Tox Ransomware

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

Tox ransomware removal instructions

What is Tox?

Tox is a ransomware creation kit that enables most users to create a fully functional ransomware infection. Cyber criminals responsible for releasing this kit provide it free of charge. Tox kit relies on an affiliate scheme - developers of this rogue application kit take a 30% commission of any successful ransomware campaigns (70% goes to the affiliates). As with other crypto ransomware, Tox uses a TOR anonymity network (to hide the location of their sites) and Bitcoins as a ransom payment currency. To use the Tox ransomware kit, affiliates are required to enter the ransom amount and the ‘cause’ (a message to alert victims that their files are held hostage until they pay the ransom). The process of creating the ransomware is straightforward - the tracking of successful infiltrations and securing profit are all processed by the Tox ransomware kit.

tox ransomware virus

Affiliates can distribute this malware using infected email messages, exploit kits, etc. After successfully infecting computers, Tox ransomware encrypts users' files (.txt, .odt, .doc, .ppt, .jpg, .png, .bmp, and many other file types) via an Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) and then opens a window with information containing the bitcoin address where victims are encouraged to send their ransom payments. Although the malware code seems to contain errors and lack complexity, no tools were available (at time of writing) to decrypt files compromised by Tox kit ransomware. The good news is that Tox does not delete the shadow copies of compromised files, and therefore, victims can use System Restore of programs such as Shadow Explorer to regain control of their files.

Ransomware infections such as Tox (for example, cryptowall, cryptolocker, and alphacrypt) present a strong case to maintain regular backups of your stored data. Note that paying the ransom as demanded by this ransomware is equivalent to sending your money to cyber criminals - you will support their malicious business model and there is no guarantee that your files will ever be decrypted. To avoid computer infection with ransomware, express caution when opening email messages, downloading files from P2P networks, etc. Furthermore, always use legitimate antivirus and anti-malware programs.

Tox ransom demanding message:

Attention - The files in your PC are now encrypted. The only way to have them back, is to pay a file. How to pay - You have to pay the ransom in bitcoins to the address which has been reserved for you. Please not that the value of bitcoins is unstable and may change in the near future. The current amount of bitcoin to pay is 0.64 (75.00$). How to buy bitcoins - 1. register, 2. deposit funds with credit card of bank transfer, 3. withdraw 0.64 bitcoins to address, 4. wait the transaction to be completed (it usually takes less than two hours). 5. if your files are not decrypted automatically, please write to toxsupport(at)sigaint.com with the subject HELP, sending the bitcoin address you paid to. You can also spam this mailbox with useless stuff or wishing me death, so that mail sent from real people who actually need help won’t be read.

Tox ransomware developers website:

tox ransomware website

Text presented in Tox ransomware developers website:

What is Tox? - We developed a virus which, once opened in a Windows OS, encrypts all the files. Once this process is completed, it displays a message asking to pay a ransom to a bitcoin address to unlock the files. How do I make money with Tox? - You can subscribe (no mail or other shit needed) and create your virus. You will have to decide the ransom to unlock the files. Once you have downloaded your virus, you have to infect people (yes, you can spam the same virus to more people). How? That's your part. The most common practice to spam it as a mail attachment. If you decide to follow this method be sure to zip the file to prevent antivirus and antispam detection. - The most important part: the bitcoin paid by the victim will be credited to your account. We will just keep a 30% fee of the income, so if you specify a 100$ ransom, you will get 70$ and we'll get 30$, isn't this fair?

 

F.A.Q. - Are you serious? - Yes, why not? This is the best way for us to infect a lot of people and make a lot of money. Am I safe? - Sure, as long as you use tor and don't use personally identifiable information: we don't need to know you, and you don't need to know us. The only thing we'll ask you is the bitcoin address to withdraw your part. Are you going to steal my profit? - Nope, why should we? The best way for us to make money is having you helping us. Also, you will be shown the btc address your victims have to pay to, so you'll be sure we're not hiding anything from you. Then why aren't you spreading the virus yourself? We are! But with you, we're going to have a bigger income. Why is the file a .scr? - Because in this way people will not suspect anything (who knows what is a .scr?). If you wish, you can change it to .exe it'll work the same. How does the virus look? - Sexy. The virus has a .src extension (same as .exe files) and it has the icon of a word document, so the victim wont be suspecting anything. Will you actually decrypt the files once the ransom is paid? - Yes, we will. We want people to trust us, so that more people will pay the ransom. How dow I withdraw the money? - In the virus section you can monitor the status of all your viruses. When you have bitcoins to withdraw, just enter your address and press the Withdraw button.

Tox Team Twitter account used for marketing the ransomware creation kit:

tox team twitter account

Tox ransomware removal:

Instant automatic removal of Tox 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 Tox 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, 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: Go to the Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click on Advanced Startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window select Advanced Startup. Click on the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into "Advanced Startup options menu". Click on the "Troubleshoot" button, then click on "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen click on "Startup settings". Click on the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press "5" 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":

Step 2

Login to the account infected with the Tox. 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 Tox 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 tox ransomware files.

To restore individual files encrypted by this ransomware, try using the 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 Tox 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 on 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 Tox 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 encrypting ransomware such as this, use reputable antivirus and anti-spyware programs. As an extra protection method, you can use programs called HitmanPro.Alert and Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware (which artificially implant group policy objects into the registry to block rogue programs such as Tox).

HitmanPro.Alert CryptoGuard - detects encryption of files and neutralises such 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 Tox ransomware:

curryscones

wow i thought that i will never remove this! thanks a lot for this great guide man!

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 virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

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

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

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