Alcatraz Locker virus Removal Guide
What is Alcatraz Locker ransomware virus?
Your personal files may become prisoners of Alcatraz Locker ransomware
The developers of Alcatraz Locker ransomware virus used a pretty vivid name for a new malware. The Alcatraz was a high-security federal prison in San Francisco, California. Indeed, once the virus gets inside the computer, all your files become prisoners of Alcatraz. According to the cyber criminals, the only way to free your files is to pay the ransom. Before talking about characteristics of this new malware, we have to discourage you from following hacker’s instructions. Alcatraz Locker virus has the same purpose as any other ransomware – to wheedle as much money as possible from computer users. It’s doubtful that hackers will provide a necessary file decryption tool after they receive a payment. Therefore, you might experience an even bigger loss. Besides, every single pound is a motivation and sponsorship for the hackers to continue old and develop new illegal projects. Take our advice and remove Alcatraz Locker from the computer immediately with the help of ReimageIntego. Then, you will be able to restore your files from backups or use alternative data recovery methods.
Malware researchers made an assumption that Alcatraz ransomware virus is still in development stage. However, it’s not a reason to underestimate it. It is still a file-encrypting virus that might use tricky distribution techniques to enter your computer and lock personal files. If you haven’t encountered ransomware, we recommend making data backup copies and store them in external devices. We do not want to scare you, but taking precautions are crucial nowadays. Alcatraz Locker ransomware uses sophisticated data encryption algorithm and appends .alcatraz file extension to each of your document, picture, audio or video file. All personal files become useless and terrified computer users often decide to follow cyber criminal’s instructions presented in the ransom note. After file encryption virus drops a ransom note which is available in several languages such as English, Spanish, Italian, French, German, etc. In the ransom note, hackers explain how Alcatraz Locker virus encrypts the files: it uses the public key for data encryption, and the private key is necessary for data decryption. Criminals are cold-hearted and do not provide a private key only from a good will. Victims have to pay 0.3 Bitcoins (almost $200) using Tor browser. What is interesting, hackers give a quite extended deadline for making a transaction. Victims have to transfer money within 30 days; usually, the time limit varies from 12 to 72 hours. Long deadline might be related to the assumption that virus is still in development. Besides, the payment website delivers as message “What are you doing here?”. Indeed, we want to ask you the same questions. Initiate Alcatraz Locker removal instead of considering paying the ransom.
Malware distribution techniques
The developers of the ransomware use various distribution methods. It’s already known that Alcatraz virus is distributed via Rig exploit kit. However, it might also be spreading via malicious email attachments or malware-laden ads. Ransomware type viruses are one of the most popular cyber threats, and they might be waiting for your one careless click. To protect your computer from Alcatraz Locker ransomware and other computer infections, you should follow these tips:
- Always double check the information about the sender when you consider opening an email attachment.
- Download and update programs from secure and reliable sources.
- Do not click misleading advertisements that offer questionable software downloads or warns about various computer-related issues.
- Do not browse on high-risk websites. These sites usually are gaming, gambling, and adult-themed Internet sites.
Additionally, install a strong antivirus program to strengthen your computer’s security. Do not forget to update it as well as other software installed on your PC.
Suggestions for Alcatraz Locker removal
File-encrypting viruses are complex and complicated computer infections, so they are almost impossible to remove manually. Do not even consider manual Alcatraz Locker removal! You might delete important files and keep malicious components; therefore, you can cause more damage to your computer. Ransomware should be eliminated using powerful malware removal tools. Remove Alcatraz Locker using ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes. These programs are capable of eliminating malware quickly. Before starting virus elimination process, reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Networking.
Getting rid of Alcatraz Locker virus. Follow these steps
Manual removal using Safe Mode
Manual removal guide might be too complicated for regular computer users. It requires advanced IT knowledge to be performed correctly (if vital system files are removed or damaged, it might result in full Windows compromise), and it also might take hours to complete. Therefore, we highly advise using the automatic method provided above instead.
Step 1. Access Safe Mode with Networking
Manual malware removal should be best performed in the Safe Mode environment.
