.dot virus (Mar 2017 update) - Free Instructions

.dot virus Removal Guide

What is .dot virus?

.dot file virus sets out for the data hunt

If you noticed that all of your important files contain .dot file extensions, then you have been struck with .dot virus. Unfortunately, it is ransomware[1] which was specifically designed to encrypt users’ valuable personal files. There is a wide variety of different types and forms of ransomware. Generally, dot files are used for containing configurations for system applications. This feature explains why users fall for the trick and get infected with this virus. Despite its misleading veneer, there are tips which would help you reduce the risk of executing hidden ransomware[2]. If this menace has fallen upon you, keep reading to find out about .dot virus removal.

It is known that the virus uses an elaborate AES encryption key to lock data[3]. Furthermore, Dot ransomware virus generates a public and private key. In the help_decrypt.txt file, it instructs to access Tor browser and access and transfer the indicated amount of bitcoins to the Bitcoin address. The sum varies depending on the type of victims: corporate or natural person. It is understandable if you are ready to pay the ransom to retrieve important documents. Nonetheless, we discourage you from doing so[4]. In addition, let us warn you not to purchase nor install .dot malware Decrypter promoted by the fraudsters. Even in the best case scenario, it helps decrypt files, it might leave a “farewell gift” – a malicious file which facilitates ransomware invasion in the future.

.dot file extension virusIt was first detected in May 2016. After a year, it has made a move agianst computer users again.

When did this virus occupy my system?

Speaking of the transmission methods, .dot hijack takes place via two channels: spam emails and exploit kits[5]. Cyber criminals have mastered various persuasion techniques. Thus, when you get an email which is seemingly sent from a governmental institution, do rush to open the attachments of such email. It might bear a highly troublesome content. Once the file is open, the malware gets activated, and it sets off to encrypt personal information. Additionally, we highly encourage you to install an anti-spyware program, for example, FortectIntego or Malwarebytes, to check your system for trojans or other malware. It is known that the .dot file extension virus also spreads via exploit kits. Due to their ability to disguise themselves as legitimate programs, some anti-virus applications might not detect them. That is why you need an additional cyber security software. Finally, let us move on the section where will tell you about the main methods to remove .dot file virus.

Is it possible to eradicate .dot file virus completely?

Regarding the complexity of this infection, you should install removal utility which will effectively and quickly remove .dot virus. Since the application is apt in locating potentially malicious files, that it eliminates all source files. Additionally, the program comes in handy while preventing minor malware. In case, your computer screen is locked and you cannot proceed with .dot virus removal, use the below-suggested methods to regain full access to vital system functions. After the malware is fully eradicated, consider the alternatives to restore your files. When the device is fully cleaned, develop a habit of backing up your files regularly.

do it now!
Fortect Happiness
Intego Happiness
Compatible with Microsoft Windows Compatible with macOS
What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Fortect Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Fortect Intego has a free limited scanner. Fortect 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 Fortect, 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 .dot virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

Enter the Safe Mode to remove the lock-screen and continue eliminating .dot file virus.

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.
  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.
  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.

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
    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):


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

Remove .dot using System Restore

System Restore is another alternative to regain full control.

  • 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 .dot. 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 FortectIntego and make sure that .dot removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove .dot 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 .dot, you can use several methods to restore them:

Data Recovery Pro option

It is one of the programs which are designed to restore files after they get damaged or deleted accidentally. It is also applicable in retrieving deleted emails.

  • 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 .dot ransomware;
  • Restore them.

What is Windows Previous Version function?

You might benefit from this function while restoring the data affected by .dot file extension ransomware.

  • 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”.

Make use of ShadowExplorer

The key advantage of this program is its ability to use shadow volume copies. This malware hardly deletes these copies beforehand, however, you should hurry up with the removal of 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.

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

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Stream videos without limitations, no matter where you are

There are multiple parties that could find out almost anything about you by checking your online activity. While this is highly unlikely, advertisers and tech companies are constantly tracking you online. The first step to privacy should be a secure browser that focuses on tracker reduction to a minimum.

Even if you employ a secure browser, you will not be able to access websites that are restricted due to local government laws or other reasons. In other words, you may not be able to stream Disney+ or US-based Netflix in some countries. To bypass these restrictions, you can employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN, which provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, not slowing you down in the process.

Data backups are important – recover your lost files

Ransomware is one of the biggest threats to personal data. Once it is executed on a machine, it launches a sophisticated encryption algorithm that locks all your files, although it does not destroy them. The most common misconception is that anti-malware software can return files to their previous states. This is not true, however, and data remains locked after the malicious payload is deleted.

While regular data backups are the only secure method to recover your files after a ransomware attack, tools such as Data Recovery Pro can also be effective and restore at least some of your lost data.

About the author
Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

If this free guide helped you and you are satisfied with our service, please consider making a donation to keep this service alive. Even a smallest amount will be appreciated.

Contact Lucia Danes
About the company Esolutions

Removal guides in other languages