ITLOCK Ransomware

Also Known As: ITLOCK virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Severe

ITLOCK ransomware removal instructions

What is ITLOCK?

ITLOCK ransomware was discovered by Cyber Security. This is a malicious program, a new version of Matrix ransomware that is designed by cyber criminals to encrypt computer data and blackmail victims by demanding ransom payments. During the encryption process, ITLOCK opens two Command Prompt windows. Once data is encrypted, each affected file is renamed by changing the filename: an email address, two random strings and the extension are merged to form an extension with the following format: ".ITLOCK" ("[rescompany19@qq.com].[random_string]-[random_string].ITLOCK"). Renamed files might appear something like this: "[rescompany19@qq.com].8SLV8GMp-hjqo9v3s.ITLOCK". ITLOCK also creates a ransom message in the "!README_ITLOCK!.rtf" file.

Within the "!README_ITLOCK!.rtf" ransom message, cyber criminals state that they have used ITLOCK ransomware to encrypt all files stored on the victims's computer using both AES-128 and RSA-2048 cryptography algorithms. Therefore, there are two possibilities: 1) the data was encrypted twice using both cryptographies, or; 2) the first cryptography was used to encrypt data and the second to encrypt the decryption key generated by the first algorithm. Whatever the case, to decrypt data, two decryption keys are required. Cyber criminals state that to receive them, victims must make contact via the rescompany19@qq.com, rescompany19@yahoo.com, or rescompany19@cock.li email addresses. They recommend that contact be made using all three email addresses. Victims must also include the assigned ID as the subject of the email. Furthermore, ITLOCK's developers recommend they users attach three encrypted files for free decryption as 'proof' that they have a valid decryption tool. The cost of this tool is not stated, however, they will probably give this once they are contacted. The ransom message includes a warning that any attempts to decrypt data using other software will cause permanent data loss. Although their tool is probably the only method capable of decryption, you are advised never to contact them or pay pay any money. Most cyber criminals ignore victims after they receive ransom payments (usually made in a cryptocurrency). Unfortunately, there are no other tools capable of decryption free of charge. Therefore, if you have a data backup that was created before the infection, we recommend that you restore files from there.

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

ITLOCK decrypt instructions

Most ransomware-type programs are used to encrypt data and blackmail people (by making ransom demands) who have infected computers. Common differences are cost of decryption tool and cryptography algorithm used to encrypt data. Examples of other programs of this type include Gorgon, GEFEST 3.0, and .happy. Unfortunately, most malicious programs of this type encrypt data - decryption is then impossible without the involvement of cyber criminals. To avoid data loss, maintain regular backups and store them on a remote server or unplugged storage device. 

How did ransomware infect my computer?

It is not known which method is used to proliferate ITLOCK ransomware, however, most cyber criminals spread these (and other) malicious programs using spam campaigns, Trojans, unofficial (dubious) software download sources, software cracking tools and fake software updaters. Ransomware developers use spam campaigns to proliferate ransomware (and other computer infections) by sending emails that contain malicious attachments. These could be Microsoft Office documents (Word, Excel, and so on), PDF files, archive files (such as ZIP and RAR), executables, and other files. The purpose of these campaigns is to trick people into downloading and opening these attachments, which results in installation of various high-risk computer infections. Trojans cause chain infections: these malicious programs proliferate other infections, however, they must first be installed. Untrustworthy, dubious software download sources such as freeware download or free file hosting websites, peer-to-peer networks such as torrents, eMule etc., and third party downloaders are used to proliferate malicious programs by presenting them as legitimate. By downloading and installing them, many people cause computer infections. Software cracking tools supposedly help users to bypass software activation, however, some of these tools proliferate infections. The same applies to fake software updaters: they infect systems by downloading malicious software rather than the expected updates or by exploiting bugs/flaws of outdated software.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?

To prevent operating systems from being infected by ransomware or other threats, download, install, update software, and browse the web, with care. Do not use the third party software downloaders/installers and tools mentioned earlier. Download software using official and trustworthy websites (or other channels) and direct links. Update software using implemented functions or tools provided by official software developers. Do not open files attached to emails (or website links) received from unknown (or suspicious) email addresses without studying these emails first. If the email seems irrelevant, ignore it. Avoid using software cracking tools, since this is classed as a cyber crime and using them might lead to computer infections. Rather than activating software (or operating systems), these tools might install malicious programs. Have reputable anti-spyware/anti-virus software installed (and enabled). These programs detect and eliminate various computer infections before they do any damage. If your computer is already infected with ITLOCK, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in ITLOCK ransomware "!README_ITLOCK!.rtf" file:

HOW TO RECOVER YOUR FILES INSTRUCTION
ATENTION!!!
We are realy sorry to inform you that ALL YOUR FILES WERE ENCRYPTED
by our automatic software. It became possible because of bad server security.
ATENTION!!!
Please don't worry, we can help you to RESTORE your server to original
state and decrypt all your files quickly and safely!

INFORMATION!!!
Files are not broken!!!
Files were encrypted with AES-128+RSA-2048 crypto algorithms.
There is no way to decrypt your files without unique decryption key and special software. Your unique decryption key is securely stored on our server.
* Please note that all the attempts to recover your files by yourself or using third party tools will result only in irrevocable loss of your data!
* Please note that you can recover files only with your unique decryption key, which stored on our server.

HOW TO RECOVER FILES???
Please write us to the e-mail (write on English or use professional translator):
rescompany19@qq.com
rescompany19@yahoo.com
rescompany19@cock.li
You have to send your message on each of our 3 emails due to the fact that the message may not reach their intended recipient for a variety of reasons!

In subject line write your personal ID:
47620CE6C1171873
We recommed you to attach 3 encrypted files to your message. We will demonstrate that we can recover your files.
* Please note that files must not contain any valuable information and their total size must be less than 5Mb.

OUR ADVICE!!!

Please be sure that we will find common languge. We will restore all the data and give you recommedations how to configure the protection of your server.

Screenshot of Command Prompt windows opened by ITLOCK during encryption:

Command Prompt windows opened by ITLOCK ransomware

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

Files encrypted by ITLOCK

ITLOCK ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK, 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 ITLOCK 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 ITLOCK ransomware: