Chinz ransomware removal instructions
What is Chinz?
Chinz belongs to the Phobos ransomware family. It is a typical ransomware which is designed to encrypt victim's files, modify their filenames and provide instructions on how to contact its developers about the decryption. Chinz changes the name of every encrypted file by adding the victim's ID, email@example.com email address and appending the ".chinz" extension to its filename. For example, it renames a file named "1.jpg" to "1.jpg.id[1E857D00-2875].[firstname.lastname@example.org].chinz", "2.jpg" to "2.jpg.id[1E857D00-2875].[email@example.com].chinz", and so on. It displays a ransom note in a pop-up window and creates another one in the "info.txt" text file.
To receive information on how to purchase a decryption tool victims supposed to contact Chinz's developers by writing them to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com email address and provide the assigned ID. It is mentioned that price of a decryption software and/or key depends on how fast it will be done. Also, victims are offered a free decryption of no more than 5 files, those files can be sent to these cyber criminals by attaching them to the email. Although, attached files should not contain valuable information. Additionally, it is stated that attempts to rename files or decrypt them with some third party software may cause permanent data loss. Unfortunately, cyber criminals behind Chin are the only ones who have the tools that can decrypt files encrypted by this ransomware. However, it is very likely that they will not send them even after a payment. Therefore, it is strongly recommended not to pay a ransom to them. Typically, victims of ransomware attack can recover their files for free only by restoring them from a backup. Also, it is possible to prevent further encryptions by uninstalling ransomware from the operating system. However, encrypted files remain inaccessible even after its uninstallation.
Screenshot of a message encouraging users to pay a ransom to decrypt their compromised data:
To sum up, ransomware is a type malware that is designed to encrypt data and to display and/or generate a ransom note (or notes). Two most common (and main) differences are price of a decryption and cryptographic algorithm (symmetric or asymmetric) that ransomware uses to encrypt victim's data. Unfortunately, in most cases such malware uses strong encryption algorithms which makes it impossible to decrypt files without the right tools that only cyber criminals who designed it have. It is possible to decrypt data without their tools only if ransomware has bugs, flaws, it is not finished, and it does not happen often. Therefore, it is recommended to always have data backed up and keep it on a remote server and/or unplugged storage device. A couple of examples of other malware of this type are Pywdu, Gomer and Deal_For_Access.
How did ransomware infect my computer?
|Threat Type||Ransomware, Crypto Virus, Files locker|
|Encrypted Files Extension||.chinz|
|Ransom Demanding Message||info.txt and pop-up window (info.hta)|
|Cyber Criminal Contactfirstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com|
|Detection Names||Avast (Win32:Trojan-gen), BitDefender (Gen:Variant.Ransom.Phobos.62), ESET-NOD32 (A Variant Of Win32/Filecoder.Phobos.C), Kaspersky (HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Generic), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Rogue Process Name||This ransomware runs a process without a name (although, in different cases its process may have a name)|
|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?
Attachments and/or website links in irrelevant emails that are received form unknown, suspicious addresses should not be opened. It is common that such emails are sent by cyber criminals, also, most of the times they are disguised as important, official. Software and files should be downloaded only from official websites and through direct links. Unofficial sites, third party downloaders (and installers), etc., can be and often are used to distribute malicious files/programs. Installed software must be updated and/or activated (if necessary) with tools and/or functions that are provided by official software developers. Third party, unofficial tools often are designed to infect computers with some malware. Also, it is not legal to use any 'cracking' tools to activate licensed software. One more way to keep computers safe is to regularly scan them with a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware suite and always eliminate detected threats right after the scanning process. If your computer is already infected with Chinz, we recommend running a scan with Malwarebytes for Windows to automatically eliminate this ransomware.
Text presented in Chinz ransomware's pop-up window ("info.hta"):
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
Write this ID in the title of your message 1E857D00-2875
In case of no answer in 24 hours write us to this e-mail:email@example.com
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 tool that will decrypt all your files.
Free decryption as guarantee
Before paying you can send us up to 5 files for free decryption. The total size of files must be less than 4Mb (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 Chinz's text file:
Text in this file:
!!!All of your files are encrypted!!!
To decrypt them send e-mail to this address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If we don't answer in 24h., send e-mail to this address: email@example.com
Chinz running in Task Manager as an unnamed process (in different cases it may have a name):
Screenshot of files encrypted by Chinz (".chinz" extension):
Chinz 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 Chinz?
- STEP 1. Chinz virus removal using safe mode with networking.
- STEP 2. Chinz 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 Chinz 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 Chinz 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 Chinz 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 Chinz 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 Chinz 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 Chinz ransomware: