GottaCry Ransomware

Also Known As: GottaCry virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Severe

GottaCry ransomware removal instructions

What is GottaCry?

GottaCry is the name of a ransomware-type program that was discovered by MalwareHunterTeam. Rather than encrypting data, GottaCry deletes all files that are placed on the victim's Desktop. It also enables a pop-up window with instructions detailing how to return the lost files.

The "GottaCry | Windows Decryptor" pop-up window states that GottaCry ransomware has encrypted all files that were stored on the computer. In fact, it does not encrypt data, but merely deletes files placed on the Desktop. According to GottaCry's developers, this ransomware sends the files to a remote server and steals the victim's passwords. To recover their files, victims are urged to pay these cyber criminals $50 in Bitcoins or to transfer $70 to their PayPal account. Victims can contact GottaCry's developers via Discord by sending a message to a user called Russen#6061. Note that typing anything into the "Unlock password" bar results in the "Wrong password" message. Additionally, this ransomware disables Task Manager, which cannot then be used to disable this malicious program (end the process). Furthermore, the GottaCry's pop-up window states that shutting down the computer will delete all files stored on the computer and leak all stolen passwords. As mentioned above, it deletes only files placed on the Desktop and does not encrypt any data, so remaining files are not locked. We advise that you do not contact GottaCry's developers regarding deleted files or pay for their recovery. It is very likely that these cyber criminals will not send the deleted files even if they have access to them. The best, free way to restore lost files is to use a data backup if you one was previously created.

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

GottaCry decrypt instructions

GottaCry is different from other programs of this type such as Rectot, Virus-encoder, Ferosas, and so on. Cyber criminals use ransomware to encrypt data and extort money from victims by urging them to purchase decryption tools/keys. The main differences between these programs are cost of decryption and cryptography algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) used to encrypt data. Unfortunately, victims cannot decrypt their files without using specific tools held only by the individual ransomware developers. Therefore, victims are often tempted to contact and pay these cyber criminals. This situation can be avoided only if the ransomware is unfinished or not fully developed, has bugs/flaws, and so on. Therefore, maintain regular backups and store them on a remote server or unplugged storage device.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

To proliferate ransomware-type and other malicious programs, cyber criminals use spam campaigns (emails), trojans, dubious software update and activation tools, and various untrustworthy file download channels. They send emails that contain malicious attachments and try to trick people into opening them. Attached files are usually Microsoft Office or PDF documents, archives such as ZIP, RAR files, executables (.exe and others), JavaScript files and so on. If opened, these attachments infect computers by downloading and installing high-risk malware. Trojans are malicious programs that proliferate other viruses. If installed, a trojan will cause chain infections. Fake/unofficial software updaters usually download and install malware rather than updating programs or operating systems. Additionally, they can also be used to exploit outdated software flaws/bugs. Software 'cracking' tools are programs that people use to activate licensed software free of charge, however, they often cause computer infections. Unofficial, untrustworthy file download sources such as Peer-to-Peer networks, free file hosting websites, freeware download pages and other similar channels can be used to proliferate malware. Cyber criminals use them to present their malicious files as legitimate and harmless. If downloaded and opened, they install another malicious program.

Threat Summary:
Name GottaCry virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Data wiper.
Ransom Demanding Message Pop-up window.
Ransom Amount $50 in Bitcoins or $70 via PayPal
Cyber Criminal Contact Russen#6061 (Discord)
Detection Names (GottaCry.exe) Avast (Win32:Malware-gen), BitDefender (Gen:Heur.Ransom.REntS.Gen.1), ESET-NOD32 (a variant of MSIL/Hoax.FakeFilecoder.EF), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan-Ransom.MSIL.Encoder.gen), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms Missing files placed on the computer Desktop. 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 Unlike other similar infections, GottaCry does not encrypt any data. This ransomware deletes files from the Desktop. Additionally, it disables Windows Task Manager.
Distribution methods Infected email attachments (macros), torrent websites, malicious ads.
Damage Files on the desktop are deleted. Additional password-stealing trojans and malware infections can be installed together with a ransomware infection.
Removal

To eliminate GottaCry virus our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
▼ Download Spyhunter
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?

Avoid opening files or web links that are attached to emails sent from unknown, suspicious addresses. Additionally, do not trust emails that are irrelevant. The safest channels to download files and software are official websites and direct download links. Avoid using torrent clients, eMule (other Peer-to-Peer) networks, unofficial websites, and other similar sources. Furthermore, update software using implemented functions or tools that are provided by official software developers. Note, paid software should not be activated using 'cracking' tools, since they can cause installation of malware and are also illegal. Keep your computer protected by having reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software installed and enabled at all times. If your computer is already infected with GottaCry, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in GottaCry ransomware pop-up window:

GottaCry Windows Decryptor 2019
Your computer has been encrypted
All your files were encrypted
If you turn off your computer, we will leak all your passwords and will delete your computer
All your desktop files were moved to my server until payment is done
All of your passwords were recovered into my servers.
Contact only on discord!
DISCORD: Russen#6061
50$ bitcoin or $70 PayPal
1HfdBrUDYZ1rCdQcgBt84Ja7JoYhHDqNcg

GottaCry ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of GottaCry 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 GottaCry 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 GottaCry 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 GottaCry 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 GottaCry 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 GottaCry 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 GottaCry, 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 GottaCry 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 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 GottaCry 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
GottaCry 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 GottaCry virus on your mobile device.
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Platform: Windows

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