The [email protected] Virus is a new strain of the Paradise ransomware family. Refer to our in-depth article for a technical analysis and full removal instructions.
|Name||[email protected] Virus|
|Short Description||The ransomware encrypts sensitive information on your computer system with the [email protected][random ext] extensions and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.|
|Symptoms||The ransomware will encrypt your files with a strong encryption algorithm.|
|Distribution Method||Spam Emails, Email Attachments|
|Detection Tool|| See If Your System Has Been Affected by [email protected] Virus |
Malware Removal Tool
|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss [email protected] Virus.|
|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.|
[email protected] Virus – Distribution Ways
The [email protected] virus uses the familiar virus distribution tactics as those used by related threats.
A common tactic is to rely on phishing email messages that are sent in a bulk-like manner. The criminals typically use web elements taken from well-known sites in an attempt to confuse the receiving users into interacting with the malicious element. The virus file might be contained either in the body contents or attached to the messages.
A similar method is to create fake download sites where the [email protected] virus is distributed as an infected software installer. In this case the criminals can take the legitimate setup files of well-known software that is frequently downloaded by the users: creativity suites, productivity applications and system utilities. They are bundled with the malware code and sent via email messages and uploaded to the fake download portals.
Another method used for implanting the ransomware is to create infected documents. Using a similar manner files of different types (presentations, rich text documents or presentations) with malware macros. When the files are opened by the victims a notification prompt appears that will ask the users to enable the built-in scripts. If this is done the infection will follow.
In certain cases the hacker operators behind it can utilize browser hijackers — malicious web browser plugins that are usually found on the associated web store repositories. They are often disguised with fake developer credentials or user reviews in an attempt to win the users trust. Once they are installed the built-in commands will redirect the victims to a hacker-controlled site and possibly infect the users with the ransomware.
[email protected] Virus – In-Depth Analysis
The [email protected] virus is based on the Paradise ransomware family of threats. The family itself is based on a RaaS (ransomware-as-a-service) platform called TeslaWare which means that it is very possible that it is a customized strain created for a specific individual hacker or criminal collective. The other possible source is its creation by the attackers. The initial security scan reveals that it contains many changes that is distinct from the original code.
The analysis shows that the criminals can customize the threat according to the defined campaign. This means that various plugins and modules can be launched against the victims.
For example the attacks can begin with a information gathering module. It is programmed to look for specific strings that are grouped into two main categories:
- Personally-Identifiable Information — This data type is concerned with information that can reveal the identity of the victim users. This includes their real name, address, phone number, interests, location and any account credentials.
- Campaign Metrics — The [email protected] virus can gather information tht can optimize the ongoing attacks. This includes an automatically-generated report about the installed hardware components and certain user-set options.
The next step in the [email protected] virus infection process may be the launch of the stealth protection module. It scans the infected system for signs of any programs that can interfere with its correct execution. This includes anti-virus software, sandbox environments or virtual machine hosts.
After these steps have completed execution the Trojan module is activated. The main engine sets up an encrypted connection to a newly created Command and Control server. This allows the hacker operators to spy on the users in real-time, as well as take over control of the machines.
It is possible that the infections can be used to deploy additional threats, including cryptominers. They make use of the available system resources which is used to generate complex calculations. When they are complete the results are sent to a specific address and the criminals will receive monetary rewards for the calculations.
Alternative signatures under which it is known include the following:
- malicious_confidence_70% (D)
- malware (ai score=87)
[email protected] Virus — Encryption
Once all prerequisite conditions have completed execution the ransomware engine is started. It uses a built-in list of target file type extensions which constitute the most popular data. An example list can target the following files:
The victim files are encrypted with a strong cipher and renamed with the yourencrypted”protonmail.ch as the main identifier. The file renaming sequence follows a built-in pattern that assigns the following name to the files: ‘[id-].[[email protected]].<3 random chars>‘. The ‘id’ field is filled in with the Unique User ID (UUID) which is generated during the information retrieval stage. It assigns an unique identifier to each user. The next string is the email address and the last extension string is a 3-character randomly generated combination.
An associated generic ransomware note is created in a file called [email protected]. Once again the ‘ID_CLIENT’ field is populated with the UUID string.
Manually delete [email protected] Virus from Windows and your browser
Note! Substantial notification about the [email protected] Virus threat: Manual removal of [email protected] Virus requires interference with system files and registries. Thus, it can cause damage to your PC. Even if your computer skills are not at a professional level, don’t worry. You can do the removal yourself just in 5 minutes, using a malware removal tool.