Matrix ransomware virus - removal and decryption options

Also Known As: Matrix virus
Damage level: Severe

What kind of malware is Matrix?

Matrix is a ransomware-type virus that encrypts various data stored on victims' computers. Despite this threat, Matrix has some flaws - it does not encrypt all files. Therefore, we assume that Matrix ransomware is still in development.

This malware appends: ".FDFK", ".TGMN", ".ABAT", ".DECP", ".YDHM", ".MDRL", ".[Kromber@tutanota.com]", ".QH24", ".NGSC", ".SDEN", ".MDEN", ".SCR", ".SBLOCK", ".GBLOCK", ".PEDANT", ".PLANT", ".CHRB", ".GMBN", ".SPCT", ".GRHAN", ".PRCP", ".FASTA", ".GMPF", ".THDA", ".NOBAD", ".GMAN", ".EMAN", ".CHE08", ".ITLOCK", ".KOK08", ".FASTBOB", ".NEWRAR", ".KOK8", ".CORE", ".ANN", ".[RestorFile@tutanota.com]", "_[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA", ".matrix", ".b10cked", ".AG88G", ".TMS5", ".[MarkEvans333@criptext.com].[random-string].MKES", ".EG83", ".AL8P". ".BNFD", ".AL8G", ".DECC", ".MH24", ".TG33" or ".[RestoreFile@qq.com].MTXLOCK" extensions to the name of every encrypted file.

For instance, "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.matrix". Following successful encryption, Matrix creates a text file "matrix-readme.rtf" (newer variants create "#What_Wrong_With_Files#.rtf", "!ReadMe_To_Decrypt_Files!.rtf", "#_#WhatWrongWithMyFiles#_#.rtf", "Readme-Matrix.rtf", "WhatHappenedWithMyFiles.rtf", or "WhatHappenedWithFiles.rtf") and places it in every folder. The file contains a ransom demand message.

Screenshot of files encrypted by Matrix ransomware:

Matrix encrypted files

Overview of the ransom note

The "matrix-readme.rtf" file contains a ransom demand message in Russian and English stating that files are encrypted and that victims who want to restore their data must contact Matrix's developers via an email address provided (BatHelp@protonmail.com, askhelp@protonmail.com, oken@tutanota.com, Files4463@tuta.io, RestorFile@tutanota.com, pyongyan001@yahoo.com, bluetablet9643@yandex.ru, matrix9643@yahoo.com, redtablet9643@yahoo.com, jamesbaker78@criptext.com or decodedecode@yandex.ru).

Further instructions will then be given. It is currently unknown if Matrix uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography. In any case, decryption without a unique key is impossible. This key is stored on a remote server controlled by cyber criminals. Therefore, victims must pay a fee to receive it.

The cost is currently unknown, however, research shows that this usually fluctuates between $500 and $1500 in Bitcoins. Despite the demands, you should never attempt to contact cyber criminals or pay any ransoms. These people often ignore victims, despite submitted payments - if you pay, it is highly probable that you will be scammed.

In addition, paying is equivalent to sending money to cyber criminals - you simply support their malicious businesses. There are currently no tools capable of restoring files encrypted by Matrix. Therefore, the only solution is to restore files/system from a backup.

Similarities with other ransomware

Matrix shares similarities with hundreds of ransomware-type viruses, such as .osiris, RenLocker, ASN1, Cerber, etc. Research shows that all ransomware encrypts files and make ransom demands. There are often just two main differences between these viruses: 1) cost of decryption, and; 2) type of encryption algorithm [symmetric/asymmetric] used.

Ransomware-type viruses are often distributed using unofficial software download sources (torrents, freeware download websites, free file hosting websites, etc.), malicious files attached to spam emails, fake software update tools, and trojans. Therefore, never download software from third party sources or open files received from suspicious email addresses.

Furthermore, keep installed applications up-to-date and never use any third party updaters. Using a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite is also paramount. The key to computer safety is caution.

Threat Summary:
Name Matrix virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension .matrix, [victim's_ID].[Yourencrypt@tutanota.com], _[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA.COM]
Ransom Demanding Message Various desktop wallpapers, matrix-readme.rtf, ReadMe_t0_recover_your_files.rtf, !ReadMe_To_Decrypt_Files!.rtf, !WhatHappenedWithMyFiles!1.rtf
Cyber Criminal Contact cremreihanob1979@yandex.ru, decodedecode@tutanota.com, jinnyg@tutanota, jinnyg@tutanota.com, linersmik@naver.com, loder903@yahoo.com, matrix9643@yahoo.com, redtablet9643@yahoo.com, restoreassistant@yandex.com, thematrixhasyou9643@yahoo.com, yourencrypt@tutanota.com, markevans333@criptext.com, evagreps83@yahoo.com, evagreps83@protonmail.com, evagreps83@aol.com
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Evo-gen [Susp]), BitDefender (Gen:Variant.Strictor.139905), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Kryptik.FUGT), Kaspersky (Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Purgen.fs), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms Cannot open files stored on your computer, previously functional files now have a different extension (for example, my.docx.locked). A ransom demand message is displayed on your desktop. Cyber criminals demand payment of a ransom (usually in bitcoins) to unlock your files.
Distribution methods Infected email attachments (macros), torrent websites, malicious ads.
Damage All files are encrypted and cannot be opened without paying a ransom. Additional password-stealing trojans and malware infections can be installed together with a ransomware infection.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
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Screenshot of a wallpaper added by this ransomware:

matrix ransomware wallpaper

Text presented on this wallpaper:

This operating system and all of important data was locked due to the violation of the federal laws of the United States of America! (Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8; Article 202; Article 210 of the Criminal Code of U.S.A provides for a deprivation of liberty for four to twelve years.)
Following violations were detected: Your IP address was used to visit websites containing pornography, child pornography, zoophilia and child abuse. Your computer also contains video files with pornographic content, elements of violence and child pornography! This computer is aimed to stop your illegal activity. To unlock your files you have to pay the penalty! You have only 96 hours to pay the penalty, otherwise you will be arrested! You must pay the penalty through Bitcoin Wallet. To pay the penalty and unlock you data, you should send the following code: - to our agent e-mails: thematrixhasyou9643@yahoo.com or cremreihanob1979@yandex.ru You will receive all necessaryy instructions! HURRY UP OR YOU WILL BE ARRESTED!!!

A slightly updated variant of the wallpaper used by Matrix ransomware (this variant adds no extensions to encrypted files):

matrix ransomware updated wallpaper

Text presented on this wallpaper:


All of important data on this computer was encrypted with strong RSA-2048 algorithm due to the violation of the federal laws of the United States of America! (Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8; Article 2010 of the Criminal Code of U.S.A provides for a deprivation of liberty for four to twelve years.)

Following violations were detected:
Your IP address was used to visit websites containing pornography, child pornography, zoophilia and child abuse!

To unlock your files you have to pay the penalty!

You have only 96 hours to recover your personal data! After this time your unique key will be deleted and files decryption will become impossible!
Each 12 hours the payment size will be automatically increased by 100$!
You must pay the payment through the Bitcoin Wallet.
To get your unique key and unlock files, you should send the following code:
to our agent emails:
redtablet9643@yahoo.com or decodedecode@tutanota.com Your will receive all necessary instructions!


Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data ("matrix-readme.rtf"):

Matrix decrypt instructions (matrix-readme.rtf)

Ransom-demand message in Russian and English ("matrix-readme.rtf" file):

Внимание! Все Вашu файлы были зашифpoваны.
Чmoбы раcшифрoвать uх, Вам нeoбхoдимo omnравить код:
на электpoнный адрес: matrix9643@yahoo.com
Далeе в oтвeтнoм пиcьмe вы noлyчите вce нeoбxoдuмые uнстpyкцuu.
Пonыmku расшифрoвать самocmoяmeльнo не пpuвeдym ни k чемy, kрoмe безвoзвpатнoй noтeри инфoрмацuи.
Ecли вы вcё же xomиme nonыmаmьcя, тo пpедваритeльнo cдeлайтe pезервныe konиu файлoв, uначe в слyчаe ux изменeнuя раcшифрoвка станeт нeвoзмoжнoй ни при каkuх ycлoвuяx.
Еcли вы не noлyчuлu oтвета пo вышеykазаннoмy адpecy в течениe 24 чаcoв (и тoльko в этoм случае!), вoспoльзуйmecь резервнoй пoчтoй:

Аttеntiоn! Аll yоur filеs wаs еnсryрtеd.
Tо dесryрt thе filеs, Yоu hаvе to shоuld sеnd thе fоllоwing cоdе:
tо е-mаil аddrеss: matrix9643@yahoo.com
Thеn Yоu will rеciеvе аll nеcеssаry instruсtiоns.
Аll thе аttеmpts оf dесryptiоn by yоursеlf will rеsult оnly in irrеvосаble lоss оf yоur dаtа.
If yоu still wаnt tо try tо dеcrypt thеm by yоursеlf plеаsе mаkе а bаckup аt first bеcаusе thе dесryptiоn will bеcоmе impоssiblе in cаsе оf аny chаngеs insidе thе filеs.
If yоu did nоt rеcеivе thе аnswеr frоm thе аfоrеcitеd еmаil fоr mоrе thоn 24 hеurs (аnd оnly in this cаsе!), usе thе rеsеrvе е-mаil аddrеss:

Update 18 December, 2017: Cyber criminals have updated this ransomware. It now adds the "_[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA.COM]" extension to encrypted files. For example, after encryption "1.jpg" appears as "1.jpg_[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA.COM]". The ransom demand message is now presented in the "ReadMe_t0_recover_your_files.rtf" file.

Screenshot of ReadMe_t0_recover_your_files.rtf file:

matrix ransomware readme rtf updated file

Update 19 March, 2018: Cyber criminals have released another update for this ransomware. The ransom demand message is now presented in the "!ReadMe_To_Decrypt_Files!.rtf" file. Files encrypted on the victim's computer are now renamed using the following pattern: after encryption, 1.jpg appears as bLAv9T37-vmPSM5EX.[Yourencrypt@tutanota.com].

matrix ransomware update Yourencrypt@tutanota.com variant

Text presented in this file:

Аll thе imроrtаnt dаtа оn this cоmрutеr wаs еnсrурtеd!
Уоu will nоt bе аblе tо ассеss уоur filеs until thеу аrе dесrуptеd! Withоut уоur pеrsоnаl kеy аnd sреciаl sоftwаrе dаtа rеcоvеrу is impоssiblе! If yоu will fоllоw оur instruсtiоns, wе guаrаntее thаt yоu cаn dесryрt аll yоur filеs quiсkly аnd sаfеly!
Wаnt tо rеcоvеr yоur filеs? Writе us tо thе е-mаils:
In subjеct linе оf your mеssаgе writе yоur pеrsоnаl ID:
Wе rесоmmеnd yоu tо sеnd yоur mеssаgе ОN ЕАСH оf ОUR 3 ЕМАILS, duе tо thе fасt thаt thе mеssаgе mау nоt rеаch thеir intеndеd rеcipiеnt fоr а vаriеtу оf rеаsоns!
Plеаsе, writе us in Еnglish оr usе prоfеssiоnаl trаnslаtоr!
If yоu wаnt tо rеstоrе yоur filеs, yоu hаvе tо pаy fоr dесrуptiоn in Bitсоins or Еthеrеum. Thе pricе dереnds оn hоw fаst уоu writе tо us.
Tо cоnfirm thаt wе cаn dесryрt yоur filеs yоu cаn sеnd us up tо 3 filеs fоr frее dесrурtiоn. Plеаsе nоte thаt filеs fоr frее dесrурtiоn must NОT cоntаin аnу vаluаblе infоrmаtiоn аnd thеir tоtаl sizе must bе lеss thаn 5Mb.
Yоu hаvе tо rеspоnd аs sооn аs pоssiblе tо еnsurе thе rеstоrаtiоn оf yоur filеs, bеcаusе wе wоnt kееp yоur dеcrуptiоn kеys аt оur sеrvеr mоre thаn оne wееk in intеrеst оf оur sеcuritу.
Nоtе thаt аll thе аttеmpts оf dесryptiоn by yоursеlf оr using third pаrty tооls will rеsult оnly in irrеvосаble lоss оf yоur dаtа.
If yоu did nоt rеcеivе thе аnswеr frоm thе аfоrеcitеd еmаils fоr mоrе then 6 hours, рlеаsе сhеck SРАМ fоldеr!
If yоu did nоt rеcеivе thе аnswеr frоm thе аfоrеcitеd еmаils fоr mоrе then 12 hours, рlеаsе trу tо sеnd уоur mеssаgе with аnоthеr еmаil sеrviсе!
If yоu did nоt rеcеivе thе аnswеr frоm thе аfоrеcitеd еmаils fоr mоrе then 24 hours (еvеn if уоu hаvе prеviоuslу rесеivеd аnswеr frоm us), рlеаsе trу tо sеnd уоur mеssаgе with аnоthеr еmаil sеrviсе tо еасh оf оur 3 еmаils!
Аnd dоn't fоrgеt tо chеck SPАМ fоldеr!

Screenshot of files encrytped by this version of Matrix ransomware ("_[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA]" extension):

matrix ransomware _[LINERSMIK@NAVER.COM][JINNYG@TUTANOTA extension

Update March 4, 2020 - Crooks have released an updated variant of Matrix ransomware. The main difference is ransom note - "!WhatHappenedWithMyFiles!1.rtf":

Updated Matrix ransomware ransom note - !WhatHappenedWithMyFiles!1.rtf

Text presented within this file:

Аttеntiоn! Аll yоur filеs wеrе еnсryрtеd with RSА-2048 аlgоrithm.
Withоut уоur pеrsоnаl dесrуptiоn kеy dаtа rеcоvеrу is impоssiblе!
Tо gеt yоur uniquе kеy аnd dесrурt thе filеs, Yоu hаvе to sеnd thе fоllоwing cоdе:
tо оur е-mаil аddrеss: decodedecode@tutanota.com
Thеn Yоu will rеciеvе аll nеcеssаry instruсtiоns.
Yоu hаvе оnlу 96 hоurs tо rеcоvеr yоur dаtа! Аftеr this timе yоur uniquе dесrурtiоn kеy will bе аutоmаticаllу dеlеtеd аnd filе dесrурtiоn will bеcоmе imроssiblе!
Hurrу uр! Еасh 12 hоurs thе pауmеnt sizе will bе аutоmаticаllу inсrеаsеd bу 100$!
Аll thе аttеmpts оf dесryptiоn by yоursеlf will rеsult оnly in irrеvосаble lоss оf yоur dаtа.
If yоu still wаnt tо try tо dеcrypt thеm by yоursеlf plеаsе mаkе а bаckup аt first bеcаusе thе dесryptiоn will bеcоmе impоssiblе in cаsе оf аny chаngеs insidе thе filеs.
If yоu did nоt rеcеivе thе аnswеr frоm thе аfоrеcitеd еmаil fоr mоrе then 24 hours (аnd оnly in this cаsе!), usе thе rеsеrvе е-mаil аddrеss:

Matrix ransomware removal:

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Video suggesting what steps should be taken in case of a ransomware infection:

Quick menu:

Reporting ransomware to authorities:

If you are a victim of a ransomware attack we recommend reporting this incident to authorities. By providing information to law enforcement agencies you will help track cybercrime and potentially assist in the prosecution of the attackers. Here's a list of authorities where you should report a ransomware attack. For the complete list of local cybersecurity centers and information on why you should report ransomware attacks, read this article.

List of local authorities where ransomware attacks should be reported (choose one depending on your residence address):

Isolating the infected device:

Some ransomware-type infections are designed to encrypt files within external storage devices, infect them, and even spread throughout the entire local network. For this reason, it is very important to isolate the infected device (computer) as soon as possible.

Step 1: Disconnect from the internet.

