Removal instructions for the JSWRM ransomware infection

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

JSWRM ransomware removal instructions

What is JSWRM?

JSWRM is yet another high-risk ransomware infection discovered by GrujaRS. Following successful infiltration, JSWRM encrypts most stored data and appends filenames with the victim's unique ID, developer's email address, and ".JSWRM" extension. For example, "sample.jpg" might be renamed to a filename such as "sample.jpg.[ID-EJ6BQNB][symmetries@tutamail.com].JSWRM". In addition, JSWRM deletes all shadow volume copies and performs a number of other rogue actions (full list below). Once data is encrypted, JSWRM generates an HTML application ("JSWRM-DECRYPT.hta") and stores it on the desktop. This application shows a pop-up window (opened on each system reboot) that delivers a ransom-demand message

"JSWRM-DECRYPT.hta" app delivers a brief ransom-demand message, which informs victims of the encryption and encourages them to contact JSWRM's developers and pay ransoms if they wish to restore their files. This ransomware is designed to encrypt data by using AES-256 cryptography. Therefore, decryption requires a unique key, which is generated individually for each victim. The decryption key is stored locally, in "C:\ProgramData" directory. However, the problem is that this key is also encrypted using RSA cryptography. Thus, victims simply cannot access it. All keys necessary to decrypt the initial AES key are stored on a remote server controlled by cyber criminals. Therefore, each victim must pay a ransom to decrypt the data. The cost is not specified and all details are provided via email, however, criminals typically demand $500-$1500 with payments submitted using various cryptocurrencies (e.g., Bitcoin, Monero, DASH, Ethereum, etc.). Note that paying usually gives no positive result, since ransomware developers often ignore victims, once payments are submitted. Therefore, we strongly advise you to ignore all requests to submit payments or even contact these people. Unfortunately, JSWRM is an undecryptable ransomware, and there are no tools capable of cracking the encryption and restoring data free of charge. You can only restore everything from a backup. Emsisoft cyber security company has released a decryption tool capable of cracking JSWRM's encryption and restoring data for free (more information below). Hence, there's absolutely no need to pay.

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

JSWRM decrypt instructions

There are dozens of ransomware-type infections that share similarities with JSWRM including Nusar, FreezedByWizard, and Lotep. These are just some examples from many. As with JSWRM, most of these infections encrypt data and make ransom demands. Although the developers differ, size of ransom and type of encryption algorithm used are typically the only major differences. Unfortunately, most ransomware infections employ cryptographies that generate unique decryption keys. Therefore, unless the virus has bugs or flaws, data decryption without the involvement of the developers (not recommended) is impossible. Ransomware presents a strong case for maintaining regular backups, however, store them in an unplugged storage device or remote server, since locally stored backups are compromised together with regular data. In addition, have multiple backup copies stored in different locations, since there is always the chance that servers/storage devices can be damaged.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware infections are typically proliferated using third party software download sources, trojans, spam email campaigns, and 'cracks'. Unofficial download sources such as free file hosting websites, freeware download websites, peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, and similar are used to present malware as legitimate software. In this way, users are tricked into manually downloading and installing malware. The same applies to spam campaigns, which are used to send hundreds of thousands of emails containing malicious attachments (links and/or files) and messages encouraging recipients to open them. To give the impression of legitimacy and increase the chance of tricking recipients, criminals often present the attachments as 'important documents' (e.g., invoices, bills, receipts, or similar). Trojans are malicious applications that infiltrate computers and inject them with additional malware. Fake updaters and cracks infect systems rather than updating software or providing access to paid features. In summary, the main reasons for computer infections are poor knowledge of these threats and careless behavior.

Threat Summary:
Name JSWRM virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension This ransomware appends filenames with the victim's unique ID, developer's email address, and ".JSWRM" extension.
Ransom Demanding Message JSWRM-DECRYPT.hta html application
Cyber Criminal Contact symmetries@tutamail.com, symmetries0@tutanota.com
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Malware-gen), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.32095161), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Injector.EGIR), Kaspersky (Trojan.Win32.VBKryjetor.byfc), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Rogue Process Name MANWARD6.exe (the process name may vary).
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.
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 JSWRM 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 key to computer safety is caution. Therefore, pay attention when browsing the Internet and downloading/installing/updating software. Think twice before opening email attachments. Files/links received from suspicious email addresses should never be opened. The same applies to those that are irrelevant or do not concern you. Additionally, download software from official sources only, preferably using direct download links. Third party downloaders/installers often include rogue apps, and thus these tools should not be used. Keep installed applications and operating systems up-to-date, however, use only implemented functions or tools provided by the official developer. Software piracy is a cyber crime and most cracking tools are fake. Therefore, the risk of infections is extremely high and cracking installed applications should never be considered. Have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running. This software detects and eliminates malware before it harms the system. If your computer is already infected with JSWRM, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in the JSWRM ransomware HTML application ("JSWRM-DECRYPT.hta"):

Your files are corrupted!
Identificator for files: EJ6BQNB

E-mail for contact: symmetries@tutamail.com

Backup e-mail for contact : symmetries0@tutanota.com

Free decryption as guarantee!
Before paying you can request free decryption of 3 files.

Total size of files must be less than 5MB (non-archived).

Files shouldn't contain valuable information (accept only txt\jpg\png).


Attention!
Don't try to decrypt it manually.

Don't rename extension of files.

Don't try to write AV companies (they can't help you).

Screenshot of JSWRM process ("MANWARD6.exe") in Windows Task Manager:

JSWRM in Windows Task Manager

Screenshot of files encrypted by JSWRM (".JSWRM" extension):

Files encrypted by JSWRM

List of actions performed by JSWRM ransomware:

  • Delete the Shadow Volume Copies
  • Delete the Shadow Volume Copies (second attempt)
  • Delete the backup catalog
  • Disable Automatic Startup Repair
  • Disable Windows Error Recovery on startup
  • Set persistence on startup
  • Terminate "dns.exe" process
  • Terminate "sqlserver.exe" process
  • Terminate "sqlwriter.exe" process
  • Terminate "store.exe" process (related to MS Exchange)

Update August 9, 2019 - The Emsisoft cyber security company has recently released a decryption tool (download link) capable of restoring data encrypted by JSWRM ransomware free of charge (decryption instructions). Therefore, there is absolutely no need to pay for anything.

Screenshot of JSWRM decrypter by Emsisoft:

JSWRM ransomware decrypter by Emsisoft

JSWRM ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM, 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 JSWRM 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 JSWRM 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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Removal Instructions in other languages
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
JSWRM 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 JSWRM virus on your mobile device.
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Platform: Windows

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