Cryptobyte ransomware / virus (Free Guide) - Quick Decryption Solution

Cryptobyte virus Removal Guide

What is Cryptobyte ransomware virus?

Cryptobyte ransomware locks down your files and demands ransom

Cryptobyte virus is an updated version of BTCware ransomware[1], which is also known as CrptXXX. The virus encrypts files on victim’s computer system and drops a ransom note called #_HOW_TO_FIX.inf which includes an order to pay a ransom. During the encryption, virus adds specific file extensions[2] to original filenames. Currently, it is known that there are two versions of this virus – one of them adds .[btc.com@protonmail.ch].cryptobyte file extensions to encrypted files, and the other, which seems to be the latest one, appends .[no.xm@protonmail.ch].cryptobyte extensions to encrypted records. Previous versions of this virus used to drop READ ME.txt files, but the most recent one no longer creates it. The ransom note says that files were encrypted and the victim needs to write to a provided email address in order to find out how much money he/she needs to pay in order to buy out the files that were encrypted. According to criminals, the price depends on how fast the victim contacts them. Crooks suggest decrypting three corrupted files for free as proof that decryption software actually exists, and warns the victim not to try to restore files using any third-party tools, otherwise it may cause permanent data loss.
Cryptobyte ransomware virusCryptobyte virus is a version of BTCware ransomware, so it uses the same text in the ransom note. This new ransomware version appends .cryptobyte extension to all files along with criminals' email address.

If this happened to you, you should put Cryptobyte removal to the top of your to-do task list. The malicious program is dangerous, and it poses a threat to the entire computer system and your privacy. The virus makes the system vulnerable to malware attacks[3], and it can even become an initiator of one – it can easily install additional malware on your computer. Therefore, we strongly recommend you to remove Cryptobyte ransomware the fastest way possible – using anti-malware software such as ReimageIntego. Unfortunately, we must say that there are no decryption tools[4] capable of restoring encrypted files, so we hope that you have a data backup. If you don’t, you should try using one of the data recovery methods explained below.

How did I install this malicious program on my computer?

You could have installed Cryptobyte ransomware after opening a deceptive email[5], attachment, or installing a shady program suggested for you by some suspicious website. This program is just a part of malware that is available nowaday, and such dangerous software is usually distributed using techniques that are meant to trick the victim into opening malicious files without realizing how dangerous they are. In other words, we can say that ransomware distribution is usually based on Trojan Horse trick – offenders typically try to force the user to install malware without realizing it, so they hide the malware into something else and give such file a secure-looking name. However, more and more computer users are aware of spam campaigns that deliver ransomware viruses, so scammers already started using techniques such as malvertising and exploit kits. These allow them to drop malware on target’s computer without having to convince the user to download the malicious file manually.

How can I remove Cryptobyte ransomware and recover my files?

The method we recommend for Cryptobyte removal requires anti-malware software, so if you do not have one, select and download one. However, before you do that, please follow instructions given below and reboot your PC safely. The reason why you need to reboot your PC into Safe Mode with Networking is that this mode helps to remove Cryptobyte virus permanently without facing any interruptions or errors. Please do not try to eliminate the virus manually – you can lose important files instead of cleaning the system from malware.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of Cryptobyte virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

Delete the virus once you boot the PC into the Safe Mode with Networking.

Important! →
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
  1. Click Start > Shutdown > Restart > OK.
  2. 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.
  3. Select Safe Mode with Networking from the list. Windows 7/XP
Windows 10 / Windows 8
  1. Right-click on Start button and select Settings.
    Settings
  2. Scroll down to pick Update & Security.
    Update and security
  3. On the left side of the window, pick Recovery.
  4. Now scroll down to find Advanced Startup section.
  5. Click Restart now.
    Reboot
  6. Select Troubleshoot. Choose an option
  7. Go to Advanced options. Advanced options
  8. Select Startup Settings. Startup settings
  9. Press Restart.
  10. Now press 5 or click 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking. Enable safe mode

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:

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details.
    Open task manager
  3. Scroll down to Background processes section, and look for anything suspicious.
  4. Right-click and select Open file location.
    Open file location
  5. Go back to the process, right-click and pick End Task.
    End task
  6. Delete the contents of the malicious folder.

Step 3. Check program Startup

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard to open Windows Task Manager.
  2. Go to Startup tab.
  3. Right-click on the suspicious program and pick Disable.
    Startup

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:

  1. Type in Disk Cleanup in Windows search and press Enter.
    Disk cleanup
  2. 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).
  3. Scroll through the Files to delete list and select the following:

    Temporary Internet Files
    Downloads
    Recycle Bin
    Temporary files

  4. Pick Clean up system files.
    Delete temp files
  5. You can also look for other malicious files hidden in the following folders (type these entries in Windows Search and press Enter):

    %AppData%
    %LocalAppData%
    %ProgramData%
    %WinDir%

After you are finished, reboot the PC in normal mode.

Remove Cryptobyte using System Restore

  • 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 Cryptobyte. 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 ReimageIntego and make sure that Cryptobyte removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Sadly, we have some bad news for you. Malware analysts weren’t successful in trying to crack this ransomware and therefore a decryption tool wasn’t discovered. At the moment, there are only such ways to restore your files:

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

Data Recovery Pro

Data Recovery Pro is a professional data recovery software that can help you to find corrupted files and restore them.

  • 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 Cryptobyte ransomware;
  • Restore them.

ShadowExplorer tool

Usually, all viruses erase Volume Shadow Copies from the system in order to prevent the virus from restoring them. Sometimes they fail to do so, so we highly recommend you to use ShadowExplorer to check if these copies are still on your computer. If they are, you might successfully recover some of them.

  • 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.

Cryptobyte decryption tool is not available yet

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

About the author
Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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