Severity scale:  
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Gamma ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Jake Doevan - - | Type: Ransomware

Gamma ransomware — yet another Dharma and Crysis variant that emerged less than a week after its predecessor

Gamma ransomware
Gamma ransomware is a cryptovirus that demands a ransom for encoded data that virus marked with .gamma file extension.

Gamma ransomware is a file-encrypting virus that comes from a well-known ransomware family – Dharma and Crysis. This cryptovirus started attacking users back in 2016, and, in less than two years, the malware authors have released fifteen different variants. Al versions are sharing similar file extensions, the same name for the ransom note, and AES encryption algorithm.[1] However, aside from these similarities, each version is using a different contact email and file marker – extension. In this particular case, encrypted data acquires .id-%ID%.[bebenrowan@aol.com].gamma file appendix and requires using bebenrowan@aol.com as a contact email to reach hackers. However, it seems that recently Gamma ransomware was updated and started using Glynnaddey@aol.com to mark files and contact its victims. Unfortunately, the virus has already managed to affect the hernia repair institute in California.[2]

Name Gamma
Type  Ransomware
Category  Cryptovirus 
Family  Dharma 
Other versions 

Brrr;
Combo;
Arrow;
Zzzz;
Onion;
Bip;

etc. 

Ransom note Info.hta and FILES ENCRYPTED.txt 
File extension  .id-%ID%.[bebenrowan@aol.com].gamma
Distribution Malicious spam emails
Contact email bebenrowan@aol.com; Glynnaddey@aol.com
Elimination Automatic Gamma ransomware removal can be done using Reimage 

Gamma ransomware virus belongs to one of the most dangerous cyber infection category. File-encrypting malware aims to extort cryptocurrency from users by encrypting their data with an army-grade encryption algorithm. .gamma appendix marks encrypted data, so you know which files cannot be opened. 

Gamma ransomware developers claim that they can decrypt these locked files, but unfortunately, there is a possibility that crooks may disappear after you pay the ransom. The specific amount is not known, and it probably differs from victim to victim, it might range anything between $20 to $10,000, or even more.

When your files get encrypted, you may notice a ransom note in every folder containing encoded data. The file called Info.hta or FILES ENCRYPTED.txt includes a simple message that your files have been encrypted and you need to pay up. It also has instructions on how to create a cryptocurrency wallet. The content may differ a bit, depending on the version, but the main display is similar.

Ransom note may contain as simple of a message as the following:

ATTENTION!
At the moment, your system is not protected.
We can fix it and restore files.

You should remove Gamma ransomware instead of contacting the people behind this virus. And, since various antivirus programs detect[3] this ransomware, you can do that using reputable anti-malware tool like Reimage. This is a program specially designed to detect, block and get rid of various malware.

A sample analysis of Gamma ransomware virus showed up on 54 program screens from 67 as malicious. Some of the given names include:

  • TR/Dropper.Gen
  • Trojan.Mauvaise.SL1
  • Win32:Malware-gen
  • Trojan.Ransom.Crysis.E
  • Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Crusis.to
  • Ransom.Crysis.Generic
  • Mal_Crysis.

Gamma ransomware removal using reputable anti-malware tools can be a fairly quick process. Automatic virus removal cleans your system thoroughly and removes all possible threats that you perhaps had no idea about. Researchers[4] advise terminating those threats before you attempt any data recovery. If you connect your backup device to the infected machine, all data will be encrypted as well. 

Questionable email attachments include malicious script

Ransomware-type cyber infections are silent intruders as any other computer virus. However, other malware can be designed to spread direct ransomware script on the system or open backdoor for this threat. The most common method of spreading trojans, worms or ransomware directly is spam email attachments.  

In most cases, these emails look safe because they contain invoices, receipts or information about some unauthorized money transaction. Unfortunately, malicious actors misuse various names of companies and insert malicious payload directly into the attachment. As soon as the victim opens the file on their device malicious script is executed, and file encryption begins.

To spot a phishing email, look out for typos, grammar mistakes, and a bogus “From” address. If you recognize the scam, delete the email immediately. If you are not entirely sure, scan the attachment using anti-malware software.

Gamma ransomware removal is important if you want to have a safe device

Do not use bebenrowan@aol.com or lynnaddey@aol.com to contact hackers hiding behind this threat! You should remove Gamma ransomware from your computer once and for all. The easiest way to do that is to employ anti-malware tools like Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner or Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes. This method of ransomware termination is especially important since this is a silent cyber threat that can install other malware and make changes to your device in the background.

The ransomware modifies Windows registry keys, so the malicious program is launched every time your PC is started. This is why you need to perform Gamma ransomware removal with the anti-malware application. This automatic virus elimination cleans the system thoroughly, and you can try to recover the encrypted data. If you have no external device with a backup, use our suggestions below for file recovery.

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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Supported versions Compatible with OS X Supported versions
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 Gamma virus, follow these steps:

Remove Gamma using Safe Mode with Networking

Ransomware may be blocking your AV, so reboot your device in Safe Mode with Networking and then scan the system thoroughly:

  • 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 Gamma

    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 Gamma removal.

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

Remove Gamma using System Restore

Follow the steps and try System Restore feature to remove Gamma ransomware:

  • 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 Gamma. 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 Gamma removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Data Recovery Pro restores encrypted files

Data Recovery Pro can also restore files that were accidentally deleted

  • 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 Gamma ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Recover your files using Windows Previous versions feature

You could restore your data using this method if System Restore feature was enabled before

  • 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 with Gamma ransomware encrypted files

Recover Shadow Volume Copies using 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.

Decrytpion tool is not avaliable

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

About the author

Jake Doevan
Jake Doevan - Computer technology expert

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References

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