The easiest way to disconnect a computer from the internet is to unplug the Ethernet cable from the motherboard, however, some devices are connected via a wireless network and for some users (especially those who are not particularly tech-savvy), disconnecting cables may seem troublesome. Therefore, you can also disconnect the system manually via Control Panel:

Navigate to the "Control Panel", click the search bar in the upper-right corner of the screen, enter "Network and Sharing Center" and select search result: Disconnecting computer from the Internet (step 1)

Click the "Change adapter settings" option in the upper-left corner of the window: Disconnecting computer from the Internet (step 2)

Right-click on each connection point and select "Disable". Once disabled, the system will no longer be connected to the internet. To re-enable the connection points, simply right-click again and select "Enable". Disconnecting computer from the Internet (step 3)

Step 2: Unplug all storage devices.

As mentioned above, ransomware might encrypt data and infiltrate all storage devices that are connected to the computer. For this reason, all external storage devices (flash drives, portable hard drives, etc.) should be disconnected immediately, however, we strongly advise you to eject each device before disconnecting to prevent data corruption:

Navigate to "My Computer", right-click on each connected device, and select "Eject": Ejecting external storage devices

Step 3: Log-out of cloud storage accounts.

Some ransomware-type might be able to hijack software that handles data stored within "the Cloud". Therefore, the data could be corrupted/encrypted. For this reason, you should log-out of all cloud storage accounts within browsers and other related software. You should also consider temporarily uninstalling the cloud-management software until the infection is completely removed.

Identify the ransomware infection:

To properly handle an infection, one must first identify it. Some ransomware infections use ransom-demand messages as an introduction (see the WALDO ransomware text file below).

Identify ransomware-type infection (step 1)

This, however, is rare. In most cases, ransomware infections deliver more direct messages simply stating that data is encrypted and that victims must pay some sort of ransom. Note that ransomware-type infections typically generate messages with different file names (for example, "_readme.txt", "READ-ME.txt", "DECRYPTION_INSTRUCTIONS.txt", "DECRYPT_FILES.html", etc.). Therefore, using the name of a ransom message may seem like a good way to identify the infection. The problem is that most of these names are generic and some infections use the same names, even though the delivered messages are different and the infections themselves are unrelated. Therefore, using the message filename alone can be ineffective and even lead to permanent data loss (for example, by attempting to decrypt data using tools designed for different ransomware infections, users are likely to end up permanently damaging files and decryption will no longer be possible even with the correct tool).

Another way to identify a ransomware infection is to check the file extension, which is appended to each encrypted file. Ransomware infections are often named by the extensions they append (see files encrypted by Qewe ransomware below).

Identify ransomware-type infection (step 2)

This method is only effective, however, when the appended extension is unique - many ransomware infections append a generic extension (for example, ".encrypted", ".enc", ".crypted", ".locked", etc.). In these cases, identifying ransomware by its appended extension becomes impossible.

One of the easiest and quickest ways to identify a ransomware infection is to use the ID Ransomware website. This service supports most existing ransomware infections. Victims simply upload a ransom message and/or one encrypted file (we advise you to upload both if possible).

Identify ransomware-type infection (step 3)

The ransomware will be identified within seconds and you will be provided with various details, such as the name of the malware family to which the infection belongs, whether it is decryptable, and so on.

Example 1 (Qewe [Stop/Djvu] ransomware):

Identify ransomware-type infection (step 4)

Example 2 (.iso [Phobos] ransomware):

Identify ransomware-type infection (step 5)

If your data happens to be encrypted by ransomware that is not supported by ID Ransomware, you can always try searching the internet by using certain keywords (for example, a ransom message title, file extension, provided contact emails, crypto wallet addresses, etc.).

Search for ransomware decryption tools:

Encryption algorithms used by most ransomware-type infections are extremely sophisticated and, if the encryption is performed properly, only the developer is capable of restoring data. This is because decryption requires a specific key, which is generated during the encryption. Restoring data without the key is impossible. In most cases, cybercriminals store keys on a remote server, rather than using the infected machine as a host. Dharma (CrySis), Phobos, and other families of high-end ransomware infections are virtually flawless, and thus restoring data encrypted without the developers' involvement is simply impossible. Despite this, there are dozens of ransomware-type infections that are poorly developed and contain a number of flaws (for example, the use of identical encryption/decryption keys for each victim, keys stored locally, etc.). Therefore, always check for available decryption tools for any ransomware that infiltrates your computer.

