THREAT REMOVAL

Remove CRYPTOMANIAC Ransomware and Restore .maniac Files

cryptomaniac ransomware removal guide stf

This article provides removal instructions of CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware as well as alternative data recovery methods for .maniac files.

CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware encrypts predefined list of file types demanding $500 ransom payment in Bitcoins for their decryption. The threat marks all corrupted files with the specific .maniac extension. The .maniac files remain inaccessible by no program until a particular decryption steps are fulfilled. CRYPTOMANIAC crypto virus also drops a ransom note (Readme_to_recover_files) on all infected machines and displays it on the PC screen. The message reveals more details about the infection and provides instructions on the ransom payment.

Threat Summary

NameCRYPTOMANIAC
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionAims to encrypt the files on the computers that have been infected by it.
SymptomsThe ransomware adds the .maniac file extension to the files encrypted by it.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments, Executable files
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by malware

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User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss CRYPTOMANIAC.
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.

CRYPTOMANIAC Ransomware – Delivery Approaches

The CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware infects target systems via a file called CryptoManiac.py as analyses reveal. Various attack techniques may be utilized for the distribution of this file. The most preferred one is believed to be spam email campaigns with links to corrupted web pages in the text body, malicious file attachments or both. The provided in-text links point to corrupted web pages that are set to download the malicious ransomware payload automatically. While the file attachments usually contain infected ZIP, PDF, DOC, JPG and other commonly used file formats that store information. In this case, the infection starts with just one click that opens the malicious file attachment on the computer which grants the ransomware payload access to the system. Then everything spun out of control. The same malevolent components used for CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware delivery may be spread via other channels like social media, file sharing services, online advertisements and potentially unwanted programs.

CRYPTOMANIAC Ransomware – More Information

CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware infection begins when CryptoManiac.py file starts running on the system. This file is believed to manage the attack, so it initiates a sequence of malicious operations to ensure the persistent presence of the ransomware on the system.

First, it needs to establish all necessary files so for the purpose it may create or drop additional malicious files from its servers. Then it terminates various processes that allow it to plague essential system settings and remain unnoticed by the active security means. Some files associated with CRYPTOMANIAC threat may be situated in the following folders:

  • %Temp%
  • %Windows%
  • %AppData%
  • %Roaming%
  • %User’s Profile%

As CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware needs to display its ransom note in the end of the attack it is likely to modify the values in Run and RunOnce Windows registry keys:

→ 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

These keys control all currently running processes as well as all processes that should execute automatically on each Windows operating system start. The practice of Windows registry keys modification is utilized for two reasons. The first one is that the ransomware needs to be persistent so it should start each time the system is loaded. The second one is that it needs to display its ransom note on the screen of the infected PC at the end of attack so hackers could extort a ransom payment from victims.

The ransom note is dropped in two files of different types, but both have the same content. The files are named Readme_to_recover_files and may be dropped on the Desktop. All that the ransom message reads is:

CRYPTOMANIAC
All your files have been encrypted by CRYPTOMANIAC!
All your files have been encrypted due to a security problem with your PC.
If you want to restore them, run the REQUEST RECOVERY application that will be automatically downloaded by CRYPTOMANIAC, if it is not automatically downloaded visit this link
***
You have to pay for decryption in Bitcoins.
The price is usually $500 worth of Bitcoin.
After payment you will be mailed the decryption tool that will decrypt all your files.
Free decryption as guarantee before paying you can get it from the REQUEST RECOVERY tool.
The free decryption tool only decrypts 10 files of the following extensions
***
How to obtain Bitcoins.
The easiest way to buy bitcoins is LocalBitcoins site.
You have to register, click ‘Buy bitcoins”, and select the seller by payment method and price, https/localbitcoins.com/buy_bitcoins
Also you can find other places to buy Bitcoins and beginners guide here: http/www.coindesk.com/information/how-can-i-buy-bitcoins/
Attention!
Do not attempt to use a file recovery software like recuva or windows recovery, as this attempt is useless and futile as CRYPTOMANIAC destroys windows shadow volume making it unrecoverable.
Do not rename encrypted files.
Do not try to decrypt your data using thud party software, it may cause permanent data loss.
Decryption of your files with the help of third parties may cause increased price (they add their fee to ours) or you can become a victim of a scam.
Please note that 250 of your personal files will be permanently deleted when the program resets either by terminating it or by a system reboot and 25 files will be permanently deleted every 60 minutes, so pay fast to reduce amount of files that will be permanently lost
Extra links to download REQUEST RECOVERY tool incase the one above is not available.
***

cryptomaniac ransomware ransom note Readme_to_recover_files.html stf

It is written in a way that makes you feel urgency, so you are more prone to act immediately and pay criminals the ransom. However, our advice is to disbelieve what they state and promise and avoid any negotiations with them because this may result in financial losses and furthermore a risk of new malware intrusions.

CRYPTOMANIAC Ransomware – Encryption Process

The primary aim of data locker ransomware like CRYPTOMANIAC is to locate all files that belong to its predefined target data list so it can utilize strong cipher algorithm to all of them. Once the encryption ends, all corrupted files have appended the specific extension .maniac and remain unusable until the appropriate decryptor is used.

As most ransomware of this type CRYPTOMANIAC is believed to encrypt files that store:

  • Music
  • Videos
  • Documents
  • Archives
  • Databases
  • Projects
  • Pictures
  • And more

Note! In step “2. Restore files encrypted by CRYPTOMANIAC” from the removal instructions below you can find alternative data recovery methods that may be efficient for the restore of .maniac files without the need to pay the ransom to crooks.

Remove CRYPTOMANIAC Ransomware and Restore .maniac Files

CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware removal is a necessary step if you want to regain the security of your computer and data. For the purpose, you can follow the step-by-step removal guide provided below. It will help you to get rid of all malicious files and objects associated with CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware. There are two methods for the CRYPTOMANIAC removal, and the first one is the manual. Once you are done with its steps, it is strongly recommended to continue with the automatic one as it will undoubtedly identify all ransomware files so you can delete them with a few mouse clicks.

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana Ivanova

Gergana has a bachelor's degree in Marketing. She has been with the STF team for five years, researching malware, reporting on the latest computer infections, and following digital marketing trends.

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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


Windows Mac OS X

How to Remove CRYPTOMANIAC from Windows.


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

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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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.

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

Ransomware infections and CRYPTOMANIAC 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 reccomended 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.


Windows Mac OS X

Get rid of CRYPTOMANIAC from Mac OS X.


Step 1: Uninstall CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC:

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 CRYPTOMANIAC. 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 CRYPTOMANIAC. 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC. 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 CRYPTOMANIAC:


Download

SpyHunter for Mac



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

Ransomware infections and CRYPTOMANIAC 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 reccomended 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.


CRYPTOMANIAC FAQ

What is CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware and how does it work?

CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware infect my computer?

Via several ways.CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 .CRYPTOMANIAC files?

You can't. At this point the .CRYPTOMANIAC 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 .CRYPTOMANIAC files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.

One way to restore files, encrypted by CRYPTOMANIAC 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 ".CRYPTOMANIAC" files (Other Methods)?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC 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 CRYPTOMANIAC ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .CRYPTOMANIAC files.

Also, keep in mind that viruses like CRYPTOMANIAC 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.

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