.pluto Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections

.pluto Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections

This article will aid you to remove .pluto Ransomware. Follow the ransomware removal instructions provided at the end of the article.

.pluto Ransomware is one that encrypts your data and demands money as a ransom to get it restored. Files will receive the .pluto extension. The .pluto Ransomware will leave ransomware instructions as a desktop wallpaper image. Keep on reading the article and see how you could try to potentially recover some of your locked files and data.

Threat Summary

Name.pluto ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionThe ransomware encrypts files by placing the .pluto before the affected files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.
SymptomsThe ransomware will encrypt your files and leave a ransom note with payment instructions.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by .pluto ransomware


Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss .pluto ransomware.
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.

.pluto Files Virus – Update April 2019

A decryption tool for the .pluto Files Virus got released by EMSIsoft, that you can download from the link provided here – Emsisoft Decrypter for Planetary Ransomware (.mira, .pluto, .Neptune, .yum). You will need a ransom note from this ransomware in order to use the decrypter.

.pluto Ransomware – Distribution Techniques

The .pluto ransomware is a new captured sample of a previous unknown virus which has been found in an active campaign. It can be spread via the most popular tactics used by most viruses:

  • Email Messages — They are sent in a bulk-like manner and include various phishing strategies. The recipients will view the notifications and think that they are receiving a message from a well-known company. The emails will be designed to emulate the layout and contents in order to coerce the victims into thinking that they are receiving real notifications. The .pluto ransomware files will be attached directly to them or linked in the body contents.
  • Malicious Sites — The criminals can additionally create fake copycat sites of legitimate search engines, download portals and product landing pages. They are created on the basis of similar sounding names and stolen or hacker-generated security certificates.
  • File-Sharing Networks — The virus samples can also be uploaded to file-sharing networks like BitTorrent which are widely used to spread both legitimate installers and pirate content.
  • Malicious Documents — A popular strategy is to embed the virus infection instructions in documents across all popular types: spreadsheets, text documents, presentations and databases. When accessed by the users a prompt will appear asking them to enable the built-in macros. The window pop-up will state that this is necessary in order to correctly view the files.
  • Application Installers — The hacker collective can craft malicious setup files which are based on popular software which are often used by end users. They are made by taking the legitimate files and modifying them in order to lead to the resulting file. It is then uploaded using one of the virus delivery mechanisms.
  • Browser Hijackers — These represent malicious plugins which are made compatible with all popular web browsers and contain dangerous scripts that lead to the virus deployment. They are widely available on the relevant repositories using fake developer credentials and promise additional features implementation or performance enhancements.

Other virus delivery methods can be used by future versions of the malware.

.pluto Ransomware – Detailed Analysis

The .pluto ransomware has been discovered in a limited ransomware delivery campaign which means that the released samples are probably early testing versions. At the time of writing this article no information is available about the included modules. It is very probable that only the ransomware engine is part in them. As such forthcoming versions can include modules such as the following:

  • Information Harvesting — The gathering of sensitive information is a standard feature of most typical ransomware infections. The primary goal is to generate an unique infection ID which is assigned to each compromised host. It is made up of the list of identifiers of the installed hardware components, user settings and certain operating system values.
  • Identity Theft — The same engine can be used to expose the identities of the victim users by looking for strings such as their name, address, interests and stored passwords. If configured properly the credentials can also be hijacked from removable storage devices and networks shares.
  • Security Services Bypass — The malicious code can search for the presence of security software that can block it and bypass their engines. Examples include anti-virus programs, firewalls, sandbox environments and virtual machine hosts.
  • Windows Registry Modifications — The ransomware engine is capable of modifying the Windows Registry values — it can both read, create and modify existing values. When changes are done they affect the stability of the whole system. Modifying strings that are used by Windows can cause certain services to work improperly thus leading to performance and usability issues. Third-party applications can also be affected — they can quit with unexpected errors.
  • Persistent Installation — By changing the boot options and configuration files the .pluto ransomware can install itself to automatically launch as soon as the computer is powered on. In many cases this will block the possibility to enter into recovery menus thus rendering manual recovery guides useless.
  • Other Malware Infection — Many ransomware are used to deploy other malware threats to the infected computers. This can include all popular categories such as cryptocurrency miners, Trojans, redirects and etc.

If the .pluto ransomware samplse are built on a modular base then other components can be made part of the main threat as well.

.pluto Ransomware – Encryption Process

Like other popular viruses the .pluto ransomware will launch the encryption engine once all prior modules have finished running. It will probably use a built-in list of target file type extensions which are to be processed by a strong cipher. An example list can include the following data types:

  • Backups
  • Databases
  • Archives
  • Images
  • Music
  • Videos

All affected files will receive the .pluto extension and the associated ransomware note will be called !!!READ_IT!!!.txt.

Remove .pluto Ransomware and Try to Restore Data

If your computer system got infected with the .pluto ransomware 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 computers. You should remove the ransomware and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.


Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterGoogle Plus

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

Share on Facebook Share
Share on Twitter Tweet
Share on Google Plus Share
Share on Linkedin Share
Share on Digg Share
Share on Reddit Share
Share on Stumbleupon Share