Avoid Meds ransomware attack

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

Meds ransomware removal instructions

What is Meds?

Meds is a malicious software that belongs to the Djvu ransomware family. Typically, ransomware-type programs are used to encrypt files and force victims to purchase decryption tools and/or keys, in other words, to pay a ransom. This ransomware adds the ".meds" extension to all encrypted files, for example, it renames a file named "1.jpg" to "1.jpg.meds" and so on. Meds is designed to create a ransom note which is the "_readme.txt" file.

As stated in the ransom note, Meds is designed to encrypt files like photos, databases, documents and other data. It encrypts them with the strongest encryption algorithm. The only way to decrypt files is to use a decryption tool and unique key that can be purchased for $980 or $490. Their price depends on how fast victims will contact Meds developers, they offer a discount of 50% for victims who will write them an email to gorentos@bitmessage.ch or gerentoshelp@firemail.cc in 72 hours. Victims have to send a personal ID and can attach one file that Meds developers supposed to decrypt for free. After that they supposed to send instructions on how to make a payment (typically, ransoms must be paid using cryptocurrency). In most cases ransomware developers are the only people who can provide tools that can decrypt files encrypted with their ransomware. Unfortunately, not all of them send them even if all their demands are met (ransom is paid). For this reason cyber criminals should not be trusted. Typically, the only and free way to recover files is to restore them from a backup.

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

Meds decrypt instructions

Meds ransomware is quite similar to other software of this type, some similar examples are Erenahen, b00m and Moka. What most ransomware-type programs have in common is that they are used to encrypt data (prevent victims from accessing their files) and force people to pay a ransom (purchase tools that can decrypt files). The main two differences usually are size of a ransom and cryptographic algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) that is used to lock data. One way or another, most of times it is impossible to decrypt files without the right tools that only ransomware developers have. It is possible only when ransomware is not finished (has bugs, flaws, etc.). To avoid data loss or having to pay cyber criminals we recommend to always have data backed up and store it on a remote server (or/and unplugged storage device).

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Typically, computers can be infected with ransomware or other malicious programs through spam campaigns (emails), Trojans, questionable software download sources/channels, fake software updaters and unofficial software activation tools. Quite often cyber criminals send emails that contain malicious attachments (or web links that are designed to download them). These attachments usually are executable files (like .exe files), archives like ZIP, RAR, Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript files, PDF documents and so on. Typically, cyber criminals seek to trick people into opening them. If opened, these files infect computers with high-risk malware like ransomware. Trojans are malicious programs that are designed to spread other software of this kind. When a Trojan is installed, it causes chain infections. In other words, downloads and installs other malware. However, it is possible only when a computer is already infected with a Trojan. Questionable software download sources such as Peer-to-Peer networks (like torrent clients, eMule), freeware download websites, free file hosting pages, third party downloaders, etc., can be used to spread malware too. As a rule, cyber criminals upload malicious files and disguise them as regular, harmless ones. They hope that people will download and open them. If opened, these files install malicious software. Fake software updaters usually infect systems by exploiting vulnerabilities of outdated software that is installed on the system. In other cases these tools simply install malware instead of updated, fixe, etc. Software 'cracking' tools supposed activate licensed software (or operating systems) for free. However, there are many cyber criminals who use programs of this type to spread computer infections too. These tools often download and install malware instead of allowing their users to bypass paid activations.

Threat Summary:
Name Meds virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension .meds
Ransom Demanding Message _readme.txt
Ransom Amount $980/$490
Cyber Criminal Contact gorentos@bitmessage.ch, gerentoshelp@firemail.cc
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Malware-gen), BitDefender (Trojan.GenericKD.41733697), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Kryptik.GWGY), Kaspersky (Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Stop.dk), 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 Meds 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?

We strongly recommend not to open files that are attached to irrelevant emails, especially if they are received from unknown/suspicious addresses. Emails of this kind should be ignored (files attached to them unopened). Programs should be downloaded from official websites. Third party downloaders and other similar tools that we mentioned in the previous paragraph should not be trusted/used. Furthermore, installed software should be updated via implemented functions or tools that are designed by official developers. If installed programs are not free, they should not be activated with third party, unofficial tools. These tools are illegal and often designed to install malware. And finally, to protect computers from various threats we recommend to scan them with a reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware suite regularly and make sure that this software is always up-to-date. If your computer is already infected with Meds, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Meds ransomware's text file ("_readme.txt"):

ATTENTION!

Don't worry, 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:
https://we.tl/t-ZFjRnJfc9f
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:
gorentos@bitmessage.ch

Reserve e-mail address to contact us:
gerentoshelp@firemail.cc

Your personal ID:

-

Screenshot of files encrypted by Meds (".meds" extension):

Files encrypted by Meds

Meds ransomware removal:

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

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