How to remove Boooam ransomware from the system?

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

Boooam ransomware removal instructions

What is Boooam?

Boooam is a high-risk ransomware that stealthily infiltrates computers and encrypts most of stored data. While encrypting, Boooam appends each filename with ".boooam@cock.li" extension - developers' email address (e.g., encrypted "sample.jpg" would be renamed to "sample.jpg.booam@cock_li"). In addition, Boooam generates an html file ("HOW_TO_DECRYPT_FILES.html") and drops it in every existing folder. This ransomware was firstly discovered by malware researcher Raby.

The created html file delivers a short message stating that data is encrypted and that a decryption key is necessary to restore it. In order to receive the key victims must contact Boooam's developers via provided email address. The message does not provide any additional information and it is currently unknown whether Boooam uses symmetric or asymmetric cryptography. Nevertheless, the claims that decryption requires a key are true. The problem is that cyber criminals store all keys in a remote server. Therefore, after contacting these persons victims will be asked to pay a ransom. Cyber criminals typically ask for $500-$1500 and the payments typically have to be submitted using various cryptocurrencies (e.g., Bitcoin, Monero, Ethereum, DASH, or another). Nonetheless, no matter how low or high the price is, it should never be paid. Research results show that cyber criminals typically ignore victims after they submit payments. Therefore, paying usually gives no positive result and users merely get scammed. For this reason, all encouragements to contact these persons (and especially submit payments) should be ignored. Unfortunately, Boooam is an undecryptable ransomware, meaning that there are no tools capable of cracking its encryption and restoring data for free. The only possible solution is to 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:

Boooam decrypt instructions

Boooam is a regular ransomware and, therefore, it shares many similarities with dozens of other infections, such as CAGO, FreezedByWizard, Besub, and TROLL. As with Boooam, listed examples also encrypt data and make ransom demands (developers blackmail victims by offering a paid recovery). There typically are only two major differences: size of ransom and type of encryption algorithm used. Unluckily, encryptions are typically performed using RSA, AES, and other high-end cryptographies that generate unique decryption keys. Thus, if the virus is flawlessly developed then decrypting data manually (without the help of developers) is impossible. Ransomware infections are one of the main reasons why you should maintain regular data backups. Bear in mind that locally stored backups will be compromised alongside with regular data, which is why you should keep them in a remote server or unplugged storage device. Moreover, there's always a chance that used server/hardware will be damaged. For this reason ,we recommend to have multiple backup copies stored in different locations.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware infections are usually distributed the following tools/methods: fake software updaters and cracks, trojans, email spam campaigns, and unofficial software download sources. Fake software updaters usually infect computers by exploiting outdated software's bugs/flaws or simply downloading and installing malware rather than actual updates. Same goes for fake cracks which infect computers rather than providing users with access to software's paid features. Trojans are essentially infectious programs that stealthily infiltrate computers with the intention to inject additional malware. Email spam campaigns are used to send hundreds of thousands of deceptive emails that contain messages encouraging recipients to open attached links/files which are malicious. It is also likely for these attachments to be presented as some important documents (e.g., invoices, bills, receipts, etc.) - crooks do this to create the impression of legitimacy and increase the chance of tricking recipients into opening. Third party software download sources (Peer-to-Peer [P2P] networks [like torrents, eMule, etc.], freeware download/free file hosting sites and similar) are also used in a similar manner. Crooks present malicious executables as legitimate software. As a result, users end up infecting their computers manually.

Threat Summary:
Name Boooam virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension boooam@cock_li
Ransom Demanding Message HOW_TO_DECRYPT_FILES.html
Cyber Criminal Contact boooam@cock.li
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Trojan-gen), BitDefender (Gen:Heur.Ransom.REntS.Gen.1), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Filecoder.NTV), Kaspersky (Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Encoder.bgq), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
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 Boooam 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 careless behavior. The key to its safety is caution. Therefore, in order to prevent this situation users must be very cautious when browsing the Internet, as well as downloading/installing software. You should always think twice before opening email attachments. Files/links received from suspicious/unrecognizable email addresses should never be opened. Irrelevant attachments should be ignored as well. Moreover, download programs only from official sources and, if possible, using direct download links. Unofficial downloaders/installers are likely to include rogue apps, which is why such tools shouldn't be used. Keeping installed applications/operating system up-to-date is also extremely important. Nevertheless, this should be achieved only through implemented functions or tools provided by the official developer. Everyone should know that cracking installed applications is illegal (software piracy is a cyber crime). Moreover, most of cracking tools are fake, which means that there's a high credibility that attempts will lead to high-risk system infections. Hence, you should never try to activate any applications using illegal/third party tools. On top of all that, be sure to have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and running. Such tools are more than likely to detect and eliminate malware before the system is harmed. If your computer is already infected with Boooam, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Boooam ransomware's html file ("HOW_TO_DECRYPT_FILES.html"):

Your computer has been attacked by virus-encoder.
All your files are now encrypted using cryptographycalli strong aslgorithm. Without the original key recovery is impossible. TO GET YOUR DECODER AND THE ORIGINAL KEY TO DECRYPT YOUR FILES YOU NEED TO EMAIL US AT: boooam@cock.li It is in your interest to respond as soon as possible to ensure the restoration of your files.

Screenshot of files encrypted by Boooam (".boooam@cock_li" extension):

Files encrypted by Boooam

Boooam ransomware removal:

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

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