Zoldon virus is a newly discovered ransomware that appears to be made entirely by its operators. It does not contain code from any of the famous ransomware families. Our article provides an overview of the virus operations and it also may be helpful in attempting to remove the virus.
|Short Description||The ransomware encrypts sensitive information on your computer system with the Encrypted 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|
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|User Experience||Join Our Forum to Discuss Zoldon 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.|
Zoldon Virus Virus – Distribution Ways
The Zoldon virus is a newly discovered malicious threat which does not appear to contain any code taken from any of the famous ransomware families. The captured number of samples appear to be low which gives an indication that this might be a test release. This fact does not give an indication on the main method of infection. As such we presume that the hackers behind it are going to use all popular methods.
One of them is the coordination of phishing email messages. They are made by taking the legitimate web elements of famous companies or Internet services in an attempt to confuse the victims into thinking that they have received a legitimate notification. Most of these messages are modeled as password reminders or service announcements.
Another tactic is to create fake web portals that use the same design elements as well-known Internet sites. These two methods are the main ways that ransomware authors spread infected payloads. Two of the main types are the following:
- Software Installers — The hackers can bundle the virus code into the setup files of popular programs. The operators typically choose software that is popular with end users: creativity suites, system utilities or productivity solutions. This is done by taking the legitimate files from the official vendor sites and including the virus code into them.
- Malicious Documents — The Zoldon virus infections can be caused by starting up an infected file. Malicious files are usually infected documents, they can take various forms: spreadsheets, presentations or rich text documents. Once they are opened in the relevant office application prompt will appear asking them to run the built-in macros. If this is done the virus infection will be triggered.
In some cases the ransomware can be acquired through the use of browser hijackers. They represent malicious extensions made for the most popular web browsers (Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari, Google Chrome). They are spread as useful addons and can often be found on the relevant repositories. The entries are typically combined with fake developer credentials, user reviews and an elaborate description.
Zoldon Virus Virus – In-Depth Analysis
The Zoldon virus appears to be an original threat made by its developer(s). No information is available about the individual or criminal collective that has made it. Another possible theory about its creation is that it has been acquired through purchase on the underground hacker markets.
As the captured samples that are labeled as test releases we presume that they contain only the basic ransomware engine. An advanced configuration of the threat may follow a complex behavior pattern.
In most cases the infections will begin with a data harvesting engine. It will scan the local system for specific strings that are categorized into two main types:
- Personal Data — Information contained in this data set can directly expose the identity of the victim users. This includes their name, address, phone number, interests, location and account credentials.
- Campaign Metrics — They are used to optimize the attacks by hijacking information that might be useful to the criminal operators. This includes a report of the installed hardware components and certain user-set regional settings.
The collected information can then be used by another module called stealth protection. It scans the system for signs of software that might interfere with it’s correct execution: anti-virus programs, virtual machine hosts or sandbox environments.
After this step has complete the virus can continue further with various system changes. One of the first steps are usually related to Windows Registry changes. They can edit strings related to the operating system which can cause overall instability and performance issues or target individual applications. In the second case some functionality may not be available.
The next steps are usually to delete backup or Shadow Volume Copies information. This renders recovery difficult unless a professional-grade solution is used. If this is the case the victims can follow our instructions on restoring files.
A persistent installation of the Zoldon virus can be instituted. This manipulates the boot options and automatically starts the malware once the computer boots. It may also disable access to the recovery boot menu which can render manual recovery guides non-working. In this case the victims will need to resort to a professional grade anti-spyware solution.
Some ransomware threats also launch a Trojan module which connects to a hacker-operated command and control server. It is used to spy on the victims in real time and deploy other viruses to the infected hosts.
Alternative names under which is known include ZOLDON Crypter V3.0. bearing the signature Bitcoin Miner Pro V3.1.exe. This is probably the name under which is distributed on the Internet.
Zoldon Virus Virus — Encryption
Once all prior components have finished execution the actual ransomware module belonging to the Zoldon virus will be started. Like other common threats it will encrypt target files with a strong cipher according to a built-in list. An example list might affect the following data:
One of the interesting characteristics is that it does not append a ransomware extension to the compromised files. It instead creates a ransomware note in a file called DesktopZoldon.txt and enforces a lockscreen instance. This blocks the ordinary interaction with the computer until the virus is compleely removed.
It reads the following message:
Alert: Your computer and Files are encrypted By Zoldon Virus
$150 within 24 hours. $400 after 24 hours
— Write this information down —
How to Remove the virus ?
After the payment send to Bitcoin Address,
send a Email to [email@example.com] containing Your Machine ID
Once payment is received you will get the decryption password and simple instructions to restore all your files and computer to normal instantly
Without the decryption password you will not get them back.
If we do not reach the amount within 72 hours
We will publish all the contents of your device on the Internet
IF YOU LOOSE THIS INFO YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO CONTACT US
Bitcoin Address: 1AHhnEDuHS1AFkSdcq3nQRZEPHs1QECAtv Copy
Machine ID: Copy
Remove Zoldon Ransomware Virus and Restore Encrypted Files
If your computer got infected with the Zoldon ransomware virus, you should have a bit of experience in removing malware. You should get rid of this ransomware as quickly as possible before it can have the chance to spread further and infect other computers. You should remove the ransomware and follow the step-by-step instructions guide provided below.
What is Zoldon virus Ransomware?
Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus?
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 Zoldon virus Infect?
Via several ways.Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus 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 .Zoldon virus files?
You can't. At this point, the .Zoldon virus 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 .Zoldon virus files successfully, then do not despair, because this virus is still new.
Can I Restore ".Zoldon virus" Files?
Yes, sometimes files can be restored. We have suggested several file recovery methods that could work if you want to restore .Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus ransomware and then remove it without causing any additional harm to your important .Zoldon virus files.
Also, keep in mind that viruses like Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus 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 Zoldon virus Research
The content we publish on SensorsTechForum.com, this Zoldon virus 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.
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