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Cyberresearcher ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Jake Doevan - - | Type: Ransomware

Cyberresearcher ransomware is a devastating virus that threatens to delete all files

Cyberresearcher ransomware

Cyberresearcher ransomware is cryptovirus that was discovered by security researchers mid-April 2018 and is based on open-source HiddenTear ransomware. The virus uses AES[1] cipher to encrypt all data and adds .CYBERRESEARCHER extension to each of the files. Users are asked to pay 2.5BTC into a provided wallet address, which is located inside READ_IT.htm file.

SUMMARY
Name Cyberresearcher
Type Ransomware
Ransom demanded 2.5 BTC
Cipher used AES cipher
Extension .CYBERRESEARCHER
Ransom note  READ_IT.htm
Distribution Spam emails, exploits, repacked or infected installers, etc.
Elimination Automatic elimination using Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware

Crypto-viruses typically have several stages of the infection process. Firstly, after the malicious file is executed, the payload is released. It modifies various settings inside the system (including registry entries). This allows Cyberresearcher virus to boot up every time the machine is started. Soon after that, the cyber threat locks up all the detected files on the device.

Cyberresearcher ransomware can lock up a variety of files, including .html, .doc, .gif, .jpg, .xlsx, etc. If the file on your computer is called document.doc, it will be turned into document.doc.CYBERRESEARCHER immediately after encryption.

The key which is stored on a remote server by cybercrooks is required to get all the files back. Thus, decrypting data without it becomes practically impossible. The only reliable file recovery procedure is possible from a back-up. Before that, users should undertake Cyberresearcher ransomware removal.

The READ_IT.htm file states the following:

Your files have been encrypted by CYBERRESEARCHER
Send 2.5 Bitcoins to [Bitcoin wallet]
Your files will be deleted permanently if the Bitcoins are not sent in the next 48 hours

Cyberresearcher authors are asking for 2.5 Bitcoins (around $20k currently) to be sent into a specific wallet. However, the e-mail address that should be used to contact hackers is not provided (typically email is given to users so that could receive the key after payment is done). Thus, it is believed that the virus might intentionally delete all files – work as a data wiper.

The required amount is pretty high, so hopefully, users will get discouraged to pay the ransom. Nevertheless, even if the ransom demand would be small, security experts recommend avoiding paying cybercrooks. There is never a guarantee that hackers will provide you with the promised key. Thus, you might end up not only losing your files but also your money.

Additionally, by paying the ransom, you would only encourage crooks to create more viruses and infect more computers with it. Instead of risking your money, remove Cyberresearcher ransomware and then proceed with file recovery. We recommend using robust security software for that, such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware.

Distribution methods of file encrypting viruses

There are few different ways the crypto-virus can get into your PC, like through unprotected RDP configuration,[2] infected installers, fake updates, fraudulent downloads, exploits, etc. But the most prevalent distribution method is via spam emails.

Therefore, it is vital to be cautious when opening emails from unknown sources. Typically, email author pretends to be an individual from a high-profile organization (such as Twitter, Amazon) or even from the governmental institution (tax collector or similar).

There are two main red flags for these type of emails:

  1. the author urges users to open up the attachment or click on a link persuasively
  2. the attachment asks to enable macro function

DO NOT click on anything and delete such emails. You can view several examples online and learn to recognize phishing emails rather quickly.

Naturally, we also advise users to stay away from torrent, file-sharing, cracked software and similar websites. Cybercrooks often inject their malicious payloads into installers and spread them using uncontrolled sites.

Remove Cyberresearcher ransomware from your computer

Security researchers from udenvirus.dk[3] recommend users to stay away from manual Cyberresearcher ransomware removal. The procedure is too complicated for regular users and might result in permanent system file damage.

Therefore, you should trust reputable security software like Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware. These programs are designed to remove Cyberresearcher virus easily. However, do not forget that crypto-virus might block normal operation o anti-virus program. Thus, reboot your PC in a safe mode with networking.

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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 Cyberresearcher ransomware. 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 Cyberresearcher virus Removal Guide:

Remove Cyberresearcher using Safe Mode with Networking

Boot your PC in Safe Mode with Networking by following 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 Cyberresearcher

    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 Cyberresearcher removal.

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

Remove Cyberresearcher using System Restore

You can try to eliminate Cyberresearcher virus by 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 Cyberresearcher. 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 Cyberresearcher removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Unfortunately, there are few options when it comes to data recovery. Even if some users might think that paying crooks is the easiest method, we highly discourage them doing so. Instead, try the following alternative methods that might work well for you.

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

Try Data Recovery Pro

Data Recovery Pro is a tool created to restore files that were accidentally deleted or damaged in other ways. In some cases, this program might be useful when it comes to ransomware encrypted files.

Windows Previous Versions feature might be useful

Windows Previous Versions feature can only be viable if you had System Restore function enabled before ransomware infection occurred.

  • 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 might be used as well

ShadowExplorer is an application that helps to restore files if Shadow Volume copies were spared by the virus.

  • 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.

Decryptor is not available

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

About the author

Jake Doevan
Jake Doevan - Computer technology expert

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References