Ghost (Jamper) Ransomware

Also Known As: Ghost (Jamper) virus
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Severe

Ghost (Jamper) ransomware removal instructions

What is Ghost (Jamper)?

Ghost (Jamper) is new variant of a high-risk ransomware called Jamper. Once infiltrated Ghost (Jamper) encrypts most of stored files and appends filenames with a random string, probably victim's unique ID (e.g., "sample.jpg" could be renamed to something like "sample.jpg.38254CED-1646-C41E-8E1F-0B8268EE8D"). Following successful encryption, Ghost (Jamper) generates a text file ("===HOW TO RECOVER ENCRYPTED FILES===.TXT") and drops it on victim's desktop wallpaper. This ransomware was firstly discovered by a malware security researcher Sandor Nemes. Note that there's another ransomware called Ghost, however, it is not related to this one.

The created text file contains a very short message stating that data is encrypted and that victims have to contact cyber criminals and purchase a decryption tool in order to restore it. Unfortunately, the fact that cyber criminals are the only ones capable of restoring data is true. Ghost (Jamper) encrypts data by using a cryptography that generates unique decryption key individually for each victim. The problem is that all keys are stored in a remote server controlled by cyber criminals. Thus, since data recovery without the key is impossible, users are encouraged to purchase a decryption tool with the key embedded within. To receive payment/decryption instructions victims have to contact cyber criminals via one of provided email addresses. Ransomware developers usually ask for $500-$1500 and the payments are typically have to be submitted using some sort of cryptocurrency. Nevertheless, no matter how low or high the price is, it should never be paid. Research results show that cyber criminals often ignore victims, once payments are submitted. This means that paying typically gives no positive result and users merely get scammed. Hence, no matter how low or high the price is, it should never be paid. Research results show that cyber criminals often ignore victims, once payments are submitted. For this reason, paying usually gives no positive result and users merely get scammed.  All encouragements to submit payments and contact these persons should be ignored. Unluckily, Ghost (Jamper) is an undecryptable ransomware, meaning that there are no tools capable of cracking its encryption. The thing victims can do is restore everything from a backup if there is one created.

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

Ghost (Jamper) decrypt instructions

Ghost (Jamper) shares many similarities with dozens of other ransomware infections, such as Poret, Buran, SECURE. Almost every single one is designed to encrypt data so that developers could blackmail victims by offering a paid recovery. Unfortunately, encryptions are typically performed using RSA, AES, or other similar algorithms that generate unique decryption keys. Therefore, unless this virus is still in development and/or has certain bugs/flaws (e.g., the key us hard-coded, stored locally, or something like that), restoring data manually (without developers interfering) is impossible. We highly recommend you to maintain regular data backups. Yet be sure to store them in unplugged storage devices (e.g., external hard drive, flash drive, or similar) or either remote server (e.g., Cloud). This way you'll prevent ransomware from compromising backups alongside with regular data. Moreover, you should keep in mind that there's always a chance that used server/storage device will be damaged. For this reason, you should have multiple backup copies stored in different locations.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Developers proliferate Ghost (Jamper) via Danabot botnet. However, such infections are also proliferated using email spam campaigns, third party software download sources, fake software updaters/cracks, and trojans. Spam campaigns are used to send thousands of emails consisting of malicious attachments (links/files) and deceptive messages encouraging recipients to open them. Additionally, cyber criminals present malicious attachments as some important documents just to create the impression of legitimacy and increase the chance of tricking recipients. Unofficial software download sources (free file hosting websites, freeware download websites, peer-to-peer [P2P] networks, etc.) are also used in a similar manner. Crooks simply present malicious executables as legitimate software, thereby tricking users into downloading and installing malware manually. Fake updaters usually infect computers by exploiting outdated software's bugs/flaws or simply downloading and installing malware rather than actual updates. Software cracks are meant to bypass paid software activation. Yet since crooks use them to spread malware, users are way more likely to infect their computers instead of gaining access to paid software features. Last but not least are trojans which stealthily infiltrate computers with an intention of injecting additional malware.

Threat Summary:
Name Ghost (Jamper) virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension Random string (potentially victim's unique ID).
Ransom Demanding Message ===HOW TO RECOVER ENCRYPTED FILES===.TXT text file.
Cyber Criminal Contact e95c12d08b14@protonmail.com, e95c12d08b14@airmail.cc
Detection Names Avast (Win32:DangerousSig [Trj]), Emsisoft (MalCert.B (A)), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Kryptik.GTSI), Kaspersky (Trojan-Downloader.Win32.Upatre.hmco), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Rogue Process Name Rowrub (the process name may vary).
Symptoms Can't open files stored on your computer, previously functional files now have a different extension, for example my.docx.locked. A ransom demanding message is displayed on your desktop. Cyber criminals are asking to pay a ransom (usually in bitcoins) to unlock your files.
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 Ghost (Jamper) 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?

The main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge and reckless behavior. Caution is the key to its safety and, therefore, paying attention when browsing the Internet, as well as downloading/installing software is a must. It is highly recommended to download software only from official sources, using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue apps, which is why such tools should never be used. Same goes for software updates. Keeping installed applications and operating system updated is paramount. Yet to achieve this users should employ only implemented functions or tools provided by the official developer. Be aware that software piracy is considered a cyber crime and, if that wasn't enough, the risk of infections is extremely high. Therefore, cracking installed applications should never be considered. We highly recommend to have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running at all times - tools like such will help you detect and eliminate malware before it harms the system. If your computer is already infected with Ghost (Jamper), we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Ghost (Jamper) ransomware's text file ("===HOW TO RECOVER ENCRYPTED FILES===.TXT"):

Your important files have been encrypted. We can help you decrypt them.
If you are interested in purchasing our decryptor, please contact us by email:
e95c12d08b14@protonmail.com, e95c12d08b14@airmail.cc

Screenshot of Ghost (Jamper)'s process ("Rowrub") in Windows Task Manager:

Ghost (Jamper) process in Windows Task Manager

Screenshot of files encrypted by Ghost (Jamper) (random string extension):

Files encrypted by Ghost (Jamper)

Ghost (Jamper) ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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 Ghost (Jamper), 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 Ghost (Jamper) ransomware.

Note that Windows 10 Fall Creators Update includes "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's more information on how to get this update and add 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 Ghost (Jamper) 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
Ghost (Jamper) virus QR code
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Platform: Windows

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