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
- When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 button (if that does not work, try F2, F12, Del, etc. – it all depends on your motherboard model) multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
- Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
- Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
- On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
- Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
- Click Restart now.
- Select Troubleshoot.
- Go to Advanced options.
- Select Startup Settings.
- Press Restart.
- Now press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking.
Step 2. Shut down suspicious processes
Windows Task Manager is a useful tool that shows all the processes running in the background. If malware is running a process, you need to shut it down:
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
- Click on More details.
- Scroll down to Background processes section, and look for anything suspicious.
- Right-click and select Open file location.
- Go back to the process, right-click and pick End Task.
- Delete the contents of the malicious folder.
Step 3. Check program Startup
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
- Go to Startup tab.
- Right-click on the suspicious program and pick Disable.
Step 4. Delete virus files
Malware-related files can be found in various places within your computer. Here are instructions that could help you find them:
- Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
- Select the drive you want to clean (C: is your main drive by default and is likely to be the one that has malicious files in).
- Scroll through the Files to delete list and select the following:
Temporary Internet Files
- Pick Clean up system files.
- You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):
After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.
Remove Alcatraz Locker using System Restore
Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
- Click Start → Shutdown → Restart → OK.
- When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
- Select Command Prompt from the list
Windows 10 / Windows 8
- Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
- Now select Troubleshoot → Advanced options → Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
- Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt in Startup Settings window.
Step 2: Restore your system files and settings
- Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter.
- Now type rstrui.exe and press Enter again..
- When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Alcatraz Locker. After doing that, click Next.
- Now click Yes to start system restore.
Bonus: Recover your dataGuide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove Alcatraz Locker from your computer. To recover your encrypted files, we recommend using a detailed guide prepared by 2-spyware.com security experts.
The developers of Alcatraz Locker ransomware offers to purchase a file decryption key; however, we do not recommend paying the ransom. Crooks tend do disappear after receiving a payment and forget bout their promises to help victims with data recovery. We do not recommend risking your money. After ransomware elimination, restore files from data backups or use additional methods presented below. Hopefully, they retrieve at least some of your files.
If your files are encrypted by Alcatraz Locker, you can use several methods to restore them:
Retrieve files using Data Recovery Pro
Data Recovery Pro might be useful after Alcatraz Locker attack. This tool was designed to locate and restore files from system wreckage, so it might be helpful in data decryption as well.
- Download Data Recovery Pro;
- Follow the steps of Data Recovery Setup and install the program on your computer;
- Launch it and scan your computer for files encrypted by Alcatraz Locker ransomware;
- Restore them.
Restore files with Windows Previous Versions Featyre
If you have enabled System Recovery function before ransomware infiltration, you can try to restore your files using this method. Follow the steps below:
- Find an encrypted file you need to restore and right-click on it;
- Select “Properties” and go to “Previous versions” tab;
- Here, check each of available copies of the file in “Folder versions”. You should select the version you want to recover and click “Restore”.
ShadowExplorer for data recovery
If Alcatraz Locker hasn’t deleted Shadow Volume Copies, this method might be useful to recover lost files. Fallow the instructions below:
- Download Shadow Explorer (http://shadowexplorer.com/);
- Follow a Shadow Explorer Setup Wizard and install this application on your computer;
- Launch the program and go through the drop down menu on the top left corner to select the disk of your encrypted data. Check what folders are there;
- Right-click on the folder you want to restore and select “Export”. You can also select where you want it to be stored.
Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Alcatraz Locker and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes
How to prevent from getting ransomware
Do not let government spy on you
The government has many issues in regards to tracking users' data and spying on citizens, so you should take this into consideration and learn more about shady information gathering practices. Avoid any unwanted government tracking or spying by going totally anonymous on the internet.
You can choose a different location when you go online and access any material you want without particular content restrictions. You can easily enjoy internet connection without any risks of being hacked by using Private Internet Access VPN.
Control the information that can be accessed by government any other unwanted party and surf online without being spied on. Even if you are not involved in illegal activities or trust your selection of services, platforms, be suspicious for your own security and take precautionary measures by using the VPN service.
Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack
Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.
When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.