Remove Ransomware? We can decrypt your files

Removing ransomware from an infected system requires in-depth knowledge of both the ransomware and the device and files that have been encrypted. Before discussing how to remove ransomware, it is necessary to understand the complexity of this malware and how it works.

Ransomware has been developed with a very well-established objective: to encrypt files, that is its basic purpose. The groups invade the victim’s system and encrypt all the stored files, after which they charge a ransom so that the victim has access to their data again.

All of this is just an overview of how the attack and data encryption take place, let’s look in more detail and understand how to remove ransomware from the system.

How does ransomware invade a system?

Hackers use countless strategies to gain access to the victim’s system. The big challenge is not just gaining access, but gaining access in a hidden way so that the ransomware is not identified by the system – this is the most important step. Encrypting data is a delicate and time-consuming process, which is why hiding the malware is essential. The aim is always to encrypt as many files as possible and the most important ones.

The main targets of the ransomware are:

  • Office documents: Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files are often targeted because they contain crucial information for companies and individuals.
  • Databases: Databases are valuable targets because they can contain sensitive information such as customer data, financial records and commercial information.
  • Image and Video Files: Personal photos and videos are often targeted, as they have significant emotional value for users. In the case of companies, media files can contain important data for marketing and design operations.
  • Audio Files: Voice recordings and audio files can be targeted, especially if they contain confidential information or important data for organisations.
  • Backup files: Ransomware often searches for and encrypts backup copies, discouraging easy data restoration. This emphasises the importance of keeping secure and isolated backups.
  • System and Configuration Files: Certain ransomware can target essential operating system files and configurations to increase the effectiveness of the attack and make recovery more difficult.
  • Application Files: Executable files, libraries and other application components can be targeted to jeopardise the normal functioning of systems.
  • Text and Log Files: Text files, logs and log files can be targeted to limit an organisation’s ability to track ransomware activities or to cause disruptions in security monitoring processes.
  • Server Configuration Files: In attacks aimed at companies, the configuration files of critical servers and applications can be targeted to destabilise operations.

Before starting encryption, the ransomware maps the entire system, after which encryption begins. That’s why the invasion strategy is important: the ransomware needs to invade and hide in the operating system. The main invasion strategies are:

  • Phishing and Social Engineering – Phishing remains a popular technique among ransomware groups. They send fraudulent emails, often disguised as legitimate messages, inducing recipients to click on malicious links or download contaminated attachments. Social engineering is often employed to manipulate victims and gain unauthorised access.
  • Exploiting vulnerabilities – Ransomware groups often take advantage of vulnerabilities in operating systems, software and services. They exploit known security flaws that have not yet been patched, which emphasises the importance of regularly applying updates and patches.
  • Brute force attacks – In order to compromise access credentials, some groups carry out brute force attacks, in which they try various combinations of usernames and passwords until they find the right one. This emphasises the importance of using strong passwords and multi-factor authentication.
  • Ransomware as a Service (RaaS) – Some groups offer ransomware as a service, allowing other less skilful cybercriminals to conduct attacks. This amplifies the threat by allowing individuals with less technical knowledge to participate in criminal activities.
  • Infiltration via Compromised Legitimate Software – Ransomware groups often gain initial access via legitimate software that has been compromised. This can include exploits in widely used applications or the use of legitimate tools to move laterally within a network.
  • Attacks on RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) servers – Some groups exploit inadequate RDP protocol settings to gain unauthorised remote access to systems. This highlights the importance of correctly configuring security options in remote services.
  • Supply Chain – Ransomware groups have also exploited vulnerabilities in the supply chain, targeting companies through their partners, suppliers or third parties connected to their network. This can include compromising software used in business processes.

Faced with this diversity of techniques, it is crucial that organisations implement comprehensive cyber security measures, including regular updates, awareness training for users, robust password policies and advanced security solutions to protect themselves against ransomware threats.

How to remove ransomware?

Perhaps “remove ransomware” is not the right way to deal with ransomware, because it can be removed, but the files will remain encrypted. Removal can be done by formatting the system, but this will also remove the data. The best option is to decrypt the encrypted files and then format the environment.

Ransomware removal must be carried out by a specialised company with the necessary technical expertise. Digital Recovery has both, has been operating in the data recovery market for over 25 years and has extensive knowledge of the encryption of the main ransomware groups.

See the ransomware groups we can decrypt:

If the ransomware you want to remove is not on this list, contact our experts. Our solutions can decrypt the vast majority of ransomware extensions on the main storage devices, such as: HDD, SSD, RAID systems, Storages (NAS, DAS, SAN), databases, servers, virtual machines, among others.

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