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Halloware ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - - | Type: Ransomware
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Files encrypted by Halloware ransomware might be soon decrypted

Halloware ransomware wallpaper

Halloware is a file-encrypting virus that uses AES-256 cryptography. However, instead of appending new file extension, malware renames files using “(Lucifer)” string. Thus, after ransomware attack, the document “File.doc” will look “(Lucifer)File.doc.”

The name for the encoded files is a signature of the developers. The hacker who created this malicious program is known as Luc1F3R. Though, when all targeted files are encrypted, Halloware virus changes computer’s wallpaper with a short ransom-demanding message:

You are hacked
your all files, folders have been encrypted
it happen when you watch too much porn or do some illegal work
if you want you files back you have to pay 100 dollar in bitcoin
visit this contact with us for payment and key or decrypter info
zinrm67igbdcdy5h.onion
open this link in Tor browser and get ur files back

Additionally, the malware also displays a pop-up window with a scary clown picture. It includes a link to ransom payment website. However, the size of the ransom seems to be increased in the payment site. Instead of $100, users are asked to pay $150 in Bitcoins. However, trying to figure out how much money you need to pay is not needed. Ransomware is decryptable.

Cyber security specialists managed to track down a website that contains ransomware-related files and extracted its source code. Therefore, the decryptor should be released soon. Thus, in case of the attack, you should focus on the Halloware removal and do not waste hundred dollars.

However, ability to decrypt files is not the only obstacle that prevents Luc1F3R from receiving ransoms because ransomware does not save any information on the remote server after data encryption. Despite this fact, author of the ransomware hopes to sell malware on the dark market.

Meanwhile, victims of the ransomware are advised to get a professional security software and remove Halloware with the help of it. Scanning the system with Reimage, Malwarebytes Anti Malware or your preferred security tool will quickly eliminate this cyber threat, and you will be able to use your PC normally again.

Luc1F3R offers to buy Halloware on the dark market

Selling ransomware on the dark market is not a new activity.[1] However, Luc1F3R offers to obtain Halloware for only $40.[2] However, considering the fact that ransomware is poorly written and can be decrypted, the set price is more than enough.

Currently, developer promotes its file-encrypting program not only in Dark Web community but on two Internet sites and even YouTube as well.

Programmer presents himself as a 17-year-old student from Northeast India who is responsible for a Batch-based ransomware, a Windows keylogger, and a Linux keylogger. It also claims to be a bulk spoofed email sender. Despite these self-rewards, malware researchers agree that this kid has to get more skills in order to create a dangerous ransomware and profit from selling it on the dark market.

Crypto-virus might be sent to your inbox

Halloware virus is supposed to be distributed via malicious spam emails that include an infected attachment. Thus, if users rush to open it, malware payload is downloaded and executed on the system. Therefore, users should be careful with received letters from unknown senders.

However, security experts from Bedynet.ru[3] warn that crypto-malware might be spread via malicious ads, fake software downloads or updates. It does not seem that Halloware might use exploit kits to take advantage of system vulnerabilities. Though, users are advised not only stay away from suspicious download sites and ads but keep operating system and program up-to-date.

Terminate Halloware ransomware virus

This file-encrypting virus does not the best example of ransomware. However, you should still remove Halloware using reputable and powerful anti-malware tool. The virus still consists of numerous malicious components that are installed in the system and numerous processes.

Only professional security software such as Reimage or Malwarebytes Anti Malware can perform Halloware removal without damaging the system. However, if the virus prevents from installing anti-malware or disables it, follow the guide below.

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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 Halloware 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 Halloware virus Removal Guide:

Remove Halloware using Safe Mode with Networking

Booting the computer to the Safe Mode with Networking helps to disable the virus and run automatic elimination with anti-malware 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 Halloware

    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 Halloware removal.

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

Remove Halloware 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 Halloware. 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 Halloware removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Data Recovery Pro might help to restore files

Data Recovery Pro is a tool created for restoring files after system wreckage and accidental deletion of the files. However, it has already helped victims of other ransomware viruses.

Windows Previous Versions feature helps to access individual files

Windows Previous Versions feature allows traveling back in computer's time. Thus, you can copy individual files by following instructions below. However, you can use this method only if System Restore was enabled before ransomware attack.

  • 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

ShadowExplorer can recover files from Shadow Volume Copies. Thus, if malware did not delete them, follow these steps and get back your files:

  • 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.

Halloware decryptor

Malware researchers obtained ransomware's code and currently are working on a decryptor. Therefore, you should be patient and wait for the tool to be released soon.

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

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

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References