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Aleta ransomware virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Lucia Danes - -   Also known as Aleta ransomware | Type: Ransomware
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Aleta ransomware starts attacking computer users at the beginning of July 2017

Aleta ransomware

Aleta virus is a typical ransomware that encrypts data files on a target computer. It belongs to BTCWare ransomware group[1] and being a version of this infamous virus, it has an alternative name “BTCWare Aleta ransomware.” The virus enters the system as a Trojan and encrypts all files using cryptographic algorithms, then drops a ransom note called !#_READ_ME_#!.inf.

During this process, the virus marks each encrypted file by adding email .[black.mirror@qq.com].aleta file extensions. These extensions contain an email address that the victim has to use in order to reach out to the cyber criminals.

According to victims’ reports, authors of this ransomware suggest decrypting encoded files for 2 Bitcoins[2] which is nearly 5000 US dollars. Needless to mention, such sum is incredibly large, and even victims willing to pay the ransom simply can not afford themselves to do it.

After corrupting all of the victim’s data, the ransomware creates and saves a short message from criminals in !#_READ_ME_#!.inf file which is known as the “ransom note.” The message informs the victim that files can be decrypted only with a decryption tool kept by cyber criminals. The price of this tool depends on “how fast” the victim writes to the criminals.

The attackers suggest that the victim has an opportunity to test the BTCWare Aleta decrypter by sending three small files to criminals via email, no larger than 1Mb in size. The criminals promise to send back decrypted versions of the files to prove that they actually can decrypt their files.

If your files were encrypted, we suggest you remove Aleta as soon as you can using a decent anti-malware software such as Reimage. Trying to delete a ransomware-type virus often results in failure due to lack of computing skills, so if you are an inexperienced PC user, you shouldn’t try to eliminate the virus manually.

You can find informative guidelines on how to restore your data right below the article. In case you are looking for ransomware removal instructions in a different language, such as Polish or German, check out websites like UsunWirusa[3] or DieViren[4].

Distribution of the Aleta Ransomware

Aleta removal will cleanse your system from malware and allow you to continue using the machine again. However, you must know how ransomware is distributed in order to prevent malicious network infiltrations in the future.

The described virus typically infiltrates the target system using RDP attacks. Cyber criminals seek to compromise admin accounts that have the right to control organization network remotely, and if they succeed to infect them, they can easily take over the target system and infect all devices with ransomware.

Keep in mind that even the strongest anti-malware programs become useless if you use weak admin passwords. In such case, crooks can brute force these passwords in a day and then fully control the target computer remotely.

There are many ways to fight ransomware; however, the general rules to protect you against ransomware attacks are:

  1. Install and keep an anti-malware program up-to-date.
  2. Create data backups regularly. You can find a guide on how to backup your data here.
  3. Never use weak passwords on your accounts, especially on remote system access software.
  4. Do not click on vague links while browsing the web and do not open emails sent by unknown people.

Get rid of BTCWare Aleta ransomware right now

Remove Aleta ransomware using instructions provided below to continue using the computer safely. Remember that ransomware often spreads in a bundle with other types of malware, therefore we suggest cleaning your PC automatically. You can find a list of suggested security programs below.

Keep in mind that you should never attempt to perform manual Aleta removal as such efforts frequently result in failure and can bring additional problems such as system’s instability. To fully erase the malware off the system, follow the steps given below.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to uninstall Aleta ransomware virus. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.

More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.

More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.

Manual Aleta virus Removal Guide:

Remove Aleta using Safe Mode with Networking

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

You will remove the virus without facing any problems if you careflly read and carry out the following instructions.

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Networking

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Networking'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Networking in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Networking'
  • Step 2: Remove Aleta

    Log in to your infected account and start the browser. Download Reimage or other legitimate anti-spyware program. Update it before a full system scan and remove malicious files that belong to your ransomware and complete Aleta removal.

If your ransomware is blocking Safe Mode with Networking, try further method.

Remove Aleta using System Restore

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

  • Step 1: Reboot your computer to Safe Mode with Command Prompt

    Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    1. Click Start Shutdown Restart OK.
    2. When your computer becomes active, start pressing F8 multiple times until you see the Advanced Boot Options window.
    3. Select Command Prompt from the list Select 'Safe Mode with Command Prompt'

    Windows 10 / Windows 8
    1. Press the Power button at the Windows login screen. Now press and hold Shift, which is on your keyboard, and click Restart..
    2. Now select Troubleshoot Advanced options Startup Settings and finally press Restart.
    3. Once your computer becomes active, select Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt in Startup Settings window. Select 'Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt'
  • Step 2: Restore your system files and settings
    1. Once the Command Prompt window shows up, enter cd restore and click Enter. Enter 'cd restore' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    2. Now type rstrui.exe and press Enter again.. Enter 'rstrui.exe' without quotes and press 'Enter'
    3. When a new window shows up, click Next and select your restore point that is prior the infiltration of Aleta. After doing that, click Next. When 'System Restore' window shows up, select 'Next' Select your restore point and click 'Next'
    4. Now click Yes to start system restore. Click 'Yes' and start system restore
    Once you restore your system to a previous date, download and scan your computer with Reimage and make sure that Aleta removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove Aleta from your computer. To recover your encrypted files, we recommend using a detailed guide prepared by 2-spyware.com security experts.

Aleta crypto ransomware is an improved version of BTCWare virus and therefore the BTCWare decryptor cannot, at least at the moment of writing, decrypt your files. We suggest using data backups and other data recovery solutions listed below to restore your files.

If your files are encrypted by Aleta, you can use several methods to restore them:

Data recovery tools

Data Recovery Pro can come in handy if your files were marked with .aleta extensions. Here's how to use this tool:

Restore files from Volume Shadow Copies

Volume Shadow Copies can help you recover your files, unfortunately it might not be possible because ransomware viruses tend to delete these copies right after encrypting the original file versions.

  • 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 Aleta and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware

About the author

Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

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References

Removal guides in other languages