CryptoViki ransomware removal instructions
What is CryptoViki?
CryptoViki is a ransomware-type virus discovered by malware security researcher, Marcelo Rivero. Once infiltrated, CryptoViki encrypts various data and appends the ".viki" extension to the names of all compromised files. For instance, "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.viki". Following successful encryption, CryptoViki changes the desktop wallpaper and creates a text file ("readme.txt"), placing it in each folder containing encrypted files.
The text file contains a message in Russian and English, stating that the files are encrypted and that the victim must contact the criminals responsible via an email address ("firstname.lastname@example.org") to restore compromised data. It is currently unknown whether CryptoViki uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography, however, in any case, decryption without a unique key is impossible. Cyber criminals store this key on a remote server and victims are encouraged to pay a ransom to receive it. The cost is currently unconfirmed, however, ransomware developers usually demand the equivalent of between $500 and $1500 in Bitcoins. Despite these demands, never attempt to contact these people or pay any ransom. Research shows that cyber criminals often ignore victims once payments are submitted and there is a high probability that paying will not deliver any positive result - you will probably be scammed. In addition, you will support cyber criminals' malicious businesses. Unfortunately, there are no tools capable of restoring files encrypted by CryptoViki and the only solution is to restore your files/system from a backup.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
CryptoViki has very similar characteristics to GruxEx, DarkoderCrypt0r, UIWIX, ThunderCrypt, and dozens of other ransomware-type viruses. All encrypt files and make ransoms. The only major differences are size of ransom and type of encryption algorithm (symmetric/asymmetric) used. Cyber criminals proliferate malware by employing spam emails (malicious attachments), third party software download sources (freeware download websites, free file hosting websites, peer-to-peer networks, etc.), fake software update tools, and trojans. Therefore, never open files received from suspicious emails or download software from unofficial sources. Furthermore, keep your installed applications up-to-date and use a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite. Bear in mind, however, that criminals proliferate malware via fake software updaters. Therefore, using third party tools to update installed applications is very risky. The key to computer safety is caution.
Message presented within CryptoViki text file ("readme.txt"):
Ваши файлы были зашифрованы.
Чтобы расшифровать их, Вам необходимо написать письмо
на электронный адрес email@example.com .
Далее вы получите все необходимые инструкции.
Попытки расшифровать самостоятельно не приведут ни к чему, кроме безвозвратной потере информации.
Если вы всё же хотите попытаться, то предварительно сделайте резервные копии файлов, иначе в случае их
изменения расшифровка станет невозможной ни при каких условиях.
Your files have been encrypted.
To decrypt them, You need to write a letter
to the email address firstname.lastname@example.org .
Next, you will receive all necessary instructions.
Attempts to decipher alone will not lead to anything other than irretrievable loss of information.
If you still want to try, make a backup of the files, or in the case they change the decryption will be
impossible under any circumstances.
Screenshot of CryptoViki desktop wallpaper:
Screenshot of files encrypted by CryptoViki ransomware (".viki" extension):
CryptoViki ransomware removal:
- What is CryptoViki?
- STEP 1. CryptoViki virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki 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 CryptoViki ransomware: