A ransomware named Zepto, because of the extension it adds to encrypted files, has been seen by researchers recently. Seemingly related to the Locky ransomware, Zepto uses the same ransom note. Another such crypto-virus, which might be spreading with the same malicious campaign is Bart Ransomware. To know how to remove Zepto ransomware and see how to try to restore your data, you should read the article through.
|Short Description||The ransomware uses 128-bit AES ciphers to encrypt files with an asymmetric algorithm to have a decryption key different than the encryption one.|
|Symptoms||The ransomware will lock all your files with .zepto extension appended to them and put a ransom note in your PC. The note states that you have to pay the equivalent of 300$ in Bitcoins for decryption.|
|Distribution Method||Spam Emails, Email Attachments, Suspicious Sites|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Zepto Ransomware|
|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.|
Zepto Virus Video Removal Guide
Zepto Ransomware – How Did I Get Infected?
Zepto Ransomware – Further Inspection
Zepto is the name of a ransomware that appears to be a new variant of Locky ransomware. The Zepto ransomware is named after the extension it puts to encrypted files.
The ransomware possibly makes an entry in the Windows Registry for automatically loading upon the start of Windows:
→HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run [exe name]
Right after your files get encrypted, the Zepto ransomware creates two files containing payment instructions. The files are:
You can see the picture of the ransom note:
The ransom note reads the following:
!!! IMPORTANT INFORMATION !!!
All of your files are encrypted with RSA-2048 and AES-128 ciphers.
More information about the RSA and AES can be found here:
Decrypting of your files is only possible with the private key and decrypt program, All which is on our secret server.
To receive your private key follow one of the links:
If all of this addresses are not available, follow synthesis steps:
1. Download and install Tor Browser: https://www.torproject.org/download/download-easy(.)html
2. After a successful installation, run the browser and wait for initialization.
3. Type in the address bar: mphtadhci5mrdlju(.)onion/D7F6EEB0D8FC508E
4. Follow the instructions on the site.
!!! Your personal identification ID: D7F6EEB0D8FC508E !!!
The sum of money wanted as ransom is 0.5 Bitcoins, which is a little over than 315 US dollars. The note indicates two web addresses using a Tor proxy where if you simply copy the links you can see their content. Inside are instructions for paying similar to that of Locky and Bart ransomware viruses. Do not pay the ransom as that will only support the criminals. No guarantee is there that paying will get your files back. The ransomware doesn’t use threats but simply give links to the paying websites.
The Zepto ransomware uses a 128-bit ciphers with 2048-bit AES algorithm for file encryption. The key is asymmetric, which means that is different than the encryption one and is sent to the ransomware makers. Zepto resembles Bart ransomware so much and it appeared almost at the same time. If the new Locky variant is sold on the black market, then the extensions which the ransomware encrypts could be the same as the Bart variant:
→.123, .3dm, .3ds, .3g2, .3gp, .602, .aes, .arc, .asc, .asf, .asm, .asp, .avi, .bak, .bat, .bmp, .brd, .cgm, .cmd, .cpp, .crt, .csr, .csv, .dbf, .dch, .dif, .dip,
.djv, .djvu, .doc, .docb, .docm, .docx, .dot, .dotm, .dotx, .fla, .flv, .frm, .gif, .gpg, .hwp, .ibd, .jar, .java, .jpeg, .jpg, .key, .lay, .lay6, .ldf, .m3u, .m4u, .max, .mdb, .mdf, .mid, .mkv, .mov, .mp3, .mp4, .mpeg, .mpg, .ms11, .myf, .myi, .nef, .odb, .odg, .odp, .ods, .odt, .otg, .otp, .ots, .ott, .p12, .paq, .pas, .pdf, .pem, .php, .png, .pot, .potm, .potx, .ppam, .pps, .ppsm, .ppsx, .ppt, .pptm, .pptx, .psd, .rar, .raw, .rtf, .sch, .sldm, .sldx, .slk, .stc, .std, .sti, .stw, .svg, .swf, .sxc, .sxd, .sxi, .sxm, .sxw, .tar, .tbk, .tgz, .tif, .tiff, .txt, .uop, .uot, .vbs, .vdi, .vmdk, .vmx, .vob, .wav, .wb2, .wk1, .wks, .wma, .wmv, .xlc, .xlm, .xls, .xlsb, .xlsm, .xlsx, .xlt, .xltm, .xltx, .xlw, .zip
When the whole encryption procedure is complete, you will see that every file on your computer is renamed with symbols and has a new extension appended – .zepto. The symbols take hexadecimal characters from the ransomware ID of a victim, in a specific order. Locky ransomware had a similar renaming pattern when it came out.
Zepto ransomware is likely to erase the Shadow Volume Copies present on a Windows operating system. Keep on reading this article to see how you might restore your data to what it was before encryption.
Remove Zepto Ransomware and Restore .zepto Locked Files
If your computer is infected by the Zepto ransomware, you should have a little experience in dealing with malware removal. You should get rid of the ransomware as fast as you possibly can because it could encrypt more data and spread itself deeper over your current network. The recommended action for you is to remove the ransomware completely by following the step-by-step instructions given below.
What is Zepto Ransomware?
Zepto 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.
Can Zepto Ransomware Cayse Damage?
Yes, ransomware can damage your computer. Ransomware is a malicious software that is designed to block access to your computer or files until a ransom is paid.
Ransomware can also damage your system, corrupt data and delete files, resulting in the permanent loss of important files.
Should I Ignore Viruses, Like Zepto?
No, you should never ignore ransomware. It can encrypt your data and block access to your computer, making it impossible to access your files until you pay a ransom.
Ignoring ransomware could lead to the permanent loss of your data, as well as the potential for the ransomware to spread to other computers on your network. Additionally, paying the ransom does not guarantee that your data will be recovered.
How Does Zepto Infect?
Via several ways.Zepto 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.
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 Zepto 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 .Zepto files?
You can't. At this point, the .Zepto files are encrypted. You can only open them once they are decrypted using a specific decryptionkey 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 .Zepto files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
Can I Restore ".Zepto" Files?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .Zepto 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 Zepto 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 Zepto ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .Zepto files.
Also, keep in mind that viruses like Zepto ransomware also install Trojans and keyloggers that can steal your passwords and accounts.
What to Do If I Cant Get The Files Back?
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 can be re-downloaded from the web.
- Another clever way 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.
How to 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 Zepto 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.
Why Is the Ransom Paid in Crypto?
Cryptocurrency is a secure and untraceable form of payment, making it the ideal choice for ransom payments. It is difficult to trace, and the transactions are almost instantaneous. This means it is nearly impossible for authorities to track the payment and recover the money.
Can 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 Zepto Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this Zepto 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.
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.
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