Todarius Ransomware

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

Todarius ransomware removal instructions

What is Todarius?

Todarius is a ransomware-type virus discovered by Michael Gillespie. This infection belongs to the Djvu ransomware family and is designed to compromise (encrypt) most stored files, thereby making them unusable. Additionally, Todarius appends each filename with the ".todarius" extension (e.g., "sample.jpg" is renamed to "sample.jpg.todarius"). Once encryption is complete, Todarius places a text file ("_readme.txt") in every existing folder.

The ransom-demand message delivered by Todarius's text file is identical to those delivered by other ransomware infections from the Djvu family. It essentially states that data is encrypted and can only be restored using a unique decryption key/tool. Unfortunately, this information is accurate. The  type of cryptography algorithm Todarius uses is currently unknown, however, a unique decryption key is generated individually for each victim. Recovery without the key is impossible. Furthermore, victims do not have access to their keys, since all are hidden on a remote server controlled by Todarius's developers. To receive a key and restore data, each victim must pay a ransom of $980. To receive payment instructions, victims must first contact cyber criminals via an email/telegram. The message also states that victims who make contact within 72 hours after encryption will receive a 50% discount (the cost will drop to $490). Regardless of the cost, do not pay. Cyber criminals often ignore victims, once payments are submitted. Therefore, paying usually gives no positive result and users are scammed. You should never contact these people and certainly so not send any money. Unfortunately, there are no tools capable of cracking Todarius's encryption and restoring data free of charge. The only solution is to restore everything from a backup.

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

Todarius decrypt instructions

The internet is full of ransomware infections that have very similar characteristics. Todarius is no exception - it is regular ransomware that shares many similarities with BellevueCollegeEncryptorGANDCRAB 5.3Robbinhood, and dozens of other ransomware-type viruses. Infections of this type are typically designed to compromise stored files (typically, by encryption) and make ransom demands. These infections typically employ algorithms that generate unique decryption keys. Therefore, unless the virus is still in development or has certain bugs/flaws, restoring data manually without involvement of developers (contacting these people is not recommended) is impossible. You can avoid data loss by maintaining regular backups, however, they should be stored on an unplugged storage device (e.g., external hard drive, Flash drive, etc.) or a remote server (e.g., Cloud), since locally stored backups are compromised with regular data.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

It is currently unconfirmed exactly how developers proliferate Todarius, however, infections of this type are usually distributed using the following tools/methods: third party software download sources, spam email campaigns, fake software updaters/cracks, and trojans. Freeware download websites, free file hosting sites, peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, and other unofficial download sources present malware as legitimate software. In this way, users are tricked into downloading and installing malware manually. Cyber criminals use spam email campaigns to proliferate various malicious files. They send hundreds of thousands of emails with deceptive messages encouraging users to open attached files/download links (which are typically presented as invoices, receipts, documents, etc.). Opening them results in system infection. Fake update tools are used to proliferate malware by exploiting outdated software bugs/flaws or simply downloading and installing malware rather than updates. Cracks also work in a similar manner. The idea behind software cracking tools is to activate paid software free of charge, however, since criminals often employ them to proliferate malware, users are much more likely to infect their computers than gain access to paid features. Finally, trojans are malicious applications that stealthily infiltrate computers and inject them with additional malware.

Threat Summary:
Name Todarius virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker.
Encrypted Files Extension .todarius
Ransom Demanding Message _readme.txt text file
Ransom Amount $980/$490
Cyber Criminal Contact vengisto@firemail.cc, gorentos@bitmessage.ch, @datarestore (telegram)
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 This malware is designed to show fake Windows Update window, modify Windows "hosts" file (to prevent users from accessing cyber security websites) and inject AZORult trojan into the system.
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.
Removal

To eliminate Todarius virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
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Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections?

To prevent system infiltration by ransomware, be very cautious when browsing the internet and downloading, installing, and updating software. Never open email attachments that seem irrelevant, or if the sender is suspicious. Download your programs from official sources only, using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue applications, and thus these tools should never be used. Keep installed applications and operating systems up-to-date, however, this should be achieved through implemented functions or tools provided by the official developer. Be aware that software piracy is illegal (it is considered a cyber crime) and the risk of infections is extremely high. Therefore, never attempt to crack installed applications. Have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running. Software of this type can detect and eliminate malicious applications before the system is harmed. If your computer is already infected with Todarius, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Todarius ransomware text file :

ATTENTION!
 
Don't worry my friend, you can return all your files!
All your files like photos, databases, documents and other important are encrypted with strongest encryption and unique key.
The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.
This software will decrypt all your encrypted files.
What guarantees you have?
You can send one of your encrypted file from your PC and we decrypt it for free.
But we can decrypt only 1 file for free. File must not contain valuable information.
You can get and look video overview decrypt tool:
hxxps://we.tl/t-oEUEuysYiZ
Price of private key and decrypt software is $980.
Discount 50% available if you contact us first 72 hours, that's price for you is $490.
Please note that you'll never restore your data without payment.
Check your e-mail "Spam" or "Junk" folder if you don't get answer more than 6 hours.
 
To get this software you need write on our e-mail:
vengisto@firemail.cc
 
Reserve e-mail address to contact us:
gorentos@bitmessage.ch
 
Support Telegram account:
@datarestore
 
Your personal ID:
-

Screenshot of files encrypted by Todarius (".todarius" extension):

Files encrypted by Todarius

Malware researcher Michael Gillespie has developed a decryption tool that might restore your data if it was encrypted using an "offline key". As mentioned, each victim receives a unique decryption key, all of which are stored on remote servers controlled by cyber criminals. These are categorized as "online keys". In some cases, when the infected machine has no internet connection or the server is timing out/not responding, Todarius will use an "offline encryption key", which is hard-coded. Note that cyber criminals change offline keys periodically. This is done to prevent multiple encryptions with the same key. Michael Gillespie continually gathers offline keys and updates the decrypter, however, the chances of successful decryption are still very low, since only a very small proportion of "offline keys" have so far been gathered. You can download the decrypter by clicking this link (note that the download link remains the same, even though the decrypter is continually updated). Your files will be restored only if the list of gathered keys includes the one that was used to encrypt your data.

Screenshot of STOP/Djvu decrypter by Michael Gillespie:

STOP/Djvu ransomware decrypter by Michael Gillespie

As with most ransomware from the Djvu family, Todarius also displays a fake Windows update pop-up during the encryption:

Djvu ransomware family fake update

IMPORTANT NOTE! - As well as encrypting data, ransomware-type infections from the Djvu malware family also install a trojan-type virus called AZORult, which is designed to steal various account credentials. Moreover, this malware family is designed to add a number of entries to the Windows hosts file. The entries contain URLs of various websites, most of which are related to malware removal. This is done to prevent users unable from accessing malware security websites and seeking help. Our website (PCrisk.com) is also on the list. Removing these entries, however, is simple - you can find detailed instructions in this article (note that, although the steps are shown in the Windows 10 environment, the process is virtually identical on all versions of the Microsoft Windows operating system).

Screenshot of websites added to Windows hosts file:

Tro Ransomware adding websites to Windows Hosts file

Todarius ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of Todarius 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 Todarius 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 Todarius 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 Todarius 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 Todarius 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 Todarius 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 Todarius, 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 Todarius 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 Todarius ransomware:

About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
Todarius virus QR code
A QR code (Quick Response Code) is a machine-readable code which stores URLs and other information. This code can be read using a camera on a smartphone or a tablet. Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of Todarius virus on your mobile device.
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