A new version of CryptoJoker ransomware has been spotted by security researchers. It differs from the one that has been released in January last year. Now the threat renames corrupted files with the malicious extensions .partially.cryptojoker or .fully.cryptojoker depending on whether it partially or fully encrypts a file.
Encrypted files become unusable until the unique decryption key is applied to the ransomware decryptor. Hackers guide victims how to act further via a ransom note CryptoJoker Recovery Information.txt that is dropped on the system during the infection process. They demand victims to pay a ransom of €100 in Bitcoin in exchange for the decryption key. Keep reading and find out how to remove CryptoJoker ransomware efficiently from the computer so you can recover encrypted data.
|Short Description||The ransomware encrypts files on your computer and displays a ransom message.|
|Symptoms||The ransomware will encrypt your files and put the extension .cryptojoker once their encryption is finished.|
|Distribution Method||Spam Emails, Email Attachments|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss CryptoJoker.|
|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.|
Technical Details of CryptoJoker Ransomware Virus
CryptoJoker malware belongs to the most destructive group of computer viruses. It is a data locker ransomware that targets frequently used file types so that it can blackmail users into paying a ransom to get the files back.
First, CryptoJoker ransomware drops its payload on the system. The payload starts a malicious executable file named CryptoJoker.exe that triggers the infection process. In order to perform all malicious activities the ransomware may drop or create additional files which are likely to be situated in the following Windows folders:
Some of these files are usually designed to modify Run and RunOnce registry keys and ensure persistent threat presence on the PC. By adding new value strings to these keys, CryptoJoker crypto virus set an automatic start of its executable file whenever the Windows OS is switched on:
Moreover, CryptoJoker uses Windows Registry Editor to display its ransom note automatically on the PC screen. The ransom note is dropped on the computer during the infection process, and it contains a message by CryptoJoker’s authors. The file is named CryptoJoker Recovery Information.txt and all it reads is:
Hello, my name is CryptoJoker !!
My name is CryptoJoker. I have encrypted all your precious files including images, videos, songs, text files, word files and e.t.c So long story short, you are screwed … but you are lucky in a way. Why is that ?? I am ransomware that leave you an unlimited amount of time to gather the money to pay me. I am not gonna go somewhere, neither do your encrypted files.
1. Can i get my precious files back ??
Answer: ofcourse you can. There is just a minor detail. You have to pay to get them back.
2. Ok, how i am gonna get them back ?
Answer: You have to pay 100€ in bitcoin.
3. There isn’t any other way to get back my files ?
4. Ok, what i have to do then ?
Answer: Simply, you will have to pay 100€ to this bitcoin address: *** . When time comes to send me the money, make sure to include your e-mail and your personal lD(you can see it bellow) in the extra information box (it may apper also as ‘Extra Note’ or ‘optional message’) in order to get your personal decryption key. It may take up to 6-8 hours to take your personal decryption key.
5. What the heck bitcoin is ?
Answer: Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and a digital payment system. You can see more information here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin . I recommend to use ‘Coinbase’ or ‘Bitcoin wallet’ as a bitcoin wallet, if you are new to the bitcoin-wallet. Ofcourse you can pay me from whatever bitcoin wallet you want, it deosn’t really matter.
6. Is there any chance to unclock my files for free ?
Answer: Not really. After 1-2 or max 3 years there is propably gonna be released a free decryptor. So if you want to wait … it’s fine. As i said, i am not gonna go somewhere.
7. What i have to do after getting my decryption key ?
Answer: Simple. Just press the decryption button bellow. Enter your decryption key you received, and wait until the decryption process is done.
Your personal ID: [HWID goes here]
The additional impact caused by CryptoJoker may be usage of the vssadmin delete shadows command that prevents data recovery by means of Shadow Volume Copies.
CryptoJoker Ransomware Virus Payload Distribution
Cyber criminals are always seeking for new ways to trick users into installing malware on their PC. Ransomware attacks like CryptoJoker usually use spam email campaigns for payloads delivery. Such emails generally impersonate legitimate sources like bank or government institutions, Internet providers, courier services and current or past employers. This approach aims to trick users into opening file attachment, clicking displayed button or following presented link without any doubt whether this action will harm their system or not. All these activities can deliver the CryptoJoker ransomware payload on the computer. And once it penetrates the system it can infect it.
Another way of delivery may be freeware programs and pirated content as well. Once hackers inject CrpytoJoker malicious code into an app or a torrent file, it comes bundled with the primary product without asking users for any additional installing permission.
CryptoJoker Ransomware Virus Data Encryption Process
CryptoJoker ransomware initiates a scan of all PC drives in order to find all file types that are predefined as targets in its data encryption list. Like its previous version CryptoJoker is likely to target the following file types:
.txt, .docx, .doc, .xls, .pdf, .java, .jpeg, .sql, .db, .docm, .odt, .csv, .xlsb, .xlsm, .aspx, .html, .psd, .pptx, .mdb, .sln, .xlsx
Whenever a file matches a value set in its list, CrptoJoker is likely to encrypt part of the original file code or the whole file with the AES-256 bit encryption algorithm. This encryption method is used by the previous version of the ransomware that has appeared in January 2016. The code analysis of new CryptoJoker version is in progress so it may be reprogrammed to utilize other cipher algorithms.
At the end of the encryption process, this new strain of CrptoJoker ransomware family appends double extension to the file names. The malicious extensions .fully.cryptojoker is used when the whole file is encoded while the .partially.cryptojoker file extensions rename data with partially corrupted code.
A unique decryption key that is generated during the encryption process is supposed to be useful for .cryptojoker data recovery. The key is possessed by hackers, so they demand € 100 in bitcoins ransom for it. However, beware that they may be bluff just to gain the money. On one hand, there is no guarantee that after ransom payment they will send the decryption key, on the other hand, the ransomware code may be broken in a way to generate useless keys that won’t restore .cryptojoker files.
Remove CryproJoker Ransomware and Restore .cryptojoker Files
For the sake of your security, it is always better to avoid any negotiations with cyber criminals and skip the ransom payment.
It is better to get rid of CryproJoker ransomware by removing all malicious files and objects created on the system. Then back up all encrypted files and attempt to restore .cryptojoker files with the help of alternative data recovery solutions. Follow the step-by-step removal guide below and cope with CryproJoker ransomware by yourself.
Have in mind that the complexity of ransomware code may make the removal of all malicious files and objects associated with CryptoJoker a challenging task even for tech savvy guys. If unsure, use the automatic option below and clean your system right away.
- Guide 1: How to Remove CryptoJoker from Windows.
- Guide 2: Get rid of CryptoJoker from Mac OS X.
- Guide 3: Remove CryptoJoker from Google Chrome.
- Guide 4: Erase CryptoJoker from Mozilla Firefox.
- Guide 5: Uninstall CryptoJoker from Microsoft Edge.
- Guide 6: Remove CryptoJoker from Safari.
- Guide 7: Eliminate CryptoJoker from Internet Explorer.
How to Remove CryptoJoker from Windows.
Step 1: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove CryptoJoker
Step 2: Uninstall CryptoJoker 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.
Step 3: Clean any registries, created by CryptoJoker on your computer.
The usually targeted registries of Windows machines are the following:
You can access them by opening the Windows registry editor and deleting any values, created by CryptoJoker there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:
Get rid of CryptoJoker from Mac OS X.
Step 1: Uninstall CryptoJoker and remove related files and objects
1. Hit the ⇧+⌘+U keys to open Utilities. Another way is to click on “Go” and then click “Utilities”, like the image below shows:
- 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 CryptoJoker 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:
You can repeat the same procedure with the following other Library directories:
Tip: ~ is there on purpose, because it leads to more LaunchAgents.
Step 2: Scan for and remove CryptoJoker files from your Mac
When you are facing problems on your Mac as a result of unwanted scripts and programs such as CryptoJoker, the recommended way of eliminating the threat is by using an anti-malware program. SpyHunter for Mac offers advanced security features along with other modules that will improve your Mac’s security and protect it in the future.
Remove CryptoJoker from Google Chrome.
Step 1: Start Google Chrome and open the drop menu
Step 2: Move the cursor over "Tools" and then from the extended menu choose "Extensions"
Step 3: From the opened "Extensions" menu locate the unwanted extension and click on its "Remove" button.
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Google Chrome by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Erase CryptoJoker from Mozilla Firefox.
Step 1: Start Mozilla Firefox. Open the menu window
Step 2: Select the "Add-ons" icon from the menu.
Step 3: Select the unwanted extension and click "Remove"
Step 4: After the extension is removed, restart Mozilla Firefox by closing it from the red "X" button at the top right corner and start it again.
Uninstall CryptoJoker from Microsoft Edge.
Step 1: Start Edge browser.
Step 2: Open the drop menu by clicking on the icon at the top right corner.
Step 3: From the drop menu select "Extensions".
Step 4: Choose the suspected malicious extension you want to remove and then click on the gear icon.
Step 5: Remove the malicious extension by scrolling down and then clicking on Uninstall.
Remove CryptoJoker from Safari.
Step 1: Start the Safari app.
Step 2: After hovering your mouse cursor to the top of the screen, click on the Safari text to open its drop down menu.
Step 3: From the menu, click on "Preferences".
Step 4: After that, select the 'Extensions' Tab.
Step 5: Click once on the extension you want to remove.
Step 6: Click 'Uninstall'.
A pop-up window will appear asking for confirmation to uninstall the extension. Select 'Uninstall' again, and the CryptoJoker will be removed.
Eliminate CryptoJoker from Internet Explorer.
Step 1: Start Internet Explorer.
Step 2: Click on the gear icon labeled 'Tools' to open the drop menu and select 'Manage Add-ons'
Step 3: In the 'Manage Add-ons' window.
Step 4: Select the extension you want to remove and then click 'Disable'. A pop-up window will appear to inform you that you are about to disable the selected extension, and some more add-ons might be disabled as well. Leave all the boxes checked, and click 'Disable'.
Step 5: After the unwanted extension has been removed, restart Internet Explorer by closing it from the red 'X' button located at the top right corner and start it again.