CRYPTEDPAY virus Removal Guide
What is CRYPTEDPAY ransomware?
CRYPTEDPAY ransomware is a virus that focuses on file-locking, so the ransom in Monero can be demanded
The infection is locking files before the ransom demand is made
CRYPTEDPAY ransomware is a dangerous blackmail-based virus that uses encryption software and attacks various devices to affect files and get money directly from victims. This virus can lock files quickly because it uses the powerful AES-256 algorithm, which allows the threat to damage commonly used files and demand the $280 in Monero cryptocurrency. The ransom should be paid in the first 62 hours after the attack because criminals promise to get rid of the data after this time period.
Once the machine is infected and files encoded, the affected pictures, documents, video, audio files get the .CRYPTEDPAY marker, you can be sure that the malicious procedures are done for the most part. The desktop gets changed to a short message that indicates encryption, and the text file appears placed on the desktop in other folders with the encrypted files. This README.txt document is a lengthy message from criminals with a guide on what to do next.
The ransom message is direct money demand and the file purposefully scaring people into paying the asked amount. However, people behind the CRYPTEDPAY virus are nothing but cybercriminals, so you need to ignore these encouragements and make sure to remove the threat fully, recover your files using proper backups and repair any issues caused by the virus damage.
Since the infection is new and not belonging to any known threat families, it is not decryptable. There are no tools specifically designed to decrypt files affected by this infection, so official solutions are limited. However, we can offer helpful tips for when the machine is affected by this threat, and the first one is DO NOT PAY. Try to use your AV tools to remove the threat and file backups for the thorough file recovery instead. Paying is never a good option because you may get your files locked further or not recovered even if you transfer funds to the wallet of these criminals.
|Type||Cryptovirus, file-locker, ransomware|
|File marker||.CRYPTEDPAY appendix gets added to locked data|
|Ransom note||README.txt – appears in various folders and on the desktop|
|Ransom amount||$280 in XMR – Monero cryptocurrency|
|Distribution||Macro virus method is used, and files with the payload get spread using spam email attachments, malicious sites, torrent platforms|
|Is decryption possible?||No official decryption software|
|Elimination||You can and should remove the virus using anti-malware programs and a full system scan|
|Repair||The system is affected by such threats significantly, so you need to run ReimageIntego or a similar tool to clear any damage and virus leftovers|
CRYPTEDPAY file virus is making all the changes on the machine right after the infiltration. Unfortunately, the infection can access the computer easily due to the deceptive techniques and help from other threat actors. The infection can be quick because malicious macro viruses get added to Word, Excel, PDF files and distributed as attachments on spam emails.
The user only needs to open such attachments, don't the machine, and enable macros with one click of a button, and the payload is activated. The same procedure happens when the torrent platform, pirating services get used as a source for software or cheats, cracks, other files. EXE files often get installed without your knowledge, and the malware starts its attack.
Steps of the infection and how to recover after that
The infection is not starting with the encryption, but the subtle changes on the PC do not cause any symptoms at first, but after that, CRYPTEDPAY ransomware moves on to encryption. This is the worst process because your files get locked, encoded, and changed from the original format. The particular file extension is indicating the name of this virus.
However, even though this is a file encryption threat, the virus is not only damaging your common files. The malware can access and corrupt data in system folders and directories, so the threat is more persistent and that any additional activities are not interrupted. It also can disable tools like anti-malware, but those are extremely important to the removal process.
These anti-malware programs are based on threat detection, and the functionality allows to find and terminate any files related to the CRYPTEDPAY file locker. Tools like SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes are the best in the malware elimination department because of the higher possible detection rate. You might find it difficult to run the app, so rely on the guide below the article that shows how to enter the Safe Mode with networking.
The virus like this can be persistent, but most AV engines find the payload file and associated data malicious once located on the machine
However, this encoding of the common files is not the only issue. The infected computer system is changed to operate differently too. The infection can alter the Windows registry database, damage vital bootup, and other sections, delete or corrupt DLL files, etc. Once a system file is damaged by malware, antivirus software cannot do anything about it, leaving it just the way it is.
Therefore, we highly recommend using a one-of-a-kind, patented technology of ReimageIntego repair. Not only can it fix virus damage after the infection, but it is also capable of removing malware that has already broken into the system thanks to several engines used by the program. Besides, the application can also fix various Windows-related issues that are not caused by malware infections, for example, Blue Screen errors, freezes, registry errors, damaged DLLs, etc.
- Download the application by clicking on the link above
- Click on the ReimageRepair.exe
- If User Account Control (UAC) shows up, select Yes
- Press Install and wait till the program finishes the installation process
- The analysis of your machine will begin immediately
- Once complete, check the results – they will be listed in the Summary
- You can now click on each of the issues and fix them manually
- If you see many problems that you find difficult to fix, we recommend you purchase the license and fix them automatically.
