Avoid Meds ransomware attacks

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

Meds ransomware removal instructions

What is Meds?

Meds is 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 effect, pay ransoms). This ransomware adds the ".meds" extension to all encrypted files. For example, "1.jpg" becomes "1.jpg.meds". Meds also creates a ransom message within the "_readme.txt" file.

The ransom message states that Meds encrypts files including photos, databases, documents, and other data, using 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. The cost depends on how quickly victims contact Meds developers - they offer a discount of 50% for those who send an email to gorentos@bitmessage.ch or gerentoshelp@firemail.cc within 72 hours. Victims must send a personal ID and are permitted to attach one file, which Meds developers will then supposedly decrypt free of charge. They will also apparently send instructions about how to make payment (typically, ransoms must be paid using cryptocurrencies). In most cases, only the developers can provide tools able to decrypt files encrypted with their ransomware. Unfortunately, not all send these tools, even if their demands are met (ransoms are paid). Therefore, do not trust any cyber criminals. Typically, the only 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 similar to other software of this type. Other examples are Erenahen, b00m, and Moka. Most ransomware-type programs encrypt data (prevent access to files) and force people to pay ransoms (purchase tools that can decrypt files). Main differences are usually size of ransom and cryptographic algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) used to lock data. In any case, it is often impossible to decrypt files without specific tools held only by the ransomware developers, unless the ransomware is not finished (has bugs, flaws, etc.). To avoid data loss, have your data backed up on a remote server and/or unplugged storage device.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Typically, computers are infected with ransomware or other malicious programs through spam campaigns (emails), Trojans, dubious software download sources/channels, fake software updaters, and unofficial software activation tools. Cyber criminals often send emails that contain malicious attachments (or web links that download them). These are usually executable files (.exe), archives such as ZIP, RAR, Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript files, PDF documents, and so on. Cyber criminals seek to trick people into opening them. The files then infect computers with high-risk malware such as ransomware. Trojans are malicious programs that proliferate other software of this type. When a Trojan is installed, it causes chain infections (by downloading and installing other malware), however, this is only possible when the computer is already infected with a Trojan. Dubious software download sources such as Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule), freeware download websites, free file hosting pages, third party downloaders, etc., can also be used to proliferate malware. Generally, cyber criminals upload malicious files and disguise them as regular and harmless. They hope that people will download and open them. If opened, these files install malicious software. Fake software updaters infect systems by exploiting vulnerabilities of outdated software installed on the system. In other cases, these tools simply install malware rather than updates, fixes, etc. Software 'cracking' tools supposedly activate licensed software (or operating systems) free of charge, however, many cyber criminals use them to proliferate computer infections. These tools often download and install malware rather than allowing users to bypass paid software activation.

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 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 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

Do not open files that are attached to irrelevant emails, especially if they are received from unknown/suspicious addresses. Ignore these emails and leave any files attached to them unopened. Programs should be downloaded from official websites. Third party downloaders and other such tools should not be trusted or used. Installed software should be updated via implemented functions or tools designed by official developers. If installed programs are not free, do not attempt to activate them with third party, unofficial tools. These are illegal and are often designed to install malware. To protect your computers from various threats, scan them with a reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware suite regularly and ensure that the software is 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 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 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 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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