Finding the correct decryption tool on the internet can be very frustrating. For this reason, we recommend that you use the No More Ransom Project and this is where identifying the ransomware infection is useful. The No More Ransom Project website contains a "Decryption Tools" section with a search bar. Enter the name of the identified ransomware, and all available decryptors (if there are any) will be listed.

Searching for ransomware decryption tools in nomoreransom.org website

Restore files with data recovery tools:

Depending on the situation (quality of ransomware infection, type of encryption algorithm used, etc.), restoring data with certain third-party tools might be possible. Therefore, we advise you to use the Recuva tool developed by CCleaner. This tool supports over a thousand data types (graphics, video, audio, documents, etc.) and it is very intuitive (little knowledge is necessary to recover data). In addition, the recovery feature is completely free.

Step 1: Perform a scan.

Run the Recuva application and follow the wizard. You will be prompted with several windows allowing you to choose what file types to look for, which locations should be scanned, etc. All you need to do is select the options you're looking for and start the scan. We advise you to enable the "Deep Scan" before starting, otherwise, the application's scanning capabilities will be restricted.

Recuva data recovery tool wizard

Wait for Recuva to complete the scan. The scanning duration depends on the volume of files (both in quantity and size) that you are scanning (for example, several hundred gigabytes could take over an hour to scan). Therefore, be patient during the scanning process. We also advise against modifying or deleting existing files, since this might interfere with the scan. If you add additional data (for example, downloading files/content) while scanning, this will prolong the process:

Recuva data recovery tool scan time

Step 2: Recover data.

Once the process is complete, select the folders/files you wish to restore and simply click "Recover". Note that some free space on your storage drive is necessary to restore data:

Recuva data recovery tool recovering data

Create data backups:

Proper file management and creating backups is essential for data security. Therefore, always be very careful and think ahead.

Partition management: We recommend that you store your data in multiple partitions and avoid storing important files within the partition that contains the entire operating system. If you fall into a situation whereby you cannot boot the system and are forced to format the disk on which the operating system is installed (in most cases, this is where malware infections hide), you will lose all data stored within that drive. This is the advantage of having multiple partitions: if you have the entire storage device assigned to a single partition, you will be forced to delete everything, however, creating multiple partitions and allocating the data properly allows you to prevent such problems. You can easily format a single partition without affecting the others - therefore, one will be cleaned and the others will remain untouched, and your data will be saved. Managing partitions is quite simple and you can find all the necessary information on Microsoft's documentation web page.

Data backups: One of the most reliable backup methods is to use an external storage device and keep it unplugged. Copy your data to an external hard drive, flash (thumb) drive, SSD, HDD, or any other storage device, unplug it and store it in a dry place away from the sun and extreme temperatures. This method is, however, quite inefficient, since data backups and updates need to be made regularly. You can also use a cloud service or remote server. Here, an internet connection is required and there is always the chance of a security breach, although it's a really rare occasion.

We recommend using Microsoft OneDrive for backing up your files. OneDrive lets you store your personal files and data in the cloud, sync files across computers and mobile devices, allowing you to access and edit your files from all of your Windows devices. OneDrive lets you save, share and preview files, access download history, move, delete, and rename files, as well as create new folders, and much more.

You can back up your most important folders and files on your PC (your Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders). Some of OneDrive’s more notable features include file versioning, which keeps older versions of files for up to 30 days. OneDrive features a recycling bin in which all of your deleted files are stored for a limited time. Deleted files are not counted as part of the user’s allocation.

The service is built using HTML5 technologies and allows you to upload files up to 300 MB via drag and drop into the web browser or up to 10 GB via the OneDrive desktop application. With OneDrive, you can download entire folders as a single ZIP file with up to 10,000 files, although it can’t exceed 15 GB per single download.

OneDrive comes with 5 GB of free storage out of the box, with an additional 100 GB, 1 TB, and 6 TB storage options available for a subscription-based fee. You can get one of these storage plans by either purchasing additional storage separately or with Office 365 subscription.

