GANDCRAB V5.0.3 Ransomware

Also Known As: GANDCRAB V5.0.3 virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Severe

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 ransomware removal instructions

What is GANDCRAB V5.0.3?

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 is an updated version of a high-risk ransomware - GandCrab 5.0.2. After successfully infiltrating the system, GANDCRAB V5.0.3 encrypts most stored files and appends filenames with the ".zkffjmip" extension. For instance, "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.zkffjmip". Encrypted data instantly becomes unusable. As well as compromising files, GANDCRAB V5.0.3 also changes the desktop wallpaper and places a copy of a text file named "ZKFFJMIP-DECRYPT.txt" in every existing folder.

The new desktop wallpaper contains a short message stating that data is compromised and that victims must read the "ZKFFJMIP-DECRYPT.txt" file. This text file also delivers a message stating that data is encrypted and can only be restored using a unique key. Unfortunately, this information is accurate. Although it is currently unknown whether GANDCRAB V5.0.3 uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography, each victim receives a unique decryption key necessary to restore data. Cyber criminals hide all keys on a remote server, and thus victims must pay ransoms for their release. To achieve this, they must visit GANDCRAB V5.0.3's website and follow the instructions. The website states that the key is equivalent to a value of $800 and this must be paid in Bitcoins. The website also contains a countdown timer. Once it reaches zero, the cost is doubled. In any case, you should never trust cyber criminals or submit any payments. Research shows that ransomware developers are very likely to ignore victims, once payments are submitted. Therefore, paying usually gives no result and users are scammed. Ignore all requests to submit payments. Unfortunately there are no tools capable of cracking GANDCRAB V5.0.3 encryption and restoring data free of charge. You can only restore everything from a backup.

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

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 decrypt instructions

The internet is full of ransomware-type viruses that share similarities with GANDCRAB V5.0.3 including Garrantydecrypt, Koolova, and Dharma-Btc. These are just some examples from many. Although they have different developers, these viruses have identical behavior - they encrypt data and make ransom demands. The only major differences are size of ransom and type of encryption algorithm used. Unfortunately, most use cryptography (e.g., AES, RSA, etc.) that generates unique decryption keys. Therefore, it is virtually impossible to decrypt data without involvement of developers (contacting these people is not recommended). The only solutions are ransomware not being fully developed or having certain bugs/flaws (for instance, the key is hard-coded, stored locally, and so on).

How did ransomware infect my computer?

There are many ways to proliferate ransomware, however, the most common tools/methods are trojans, fake software updaters, unofficial download sources, and spam email campaigns. Trojans cause so-called "chain infections" - one virus proliferates another. Fake update tools infect systems in two ways: by exploiting old software bugs/flaws or simply downloading and installing malware rather than promised updates. Third party download sources (free file hosting websites, freeware download websites, peer-to-peer [P2P] networks, etc.) present malicious executables as legitimate software, thus tricking users into downloading and installing malware. Spam campaigns proliferate malicious attachments that, once opened, infiltrate viruses into the system.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?

Lack of knowledge and careless behavior are the main reasons for computer infections. Caution is the key to safety. Therefore, pay attention when downloading/installing/updating software and browsing the internet. Keep installed applications up-to-date, however, this should be achieved through implemented features or tools provided by the official developer. In addition, download apps from official sources only, using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue programs, and thus these tools should never be used. Think twice before opening email attachments. Files that are irrelevant/unexpected and those received from suspicious/unrecognizable email addresses should never be opened. Having a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running is also paramount. If your computer is already infected with GANDCRAB V5.0.3, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in GANDCRAB V5.0.3 ransomware text file :

---=GANDCRAB V5.0.3=---
***********************UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES DO NOT DELETE THIS FILE, UNTIL ALL YOUR DATA IS RECOVERED***********************

*****FAILING TO DO SO, WILL RESULT IN YOUR SYSTEM CORRUPTION, IF THERE WILL BE DECRYPTION ERRORS*****
Attention!
All your files, documents, photos, databases and other important files are encrypted and have the extension: .ZKFFJMIP
The only method of recovering files is to purchase an unique private key. Only we can give you this key and only we can recover your files.
The server with your key is in a closed network TOR. You can get there by the following ways:
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

| 0. Download Tor browser - hxxps://www.torproject.org/

| 1. Install Tor browser
| 2. Open Tor Browser
| 3. Open link in TOR browser: hxxp://gandcrabmfe6mnef.onion/113737081e857d00
| 4. Follow the instructions on this page

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On our page you will see instructions on payment and get the opportunity to decrypt 1 file for free.
ATTENTION!
IN ORDER TO PREVENT DATA DAMAGE:

* DO NOT MODIFY ENCRYPTED FILES
* DO NOT CHANGE DATA BELOW

---BEGIN GANDCRAB KEY---
---END GANDCRAB KEY---

---BEGIN PC DATA---
---END PC DATA---

Screenshot of GANDCRAB V5.0.3 desktop wallpaper:

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 wallpaper

Screenshot of GANDCRAB V5.0.3 website:

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 website

Text presented within this site:

We are sorry, but your files have been encrypted!
Don't worry, we can help you to return all of your files!
Files decryptor's price is 800 USD
If payment isn't made until 2018-03-08 10:45:13 UTC the cost of decrypting files will be doubled
Amount was doubled!
What the matter?
Your computer has been infected with GandCrab Ransomware. Your files have been encrypted and you can't decrypt it by yourself.
In the network, you can probably find decryptors and third-party software, but it won't help you and it only can make your files undecryptable
What can I do to get my files back?
You should buy GandCrab Decryptor. This software will help you to decrypt all of your encrypted files and remove GandCrab Ransomware from your PC.
Current price: $800.00. As payment, you need cryptocurrency DASH or Bitcoin
What guarantees can you give to me?
You can use test decryption and decrypt 1 file for free
What is cryptocurrency and how can I purchase GandCrab Decryptor?
You can read more details about cryptocurrency at Google or here.
As payment, you have to buy DASH or Bitcoin using a credit card, and send coins to our address.
How can I pay to you?
You have to buy Bitcoin or DASH using a credit card. Links to services where you can do it: Dash exchanges list, Bitcoin exchanges list
After it, go to our payment page Buy GandCrab Decryptor, choose your payment method and follow the instructions

Screenshot of files encrypted by GANDCRAB V5.0.3 (".zkffjmip" extension):

Files encrypted by GANDCRAB V5.0.3

Update 25 October, 2018 - GANDCRAB developers have recently leaked almost one thousand decryption keys that allow victims from Syria to decrypt data free of charge. BitDefender immediately took advantage and released a decryption tool that could help these victims to easily decrypt their data. After the initial release, however, BitDefender teamed up with Europol and a number of police departments from various countries (such as Romania, Netherlands, United States, and many more). While working together, they discovered a GANDCRAB flaw that can be exploited to decrypt data free of charge. The tool is universal (i.e., it can help victims from across the world) and is compatible with 1st, 4th, and 5th versions of GANDCRAB. At time of writing, this decryption tool is being updated and will eventually be able to decrypt data compromised by 2nd and 3rd versions of GANDCRAB. You can find more information in this article and you can download the decrypter by clicking this link.

The decryption tool developed by BitDefender, Europol, and a number of police departments, has the following appearance:

GANDCRAB ransomware decrypter by BitDefender, Europol and many police departments

GANDCRAB V5.0.3 ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3, 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 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 GANDCRAB V5.0.3 ransomware: