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DiskDoctor ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Alice Woods - - | Type: Ransomware

DiskDoctor ransomware – a new addition to Scarab virus family

DiskDoctor Ransomware
DiskDoctor ransomware gives each victim a unique identification number which is provided in the ransom note

Disk Doctor ransomware is a file-encrypting virus that belongs to the group of Scarab ransomware viruses. The virus came to the world in June 2018 and started encrypting victims' files with AES cipher. During the encryption, it adds .DiskDoctor file extension to each document, picture or other records. As soon as ransomware[1] finishes encrypting files, it downloads a ransom note “HOW_TO_RECOVER_ENCRYPTED_FILES.txt” in every folder that contains encrypted files. 

Name Disk Doctor
Type Ransomware
Ransom note HOW_TO_RECOVER_ENCRYPTED_FILES.txt
Danger level  High. Locks files, demands ransom, can lead to money and data loss.
Extension  .DiskDoctor
Cryptography AES
Family Scarab ransomware family
Distribution Spam email attachments
Target OS Windows
Decryption  Not available
Elimination  Reimage is a best tool for virus removal

DiskDoctor ransomware virus usually spreads via malicious spam emails that contain an infected attachment. If a person opens it, malware is dropped on the system and starts causing system changes. Once it settles in Windows OS, it starts scanning the system looking for the targeted files for the encryption. 

When all files are locked with .DiskDoctor extension, malware drops a ransom note in the text file. This document includes information about data recovery instructions and threatens not to use any other methods to retrieve stolen data: 

Warning all your files is encrypted are !!! 
The receive the decoder's the To, a must you the send an email to  the email address with your personal ID: 
DiskDoctor@protonmail.com 
with In response you will of the receive Further instructions. 
ATTENTION !!! 
The Do not Attempt * to uninstall the program or the run  antivirus software. 
Attempts to the self *-decrypt the files is will of of result in the  loss of your data. 
Decoders of OTHER * the users are Incompatible with your  data, as with the each user has a unique encryption key. 

DiskDoctor ransomware gives each victim a unique identification number which is provided in the ransom note. As you can see from the quote above, developers of the virus require to send it to the contact email address. Crooks are supposed to respond with data decryption solution.

There's no doubt that criminals will ask to pay a specific amount of money in Bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies. The size of the ransom is unknown, but it might differ from victim to victim based on the amount and importance of the encrypted data. The most important part is that payment does not guarantee that you will get a needed decryption software.

Cybersecurity specialists from Senzavirus.it[2] inform that cyber criminals might disappear as soon as they get the payment. These people are only interested in getting an easy money; data recovery is optional for them. Thus, you should not risk. No one can guarantee that crooks will give you a mercy and release encrypted files. 

We highly recommend focusing on DiskDoctor removal instead of looking for the ways to decrypt data. Currently, the official and safe to use decryptor is not released yet. The only possibility to restore all files is to use backups. However, if you do not have them, there's still a possibility to recover at least some of them. We have provided a couple of alternative methods that might help.

However, before trying data recovery options, you have to remove DiskDoctor from the machine. While it sits inside the computer, it might encrypt your files again and again. This malicious program runs every time when a device is turned on. Hence, begin system scan with Reimage and get rid of the cyber threat in order to try recovery methods and protect new files from the encryption.

Spam emails might contain not so innocent attachments

Various research data tell that ransomware is most likely to strike from malicious email attachments. This distribution method is the most popular one for a couple of years. Unfortunately, it's the most effective too. Crooks learned how to use social engineering and create convincing emails that trick users into opening an obfuscated attachment.

Usually, these letters seem legitimate and contain safe-looking files, for instance, Microsoft Word. However, even such innocent file can contain malicious macros that install malware payload on the system immediately. So, it's important to be careful with received emails. We highly recommend keeping away from spam folder: do not open these letters and keep away from all clickable content inside of it.

In some rare occasions, developers of ransomware use other distribution strategies, such as:

  • displaying malware-laden ads on legitimate and high-risk websites;
  • upload obfuscated programs to file-sharing[3] programs;
  • deliver fake security or update alerts asking to download specific content;
  • launch brute-force attacks.

Hence, following basic cyber security tips is needed to minimize the risk of the attack. Creating backups is also important. If you fail to identify phishing email or install bogus programs and let ransomware inside, you don't need to worry about lost files. They are safely stored in external or cloud drive.

DiskDoctor ransomware elimination guide for Windows users

To remove DiskDoctor correctly we advise you to use professional anti-malware tools, for instance, Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes. However, if you want to use other software, feel free to do that as well. No matter what tool you choose, you should be aware of the fact that ransomware can block it. So, you will need to disable the virus first.

Our specialists have created detailed instructions that should help to remove DiskDoctor from Windows. Please follow them attentively. Once you install anti-malware software, do not update it before running a system scan. Outdated software might leave some ransomware-related components or do not identify cyber infection on your PC.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. 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.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove DiskDoctor virus, follow these steps:

Remove DiskDoctor using Safe Mode with Networking

Starting your PC to Safe Mode with Networking helps to disable ransomware and eliminate it with security software

  • 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 DiskDoctor

    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 DiskDoctor removal.

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

Remove DiskDoctor using System Restore

System Restore can help to deal with ransomware elimination too:

  • 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 DiskDoctor. 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 DiskDoctor removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

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

Data Recovery Pro – professional tool for restoring compromised files

This tool is designed to recover encrypted or accidentally deleted files on your computer. It's not an official decryptor for ransomware, so it may not restore all of the data.

  • 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 DiskDoctor ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Windows Previous Versions feature – for individual file recovery

This feature works for restoring files, but only when System Restore was enabled before ransomware infiltration.

  • 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 can help restore lost files if DiskDoctor ransomware left Shadow Copies

If you were successful and virus left those Shadow Copies you can follow these steps and use ShadowExplorer

  • 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.

DiskDoctor decryptor is not available yet

We want to discourage you from obtaining decryptor provided by cyber criminals. If none of the above-mentioned methods helped to restore files, please be patient. Hopefully, IT specialists and malware researchers will crack ransomware's code and create a free decryptor soon.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from DiskDoctor and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes

About the author

Alice Woods
Alice Woods - Likes to teach users about virus prevention

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