How to uninstall removeme2020 ransomware?

Also Known As: removeme2020 virus
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Removeme2020 ransomware removal instructions

What is removeme2020?

Removeme2020 is a malicious program, belonging to the GlobeImposter ransomware family. Its discovery is credited to malware researcher - Raby. This ransomware operates by encrypting data and demanding a ransom to be paid for the decryption. As removeme2020 encrypts, files are appended with the ".locker" extension; for example, a file tilted something like "1.jpg" would appear as "1.jpg.locker" - following encryption. After this process is finished, an HTML file - "how_to_back_files.html" - containing the ransom note is dropped onto the desktop.

The note informs victims that their data has been encrypted and provides instructions how to obtain the appropriate decryption software/tools. It instructs users to establish contact with the developers of removeme2020 via the email addresses listed. The letter must include the victims' unique IDs (which can be found in "how_to_back_files.html"). To test decryption, users can attach one encrypted image or text file to their email. Afterwards, the victims will receive the decrypted file and the assigned price of decryption software/keys. The message ends with warnings that attempts of manual decryption - will result in permanent data loss. Additionally, it is stated that the decryption keys of other victims will not be compatible, as each encryption key is generated individually. In general, ransomware encryptions are impossible to decrypt, without the involvement of cyber criminals responsible. Decryption might be possible, if the malware in question is still in development and/or has flaws/bugs. Whatever the case, it is expressly advised against meeting the ransom demands. Often, despite paying - victims do not receive the promised decryption tools/software. Therefore, not only does their data remain encrypted and worthless, but they also experience significant financial losses. To prevent removeme2020 from further encryptions, it must be removed from the operating system. Unfortunately, removal will not restore already encrypted files. The only possible solution is recovering the data from a backup. Provided, if it was made prior to the infection and was stored in a different location.

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

removeme2020 decrypt instructions (how_to_back_files.html)

Ransomware is designed to encrypt the data of infected devices and demand payment for its decryption. JenkinsAfroditaBitPyLockKangaroo are a couple examples of such malicious programs. Main differences include - the cryptographic algorithm they use (symmetric or asymmetric) and the ransom size. The sums typically range between three and four digits (in USD). Digital currencies (primarily cryptocurrencies) are used, as transactions of them are difficult/impossible to trace. To ensure data safety, it is recommended to keep backups in remote servers and/or unplugged storage devices. Preferably, backups should be stored in several different locations.

How did ransomware infect my computer?

Usually ransomware and other malware infections originate from infectious files sent during spam campaigns, trojans, illegal activation tools ("cracks"), illegitimate updaters and untrustworthy download channels. "Spam campaign" is a term used to define the sending of thousands deceptive emails. These letters are disguised as "official", "important", "urgent" and so on. They have malicious files attached or contain links leading to them. The virulent files can be in various formats, for example: archive (ZIP, RAR) and executable (.exe, .run) files, PDF and Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript, etc. When they are opened - it initiates the infection (i.e. they begin downloading/installing malware). Trojans are malicious programs, designed to cause chain infections. Instead of activating licensed product, illegal activation ("cracking") tools can download/install malware. Fake updaters infect systems by exploiting the weaknesses of outdated software and/or install malware, rather than the promised updates. Untrustworthy download sources like: unofficial and free file-hosting sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks (BitTorrent, Gnutella, eMule, etc.) and other third party downloaders - can offer malicious content for downloading (e.g. presented and ordinary programs and/or bundled with them).

Threat Summary:
Name removeme2020 virus
Threat Type Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker
Encrypted Files Extension .locker
Ransom Demanding Message how_to_back_files.html
Cyber Criminal Contact remoteav@protonmail.ch and removeme2020@tutanota.com
Detection Names Avast (Win32:Malware-gen), BitDefender (Generic.Ransom.GlobeImposter.0CB27413), 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.
Removal

To eliminate removeme2020 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?

It is recommended not to open suspicious and/or irrelevant emails, especially ones received form unknown addresses. Any attachments (or links) present in dubious mail - must never be opened, as doing so can initiate an infection. Only official and verified download channels should be used, as opposed to various sharing networks and other third party downloaders. All program activation and updating should be done with tools/functions, provided by legitimate developers. Illegal activation tools ("cracks") and third party updaters are considered to be high-risk, therefore they are advised against use. It is crucial to device health, to have a reputable anti-virus software installed and kept updated. Furthermore, it should be used to perform regular system scans and removal of detected/potential threats. If your computer is already infected with removeme2020, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.

Text presented in removeme2020 ransomware's ransom note ("how_to_back_files.html"):

YOUR PERSONAL ID
-


ENGLISH
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 remoteav@protonmail.ch.
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.
Attention!

Only remoteav@protonmail.ch decrypt your files
Do not trust anyone remoteav@protonmail.ch
Reserv Email:removeme2020@tutanota.com
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

The appearance of removeme2020 ransomware's note (GIF):

removeme2020 ransomware note appearance

Screenshot of files encrypted by removeme2020 (".locker" extension):

Files encrypted by removeme2020 ransomware (.locker extension)

removeme2020 ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020, 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 removeme2020 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 removeme2020 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 malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

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

QR Code
removeme2020 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 removeme2020 virus on your mobile device.
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Platform: Windows

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