Removal of the CRYPTEDPAY ransomware is not the same as file recovery
CRYPTEDPAY ransomware virus delivers a long message in the README.txt file about the infection and encryption consequences, but the only option listed on the ransom message is paying the $280 in Monero within 62 hours. Criminals “helpfully” list all the steps you need to take to obtain the currency and state that you will lose everything if you do not meet their requirements.
It is possible because criminals may encrypt files again and make them permanently damaged or delete any remaining data from the machine. These people do not care about your belongings, so we do not recommend contacting criminals in any circumstances. Ignore any scary messages and make sure to remove the virus as soon as possible to avoid damage and data or financial losses.
However, the recovery options for the CRYPTEDPAY ransomware are limited because decryption tools take a long time to develop, and we do not have any other universal decryptor to offer. If you remove the virus and make sure to recover the system fully after, you can rely on your backups or other software. AV applications are not helping with decryption or any data restoring functions.
encryption-based threats deliver direct files with instructions on payment transfer
Since many users do not prepare proper data backups before being attacked by ransomware, they might often lose access to their files permanently. Paying criminals is also very risky, as they might not fulfill the promises and never send back the required decryption tool.
While this might sound terrible, not all is lost – data recovery software might be able to help you in some situations (it highly depends on the encryption algorithm used, whether ransomware managed to complete the programmed tasks, etc.). Since there are thousands of different ransomware strains, it is immediately impossible to tell whether third-party software will work for you.
Therefore, we suggest trying regardless of which ransomware attacked your computer. Before you begin, several pointers are important while dealing with this situation:
- Since the encrypted data on your computer might permanently be damaged by security or data recovery software, you should first make backups of it – use a USB flash drive or another storage.
- Only attempt to recover your files using this method after you perform a scan with anti-malware software.
Install data recovery software
- Download Data Recovery Pro.
- Double-click the installer to launch it.
- Follow on-screen instructions to install the software.
- As soon as you press Finish, you can use the app.
- Select Everything or pick individual folders where you want the files to be recovered from.
- Press Next.
- At the bottom, enable Deep scan and pick which Disks you want to be scanned.
- Press Scan and wait till it is complete.
- You can now pick which folders/files to recover – don't forget you also have the option to search by the file name!
- Press Recover to retrieve your files.
CRYPTEDPAY ransomware can also infect the computer using the help of other threats like trojans and malware. Those pieces can add the payload of the ransomware without causing any issues and additionally run on the machine affecting the speed and performance behind your back.
All these possibilities are endless, so you need to run anti-malware tools like SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes to clear any infections that can affect the ransomware's persistence, help keep it running, or affect the different system functions. ANy leftovers and possibly malicious programs can be terminated, so the machine is no longer infected, and you can use it again.
Of course, before you rely on the machine again, you need to repair damaged pieces and clear the system corruption. The removal of the CRYPTEDPAY virus is not the only process that victims need to take. System repair with ReimageIntego or a similar application can improve the data recovery process.
If you couldn't recover the machine after the infection yourself with all the listed suggestions, you can rely on the instructions below that show where to check for possible decryption tools and how to back up your files. You can sometimes save some of the files related to the infection and wait for the decryption tool to be made. That is not very reliable, but possible. Keep those anti-malware tools up to date, so you can ensure that the computer is malware-free and secure.
Getting rid of CRYPTEDPAY virus. Follow these steps
Isolate the infected computer
Some ransomware strains aim to infect not only one computer but hijack the entire network. As soon as one of the machines is infected, malware can spread via network and encrypt files everywhere else, including Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices. If your computer is connected to a network, it is important to isolate it to prevent re-infection after ransomware removal is complete.
The easiest way to disconnect a PC from everything is simply to plug out the ethernet cable. However, in the corporate environment, this might be extremely difficult to do (also would take a long time). The method below will disconnect from all the networks, including local and the internet, isolating each of the machines involved.
- Type in Control Panel in Windows search and press Enter
- Go to Network and Internet
- Click Network and Sharing Center
- On the left, pick Change adapter settings
- Right-click on your connection (for example, Ethernet), and select Disable
- Confirm with Yes.
If you are using some type of cloud storage you are connected to, you should disconnect from it immediately. It is also advisable to disconnect all the external devices, such as USB flash sticks, external HDDs, etc. Once the malware elimination process is finished, you can connect your computers to the network and internet, as explained above, but by pressing Enable instead.
Find a working decryptor for your files
File encryption is a process that is similar to applying a password to a particular file or folder. However, from a technical point of view, encryption is fundamentally different due to its complexity. By using encryption, threat actors use a unique set of alphanumeric characters as a password that can not easily be deciphered if the process is performed correctly.
There are several algorithms that can be used to lock data (whether for good or bad reasons); for example, AES uses the symmetric method of encryption, meaning that the key used to lock and unlock files is the same. Unfortunately, it is only accessible to the attackers who hold it on a remote server – they ask for a payment in exchange for it. This simple principle is what allows ransomware authors to prosper in this illegal business.
While many high-profile ransomware strains such as Djvu or Dharma use immaculate encryption methods, there are plenty of failures that can be observed within the code of some novice malware developers. For example, the keys could be stored locally, which would allow users to regain access to their files without paying. In some cases, ransomware does not even encrypt files due to bugs, although victims might believe the opposite due to the ransom note that shows up right after the infection and data encryption is completed.
Therefore, regardless of which crypto-malware affects your files, you should try to find the relevant decryptor if such exists. Security researchers are in a constant battle against cybercriminals. In some cases, they manage to create a working decryption tool that would allow victims to recover files for free.
Once you have identified which ransomware you are affected by, you should check the following links for a decryptor:
- No More Ransom Project
- Free Ransomware Decryptors by Kaspersky
- Free Ransomware Decryption Tools from Emsisoft
- Avast decryptors
If you can't find a decryptor that works for you, you should try the alternative methods we list below. Additionally, it is worth mentioning that it sometimes takes years for a working decryption tool to be developed, so there are always hopes for the future.
Create data backups to avoid file loss in the future
One of the many countermeasures for home users against ransomware is data backups. Even if your Windows get corrupted, you can reinstall everything from scratch and retrieve files from backups with minimal losses overall. Most importantly, you would not have to pay cybercriminals and risk your money as well.
Therefore, if you have already dealt with a ransomware attack, we strongly advise you to prepare backups for future use. There are two options available to you:
- Backup on a physical external drive, such as a USB flash drive or external HDD.
- Use cloud storage services.
The first method is not that convenient, however, as backups need to constantly be updated manually – although it is very reliable. Therefore, we highly advise choosing cloud storage instead – it is easy to set up and efficient to sustain. The problem with it is that storage space is limited unless you want to pay for the subscription.
Using Microsoft OneDrive
OneDrive is a built-in tool that comes with every modern Windows version. By default, you get 5 GB of storage that you can use for free. You can increase that storage space, but for a price. Here's how to setup backups for OneDrive:
- Click on the OneDrive icon within your system tray.
- Select Help & Settings > Settings.
- If you don't see your email under the Account tab, you should click Add an account and proceed with the on-screen instructions to set yourself up.
- Once done, move to the Backup tab and click Manage backup.
- Select Desktop, Documents, and Pictures, or a combination of whichever folders you want to backup.
- Press Start backup.
After this, all the files that are imported into the above-mentioned folders will be automatically backed for you. If you want to add other folders or files, you have to do that manually. For that, open File Explorer by pressing Win + E on your keyboard, and then click on the OneDrive icon. You should drag and drop folders you want to backup (or you can use Copy/Paste as well).
Using Google Drive
Google Drive is another great solution for free backups. The good news is that you get as much as 15GB for free by choosing this storage. There are also paid versions available, with significantly more storage to choose from.
You can access Google Drive via the web browser or use a desktop app you can download on the official website. If you want your files to be synced automatically, you will have to download the app, however.
- Download the Google Drive app installer and click on it.
- Wait a few seconds for it to be installed.
- Now click the arrow within your system tray – you should see Google Drive icon there, click it once.
- Click Get Started.
- Enter all the required information – your email/phone, and password.
- Now pick what you want to sync and backup. You can click on Choose Folder to add additional folders to the list.
- Once done, pick Next.
- Now you can select to sync items to be visible on your computer.
- Finally, press Start and wait till the sync is complete. Your files are now being backed up.
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.
Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from CRYPTEDPAY and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes
How to prevent from getting ransomware
Stream videos without limitations, no matter where you are
There are multiple parties that could find out almost anything about you by checking your online activity. While this is highly unlikely, advertisers and tech companies are constantly tracking you online. The first step to privacy should be a secure browser that focuses on tracker reduction to a minimum.
Even if you employ a secure browser, you will not be able to access websites that are restricted due to local government laws or other reasons. In other words, you may not be able to stream Disney+ or US-based Netflix in some countries. To bypass these restrictions, you can employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN, which provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, not slowing you down in the process.
Data backups are important – recover your lost files
Ransomware is one of the biggest threats to personal data. Once it is executed on a machine, it launches a sophisticated encryption algorithm that locks all your files, although it does not destroy them. The most common misconception is that anti-malware software can return files to their previous states. This is not true, however, and data remains locked after the malicious payload is deleted.
While regular data backups are the only secure method to recover your files after a ransomware attack, tools such as Data Recovery Pro can also be effective and restore at least some of your lost data.