CryptoID ransomware removal instructions
What is CryptoID?
Ransomware-type programs are malicious programs developed by cyber criminals who use them to encrypt data (lock files) and make ransom demands. CryptoID is an example, which is also known as RICKROLL LOCKER. This is an offline version of another ransomware infection called Aurora. CryptoID was discovered by MalwareHunterTeam. It renames each encrypted file by adding the ".cryptoid" extension: "1.jpg" becomes "1.jpg.cryptoid". It also creates three ransom messages within separate text files: "CRYPTOID_BLOCKED.txt"; "CRYPTOID_HELP.txt", and; "CRYPTOID_MESSAGE.txt". They are stored in each folder that contains encrypted data. All of these ransom demand files contain identical text.
According to the ransom messages, cyber criminals have infected the computer with CryptoID, which resulted in encryption of all files. It is stated that data was encrypted using the RSA-2048 cryptography algorithm, and that using any 'decryption tools' might cause permanent data loss, thus making data recovery impossible. According to the criminals who developed CryptoID, only they should be contacted to obtain the correct tool for successful decryption. To achieve this, victims are urged to send an email to them via the firstname.lastname@example.org address. This must contain the "000000000.key" file, which should be found in the "%appdata%" folder. They state that data decrypt is not possible unless the "000000000.key" file is sent to them. To receive instructions on how to decrypt files, however, victims are required to pay $400 in Bitcoins using the Bitcoin wallet address provided. Generally, people who develop ransomware-type programs use cryptographies that are impossible to crack/decrypt without using tools provided by specific ransomware developers. Note that no cyber criminals should be trusted, since they usually ignore victims once their ransom demands are met. They send no decryption tools and people are scammed. Typically, the only free solution in these cases is to use a data backup and restore files from there. In this particular case, however, there is another solution: CryptoID's victims can decrypt data free of charge using a tool developed by Michael Gillespie, and it can be downloaded from here.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
There are many ransomware-programs online, however, most are similar. Some examples are Air, ETH, and Qwex. These programs usually have two main purposes: to encrypt data and blackmail users by making ransom demands. The main differences are cryptography algorithm used to encrypt data and ransom amount (cost of decryption tool). As mentioned above, CryptoID can be decrypted using a tool that can be downloaded free of charge, however, encrypted data cannot be decrypted without the involvement of specific ransomware developers. This is only possible if the ransomware is not fully developed or has bugs/flaws (this is rare). Therefore, maintain regular backups and store them on remote servers or unplugged storage devices. Do not store backups on the computer, since they will be encrypted with other data.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
It is unknown exact which method (or methods) are used to proliferate CryptoID, however, most cyber criminals use one of the following ways: software cracking tools, spam (email) campaigns, dubious software download sources, fake software updaters and Trojans. Software cracking tools allow users to avoid paying for software (or operating system) activation, however, cyber criminals use these tools to infect computers. They might install malicious programs rather than activating any software or OS. Spam campaigns are also used to proliferate ransomware. Cyber criminals send emails that contain malicious attachments, which are often Microsoft Office documents, archive files, PDF documents, executable files, and so on. These attachments cause computer infections only if opened - opening them results in download and installation of malicious programs. Dubious/untrustworthy sources such as freeware download or free file hosting websites, Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks (torrents, eMule etc.), third party software downloaders/installers are used to proliferate malware. Cyber criminals present their malicious programs as legitimate files, however, once downloaded and executed, they install ransomware or other infections. Using these software download sources, they often successfully trick people into installing malware. Fake software updaters can cause high-risk computer infections by downloading and installing malicious programs rather than the expected updates or by exploiting bugs/flaws of outdated software. Trojans are malicious programs that proliferate other programs of this type, however, to cause chain infections, a Trojan must first be installed.
How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?
There are several factor that can prevent computer infection with ransomware and other computer infections. Emails received from unknown/suspicious addresses and containing attachments should be handled with care. Do not open the attachment if the email seems irrelevant or suspicious. Even if the email is presented as 'important and legitimate'. The best option in these cases is to simply ignore them. Software should be downloaded using official websites or tools, and not third party downloaders and the other sources mentioned above. The same applies when updating software: this should be done using tools or implemented functions provided by official software developers. Software cracking tools should not be used, since they often install malicious software rather than free software activation. Furthermore, using these tools is committing a cyber crime. Have reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software installed. These tools often detect threats before they can do any damage to the operating system or files stored on the computer. If your computer is already infected with CryptoID, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in CryptoID ransomware text files (" CRYPTOID_BLOCKED.txt", "CRYPTOID_HELP.txt" and "CRYPTOID_MESSAGE.txt"):
#############> RICKROLL LOCKER <#############
SORRY! Your files are encrypted.
File contents are encrypted with random key.
Random key is encrypted with RSA public key (2048 bit).
We STRONGLY RECOMMEND you NOT to use any "decryption tools".
These tools can damage your data, making recover IMPOSSIBLE.
Also we recommend you not to contact data recovery companies.
They will just contact us, buy the key and sell it to you at a higher price.
If you want to decrypt your files, you have to get RSA private key.
In order to get private key, write here: email@example.com
Attach file is 000000000.key from %appdata% to email message,
without it we will not be able to decrypt your files
And pay $400 on BTC-wallet 1Ex6qfkopZ5wgbiCrxpq4cALF56yr8gLhX
If someone else offers you files restoring, ask him for test decryption.
Only we can successfully decrypt your files; knowing this can protect you from fraud.
You will receive instructions of what to do next.
#############> RICKROLL LOCKER <#############
Screenshot of files encrypted by CryptoID (".cryptoid" extension):
CryptoID ransomware removal:
Instant automatic removal of RICKROLL LOCKER 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 RICKROLL LOCKER virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is CryptoID?
- STEP 1. CryptoID virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. CryptoID 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 CryptoID 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 CryptoID 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 CryptoID 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 CryptoID 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 CryptoID 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 CryptoID ransomware: