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QQQW Virus Ransomware [.qqqw Files] Remove & Decrypt Guide [2022]

What Is Qqqw Virus?

qqqw-virus-ransomware-remove-decerypt-qqqw-files

Qqqw virus is a ransomware crypto-virus that is part of the STOP/DJVU family of infections. Its main goal is to extort you into paying Bitcoin by encrypting your files and leaving them in a no longer openable state with the .qqqw added as a file extension. The virus leaves behind a ransom note, called _readme.txt, which contains instructions on how to contact the criminals behind it. These crooks want you to pay a lot of money in the form of Bitcoin if you want to be able to use the files again.

Read this article to learn more information about how this virus works, what does it do and how you can remove it and try to get your files to open again.

Qqqw Virus Summary

Name Qqqw virus, also known as UDS:Trojan.Win32.Chapak.gen, Ransom:Win32/StopCrypt.KM!MTB, Win32:PWSX-gen [Trj], Win32:PWSX-gen [Trj], A Variant Of Win32/GenKryptik.FHJB – more detections of this virus on VirusTotal
File Extension .Qqqw
Type Ransomware, Cryptovirus
Short Description The ransomware encrypts files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.
Symptoms The Qqqw Virus ransomware will encrypt your files by appending the .Qqqw extension to them.
Ransom Demanding Note _readme.txt
Distribution Method Spam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

Download

Malware Removal Tool

Qqqw Virus – How Did I Get Infected?

Qqqw virus very similar to other recently detected versions of this infection, like Zaqi, Yber and Miia.

The main ways these viruses used to slither in your computer system without you realising it is by being sent to you in the form of an email that carries the malicious file and that is disguised to be a legitimate document:

  • Work-related files.
  • Receipts.
  • Invoices.
  • E-Tickets for events or flights.

As soon as this file is open on your computer system, it may trigger the following infection process via malicious macros:

Qqqw virus may also be downloaded in the form of an executable file that you may have been looking for to get for free from some type of third-party website. If this is the case, then the file is most likely of the following kinds, as reported by victims of these viruses:

  • Self extracting archives or regular archives.
  • Fake installation files.
  • Software patches.
  • Cracked portable versions of apps.
  • Software or game cracks.
  • Key generator (or Keygen).

Qqqw Virus – What Does It Do?

Qqqw virus my first connect to a remote cost from where the malicious files of this infection are downloaded on your computer system. They may contain different, often random names and could be dropped in the following Windows directories:

  • %Windows%
  • %SystemDrive%
  • %LocalLow%
  • %AppData%
  • %Local%
  • %Temp%
  • %System%
  • %system32%

As soon as these fires are triggered, they may create a ransom note, that is called _readme.txt. It has the extortion instructions that are set by the cyber criminals and are directed towards the victim:

STOP ransomware virus ransom message

The virus may also tamper with the Windows Registry Editor, by adding registries in the following keys that make its malicious files run each time you start your computer system:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

What Are .qqqw Files

Qqqw virus attacks your files in and encodes them by using the AES encryption algorithm. This changes the course structure of the files and makes them no longer able to be opened unless you have the decryption key that is used to reverse this process. Such a key is usually two types – offline and online with the online one keep being the hardest to decrypt. The main files that are attacked are of the following types:

  • Audio (.mp3, .wav, etc.).
  • Picture file kinds (.jpg, .png, .etc).
  • Videos (.mp4, .avi, etc.).
  • Archive file formats (.zip, .rar, etc).
  • Documents of different types (.docx, .pptx, etc.).
  • Others.

After this virus finishes encrypting your files it may begin to make them appear like the following:

Picture.jpg.qqqw

How to Remove Qqqw Virus?

For the removal of this virus, we suggest that you follow the instructions that we have created underneath this post. They are designed to contain the necessary steps to remove the virus either by yourself if you have the experience or automatically if you want a quick and easy solution. For the most effective way, security experts do advise that you take the automatic approach and scan your computer using anti-malware software. Such a program is designed to thoroughly detect and delete any virus files and clean up your PC.

