Written by Tomas Meskauskas on
Crptxxx ransomware removal instructions
What is Crptxxx?
Crptxxx is a ransomware-type virus discovered by malware researcher MalwareHunterTeam. This malware employs enigma0x3's UAC (Microsoft's User Account Control) bypass. Once infiltrated, Crptxxx encrypts various data using AES cryptography. In addition, this ransomware appends the ".crptxxx" extension to the name of each encrypted file (for example, "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.crptxxx"). The malware then creates a text file ("HOW_TO_FIX_!.txt"), placing it in each folder containing the encrypted files.
The text file contains a message that informs victims of the encryption, and states that to restore files, they must visit a Tor website and follow the instructions within. As mentioned above, Crptxxx employs an AES encryption algorithm and, thus, decryption without a unique key is impossible. This key is stored on a remote server and victims are encouraged to pay a ransom to receive it. The cost is currently unconfirmed, however, criminals usually demand the equivalent of $500 - 1500 in Bitcoins. In any case, you should never attempt to contact these people or pay any ransom. Research shows that these criminals often ignore victims, once payments are submitted. Paying will not deliver any positive result and you will probably be scammed - never trust ransomware developers. Unfortunately, there are no tools capable of restoring files encrypted by Crptxxx. Therefore, you can only restore files/system from a backup.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
The Internet is full of ransomware-type viruses similar to Crptxxx including Karmen, FileLocker, and CryptON CryptoLocker - these are just some examples from many. As with Crptxxx, this malware also encrypts files and makes ransom demands. The only major differences are size of ransom and type of encryption algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) used. The distribution methods are also identical. Cyber criminals distribute ransomware by employing fake software updaters, trojans, third party software download sources (freeware download websites, free file hosting websites, torrents, etc.), and spam emails (infectious attachments). Therefore, keep your installed applications up-to-date. Bear in mind, however, that cyber criminals employ fake software updaters to proliferate various malware, so never update installed apps via third party tools. Furthermore, never download software from unofficial sources or open files received from suspicious emails. Using a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite is also paramount. Rushing and careless behavior is often the reason for computer infections. The key to computer safety is caution.
Text presented within Crptxxx ransomware text file ("HOW_TO_FIX_!.txt"):
All your files have been encrypted with AES
If you want to restore them, use this instructions:
1) Download tor browser
2) Run tor and go to: hxxp://dokg5gcojuswihof.onion
Or you can use tor2web services
In login panel enter your personal ID:
Follow next instructions on website
If server is down - try connect later
!! Decoders from other users are not compatible with your data, because each users unique encryption key !!
!! Do not try to decrypt your data using third party software, it may cause permanent data loss. !!
Screenshot of files encrypted by Crptxxx ("crptxxx" extension):
Crptxxx ransomware removal:
Quick menu: Quick solution to remove .crptxxx virus
- What is Crptxxx?
- STEP 1. Crptxxx virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. Crptxxx ransomware removal using System Restore.
Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, and then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 8 users: Start Windows 8 is Safe Mode with Networking - Go to Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click Advanced startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window, select Advanced startup. Click the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into the "Advanced Startup options menu". Click the "Troubleshoot" button, and then click the "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen, click "Startup settings". Click the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press F5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button. In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Log in to the account infected with the Crptxxx virus. Start your Internet browser and download a legitimate anti-spyware program. Update the anti-spyware software and start a full system scan. Remove all entries detected.
If you cannot start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking, try performing a System Restore.
Video showing how to remove ransomware virus using "Safe Mode with Command Prompt" and "System Restore":
1. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until the Windows Advanced Options menu appears, and then select Safe Mode with Command Prompt from the list and press ENTER.
2. When Command Prompt mode loads, enter the following line: cd restore and press ENTER.
3. Next, type this line: rstrui.exe and press ENTER.
4. In the opened window, click "Next".
5. Select one of the available Restore Points and click "Next" (this will restore your computer system to an earlier time and date, prior to the Crptxxx ransomware virus infiltrating your PC).
6. In the opened window, click "Yes".
7. After restoring your computer to a previous date, download and scan your PC with recommended malware removal software to eliminate any remaining Crptxxx ransomware files.
To restore individual files encrypted by this ransomware, try using Windows Previous Versions feature. This method is only effective if the System Restore function was enabled on an infected operating system. Note that some variants of Crptxxx are known to remove Shadow Volume Copies of the files, so this method may not work on all computers.
To restore a file, right-click over it, go into Properties, and select the Previous Versions tab. If the relevant file has a Restore Point, select it and click the "Restore" button.
If you cannot start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking (or with Command Prompt), boot your computer using a rescue disk. Some variants of ransomware disable Safe Mode making its removal complicated. For this step, you require access to another computer.
To protect your computer from file encryption ransomware such as this, use reputable antivirus and anti-spyware programs. As an extra protection method, you can use programs called HitmanPro.Alert and EasySync CryptoMonitor, which artificially implant group policy objects into the registry to block rogue programs such as Crptxxx ransomware.
HitmanPro.Alert CryptoGuard - detects encryption of files and neutralises any attempts without need for user-intervention:
Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware Beta uses advanced proactive technology that monitors ransomware activity and terminates it immediately - before reaching users' files:
- The best way to avoid damage from ransomware infections is to maintain regular up-to-date backups. More information on online backup solutions and data recovery software Here.
Other tools known to remove Crptxxx ransomware: