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

removal by Gabriel E. Hall - - | Type: Ransomware
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BlueHowl is a dangerous crypto-malware that locks computer’s screen and plays music in the background

BlueHowl is a lock-screen ransomware virus. Once malware gets on the affected computer, it starts checking the system and making important modifications. It settles in the device and makes sure that it is run at system startup. Then it starts installing dangerous files and starts malicious processes. Once it’s done, the virus starts data encryption procedure and takes files to hostage with the help of sophisticated encryption algorithm. The ransomware is designed to encrypt various types of data, including image, audio, video, text and other popular file types. Following data encryption, BlueHowl ransomware opens a ransom-demanding message n the lock-screen window where cyber criminals demand to pay 0.2 Bitcoins within 72 hours for data recovery. What is more, the virus also plays “The Final Countdown” by Europe in the background. It seems criminals have some dark sense of humor. Hackers also provided a QR code to make payment more convenient. However, the research has shown that it’s not working. Thus, victims have to use a TOR browser[1] to transfer the money to the provided Bitcoin wallet address. However, doing that is not recommended. Instead of having business with cyber criminals and risking to lose the money, you should perform BlueHowl removal as soon as possible. It’s a complicated and dangerous cyber infection that has to be terminated immediately using a powerful malware removal program, such as Reimage.

The image of BlueHowl

The research has shown that BlueHowl might be capable of not only damaging files but also tracking information about victims. It seems that ransomware is designed to modify Internet cache, harvest and monitor system information. This functionality allows cybercriminals to get your computer’s name, Windows configuration files and alter various processes on the system. In this way, cyber criminals might revert all the changes that victims might be trying to make in order to remove BlueHowl manually. Such actions should not be taken because these attempts are designed to fail or damage the system. The only safe and efficient way to get rid of the virus is to employ professional antivirus or malware removal program. What is more, ransomware is capable of altering Internet cache and spying on victims using a proxy server. This functionality allows accessing not only victim’s browsing-related information but also steal private information, such as banking data, credit card information, login details, etc. Thus, BlueHowl might be dangerous to both the computer and its owner.

Infiltration strategies of the file-encrypting virus

BlueHowl malware might enter the system using numerous different methods. However, the primary distribution and infiltration strategy is malicious spam emails and their attachments. Criminals use social engineering[2] techniques and pretend to be from official organizations to trick people into opening a provided document. Once users click on an infected file, they initiate installation of malware executable. Thus, only one click may lead to ransomware attack. BlueHowl might also be hiding under malware-laden ads or presented as useful programs on various file-sharing sites, P2P networks or torrents. Thus, users have to be careful before clicking on eye-catchy ads and make sure that they are choosing reliable sources for software installation. Finally, users have to keep all the programs and operating system updated to protect devices from ransomware attack. BlueHowl might be capable of taking advantage of outdated software and use security vulnerabilities to hijack the system.

The safe way to remove BlueHowl ransomware virus from the system

BlueHowl removal must be performed using professional malware removal program. As we have explained, the virus is capable of making significant changes in the system, install dangerous files and inject malicious codes into legitimate processes. Thus, it’s a complex cyber infection that might also reject all the attempts to delete it manually. For this reason, you have to use powerful tools such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware. Before installing them, you may need to reboot the computer to the Safe Mode with Networking. In this way, you will disable the virus and be able to remove BlueHowl without any problems.

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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 BlueHowl 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.
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Manual BlueHowl virus Removal Guide:

Remove BlueHowl using Safe Mode with Networking

BlueHowl removal might be complicated because it may prevent from installing or accessing security programs. However, rebooting the computer to the Safe Mode with Networking helps to disable the virus and perform the automatic removal.

  • 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 BlueHowl

    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 BlueHowl removal.

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

Remove BlueHowl using System Restore

System Restore method also helps to access malware removal program and scan the system.

  • 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 BlueHowl. 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 BlueHowl removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Currently, there’s no way to restore files without particular decryption program. However, purchasing it from cyber criminals is not recommended because it may lead to money loss. If you have backups, please use them after virus removal. If not, please try alternative recovery methods. 

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

Restore files encrypted by BlueHowl ransomware using Data Recovery Pro

It’s a professional software created to restore deleted, corrupted and some of the encrypted files. Thus, it might help you as well.

Take advantage of Windows Previous Versions feature

If you have few important files to restore, this method might help you. By following the steps below, you can travel back in computer’s time and copy files before ransomware attack. However, in order to use this recovery method, you have to be enabled System Restore function before ransomware attack.

  • 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”.

Try ShadowExplorer for data recovery

If BlueHowl hasn’t deleted Shadow Volume Copies of the targeted file, this tool might help you as well.

  • 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.

BlueHowl Decryptor is not available yet.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from BlueHowl and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware

About the author

Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

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References