How to remove Nvram ransomware from the operating system

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

Nvram ransomware removal instructions

What is Nvram?

Discovered by GrujaRS, Nvram is ransomware belonging to the CrySis/Dharma malware family. It operates by encrypting data and demanding ransom payments for decryption. During the encryption process, all files are renamed with a unique ID number, the developer's email address, and the ".nvram" extension. Therefore, a file named, for example, "1.jpg" would appear as something like "[].nvram", and so on. A text file ("FILES ENCRYPTED.txt") is then created and stored on the desktop. Nvram also displays a pop-up window.

The pop-up and text file contain a ransom message. The latter informs affected users that their data has been locked and, if they want to 'return' it, they must send a message to the developers of Nvram. The pop-up is more detailed. It states that all files have been encrypted and, to decrypt them, victims are to establish contact via the email address listed. The subject line of the victim's message must contain the ID number (generated individually, found in the pop-up and within the filename of each encrypted file). The size of ransom is not stated, but will depend on how quickly users contact the cyber criminals behind Nvram. The currency used must be Bitcoin (a cryptocurrency). Web links are provided, which lead to instructions about how to procure Bitcoins. Once the transaction is made, victims are promised decryption tools/software. As 'proof' of their ability to recover the data, criminals offer to decrypt one file free of charge. This test file must be no larger than 1 MB (non-archived) and contain no valuable information, such as backups, databases, large excel sheets, or similar. The message warns against renaming encrypted files or manual decryption using third party software, since this risks permanent data loss. Unfortunately, encryption of most ransomware-type programs cannot be "cracked" with free tools. Only the software that initially encrypted the file is capable of recovering them. Despite this, you are strongly advised against meeting any ransom demands or communicating with cyber criminals. Although many victims pay, they receive none of the necessary tools to decrypt their files, which leaves them beyond repair. To prevent Nvram from encrypting more data, this malware must be removed immediately. Removal will not restore already compromised files - the only solution is to restore them from a backup, if one was made prior to the infection and stored in a different location.

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

Nvram decrypt instructions

Ransomware infections are similar on two accounts: they all involve data encryption and make ransom demands. For example, MajorHakbitNEMTY REVENGE 2.0, and Rooster865qq are a few examples of malicious software akin to Nvram. There are some key differences, such as the cryptographic algorithm they use (symmetric or asymmetric) and size of ransom. Demands commonly range between three-digit and four-digit sums (in USD). Digital currencies (mostly cryptocurrencies) are preferred by cyber criminals, as these transactions are difficult/impossible to trace. Unless ransomware is still in development and/or has certain flaws, decryption without the involvement of the developers is impossible. To ensure data safety, keep backups on unplugged storage devices and or remote servers. It is best to store several backup copies is separate locations.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware and other malware typically proliferate through trojans, spam campaigns, untrustworthy download sources, fake software updaters and illegal activation tools. Trojans are malicious programs that cause chain infections (i.e., they download/install additional malware). Spam campaigns refer to the sending of deceptive emails on a massive scale. These emails are usually disguised as "official", "important", "urgent" and contain infectious attachments (or links leading to them). The attached files come in various formats (e.g. archive and executable files, PDF and Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript, etc.). When opened, they infect systems by downloading/installing malicious programs. Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, eMule, Gnutella, etc.), unofficial and free file-hosting websites, third party downloaders and similar channels are untrusted and are more likely to offer malicious content and/or normal products bundled with malware. Fake updaters cause infections by exploiting weaknesses in outdated software or by installing malware rather than the updates. Illegal activation ("cracking") tools can download/install malicious software, rather than activate any licensed products.

Threat Summary:
Name Nvram virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker.
Encrypted Files Extension .nvram (files are also appended with a unique ID number and the cyber criminals' email address).
Ransom Demanding Message FILES ENCRYPTED.txt and text within the pop-up window.
Cyber Criminal Contact
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Trojan-gen), BitDefender (Generic.Ransom.DCRTR.9A1B9DC1), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Filecoder.Crysis.R), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Generic), 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.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Malwarebytes.
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How to protect yourself from ransomware infections

Irrelevant and/or suspicious emails, should not be opened or read. Do not open files attached within suspicious emails, since this can infect the system. Use official and verified download channels. Software should be activated and updated with tools/functions provided by legitimate developers. Illegal activation tools ("cracks") and third party downloaders are a threat to device/user safety and should be avoided. Have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and kept up-to-date. This software should be used to perform regular system scans and for the elimination of detected threats/issues. If your computer is already infected with Nvram, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Nvram ransomware pop-up window:

All your files have been encrypted!
All your files have been encrypted due to a security problem with your PC. If you want to restore them, write us to the e-mail
Write this ID in the title of your message 007D851E
You have to pay for decryption in Bitcoins. The price depends on how fast you write to us. After payment we will send you the decryption tool that will decrypt all your files.
Free decryption as guarantee
Before paying you can send us up to 1 file for free decryption. The total size of files must be less than 1Mb (non archived), and files should not contain valuable information. (databases,backups, large excel sheets, etc.)
How to obtain Bitcoins
The easiest way to buy bitcoins is LocalBitcoins site. You have to register, click 'Buy bitcoins', and select the seller by payment method and price.
Also you can find other places to buy Bitcoins and beginners guide here:
Do not rename encrypted files.
Do not try to decrypt your data using third party software, it may cause permanent data loss.
Decryption of your files with the help of third parties may cause increased price (they add their fee to our) or you can become a victim of a scam. 

Screenshot of Nvram text file ("FILES ENCRYPTED.txt"):

Nvram text file

Text presented in this file:

all your data has been locked us
 You want to return?
 write email or

Screenshot of files encrypted by Nvram (".nvram" extension):

Files encrypted by Nvram

Nvram ransomware removal:

Instant automatic malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Malwarebytes is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
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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 Nvram 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 Nvram 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 Nvram 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 Nvram 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 Nvram, 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 Nvram 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, and 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 Nvram 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 since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

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Nvram virus QR code
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