CryptoLite Ransomware

Also Known As: CryptoLite virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

CryptoLite ransomware removal instructions

What is CryptoLite?

Discovered by MalwareHunterTeam, CryptoLite is a ransomware-type virus that stealthily infiltrates the system and encrypts most stored files, thereby making them unusable. In doing so, CryptoLite appends filenames with the ".encrypted" extension (e.g., "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.encrypted"). An identical extension is used by many other ransomware-type viruses, such as GenoCheats, WantMoney, and MoneroPay, however, this does not necessarily mean that these viruses are related. Immediately after encryption, CryptoLite opens a pop-up window containing a ransom-demand message.

The pop-up contains a message claiming that data is encrypted and that victims must pay a ransom to restore it. It is currently unknown whether CryptoLite uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography - this information is not provided, however, ransomware certainly generates a unique key for each victim, which is necessary to restore data. Cyber criminals store all keys on a remote server, allowing them to blackmail victims. To receive their keys, victims must pay a ransom of .5 Bitcoin (currently equivalent to ~$3080). This cost of decryption is quite large - ransomware developers typically demand $500-1500 in Bitcoins or another cryptocurrency. Note that cyber criminals are likely to ignore victims, once payments are submitted. Therefore, paying typically gives no positive result and users are scammed. Therefore, never agree to submit any payments or contact these people. Unfortunately, there are currently no tools capable of file decryption free of charge. There is only one solution: to restore everything from a backup.

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

CryptoLite decrypt instructions

There are dozens of ransomware-type viruses that have similar characteristics to CryptoLite. For example, Evil Locker, BitPaymer, LittleFinger, Donut, and RedEye. Although the developers are different, these viruses have identical behavior - all encrypt files and demand payments. Research shows that, in most cases, the size of ransom and type of cryptography used are the only major differences. Most ransomware use RSA, AES, and other algorithms that generate unique decryption keys. Therefore, unless the virus is not fully developed or has certain bugs/flaws (the key is hard-coded, stored locally or similar), decryption is impossible. These viruses present a strong case for maintaining regular data backups, however, they must be stored on a remote server or unplugged storage device, otherwise malware encrypts them together with regular data.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware is proliferated in various ways, however, the most popular five are: 1) spam emails; 2) trojans; 3) fake software update tools; 4) peer-to-peer [P2P] networks, and; 5) third party software download sources. Spam emails are delivered with malicious email attachments, such as MS Office documents, JavaScript files, and similar. Once opened, these files stealthily download and install malware. Trojans open "backdoors" for other viruses to infiltrate the system. Fake updaters infect the system by exploiting outdated software bugs/flaws or simply downloading and installing viruses rather than updates. Unofficial download sources (freeware download websites, free file hosting sites, etc.) and P2P networks (eMule, torrents, and so on) proliferate viruses by presenting them as legitimate programs. In this way, users are tricked into downloading and installing malware. In summary, the main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and careless behavior.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?

To prevent PUP infiltration, be very cautious when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing/updating software. Carefully analyze each received email attachment. Files that seem irrelevant or have been received from unrecognizable email addresses should not be opened. Furthermore, you are advised to download your programs from official sources only, using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue apps, and thus should never be used. Keep installed programs up-to-date using implemented features or tools provided by the official developer only. Having a legitimate anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running is also paramount. The key to computer safety is caution. If your computer is already infected with CryptoLite, we recommend running a scan with Reimage Repair Tool for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in CryptoLite ransomware pop-up window:

ALL YOUR FILES HAVE BEEN ENCRYPTED!!!
there's no way to decrypt these files without the decryption key.
To retrieve the decryption key a payment of 0.5 BC will beed to be paid.
INSTRUCTIONS:
* Purchase the bitcoins from localbitcoins.com
* Transfer the bitcoins to blockchain.info/Wallet
* Add a message to the transaction with the following format:
{MAC-ADDRESS_EMAIL}Example: 00:A0:C9:14:C8:29_pwned@gmail.com
Following payment the key will be emailed to you after confirmation.
IF YOU MESS UP YOUR MESSAGE FORMAT, YOU WILL NOT RECEIVE THE KEY!
BitCoin Address: 1aa5cmqmvQq8YQTEqcTmW7dfBNuFwgdCD/p>

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

Files encrypted by CryptoLite

CryptoLite ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of CryptoLite virus: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Reimage Repair is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of CryptoLite virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Reimage Repair 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 Reimage Repair.

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 CryptoLite 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 CryptoLite 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 CryptoLite 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 CryptoLite 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 CryptoLite, 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 CryptoLite 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 CryptoLite ransomware: