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Remove Dever ransomware (Virus Removal Guide) - Free Instructions

removal by Julie Splinters - - | Type: Ransomware

Dever ransomware is a computer threat that belongs to one of the most prominent file locking malware families

Dever ransomware
Dever ransomware is a file locking virus that uses AES encryption algorithm to lock all files on the computer and its networked shares

Dever ransomware is malware that locks all pictures, music, videos, documents, databases, as well as other non-system and non-executable files on the system and holds them hostage until a ransom is paid in Bitcoin. The virus is a variant of Phobos ransomware, and hackers behind it specialize in attacking various businesses and organizations, although regular users may also be affected. Unfortunately, no Dever ransomware decryptor currently exists, so there are very few options when it comes to data recovery without paying a ransom to criminals.

Dever ransomware uses the AES encryption algorithm to lock files and applies .Dever extension to each of them. However, this is not the only symptom of the infection, as victims can also see a pop-up window titled “encrypted” (a .hta file), as well as a text file “info.txt” in almost every folder of the computer. As it is typical with Phobos variants, the ransom amount is not provided, and instead, users are asked to contact crooks via bexonvelia@aol.com, lizethroyal@aol.com or maitlandtiffaney@aol.com emails.

Name Dever ransomware
Type File locking virus, cryptomalwawre
Family The virus belongs to Phobos ransomware family
Primary targets Dever primary targets are public entities and businesses
Attack vector Most malware victims were infected via inadequately protected Remote Desktop connection, although there are several other distribution techniques that hackers could use, including malicious spam/targeted emails, exploits, fake updates, etc.
Extension  Once the infection routine is triggered, all personal files are appended with .id[XXXXXXXX-XXXX].[bexonvelia@aol.com].Dever extension (the email address in the extension might vary)
Ransom note Two ransom notes are provided: info.hta (short version) and the pop-up window titled “encrypted”
Contact Users are prompted to contact cybercriminals via bexonvelia@aol.com, lizethroyal@aol.com or maitlandtiffaney@aol.com emails
Related AntiRecuvaAndDB.vir.exe
Detection

Multiple engines detect the sample as follows:

  • Trojan/Win32.BantaRansom.R279004
  • Win32:Malware-gen
  • Trojan.Ransom.Phobos.F (B)
  • Trojan:Win32/Phoenix
  • Ransom.Phobos
  • BehavesLike.Win32.PWSZbot.qc, etc.
File decryption  No decryptor is currently available, although victims can retrieve data from backups or trying the  third-party recovery tools
Malware removal Use reputable anti-malware software to perform a full system scan in Safe Mode with Networking as explained in our instructions below
System recovery If you experience system instability after the infection, you should use PC repair software Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego to fix virus damage

Dever ransomware can be spread in multiple different ways, although security researchers noticed that most Phobos variants are delivered via incorrectly protected RDP connections.[1] Other methods may include:

  • Spam email
  • Exploits[2]
  • Fake updates
  • Web injects
  • Software cracks, etc.

Soon after the infiltration, the Dever virus attempts to configure Windows for a smooth infection and file encryption process. For example, most ransomware viruses are known to delete Shadow Volume Copies in order to prevent easy data recovery, alter Windows registry for persistence, and even terminate security measures like a firewall or anti-malware software to prevent Dever ransomware removal.

After the necessary changes are made, Dever ransomware encrypts all the data with a symmetric encryption algorithm[3] AES – a secret key is used to lock and unlock all the data on the machine and the connected network, and it is sent off to a Command & Control server which is only accessible to hackers.

To retrieve the required key, victims are asked to pay a ransom in Bitcoin in an info.txt file which reads:

!!!All of your files are encrypted!!!
To decrypt them send e-mail to this address: bexonvelia@aol.com.
If we don’t answer in 24h., send e-mail to this address: maitlandtiffaney@aol.com

In the Info.hta note, hackers behind Dever ransomware explain what happened to users' files and explain everything in more detail. They also offer a free test decryption service, which is meant to increase the sense of credibility when it comes to file decryption – criminals want to prove that Dever ransomware decryptor exists and they can get it as soon as they pay the money.

Dever ransomware virus
Dever ransomware is a variant of the prominent Phobos virus family

Security advocates[4] advise users to stay away from criminals, as they might never send the required decryptor after the payment, although some users might not have another choice. If you choose to pay, be aware that you might lose your money along with your files. If you had no backups, you could try using third-party recovery software.

Note that you need to remove Dever ransomware before you attempt to recover your data, as malicious background processes keep running to encrypt newly added files. Thus, make a copy of encrypted data and terminate the virus with anti-malware software. If the virus affected your Windows OS, you can use Reimage Reimage Cleaner Intego to fix virus damage.

Stop manual malware attacks by correctly protecting your Remote Desktop connections 

As previously mentioned, mostly RDP attacks are used by Phobos actors to infect victims with ransomware. Therefore, the key to avoiding the infections is protecting Remote Desktop connections as much as possible. Unfortunately, there are thousands of companies and businesses that still use RDPs that are publicly exposed, and do not apply the Network Level Authentication when connecting.[5] Due to this, RDP attacks became one of the primary ransomware and other malware distribution methods, as they are extremely effective, and can also allow the attacker to act “on the spot.”

Therefore, make sure you protect your business from ransomware by enabling Network Level Authentication (NLA) via System Properties, limiting the access to only those that need it, never using the default TCP and UDP port 3389, and protecting the RDP by using a strong password created from alphanumeric characters.

Additionally, you should also make sure that all the other basic protection measures are applied, including regular backups, staff training, application of software updates, comprehensive security software, etc.

Dever ransomware encrypted files
Once Dever ransomware encrypts files, the icon is turned into a blank one, and no applications can open them anymore

Backup the encrypted data before you remove Dever ransomware

If is very important to note that Dever ransomware removal might permanently damage and corrupt your files – even the malicious actors then would not be able to return your data. Therefore, before you do anything, you should copy all the encrypted files (unless you have working backups – you should then simply get rid of the Dever virus as explained below) to a flash drive or virtual storage.

Once that is complete, you need to remove Dever ransomware from your machine as soon as possible by using anti-malware software. Note that this virus keeps running in the background, so it will encrypt all the incoming files, as well as recovered backups if it is not terminated. If you had no backups, you could attempt to recover your files with the help of third-party recovery tools, although the chances of this method being successful are slim. Alternatively, you can wait till security researchers find bugs within malware's code and create a free Dever ransomware decryptor.

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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 Dever virus, follow these steps:

Remove Dever using Safe Mode with Networking

In case of Dever file virus is tampering with your security software, you should access Safe Mode with Networking and perform a full system scan from there:

  • 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 Dever

    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 Dever removal.

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

Remove Dever using System Restore

You can also use System Restore when trying to terminate the virus:

  • 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 Dever. 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 Dever removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

While it is true that only hackers hold the required key for file decryption, paying them is risky, as they might simply forget about you and never send the required software. Thus, rather not contact crooks and try using recovery software if you have no backups available.

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

Data Recovery Pro might be able to help you

Although it is unlikely that recovery software will work, it may be possible to retrieve at least a portion of your files if the process is done immediately after the infection, and the data in HDD is not overwritten with new entries. In other words, the less you use your computer post-infection, the more chances there are to recover data with tools like Data Recovery Pro.

  • 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 Dever ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Make use of Windows Previous Versions Feature

If you had System Restore enabled before the infection occurred, you could try using Windows Previous Versions feature for data recovery.

  • 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 the best solution

If Dever ransomware failed to remove Shadow Volume Copies, immediately scan your device with ShadowExplorer, as it might be able to recover data by using automatic Windows backups.

  • 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.

No decryption tool is currently available

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

About the author

Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Malware removal specialist

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