How to Decrypt .qqqw Files?

To decrypt the files, it is recommended that you try the STOP Ransomware File Decryption Guide or watch the video guide below. They contain the usage of the official decryption software for the virus in case your key is offline based. This decryptor is created by independent and reputable researchers and is designed to work for most of the variants, except the ones with online keys.

Video guide for using the STOP Ransomware Decryptor:

If your key is online, then you could try the alternative file recovery steps that are mentioned underneath this article. They may not be 100% solution to the virus but they may help you recover at least some of your files.

Video Removal Guide for Qqqw Virus (Complete)

Be advised, that we have also managed to create a removal instructions video that should be able to help you get rid of this cryptovirus malware in a more convenient way. If you like following instructional videos, then it would be better to use ours instead of following all of the steps that are below – it’s really up to you!

Make sure to follow instructions only from websites and YouTube channels that are reputable, because a lot of the channels out there may only use your unfortunate situation in order to scam you out of your money. Furthermore, be advised that you can leave us a comment at any time at the bottom of the article. This will help us help you to better understand any inquiries that you might have and also benefits our website, so we will try to answer your questions as fast as we can.

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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Attention! SensorsTechForum strongly recommends that all malware victims should look for assistance only by reputable sources. Many guides out there claim to offer free recovery and decryption for files encrypted by ransomware viruses. Be advised that some of them may only be after your money.

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.

OFFER

REMOVE IT NOW (PC)
with Anti-Malware
We recommend you to download SpyHunter and run free scan to remove all virus files on your PC. This saves you hours of time and effort compared to doing the removal yourself.
SpyHunter 5 free remover allows you, subject to a 48-hour waiting period, one remediation and removal for results found. Read EULA and Privacy Policy

About the Qqqw Research

The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this Qqqw 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 Qqqw 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.

References

1. How to Recognize Spam Emails with Ransomware
2. How Does Ransomware Encryption Work?
3. How to Decrypt Ransomware Files
4. Ransomware Getting Greedier and Bigger, Attacks Increase by 40%
5. 1 in 5 Americans Victim of Ransomware



Windows Mac OS X

How to Remove Qqqw from Windows.


Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove Qqqw

OFFER

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.


2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.


3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".

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.


5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.


Step 2: Uninstall Qqqw and related software 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.


2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.


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"

Follow the instructions above and you will successfully uninstall most programs.


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

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.


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


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

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.

IMPORTANT!
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: Scan for Qqqw 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.

SpyHunter5-update-2018


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

SpyHunter5-Free-Scan-2018


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.

SpyHunter-5-Free-Scan-Next-2018

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

Video Guide for Automatic and Fast Removal

Step 5 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by Qqqw.

Ransomware infections and Qqqw 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.

Step 6: How to Restore Files Encrypted by Ransomware (Video Guide)


Windows Mac OS X

Get rid of Qqqw from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall Qqqw and remove related files and objects

OFFER
Manual Removal Usually Takes Time and You Risk Damaging Your Files If Not Careful!
We Recommend To Scan Your Mac with SpyHunter for Mac
Keep in mind, that SpyHunter for Mac needs to purchased to remove the malware threats. Click on the corresponding links to check SpyHunter’s EULA and Privacy Policy

1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:


2. Find Activity Monitor and double-click it:


3. In the Activity Monitor look for any suspicious processes, belonging or related to Qqqw:

Tip: To quit a process completely, choose the “Force Quit” option.


4. Click on the "Go" button again, but this time select Applications. Another way is with the ⇧+⌘+A buttons.


5. In the Applications menu, look for any suspicious app or an app with a name, similar or identical to Qqqw. If you find it, right-click on the app and select “Move to Trash

”.


6. Select Accounts, after which click on the Login Items preference.

Your Mac will then show you a list of items that start automatically when you log in. Look for any suspicious apps identical or similar to Qqqw. Check the app you want to stop from running automatically and then select on the Minus (“-“) icon to hide it.


7. Remove any left-over files that might be related to this threat manually by following the sub-steps below:

  • Go to Finder.
  • In the search bar type the name of the app that you want to remove.
  • Above the search bar change the two drop down menus to “System Files” and “Are Included” so that you can see all of the files associated with the application you want to remove. Bear in mind that some of the files may not be related to the app so be very careful which files you delete.
  • If all of the files are related, hold the ⌘+A buttons to select them and then drive them to “Trash”.

In case you cannot remove Qqqw via Step 1 above:

In case you cannot find the virus files and objects in your Applications or other places we have shown above, you can manually look for them in the Libraries of your Mac. But before doing this, please read the disclaimer below:

Disclaimer! If you are about to tamper with Library files on Mac, be sure to know the name of the virus file, because if you delete the wrong file, it may cause irreversible damage to your MacOS. Continue on your own responsibility!

1: Click on "Go" and Then "Go to Folder" as shown underneath:

2: Type in "/Library/LauchAgents/" and click Ok:

3: Delete all of the virus files that have similar or the same name as Qqqw. If you believe there is no such file, do not delete anything.

You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:

→ ~/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons

Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.


Click the button below below to download SpyHunter for Mac and scan for Qqqw:


Download

SpyHunter for Mac



Step 3 (Optional): Try to Restore Files Encrypted by Qqqw.

Ransomware infections and Qqqw 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 top, choose Data Recovery - Data Recovery Wizard for Windows or Mac (depending on your OS), and then download and run the tool.


Qqqw FAQ

What is Qqqw ransomware and how does it work?

Qqqw 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 algorithm how 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.

How does Qqqw ransomware infect my computer?

Via several ways.Qqqw Ransomware infects computers by being sent via phishing e-mails, 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 Qqqw 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 .Qqqw files?

You can't. At this point the .Qqqw files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted.

Decryptor did not decrypt my data. What now?

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

One way to restore files, encrypted by Qqqw ransomware is to use a decryptor for it. But since it's a new virus, advised that the decryption keys for it may not be out yet and available to the public. We will update this article and keep you posted as soon as this decryptor is released.

How Do I restore ".Qqqw" files (Other Methods)?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .Qqqw files.

These methods are in no way 100% guarantee that you will be able to get your files back. But if you have a backup, your chances of success are much greater.

How do I get rid of Qqqw ransomware virus?

The safest way and the most efficient one for the removal of this ransomware infection is the use a professional anti malware software. It will scan for and locate Qqqw ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .Qqqw files.

Also, keep in mind that viruses like Qqqw ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts. Scanning your computer with an anti-malware software will make sure that all of these virus components are removed and your computer is protected in the future.

What to Do If nothing works?

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 it can be re-downloaded from the web.
  • Another clever way to get back some of your files 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:

Reports may be responded to in different timeframes, depending on your local authorities.

3 Comments
  1. Leo

    Today that virus corrupted an important project and I had to miraculously create it again from scratch.. Tomorrow I ll try to remove the virus manually but I have no experiencie malware. Is it better to do it with someone who has more experience?

    Reply
    1. Milena Dimitrova

      Hi there,

      We’d say, yes, if there is someone to assist you. You always have the option to run an anti-malware program to delete the ransomware.

      Also…Remember to back up your encrypted data, so that you don’t lose or impair it, as a decryption solution may appear in the near future. You can use an external drive to do that. You also have the option to run a data recovery program, like the one we offer in our removal guide. Some ransomware victims have succeeded recovering some of their encrypted files partially, but there is no quarantee it will work in your case.

      Reply
  2. GIul

    Je viens d’etre infecter par ce virus .. si je comprend bien il faut faire totue les étapes pour enfin revenir à 0 sans virus???? j’ai cru comprendre qu’il faut sauvegarder totu ces fichiers infecter sur une cle usb ou disque dur externe ?

    Reply

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