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Arrow ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Lucia Danes - - | Type: Ransomware

Arrow virus – new ransomware from Dharma family

Illustration of Arrow ransomware virus

Arrow ransomware is one of the variants of Dharma ransomware that appeared in March 2018. Malware AES cryptography[1] and appends .arrow file extension to the targeted data to swindle the money from the users. The instructions how to pay the ransom are delivered in the ransom note which is downloaded immediately after successful encryption.

Name Arrow ransomware
Family Dharma
Extensions used to mark infected files .id-[random-characters].[].arrow, [].arrow,].arrow
Email address
Distribution Spam, infected email attachments, illegal software
Decrypter Dharma Decryptor

Arrow virus usually spreads via malicious spam emails which contain an obfuscated attachment. When a victim opens a document, malware payload is dropped and executed on the system. Malware immediately starts making changes to the system, such as:

  • Gets admin rights to specific Windows processes or system files,
  • Modifies or creates new Registry entries,
  • Deletes Shadow Volume Copies.

All these changes allow Arrow malware to settle in the computer and boot with system startup. However, the biggest problem is that it might delete shadow copies which are very important in data recovery.[2] Though, sometimes ransomware fails to delete them and data recovery might be possible with third-party software.

Arrow ransomware targets the most popular file types, including documents, images, audio, video and other files. The crypto-virus adds a complex suffix to targeted files that include a contact email address, victim’s ID and unique file extension. After the encryption, all files are locked with .id-[random-characters].[].arrow, [].arrow or].arrow file extension.

Victims are supposed to contact authors of Arrow via However, security specialists do not recommend doing it. Communication with cybercriminals and following their instructions might lead to money loss. No one can ensure that they have a decryptor or let you use it after receiving your payment.

Keep in mind that some versions of Dharma are decryptable. Hence, you should remove Arrow ransomware and try its decryptor. It might be updated any minute to help victims to recover lost files. Additionally, you can try third-party tools if you do not have your important files backed up.

But before you proceed with data recovery, you have to clean the computer. For Arrow removal, you will need a professional malware removal tool. We highly recommend using Reimage, but you can choose any other reliable security tool too.

Do not rush opening email attachments to avoid ransomware attack

Malicious spam email attachments are the main distribution method of the file-encrypting viruses. Ransomware executable typically spreads as obfuscated Word, PDF or ZIP file, so it’s easy to get tricked and open an infected document.

However, if you be attentive and do not open spam or other suspicious emails, you can protect your files from encryption. If you find the content of the email unfamiliar or shady, follow these instructions:

  • Look up for grammar and spelling mistakes. Crooks often leave typos and language errors which can reveal their malicious goals.
  • Double-check the information about the sender. Look up for the information about email address and the sender online, especially if the letter seems to be sent from the bank, governmental institutions or similar company.
  • Check credentials. Phishing emails often lack credentials, such as signature or logos.

Specialists from[3] remind to be careful with freeware downloads, update installation and aggressive pop-ups. They might be used in ransomware distribution too. For full protection, you should also install reputable antivirus and create backups.

Delete Arrow ransomware virus safely

We want to warn that you should not try to remove Arrow virus from the computer manually. The file-encrypting virus can inject malicious code into legit system processes and install numerous additional files or applications that perform harmful activities.

Terminate all these entries without security software is nearly impossible, especially if you are not an experienced IT specialist. For this reason, you should opt for automatic Arrow ransomware removal. To clean malware safely, you should choose one of these tools: Reimage, Malwarebytes Anti Malware or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus. If you have some obstacles, follow the guide below.

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If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
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More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.
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Manual Arrow virus Removal Guide:

Remove Arrow using Safe Mode with Networking

If Arrow ransomware prevents from automatic removal, follow these steps:

  • 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 Arrow

    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 Arrow removal.

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

Remove Arrow using System Restore

This method might also help to disable the virus and run security software:

  • 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 Arrow. 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 Arrow removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

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

Restore some of the files with Data Recovery Pro

Data Recovery Pro can help to restore some of the missing files. However, it's not an actual decrypter, so you should not expect to get back all of your files.

Use Windows Previous Versions feature to get back the most important files

If System Restore was enabled before ransomware attack, you can follow the steps below and restore individual files you need the most:

  • 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 can be useful if malware failed to delete shadow copies

You can restore files encrypted by Arrow ransomware with ShadowExplorer if it failed to delete Shadow Volume Copies that are needed for this tool.

  • Download Shadow Explorer (;
  • 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.

Try Dharma Decryptor

Some versions of Dharma ransomware are decryptable with this free tool. Maybe it will help you too.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Arrow 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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