Ox4444 ransomware removal instructions
What is Ox4444?
Ox4444 is a virus categorized as ransomware and is a new variant of high-risk malware called GlobeImposter. Once a computer is infected with Ox4444, this virus encrypts all (or most) files and makes them unusable. Furthermore, Ox4444 adds the ".Ox4444" extension to each encrypted file. For example, "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.Ox4444". This ransomware also places a "HOW_TO_BACK_FILES.txt" text file in folders that contain encrypted files.
The "HOW_TO_BACK_FILES.txt" text file is a ransom-demand message that contains information about how to contact Ox4444 developers (cyber criminals). According to the message, victims of the Ox4444 virus must contact these criminals via one of the email addresses (China.Helper@aol.com or China.Helper@india.com) provided and give their personal ID. Once a victim is identified, Ox4444 developers decrypt a number of files free of charge and then the cost of decryption of all other files is provided. Criminals use this free decryption as an evidence that they can be trusted. According to these people, victims will receive a decryption tool as soon as the ransom demands are met. They also inform people that they only they are able to decrypt the files, and urge their victims not attempt decryption manually. It is not known which cryptography algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) Ox4444 developers use to encrypt data, however, there is no tool capable of cracking this encryption free of charge. Do not contact cyber criminals - they cannot be trusted. They often ignore victims even when payments are made. The only way to retrieve files free of charge is to use an existing backup.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
Most ransomware-type viruses are very similar. Some examples of other viruses of this type are Dharma-tron, Maria, Xxxxx, Sicck, and Gdb. Generally, these viruses encrypt files and make ransom demands. Most common variables are the cryptography algorithm used and sum of money (ransom) required for decryption. Generally, manual decryption is impossible, unless the virus contains bugs, flaws, or is not fully developed. In some cases, people are encouraged to contact cyber criminals. Therefore, maintain regular backups and keep them on a remote server or unplugged storage device. If not, the ransomware virus might encrypt backups with other data.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
It is difficult to determine the exact reason for this infection, however, there are several common that systems are infected with ransomware. Ransomware-type viruses usually are proliferated using spam email campaigns, untrustworthy third party software download sources, trojans and fake updaters. Spam campaigns proliferate these (and other) viruses by presenting malicious email attachments as legitimate. The purpose of spam campaigns is to trick people into opening malicious attachments, which are usually Microsoft Office documents (Word, Excel etc), executable files (.exe), archive files (RAR and similar), and so on. Once opened, attachments are given permission to download/install malware and infect computers. Various third party download sources such as peer-to-peer networks, freeware download websites, free file hosting websites, torrents, and so on are often used to present malicious executables as legitimate files. These sources are used to trick people into installing malware and viruses. Trojans proliferate other viruses. In summary, if a trojan is installed, it will probably infect computers with other viruses. Fake software updaters usually infect systems by exploiting outdated software bugs and flaws, or simply downloading malware rather than the promised updates.
|Threat Type||Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker|
|Symptoms||Can't open files stored on your computer, previously functional files now have a different extension, for example my.docx.locked. A ransom demanding message is displayed on your desktop. Cyber criminals are asking to pay a ransom (usually in bitcoins) to unlock your files.|
|Distribution methods||Infected email attachments (macros), torrent websites, malicious ads.|
|Damage||All files are encrypted and cannot be opened without paying a ransom. Additional password stealing trojans and malware infections can be installed together with a ransomware infection.|
To eliminate Ox4444 virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?
Take precautions when dealing with emails. Avoid opening attachments or links that are presented in emails sent from unknown/suspicious addresses. If you suspect that an email is irrelevant, do not open the included attachment or click any links. Download software using direct links, trustworthy, and official channels only. Avoid using third party downloaders, installers. These sources are often used to proliferate rogue applications that might cause computer infections or other problems. Update software using tools or implemented functions that are provided by official software developers. Do not use third party updaters. Finally, have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and keep it enabled at all times. This software helps to prevent viruses from being proliferated and causing any harm. If your computer is already infected with Ox4444, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in Ox4444 ransomware text file :
YOUR FILES ARE ENCRYPTED !!!
TO DECRYPT, FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS:
To recover data you need decrypt tool.
To get the decrypt tool you should:
1.In the letter include your personal ID! Send me this ID in your first email to me!
2.We can give you free test for decrypt few files (NOT VALUE) and assign the price for decryption all files!
3.After we send you instruction how to pay for decrypt tool and after payment you will receive a decryption tool!
4.We can decrypt few files in quality the evidence that we have the decoder.
DO NOT TRY TO DO SOMETHING WITH YOUR FILES BY YOURSELF YOU WILL BRAKE YOUR DATA !!! ONLY WE ARE CAN HELP YOU! CONTACT US:
ATTENTION !!! THIS IS YOUR PERSONAL ID WICH YOU HAVE TO SEND IN FIRST LETTER:
Screenshot of files encrypted by Ox4444 (".Ox4444" extension):
Ox4444 ransomware removal:
Instant automatic removal of Ox4444 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 Ox4444 virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is Ox4444?
- STEP 1. Ox4444 virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. Ox4444 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 Ox4444 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 Ox4444 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 Ox4444 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 Ox4444 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 Ox4444 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.
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:
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 Ox4444 ransomware: