Our in-depth removal guide shows how victims of the .RansomUserLocker virus can restore their data and computers. This is a follow-up derivative of an earlier threat and the security experts propose that future updates can also be expected.
The malware engine has the ability to cause a lot of different types of infections and as it is built on a modular framework it can easily be delivered using different techniques.
|The ransomware encrypts files on your computer, institutes a lockscreen and may lead to other infections.
|Various sensitive user files are encrypted with the .RansomUserLocker extension. Persoanl data can be stolen and other modules can be launched.
|Spam Emails, Email Attachments, Compromised Web Pages
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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.
Distribution Techniques for .RansomUserLocker Virus
The .RansomUserLocker virus is distributed using the common ransomware delivery tactics. Depending on the hacker operators and their target end users the strategies can change according to the inteded scale.
The ransomware strains can be delivered through email spam messages using various methods. One of them relies on the creation of messages that contain malware file attachments. Using different social engineering techniques the criminals can manipulate and coerce the victims into interacting with them. The .RansomUserLocker virus samples hosted on malware sites can be linked in the messages.
In certain situations the criminal operators can embed the malware code in infected documents that can be of different types: rich text documents, spreadsheets or presentations. Once the victims open them up a notification prompt appears which asks them to enable the built-in macros (scripts). If this is done the infection follows. Fraud software installers are the other method that has attained popularity among the criminal operators. The hackers obtain the legitimate software files from the official vendors and bundle the malware code in them. They are then distributed on hacker-controlled sites that can take the form of download portals or search engines that resemble legitimate web services. In many cases file sharing applications such as BitTorrent can also be used.
When advanced delivery tactics are used the payload can be delivered through other infections. In such cases the hackers can utilize exploit kits and other types of direct attacks against the intended victims.
Infection Flow of .RansomUserLocker Virus
According to the analysis the .RansomUserLocker virus is descendant from an earlier threat known as the Korean Talk ransomware. The original threat was noteworthy for performing a series of system changes and then instituting a lockscreen instance once the encryption phase has completed.
One of the first actions that are executed once the infections have taken place is the information gathering module. The ransomware itself does this in order to harvest sensitive information from the computer hosts. It is usually categorized into two main types:
- Anonymous Metrics — The criminals can harvest information that can be useful in determining how efficent the attack campaign is.
- Personally-identifiable Information — This type of data can be used to directly expose the users identity. The malware engine is able to search for strings related to the victim’s name, address, telephone number, interests and passwords.
The security analysis has revealed that the information harvesting engine uses the extracted information in order to calculate an unique victim ID assigned to each individual computer host. Depending on the configuration this data can be relayed to the hacker operators once the module has completed executing or after the network connection has been made. Advanced versions of similar ransomware enable the criminal controllers to perform a stealth protection installation. They can scan the system for security software (sandbox and debug environments and virtual machines) and attempt to bypass or delete them. The ransomware has the ability to impact the compromised computers — the Windows registry and important configuration settings. As a result the victims may experience performance issues and application failure. Further updates to the malware code can lead to Trojan infections that allow the hacker operators to spy on the victims in real time as well as take over control of the infected hosts.
Encryption Process of .RansomUserLocker Ransomware
Once all modules have completed execution the ransomware component is engaged. Like its predecessor it seeks to encrypt files according to a built-in list of target file type extensions. If the hackers have implemented the same code baase then it is likely that the same list is used as well. The original threat was set to encrypt the following user data:
.asp, .aspx, .bat, .bmp, .csv, .doc, .docx, .html, .hwp, .java, .jpg, .kys, .mdb, .mp3, .odt,
.pdf, .php, .png, .ppt, .pptx, .psd, .rtf, .sln, .sql, .txt, .URL, .xls, .xlsx, .xml, .zip
As a result the affected data is renamed using the .RansomUserLocker extension. In a similar way to other popular viruses of late it institutes a lockscreen instance in Korean.
Remove .RansomUserLocker File Virus and Restore Data
Below you can find a set of manual removal instructions for .RansomUserLocker file virus. Beware that threat samples reveal that it has a really complex code so the removal process can be sort of challenging task even for tech-savvy guys. That’s why the help of professional anti-malware tool is recommended for maximum efficiency. Such tool will scan the whole system to locate all malicious files so you can easily get rid of them with a few mouse clicks.
What is .RansomUserLocker Ransomware?
.RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker Infect?
Via several ways..RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker 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 ..RansomUserLocker files?
You can't without a decryptor. At this point, the ..RansomUserLocker 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 ..RansomUserLocker files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
Can I Restore "..RansomUserLocker" Files?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore ..RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important ..RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker 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 .RansomUserLocker Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this .RansomUserLocker 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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