloaded the ransomware there will be some sort of an error message popping on your screen. The result is a UAC (User Account Control) window launching and asking you to give permission for the execution of a certain command.
Giving that permission will launch the ransomware with Administrative privileges, and your computer will be scanned so your files to get encrypted.
The following files will be created:
- some other files with similar names
Also, note that some processes could be stopped like Windows Defender and other similar security mechanisms of the Windows OS.
The ransom note will appear after the encryption process is finished. The note is written in English. Inside, you will see instructions with the demands for payment and how you might recover your files. The ransom note is inside the above-mentioned file called “_HELP_INSTRUCTION.txt” as it was with previous variants of the ransomware as well. You can preview it down here:
That ransom note reads the following:
!_! INFORAMTIONS !_!
All of your files are encrypted with RSA_2048 and AES_128 ciphers.
More information about the RSA and AES can be found here:
Decrypting your files is only possible with
he private key and decrypts program, which is on our secret server.
Follow these steps:
1. Download and install Tor Browsers: https://www.torproject.org/download/download-easy.html
2. After a successful installation, run the browser and wait for initialization.
3. Type in the address bar:
4. Follow the instructions on the site.
!_! Your DECRYPT-ID: XXXXXXXX-XXXX-XXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXXXXXXXXX !_!
Below you can see the payment page hosted on the TOR Network, as a reference:
That page states the following:
Price of software and your private key is 1.0 bitcoins. With this product you can decrypt all your files.
If you are willing to pay for a software product, then:
Dear user, leave your DECRYPT-ID and e-mail. We will contact you within 24 hours and give further instructions. !!! You do not need to leave different electronic addresses, or the same address many times.
The ransom note of the .MOLE03 file virus should not be followed. You shouldn’t under any circumstances pay 1 Bitcoin (or any other sum) nor contact the cybercriminals. Your files may not even be restored, and nobody could give you a guarantee for that. Furthermore, supporting criminals is not a good idea. The crooks may get motivated to do more criminal activities, like creating more ransomware viruses.
.MOLE03 File Virus – Encryption
.MOLE03 file virus has an interesting encryption process. The encryption algorithms which are used for the process are both RSA with 2048-bit ciphers and AES with 128-bit ciphers.
Every file that gets encrypted will receive the same extension appended to each one of them, and that is the .MOLE03 extension. For instance Job.doc will look like YG8FGS87S7G4R8SF76SD7F8SD8FCPK3L.MOLE03 after encryption is done. Below you can see all file extensions that the .MOLE03 ransomware probably seeks to encrypt, if the list is unchanged from its previous variants:
→.doc, .xls, .pub, .odt, .ods, .odp, .odm, .odc, .odb, .wps, .xlk, .ppt, .mdb, .accdb, .pst, .dwg, .dxf, .dxg, .wpd, .rtf, .wb2, .mdf, .dbf, .psd, .pdd, .eps, .ai, .indd, .cdr, .jpg, .dng, .3fr, .arw, .srf, .sr2, .bay, .crw, .cr2, .dcr, .kdc, .erf, .mef, .mrw, .nef, .nrw, .orf, .raf, .raw, .rwl, .rw2, .r3d, .ptx, .pef, .srw, .x3f, .der, .cer, .crt, .pem, .pfx, .p12, .p7b, .p7c
The .MOLE03 file virus cryptovirus will delete the Shadow Volume Copies from the Windows operating system with issuing the command:
→vssadmin.exe Delete Shadows /All /Quiet
That also makes the encryption process more viable since it eliminates one of the ways for decrypting your data. Read on through and see what kind of ways you might try out to potentially recover some of your data.
Remove .MOLE03 File Virus and Restore Data
If your computer got infected with the .MOLE03 file 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 computer systems. You should remove the ransomware and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.
What is MOLE03 Ransomware?
MOLE03 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 MOLE03 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 MOLE03 Infect?
Via several ways.MOLE03 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 MOLE03 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 .MOLE03 files?
You can't without a decryptor. At this point, the .MOLE03 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 .MOLE03 files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
Can I Restore ".MOLE03" Files?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .MOLE03 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 MOLE03 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 MOLE03 ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .MOLE03 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 MOLE03 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.
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 MOLE03 Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this MOLE03 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.
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.