CILLA ransomware removal instructions
What is CILLA?
CILLA is malicious software belonging to the GlobeImposter ransomware family. It operates by encrypting data and demanding ransom payments for decryption. During this process, all compromised files are renamed with the ".CILLA" extension. For example, a filename such as "1.jpg" becomes "1.jpg.CILLA". After this process is finished, CILLA creates an HTML file named "how_to_back_files.html" and stores it in each affected folder.
The text presented in the HTML file informs victims that their data has been encrypted. It states that the only way to recover the files is to obtain a decryptor from developers of CILLA. To receive further instructions, users are instructed to contact them via the email addresses provided. The victims' messages must contain their IDs (listed in "how_to_back_files.HTML") and one encrypted file (image or text file) for decryption free of charge. The cyber criminals behind this infection will then return the restored file, assign the payment amount, and provide details about how to make it. Once ransoms are paid, the message informs users that they will receive the necessary tools to decrypt their data. Additionally, the message warns users not to trust third parties to retrieve their files. Removing CILLA, running an anti-virus software and attempting manual decryption will apparently lead to permanent data loss. The decryptors of other affected users are said to be incompatible, as each encryption key is unique. Unfortunately, in most cases of ransomware infections, manual decryption with third party decryption tools is impossible, unless, in rare cases, the malware is still in development and/or has key flaws/bugs. Regardless, you are strongly advised against contacting or meeting the demands of cyber criminals. Despite paying, victims do not receive the promised decryption tools/software. Therefore, their files remain encrypted and useless. While removal of this malicious program will not restore compromised data, it will prevent CILLA from further encryption. The only viable solution is to recover files from a backup, if one was created before the infection and was stored separately.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
MT88, BigBossRoss, and JavaRatty are several examples of other ransomware programs. All infections within this category encrypt files and demand payment for decryption. They differ by the cryptographic algorithm they use (symmetric or asymmetric) and ransom size. The latter commonly ranges between three-digit and four-digit sums. Digital currencies (e.g. cryptocurrencies, pre-paid vouchers, etc.) are preferred, since these transactions are difficult/impossible to trace. To ensure data safety, keep backups on unplugged storage devices and/or remote servers. Store multiple backup copies in different locations.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
|Threat Type||Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker.|
|Encrypted Files Extension||.CILLA|
|Ransom Demanding Message||how_to_back_files.html|
|Cyber Criminal Contactemail@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:Trojan-gen), BitDefender (Generic.Ransom.GlobeImposter.4361C1A9), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Filecoder.FV), 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.
How to protect yourself from ransomware infections
Do not open suspicious/irrelevant emails. Any attachments or links found in dubious mail must never be opened, as these files are the origin of a potential system infection. You are advised to use official and verified download channels. Software should be activated and updated using functions/tools provided by genuine developers. Do not use illegal activation tools ("cracks") or third party updaters, due to high-risk of malware installation. Have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and kept updated. This software is to be set to perform regular system scans and to remove detected threats/issues. If your computer is already infected with CILLA, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in CILLA ransomware HTML file ("how_to_back_files.html"):
YOUR PERSONAL ID
☠ YOUR FILES ARE ENCRYPTED! ☠
ALL YOUR IMPORTANT DATA HAS BEEN ENCRYPTED.
To recover data you need decryptor.
To get the decryptor you should:
Send 1 test image or text file email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the letter include your personal ID (look at the beginning of this document).
We will give you the decrypted file and assign the price for decryption all files
After we send you instruction how to pay for decrypt and after payment you will receive a decryptor and instructions We can decrypt one file in quality the evidence that we have the decoder.
Only email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org can decrypt your files
Do not trust anyone email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org
Do not attempt to remove the program or run the anti-virus tools
Attempts to self-decrypting files will result in the loss of your data
Decoders other users are not compatible with your data, because each user's unique encryption key
Screenshot of files encrypted by CILLA (".CILLA" extension):
CILLA 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:
- What is CILLA?
- STEP 1. CILLA virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. CILLA ransomware removal using System Restore.
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.
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.
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.
Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":
Log in to the account infected with the CILLA 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.
2. When Command Prompt mode loads, enter the following line: cd restore and press ENTER.
3. Next, type this line: rstrui.exe and press ENTER.
4. In the opened window, click "Next".
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 CILLA ransomware virus infiltrating your PC).
6. In the opened window, click "Yes".
7. After restoring your computer to a previous date, download and scan your PC with recommended malware removal software to eliminate any remaining CILLA 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 CILLA 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.
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 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 CILLA 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.
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:
Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware Beta uses advanced proactive technology that monitors ransomware activity and terminates it immediately - before reaching users' files:
- 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 CILLA ransomware: