ATAWARE ransomware removal instructions
What is ATAWARE?
Discovered by Securityinbits, ATAWARE is a high-risk virus, a ransomware-type program designed to encrypt files stored on victims' computers and keep them unusable until a ransom is paid. The program adds the ".ATANUR" extension to each encrypted file. For example, "1.jpg" becomes "1.jpg.ATANUR". Once a computer is infected and files are encrypted, ATAWARE displays a ransom message in a pop-up window. It also creates the "Decryptor.exe" file and places it on the Desktop.
The pop-up window states that all data was encrypted and can no longer be accessed. Cyber criminals behind this ransomware target random users of ATAWARE to encrypt their files. They state that the cost of decryption is "500 points" (of an unknown currency), however, they provide no details about how to contact the developers or pay. Therefore, it is likely that this ransomware is still in development. Clicking the "Decrypt" button in the pop-up window opens another pop-up window suggesting that the user waits until the decryptor finishes its job. This, however, does not seem to be working. This is the same situation with the "Decryptor.exe" file placed on the Desktop - it does not work. Ransomware-type programs that are unfinished are sometimes possible to 'crack' without having to contact cyber criminals or pay any ransom, however, there is no tool capable of file decryption encrypted by ATAWARE (at least not at the moment). Frequently, only cyber criminals have the correct decryption tools. In this case, we recommend that you use a data backup and restore all files from there.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
Ransomware-type programs generally perform similar operations. They encrypt data and display ransom messages. Some other examples include MegaLocker, Langolier, and Etols. Main differences between these programs are usually cost of decryption and cryptography algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) used for encryption. Unfortunately, most encryptions are impossible to decrypt without using specific decryption tools. Typically, these can only be provided by cyber criminals. Free decryption is possible only if the ransomware is not complete, has bugs/flaws, and so on (these cases are rare). Therefore, maintain regular backups and keep them stored on remote servers or unplugged/disconnected storage devices.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
|Threat Type||Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker.|
|Encrypted Files Extension||.ATANUR|
|Ransom Demanding Message||Pop-up window.|
|Ransom Amount||500 points (currency is unknown).|
|Detection Names (ATAPIUpdtr.bin)||Avast (Win64:Trojan-gen), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.31881027), ESET-NOD32 (a variant of Win64/Filecoder.ATAWARE.A), Kaspersky (Trojan.Win32.Khalesi.oty), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Symptoms||Cannot open files stored on your computer, previously functional files now have a different extension (for example, my.docx.locked). A ransom demand message is displayed on your desktop. Cyber criminals demand payment of a ransom (usually in Bitcoins) to unlock your files.|
|Additional Information||At time of research, ATAWARE was not fully developed, since it did not provide any payment information and its decrypt function was not working.|
|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 ATAWARE virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?
Do not open attachments that are presented in emails received from unknown, suspicious addresses. Files that are attached to irrelevant emails (even if they are presented as 'important' or 'official') should not be opened. Update installed software (or operating systems) using implemented functions or tools provided by official developers only. Any other (third party) tools cannot be trusted. Furthermore, download all software from official websites and using direct links. Do not use other, dubious sources. Use of software cracking tools is illegal and often leads to serious computer infections. Having reputable anti-spyware or anti-virus software installed and keeping it enabled is important. If your computer is already infected with ATAWARE, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in ATAWARE ransomware pop-up window:
Your data were encrypted and you don't have an access to your assets anymore.
You may attempt to decrypt your files, however,it may be just waste of your time.
--Who are you?--
We are just random people.
--How can I contact you?--
Unfortunately you can't contact us.We do not provide customer service.
--How can I restore my files?--
You may kindly ask for a decryption key,but it will cost you 500 points.
--If I pay, do you guarantee to send me the decryption key?--
We always guarantee high quality services.
Screenshot of ATAWARE pop-up window after clicking the "Decrypt" button:
Screenshot of files encrypted by ATAWARE (".ATANUR" extension):
ATAWARE ransomware removal:
Instant automatic removal of ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE virus. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is ATAWARE?
- STEP 1. ATAWARE virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE 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 ATAWARE ransomware: