Protect files from encryption by Kr ransomware

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

Kr ransomware removal instructions

What is Kr?

Discovered by Jakub Kroustek, Kr ransomware is part of Dharma, a family of ransomware-type programs. Ransomware is a type of malicious software that makes files inaccessible by encrypting them. To use regain access to their files, victims of ransomware attacks are encouraged to pay ransoms. Kr renames all encrypted files by adding the victim's ID, email address, and ".kr" extension to filenames. For example, "sample.jpg" might be renamed to a filename such as "[].kr", and so on. Instructions about how to pay the ransom and contact cyber criminals are provided in a pop-up window and the "FILES ENCRYPTED.txt" file.

The pop-up window states that to restore files, victims must send an email to Kr's developers via the or address, which must include the appointed ID number. It can also contain one file that they will decrypt free of charge. It is also stated that cost of decryption depends on how quickly they are contacted (Kr's developers encourage victims to contact them immediately). They promise to send a decryption tool after payment. Victims are warned not to try to decrypt files using any other, third party tools since this might cause permanent data loss. Unfortunately, it is impossible to decrypt files without tools held only by the cyber criminals who designed Kr. Generally, ransomware-type programs encrypt files with strong encryption algorithms. Note that no cyber criminals can be trusted. They often send no decryption tools/keys even if victims pay. Typically, the only way to recover files without paying ransoms and risking being scammed is to restore them from a backup, if one was created before the ransomware attack. Even if specific ransomware is uninstalled, affected files remain encrypted. Removing ransomware from the operating system simply prevents it from causing further damage (encryption).

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

Kr decrypt instructions

Other examples of ransomware-type malware include Nvram, Major, and Corpseworm. Most are used to extort money (typically, cryptocurrency) from victims by encrypting their data and forcing them to purchase decryption tools/keys. Common differences are cost of decryption and cryptographic algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) used to block access to data. Unfortunately, it is mostly impossible to decrypt files without tools held only by cyber criminals, unless the ransomware is not finished (contains bugs, flaws, etc.). Therefore, have data backed up and store it on an unplugged (disconnected) storage device or remote server such as Cloud.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Ransomware and other malware can be distributed in various ways. In most cases, cyber criminals use spam campaigns (emails), Trojans, fake software updating tools, unofficial activation ('cracking') tools and dubious software download channels. They proliferate malware by attaching a malicious Microsoft Office of PDF document, archive file such as ZIP, RAR, executable file such as .exe files, JavaScript file, etc., to an email and send it to many people. If opened, the attachment installs malicious software. Trojans can damage systems only when they are already installed. They then start proliferating other malware. Fake (unofficial) software updaters infect systems by downloading and installing malware rather than updates/fixes, or by exploiting bugs/flaws of outdated software installed on the operating system. Unofficial activation tools install malicious programs rather than bypassing activation of paid, licensed software. Malware is also spread through free file hosting and freeware download websites, Peer-to-Peer networks (torrent clients, eMule) third party downloaders, unofficial pages and other similar download sources. Cyber criminals upload malicious files that are disguised as harmless, legitimate and hope that someone will download and open them. If opened, the files infect computers with high-risk malware.

Threat Summary:
Name Kr virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker.
Encrypted Files Extension .kr
Ransom Demanding Message FILES ENCRYPTED.txt and pop-up window.
Cyber Criminal Contact,
Detection Names Avast (Win32:RansomX-gen [Ransom]), BitDefender (Trojan.Ransom.Crysis.E), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Filecoder.Crysis.P), Kaspersky (, 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.
▼ Download Malwarebytes
To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Malwarebytes. 14 days free trial available.

How to protect yourself from ransomware infections

Do not open attachments (or web links) that are included in irrelevant emails, especially if they are sent from unknown, suspicious addresses. Software and files should be downloaded from official websites Other sources (such as those that we mentioned above) should not be trusted or used. Installed software must be updated and activated properly using tools and/or implemented functions designed by official developers. Note that it is illegal to activate licensed software using unofficial activation ('cracking') tools. Regularly scan the operating system with reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software and ensure that it is up-to-date. If your computer is already infected with Kr, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in Kr 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 -
In case of no answer in 24 hours write us to theese
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 Kr text file ("FILES ENCRYPTED.txt"):

Kr text file

Text in this file:

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

Screenshot of files encrypted by Kr (".kr" extension):

Files encrypted by Kr

Kr 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:
▼ DOWNLOAD Malwarebytes By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Malwarebytes. 14 days free trial available.

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 Kr 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 Kr 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 Kr 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 Kr 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 Kr, 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 Kr 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 Kr 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.

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 malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
Kr 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 Kr virus on your mobile device.
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