Creating a data backup:

The backup process is the same for all file types and folders. Here’s how you can back up your files using Microsoft OneDrive

Step 1: Choose the files/folders you want to backup.

Click the OneDrive icon in the taskbar

Click the OneDrive cloud icon to open the OneDrive menu. While in this menu, you can customize your file backup settings.

Select Help & Settings and click Settings

Click Help & Settings and then select Settings from the drop-down menu.

Select the Backup tab and click Manage backup

Go to the Backup tab and click Manage backup.

Select folders to backup and click Start backup

In this menu, you can choose to backup the Desktop and all of the files on it, and Documents and Pictures folders, again, with all of the files in them. Click Start backup.

Now, when you add a file or folder in the Desktop and Documents and Pictures folders, they will be automatically backed up on OneDrive.

To add folders and files, not in the locations shown above, you have to add them manually.

Select a file manually and copy it

Open File Explorer and navigate to the location of the folder/file you want to backup. Select the item, right-click it, and click Copy.

Paste the copied file in the OneDrive folder to create a backup

Then, navigate to OneDrive, right-click anywhere in the window and click Paste. Alternatively, you can just drag and drop a file into OneDrive. OneDrive will automatically create a backup of the folder/file.

File statuses in OneDrive folder

All of the files added to the OneDrive folder are backed up in the cloud automatically. The green circle with the checkmark in it indicates that the file is available both locally and on OneDrive and that the file version is the same on both. The blue cloud icon indicates that the file has not been synced and is available only on OneDrive. The sync icon indicates that the file is currently syncing.

Click Help & Settings and click View Online

To access files only located on OneDrive online, go to the Help & Settings drop-down menu and select View online.

Click the Settings cog and click Options

Step 2: Restore corrupted files.

OneDrive makes sure that the files stay in sync, so the version of the file on the computer is the same version on the cloud. However, if ransomware has encrypted your files, you can take advantage of OneDrive’s Version history feature that will allow you to restore the file versions prior to encryption.

Microsoft 365 has a ransomware detection feature that notifies you when your OneDrive files have been attacked and guide you through the process of restoring your files. It must be noted, however, that if you don’t have a paid Microsoft 365 subscription, you only get one detection and file recovery for free.

If your OneDrive files get deleted, corrupted, or infected by malware, you can restore your entire OneDrive to a previous state. Here’s how you can restore your entire OneDrive:


1. If you're signed in with a personal account, click the Settings cog at the top of the page. Then, click Options and select Restore your OneDrive.

If you're signed in with a work or school account,  click the Settings cog at the top of the page. Then, click Restore your OneDrive.

2. On the Restore your OneDrive page, select a date from the drop-down list. Note that if you're restoring your files after automatic ransomware detection, a restore date will be selected for you.

3. After configuring all of the file restoration options, click Restore to undo all the activities you selected.

The best way to avoid damage from ransomware infections is to maintain regular up-to-date backups.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How was my computer hacked and how did hackers encrypt my files?

Cybercriminals cannot infect computers without the interference of users. Their goal is to trick users into executing ransomware by themselves. Usually, they send emails containing malicious attachments (or links) or use fake installers for cracked software, fake updaters, or unreliable sources for downloading files/programs to deliver malware.

How to open files encrypted by Matrix ransomware?

Once ransomware has encrypted files, it is not possible to open them until they are decrypted with the right decryption tool.

Where should I look for free decryption tools for Matrix ransomware?

In case of a ransomware attack you should check the No More Ransom project website (more information above).

I can pay you a lot of money, can you decrypt files for me?

We do not provide a decryption service and strongly recommend not to pay third parties for it - they are scammers or act as a man-in-the-middle. As a rule, only cybercriminals behind ransomware attacks can decrypt files (unless ransomware has bugs/flaws).

Will Combo Cleaner help me remove Matrix ransomware?

Yes, Combo Cleaner will remove ransomware from your computer, but it will not decrypt files. Security software cannot decrypt data. It removes ransomware to prevent more damage (further encryptions).

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Medium threat activity

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