.SBLOCK Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections
THREAT REMOVAL

.SBLOCK Ransomware — How to Remove Virus Infections

This article will aid you to remove .SBLOCK Ransomware. Follow the ransomware removal instructions provided at the end of the article.

.SBLOCK Ransomware is one that encrypts your data and demands money as a ransom to get it restored. Files will receive the .SBLOCK extension. The .SBLOCK Ransomware will leave ransomware instructions as a desktop wallpaper image. Keep on reading the article and see how you could try to potentially recover some of your locked files and data.

Threat Summary

Name.SBLOCK ransomware
TypeRansomware, Cryptovirus
Short DescriptionThe ransomware encrypts files by placing the .SBLOCK extension on the target files on your computer system and demands a ransom to be paid to allegedly recover them.
SymptomsThe ransomware will encrypt your files and leave a ransom note with payment instructions.
Distribution MethodSpam Emails, Email Attachments
Detection Tool See If Your System Has Been Affected by .SBLOCK ransomware

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Malware Removal Tool

User ExperienceJoin Our Forum to Discuss .SBLOCK ransomware.
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.

.SBLOCK Ransomware – Distribution Techniques

The .SBLOCK ransomware as a new release of the Matrix ransomware family probably uses the same attack methods as the previous samples. One of the most popular ones is the launch of email SPAM campaigns that contain various phishing elements. The recipients are coerced into thinking that they have received a legitimate message from a well-known service, product or company. The hackers might hijack the legitimate contents and use them in the dangerous crafted messages. Usually the virus files will be linked or directly attached.

An alternative is to craft malicious sites that attempt to impersonate well-known company landing pages, search engines and download portals. The associated .SBLOCK ransomware can be placed both in the main file contents and any associated elements: web banners, pop-ups, ads and etc.

The .SBLOCK ransomware infection code can also be embedded in payload carriers of which there are two main types:

  • Malicious Documents — The hackers can embed the virus infection scripts as macros across all popular formats: spreadsheets, presentations, databases and text files. Whenever they are opened by the users a notification prompt will be spawned asking the users to enable the built-in macros. The quoted reason is that this is required in order to correctly view the file.
  • Dangerous Application Installers — The criminals can hijack the legitimate setup files of popular programs which are often downloaded by end users. Usually the list of affected applications includes system utilities, creativity suites, productivity and office apps and etc.

All of these files can also be found on file-sharing networks like BitTorrent where both pirate and legitimate content is found. Large-scale campaigns can be orchestrated via browser hijackers which are dangerous plugins which are made compatible with the most popular web browsers. They are usually uploaded to the relevant repositories using fake user reviews and developer credentials thereby enticing the visitors into installing them. The presented descriptions will promise new features addition and performance optimization. However upon installing them the .SBLOCK ransomware will be delivered along with any other malicious behavior as intended. This is usually a manipulation of the default settings in order to redirect the victims to a preset hacker-controlled page. The altered changes are usually the default home page, search engine and new tabs page.

.SBLOCK Ransomware – Detailed Analysis

As the .SBLOCK ransomware is descendant from the Matrix family of threats its set of modules is known. It is anticipated that it will follow the typical behavior patterns as known by previous infections. One of the first components that is run is the information gathering. This instructs the engine to extract information that can be categorized into two main groups:

  • Personal Information — The engine can be programmed to search for personal information that can reveal the identity of the hackers. This makes the engine search for strings like their name, phone number, address, interests and any stored account credentials.
  • Machine Identification Data — The criminals can program the .SBLOCK ransomware engine to construct an unique string that can identify each affected computer. It is made by an algorithm thaat takes its input values from a wide range of sources: system configuration values, the installed hardware components and certain user preferences.

The collected information can be used further by the next module in the chain called security bypass. It will scan the memory and hard disk contents for any applications and services that can block the proper virus execution. Their real-time engines and main executables can be bypassed or entirely removed. In most cases this includes the likes of anti-virus programs, sandbox environments, virtual machine hosts and etc.

Whenever the security of the machines has been bypassed the .SBLOCK ransomware can continue further with various system changes and other related malicious actions. Some of them include the following:

  • Windows Registry Modifications — The ransomware engine can change values that belong both to the operating system and any third-party installed applications. In most cases this can lead to severe performance issues to the point of rendering the system completely unusable. Certain functions can be become inaccessible and unexpected errors and shut downs can happen. This usually results in data loss.
  • Data Removal — Like some previous Matrix ransomware samples the .SBLOCK virus release is able to identify and remove sensitive files from the infected computers. This usually includes the likes of system restore points, backups and shadow volume copies. In this case the victims will need to use a professional-grade data recovery software.
  • Persistent Installation — The .SBLOCK ransomare can reconfigure the system in order to start automatically as soon as the computer is powered on. This will also disable access to the boot menu options and recovery menus which are used wwith manual user removal instructions. In this case the victims will be forced to use a professional-grade anti-spyware solution in order to guarantee a complete removal.
  • Additional Malware Delivery — In many cases viruses like this one are used to deploy other threats to the affected computers. This is done because the ransowmare has already bypassed and the dropped viruses will have the ability to fully unleash their potential.

Most of the advanced Matrix ransomware samples are also fully capable of installing complex Trojan horse clients. They allow the criminals to use a persistent connection to the infected machines. The hackers are thus able to take over control of the machines at any time, spy on the users actions and retrieve data before it has been processed by the encryption engine.

.SBLOCK Ransomware – Encryption Process

Like other popular malware samples the .SBLOCK ransomware will launch the encryption engine once all prior modules have finished running. It will probably use a built-in list of target file type extensions which are to be processed by a strong cipher. An example list can include the following data types:

  • Backups
  • Databases
  • Archives
  • Images
  • Music
  • Videos

All affected files are renamed with the .SBLOCK extension.

Remove .SBLOCK Ransomware and Try to Restore Data

If your computer system got infected with the .SBLOCK 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.

Martin Beltov

Martin graduated with a degree in Publishing from Sofia University. As a cyber security enthusiast he enjoys writing about the latest threats and mechanisms of intrusion.

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