ZORAB ransomware removal instructions
What is ZORAB?
Discovered by malware researcher S!Ri, ZORAB is a malicious program classified as ransomware. Systems infected with it, experience data encryption and receive ransom demands for the decryption tools/software. During the encryption process, files are appended with the ".ZRB" extension. For example, a file like "1.jpg" would appear as "1.jpg.ZRB" - following encryption, and so on for all of the affected files. After this process is complete, a ransom note ("--DECRYPT--ZORAB.txt") is dropped into every compromised folder.
The ransom-demanding message ("--DECRYPT--ZORAB.txt") informs victims that their data has been encrypted. Files like documents, photos, databases and others have been affected and have the ".ZRB" extension added to their filenames. According to the note, the only method of recovering the data is by purchasing the decryption software and keys from the cyber criminals behind the infection. To learn how to obtain these tools, users are instructed to establish contact with the criminals, via email. Prior to paying, decryption can be tested by sending up to two encrypted files, by attaching them to the emails. The message ends with a warning not to modify the encrypted files and/or attempt to decrypt them with third party tools. In many cases of ransomware infections, without interference of the cyber criminals responsible - decryption is impossible. It might be, if malware is still in development and/or has bugs (flaws). Whatever the case, it is expressly advised against communicating with and/or meeting the demands of criminals. Since often, despite paying - users do not receive the necessary tools to decrypt their data. Therefore, it remains encrypted and worthless, and victims experience financial loss. Removing ZORAB ransomware will prevent it from further encryptions. Unfortunately, removal will not restore already encrypted files. The sole viable solution is recovering the data from a backup, if one was created before the infection and was stored in a separate location.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
Btc (Oled), Banks1, Pezi and Vfcfocxp are few examples of other ransomware-type programs. They encrypt files and demand payment for the decryption. There are two main differences between these programs/infections: the cryptographic algorithms they use (symmetric or asymmetric) and the ransom size. The latter tend to range between three and four digit sums (in USD). Digital currencies (e.g. cryptocurrencies, pre-paid vouchers, etc.) are usually used for these payments, due to transactions of them being difficult/impossible to trace. To avoid data loss, it is recommended to keep backups in unplugged storage devices and/or remote servers. It is best to store backups in multiple different locations.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
|Threat Type||Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker|
|Encrypted Files Extension||.ZRB|
|Ransom Demanding Message||--DECRYPT--ZORAB.txt|
|Cyber Criminal Contactemail@example.com|
|Detection Names||Avast (FileRepMetagen [Malware]), BitDefender (DeepScan:Generic.Ransom.SarCov.416DB1B6), DrWeb (Trojan.Encoder.31931), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.MSIL.DOTHETUK.gen), 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?
Dubious and/or irrelevant emails should not be opened, especially ones received from unknown/suspect senders. Any attachments or links present in suspicious letters must never be opened, as doing so can result in a high-risk infection. It is recommended to only use official and verified download channels. It is just as important to activate and update products with tools/functions provided by legitimate developers, as opposed to using illegal activation tools ("cracks") and third party updaters - which are commonly employed to distribute malware. To protect device health and user safety, it is crucial to have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed. This software must be kept updated, used to perform regular system scans and to remove detected/potential threats. If your computer is already infected with ZORAB, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in ZORAB ransomware's text file ("--DECRYPT--ZORAB.txt"):
—+-= ZORAB =-+—
Attention! Attention! Attention!
Your documents, photos, databases and other important files are encrypted and have the extension: .ZRB
Don't worry, you can return all your files!
The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool and unique key for you.
This software will decrypt all your encrypted files.
if you want to decrypt your files
The only method of recovering files is to purchase decrypt tool
This tool will decrypt all your encrypted files.
To get this software you need write on our e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
What guarantees do we give to you?
Its just a business. We absolutely do not care about you and your deals, except getting benefits.
You can send 2 your encrypted file from your PC and we decrypt it for free.
DONT try to change files by yourself, DONT use any third party software for restoring your data
Your personal id: -
Screenshot of files encrypted by ZORAB (".ZRB" extension):
Update June 8, 2020 - The Djvu ransomware family continues to remain as one of the most popular ransomware infection. Every week a new variant of Djvu is released, meaning that there are thousands of victims who seek for help. We have recently discovered a fake Djvu ransomware decrypter, which disguises the ZORAB ransomware. Once the malicious file is executed, a fake decryption window is displayed. However, this is a mere disguise - the ZORAB encryption process starts the moment malicious executable is opened. Victims will notice an additional extension (".ZRB") as well as another ransom note ("--DECRYPT--ZORAB.txt"). Using a fake decryption tool to inject a second ransomware is rather uncommon, since encrypted files are already unusable and victims are very unlikely to pay twice (for both Djvu and ZORAB ransomwares' developers). Nonetheless, hiding malware under a fake Djvu decryption is efficient due to this ransomware's popularity.
Screenshot of the fake Djvu ransomware decryptor designed to inject ZORAB ransomware into the system (VirusTotal detection list):
Update June 9, 2020 - Emsisoft has recently released a decryptor for ZORAB ransomware. Therefore, there victims can easily restore data without having to pay for anything. You can find the user manual and download the decryptor from Emsisoft's page.
Screenshot of Emsisoft's decryptor for ZORAB ransomware:
ZORAB 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 ZORAB?
- STEP 1. ZORAB virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. ZORAB 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 ZORAB 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 ZORAB 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 ZORAB 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 ZORAB 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 ZORAB 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 ZORAB ransomware: