..docx Ransomware

Also Known As: ..docx virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

..docx ransomware removal instructions

What is ..docx?

..docx is a new variant of a high-risk ransomware infection called GlobeImposter. It is identical to other ransomware with a similar name - ..doc. Once infiltrated, ..docx encrypts most stored files and adds the "..docx" extension to the name of each file. From this point, files become unusable. Following successful encryption, ..docx places a copy of the "READ__ME.html" file in every existing folder.

The new HTML file contains a message informing victims of the encryption and instructing them what to do next. To restore encrypted data, users must visit a Tor website and follow the instructions. Although it is currently unconfirmed whether ..docx uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography, it is certain that decryption requires a unique key. Criminals (developers of ..docx) hide this key on a remote server, allowing them to make ransom demands - users must pay for release of the key. The cost is unknown, however, in most cases it fluctuates between $500 and $1500 in Bitcoins, or another cryptocurrency. Users are also permitted to send developers a single selected file, which is decrypted free of charge and returned to the victim. In doing so, criminals supposedly "guarantee" that decryption is possible. Despite these threats and demands, cyber criminals can never be trusted. Research shows that victims are often ignored once they submit payments. Paying typically gives no positive result and users are scammed. You are advised to ignore all requests to contact these people and not to pay any ransom. Unfortunately, there are no tools capable of restoring files compromised by ..docx ransomware and you can only restore everything from a backup.

Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:

..docx decrypt instructions

There are dozens of ransomware-type viruses similar to ..docx. The list of examples includes (but is not limited to) InsaneCrypt, Velso, Lime, GHOST ARMY, and SERVER. Although these viruses are developed by different cyber criminals, they have identical behavior - all encrypt data and make ransom demands. In most cases, there are just two major differences: 1) size of ransom, and; 2) type of encryption algorithm used. Research shows that, unfortunately, most of these viruses employ algorithms that generate unique decryption keys. Therefore, unless the malware is still in development or has certain bugs/flaws (e.g., the key is stored locally, is hard-coded, or similar), restoring files manually, without involvement of the developers (not recommended) is impossible. Malware such as ..docx presents a strong case for maintaining regular data backups, however, keep backup files on an external server (e.g., Cloud) or unplugged external storage. If not, backups are encrypted along with other regular files.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware-type viruses are often proliferated using trojans, fake software updaters, spam emails (malicious attachments), and third party software download sources (peer-to-peer [P2P] networks, freeware download websites, free file hosting websites, and so on). Trojans are very simple - they are designed to open "backdoors" for high-risk malware to infiltrate the system. Fake updaters infect the system by exploiting outdated software bugs/flaws, or downloading/installing malware rather than the update. Infectious attachments typically come in the format of JavaScript files or MS Office documents. By opening these files, users execute scripts that stealthily download and install malware. Unofficial download sources often present malicious executables as legitimate software. Therefore, users are often tricked into downloading and installing malware. Essentially, the main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and careless behavior.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?

The key to computer safety is caution. Therefore, pay close attention when browsing the Internet. Have a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running. Keep all installed applications up-to-date, but since criminals proliferate malware with fake updaters, use implemented update features or tools provided only by official developer. With regard to software, your applications should be downloaded only from official/certified sources using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue programs. Therefore, these tools should not be used. Never open files received from suspicious email addresses - these emails should be deleted without reading. The key to computer safety is caution.

Text presented in ..docx ransomware HTML file ("READ__ME.html"):

Your files are Encrypted!
For data recovery needs decryptor.
How to buy decryptor:
1. Download "Tor Browser" from https://www.torproject.org/ and install it.
2. Open this file READ__ME.html In the "Tor Browser" and click button:

DECRYPTOR
Note! This button is available via "Tor Browser" only.
If your personal page not working:
Open this link in the TOP browser: http://n224ezvhg4sgyamb.onion/sup.php

Screenshot of ..docx website:

..docx website

Text presented within this website:

SUPPORT
Free decryption as guarantee.
Before paying you can send us 1 file for free decryption.

1. Install the TOR Browser from this link: https://www.torproject.org/projects/torbrowser.html.en

To send a message or file use this link. (IN TOR Browser!!!)

create ticket here: http://n224ezvhg4sgyamb.onion/open.php

Screenshot of files encrypted by ..docx ("..docx" extension):

Files encrypted by ..docx

..docx ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of ..docx virus: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of ..docx virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Spyhunter By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

Quick menu:

Step 1

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.

Safe Mode with Networking

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.

Windows 8 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.

windows 10 safe mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Step 2

Log in to the account infected with the ..docx 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.

Boot your computer in Safe Mode with Command Prompt

2. When Command Prompt mode loads, enter the following line: cd restore and press ENTER.

system restore using command prompt type cd restore

3. Next, type this line: rstrui.exe and press ENTER.

system restore using command prompt rstrui.exe

4. In the opened window, click "Next".

restore system files and settings

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 ..docx ransomware virus infiltrating your PC).

select a restore point

6. In the opened window, click "Yes".

run system restore

7. After restoring your computer to a previous date, download and scan your PC with recommended malware removal software to eliminate any remaining ..docx 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 ..docx 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.

Restoring files encrypted by CryptoDefense

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 regain control of the files encrypted by ..docx, you can also try using a program called Shadow Explorer. More information on how to use this program is available here.

shadow explorer screenshot

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 ..docx ransomware.

Note that Windows 10 Fall Creators Update includes a "Controlled Folder Access" feature that blocks ransomware attempts to encrypt your files. By default, this feature automatically protects files stored in the Documents, Pictures, Videos, Music, Favorites as well as Desktop folders.

Controll Folder Access

Windows 10 users should install this update to protect their data from ransomware attacks. Here is more information on how to get this update and add an additional protection layer from ransomware infections.

HitmanPro.Alert CryptoGuard - detects encryption of files and neutralises any attempts without need for user-intervention:

hitmanproalert ransomware prevention application

Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware Beta uses advanced proactive technology that monitors ransomware activity and terminates it immediately - before reaching users' files:

malwarebytes anti-ransomware

  • 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 ..docx ransomware: