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Remove CryptoWall 3.0 virus (Easy Removal Guide) - updated Apr 2017

removal by Linas Kiguolis - -   Also known as CryptoWall | Type: Ransomware

CryptoWall 3.0: the main features of the famous ransomware spin-off 

CryptoWall 3.0 virus is a dangerous ransomware [1] which can easily lead you to lots of trouble. This threat has no problem blocking your files, blackmailing you and feels no shame leaving its victims penny-less [2]. If you want to avoid such issues, you should try your best when preventing CryptoWall 3.0 and previous its versions, such as Cryptowall, Cryptolocker, CTB Locker, etc from infecting your PC. Otherwise, you can be left without your important documents, photos, video files and similar data. In this article you will learn all about how this virus works, how it infiltrates computers and, finally, how can an infected user remove CryptoWall 3.0 from the computer without inflicting more damage.

Image of the CryptoWall ransomware virusCryptoWall 3.0 is a malicious ransomware virus which encrypts hundreds of file extensions and demands that their owners pay for their decryption.

If any of the previously mentioned viruses infiltrate the system, they typically start by scanning and encrypting the predetermined files. It is now known that CryptoWall 3.0 virus is specifically looking for these file extensions: 3fr, accdb, ai, arw, bay, cdr, cer, cr2, crt, crw, dbf, dcr, der, dng, doc, docm, docx, dwg, dxf, dxg, eps, erf, indd, jpe, jpg, kdc, mdb, mdf, mef, mrw, nef, nrw, odb, odm, odp, ods, odt, orf, p12, p7b, p7c, pdd, pef, pem, pfx, ppt, pptm, pptx, psd, pst, ptx, r3d, raf, raw, rtf, rw2, rwl, srf, srw, wb2, wpd, wps, xlk, xls, xlsb, xlsm, xlsx, etc. After finding these files, the virus encrypts their content with the help of AES CBC 256-bit encryption algorithm [3]. This means that the only way to decrypt each of the encrypted files is to get a decryption key. After it’s done encrypting, Cryptowall displays a full-screen warning message instructing the victim about possible data recovery options. Typically, the extortionists ask to download and install Tor web browser, launch it and then visit an indicated website. Here, the victim is asked to pay a ransom of $500. After failing to do so within 7 days, the hackers threaten to increase the sum to $1000. However, we want to encourage you NOT to pay the fine. There is no guarantee that after pushing you into paying a ransom, CryptoWall owners will send you the decryption key.

At the moment of writing, ransomware-type programs are a serious threat for all PC users. Luckily, there are also lots of developers who began designing specific tools that could help the affected PC users. If this parasite has just appeared on your desktop, you should run a full system scan with Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego and remove CryptoWall 3.0 from your computer for good.

Preventing CryptoWall 3.0 infiltration. Is it possible?

If you want to avoid ransomware such as CryptoWall 3.0, you must take active steps to prevent it. First of all, make sure you have a reputable anti-spyware installed on your computer. Also, try to keep it up-to-date to have an ability to see what malware is trying to get inside your PC system. Also, make sure you stay away from misleading email messages. If an email looks suspicious [4], it is full of typos or grammar mistakes, or if you don’t recognize the sender, simply ignore it. You can try to contact the person who is responsible for this mail and double check him/her. Otherwise, you may be tricked into clicking on a malicious link or downloading an infected email attachment. If CryptoWall 3.0 enters the system, it takes only a few minutes until it checks it, blocks the files and starts demanding ransom. If you think that you are infected with CryptoWall 3.0 ransomware, scroll to the end of the article and perform the required actions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Question. I got infected with CryptoWall 3.0 ransomware last week. It seems that all my drivers except C have been affected. Is there anything else I can do instead paying the ransom to get my files back?

Answer. The worst thing that you can do is to pay the ransom. Doing so is equal to giving away your money straight to online scammers. Moreover, you can disclose your credit card details and other personal information that is related to your bank account. Thus, instead of paying the ransom, remove CryptoWall 3.0 from your PC and use a data recovery tool for encrypting your personal files. For that, you can rely on a guide, which is given down below.

Question. A couple of days ago Cryptowall virus infected my computer. Fortunately, it seems that it has affected only one folder in my hard drive and, luckily, it does not contain any important data. Of course, I’m not going to pay the ransom for criminals; however, I wonder if it’s enough to remove the infected folder to get rid of this threat?

Answer. NO. Ransomware is very deceiving and very cleverly designed computer infections that can hide in computer’s memory for a long time and then attack unexpectedly. Removal of the folder with encrypted files will not help you at all. In contrast, you may lose more important data, such as photos, documents, music, videos, etc. Thus, the only hundred percent reliable data protection solution is a full CryptoWall 3.0 removal. Recently, 2-spyware security experts prepared a helpful guide that should help you with the removal of Cryptowall 3.0. You can find it down below.

Question. How can I decrypt my files after Cryptowall infiltration? My whole drive has been encrypted. I made a backup on a separate drive, but it is also infected. Is there a way to decrypt my files without experiencing any damage?

Answer. The most important thing that you have to remember is NOT to pay the ransom that you are demanded to pay. This way you risk disclosing credit card details to online scammers. Besides, we doubt if the key that you will get after making the payment will help you in decrypting your data. Therefore, as soon as this ransomware affects your machine, scan it with a reputable anti-spyware and try to recover data using a R-Studio, Photorec or another data recovery software. All details are given below.

Question. Yesterday I got attacked by CryptoWall 3.0. I’ve found the file named help_decrypt.png .txt .html in every folder and removed it. Besides, I did remove it from the registry. Nevertheless, file types, such as .xls .pdf, .doc, etc. cannot be opened. What’s the problem? It’s the first time I’m dealing with the ransomware, but I’m not going to pay a dollar for those frauds. Please, advice!

Answer. Manual CryptoWall 3.0. ransomware removal is not possible. The only way to get rid of this infection is a full system scan using a reputable and updated (!) anti-spyware. If you want to delete CryptoWall 3.0. virus from your computer once and for all, you should use once of the programs that are mentioned below.

Question. Please provide me with a hand on getting my money and files back! I paid for these bastards $500 and received a fake key, which did nothing at all with encrypted files. Is there any way to refund my money? And what about files? Are they lost permanently? Any help appreciated!

Answer. Such scenario is the most common. That’s why we urge people NOT to pay the ransom. Unfortunately, it’s not very likely that you will get your money back. You can try to contact the bank and ask it to cancel the payment. However, this will certainly not work if you made the payment via Tor web browser. Speaking about encrypted data, we have better news. Before starting the recovery, make sure that you remove CryptoWall 3.0 virus from the system with a reliable anti-spyware (the list of recommended programs is provided below). After that, install a reliable data recovery tool and try to decrypt your files. You can find a full Cryptowall 3.0 removal guide down below.

Free your computer from CryptoWall 3.0 

If you are looking at a message which claims that your files have been encrypted and that you must pay certain amount of money to decrypt them, there is no denying that you are infected with ransomware and have to take action immediately. Don’t try to remove CryptoWall 3.0 virus by yourself! Minor mistakes during the virus elimination can have disastrous consequences and your computer may be corrupted beyond repair. Thus, it is best to perform the elimination automatically, using professional antivirus software. If you want to restore the access to your files, you should try using backups or, if you don’t have them, try following manual recovery guidelines below this article.

We highly recommend thinking about the prevention of such infections like Cryptowall. Besides, don’t forget to think about the immunity of your files and backup [5]. For that, you can use USB external hard drives, CDs, DVDs, or simply rely on online backups, such as Google Drive, Dropbox, Flickr and other solutions. More information about backups can be found in this post: Why do I need backup and what options do I have for that?

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove 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.

To remove CryptoWall 3.0 virus, follow these steps:

Remove CryptoWall 3.0 using Safe Mode with Networking

CryptoWall 3.0 is not a lightweight infection, so it may not be eliminated from the computer that easily. CryptoWall may block your antivirus and prevent it from properly scanning the system. To get you antivirus running again follow the instructions below:

  • 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 CryptoWall 3.0

    Log in to your infected account and start the browser. Download Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego or other legitimate anti-spyware program. Update it before a full system scan and remove malicious files that belong to your ransomware and complete CryptoWall 3.0 removal.

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

Remove CryptoWall 3.0 using System Restore

In some cases, CryptoWall 3.0 may give in an abandon your computer easily, in other instances, the malware may be more difficult to remove. To help achieve a smoother elimination, we have prepared the guidelines below. When you are done with the indicated steps, run the scan of your system again.

  • 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 CryptoWall 3.0. 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 Reimage Cleaner Intego and make sure that CryptoWall 3.0 removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove CryptoWall 3.0 from your computer. To recover your encrypted files, we recommend using a detailed guide prepared by security experts.

If your files are encrypted by CryptoWall 3.0, you can use several methods to restore them:

CryptoWall 3.0 recovery using Data Recovery Pro

Data Recovery Pro is often used to recover files that have been accidentally deleted or corrupted. Nevertheless, it works well with data recovery after ransomware infiltration, too. Here is how you use this tool:

  • 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 CryptoWall 3.0 ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Rolling back files encrypted by CryptoWall 3.0 with the help of Windows Previous Versions feature

Windows Previous Versions feature may help recover some of the CryptoWall 3.0 virus affected files. You will have to pick which files you want to roll back yourself:

  • 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”.

Download ShadowExplorer to recover data encrypted by CryptoWall 3.0

With ShadowExplorer you can help your files only if their Volume Shadow Copies are not deleted by the virus. To test that complete these steps:

  • 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.

CryptoWall 3.0 decrypter

Unfortunately, CryptoWall 3.0 decrypter is currently unavailable. Please check back with us later. 

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from CryptoWall 3.0 and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

Access your website securely from any location

When you work on the domain, site, blog, or different project that requires constant management, content creation, or coding, you may need to connect to the server and content management service more often. It is a hassle when your website is protected from suspicious connections and unauthorized IP addresses.

The best solution for creating a tighter network could be a dedicated/fixed IP address. If you make your IP address static and set to your device, you can connect to the CMS from any location and do not create any additional issues for server or network manager that need to monitor connections and activities. This is how you bypass some of the authentications factors and can remotely use your banking accounts without triggering suspicious with each login. 

VPN software providers like Private Internet Access can help you with such settings and offer the option to control the online reputation and manage projects easily from any part of the world. It is better to clock the access to your website from different IP addresses. So you can keep the project safe and secure when you have the dedicated IP address VPN and protected access to the content management system.

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
Linas Kiguolis
Linas Kiguolis - Expert in social media

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  1. WC Jordan says:
    December 12th, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    The Cryptowall 3.0 Trojan installed itself as a McAfee utility. McAfee could not scan or detect the Trojan. I have a live version of the Trojan on a hard drive that was removed while the Trojan was active. Would this do anyone any good? Also has anyone started a database of the ransom keys? Mine is 1x8dhN3.

Your opinion regarding CryptoWall 3.0 virus