KCTF Locker ransomware (Free Instructions) - Decryption Steps Included

KCTF Locker virus Removal Guide

What is KCTF Locker ransomware?

KCTF Locker ransomware is yet another cyber threat that poses as an educational ransomware

KCTF Locker ransomware virusKCTF Locker ransomware is a virus developed for educational purposes. At the moment, it is targeting Japanese-speaking users.

KCTF Locker ransomware is a file-encrypting virus that was supposedly invented for educational purposes. However, no educational organization or service is linked to this threat, and the only ones who should be blamed are hackers. The main targets of this ransomware[1] are Japanese-speaking users as the ransom note it displays is written in this language, and the sample of the virus was uploaded from East Asia IP address. KCTF Locker modifies the victim's data by using the XOR encryption method, and, after the process, marks locked files with .DWG file extension. After the encryption, files become useless. The ransom note, which was called as KCTF LOCKER, typically states that files have been encrypted and that the victim needs to pay 10 BTC to the provided wallet to get them restored.

Name KCTF Locker ransomware
Type Cryptovirus
File extension .DWG appendix
Targeted country Japan
Encryption method Xor
Ransom amount 10BTC
Ransom note Displayed in a program window called KCTF LOCKER
Distribution Spam email attachments
Elimination Remove KCTF Locker ransomware using your guide below and use ReimageIntego to delete virus damage

KCTF Locker ransomware is a cryptovirus that modifies various data on the infected system. For the encryption, it chooses anything from photos, videos to documents or even archives. The virus typically changes the code of the data by using the predetermined encryption algorithm to make it useless. You can identify encrypted files because ransomware is appending .DWG file extension to the locked data.

After the encryption is done using XOR encryption method, virus generates a ransom note and places it as a program window on the screen. The message called KCTF LOCKER displays the following text:

Your data has been encrypted.
If you want to restore, please pay 10 BTC below
3AmD4gsD9kUe7GEvNra6gNm2ALBF9KrLzv

KCTF Locker ransomware demands to 10 BTC for the locked files, but we do not recommend paying this fee or even contacting these cybercriminals in any way. Any communication between the victim and hackers can lead you to the permanent data or money loss.

You need to remove KCTF Locker ransomware as soon as possible, so you can clean your device and restore locked data. Since the threat can block your antivirus, you should reboot the device in Safe Mode with Networking and then run a scan. You can find alternative removal methods down below as well as the ransomware tends to block its victims and prevent its removal.

After the proper KCTF Locker removal, you need to fix the damage this threat caused. You can use reputable anti-malware like ReimageIntego for the job. This tool scans your system thoroughly and detects various system vulnerabilities and other possible threats. If you are planning to do a data recovery using a backup, you can only do that after the device is fully cleaned. Ransomware can encrypt newly added data too.

KCTF Locker ransomwareKCTF Locker ransomware virus is a file-encrypting cyber threat that demands 10 BTC for recovered data.

Spam emails have been used to spread direct malware script

Malicious actors have been widely using email campaigns to distribute their viruses. They have been luring people to open safe-looking emails and download file attachments with macro-virus[2] or direct malware script. Typically, these malicious emails look legitimate because virus developers tend to hide their products under well-known company names and logos.

You should be aware of these techniques and, every time you get an email you are not expecting, delete these messages without opening. If you downloaded the file from the email that was affected by ransomware, the minute you open it malware installs direct script to your device and your system gets infected.

You can avoid this if you scan every file with an antivirus before opening it on the device. Also, you can look for red flags on these emails. For example, if the email contains various ads or other commercial content you should be concerned. Researchers[3] note that typos, grammar mistakes or lots of hyperlinks can indicate that this email is spam and has no important information.

Eliminate KCTF Locker ransomware related problems

To remove KCTF Locker ransomware properly and get rid of the damage, you need to be very cautious. Since this is a silent intruder, it may work in the background and change various settings on the device. Use our guide to block the virus and then scan the system using ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes to clean the system thoroughly and fix the damage caused by the threat.

Manual KCTF Locker ransomware removal is not recommended as there are numerous files and components to look after. Then, don't forget to clean up all the damage after the virus termination and restore your encrypted files. To recover this data, you can also rely on methods provided by our experts.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix 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.

Getting rid of KCTF Locker virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

Reboot your device in Safe Mode with Networking, this way you can disable KCTF Locker ransomware:

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.
    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.
    Reboot
  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.
    Startup

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
    Downloads
    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):

    %AppData%
    %LocalAppData%
    %ProgramData%
    %WinDir%

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

Remove KCTF Locker using System Restore

Use System Restore feature if you want to get rid of this threat by disabling it:

  • 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 KCTF Locker. 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 ReimageIntego and make sure that KCTF Locker removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Data Recovery Pro can restore accidentally deleted or encrypted files

Use Data Recovery Pro and restore files encrypted by ransomware

  • 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 KCTF Locker ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Windows Previous Versions feature can recover your files after the ransomware attack

If System Restore feature was enabled, you could try data recovery using Windows Previous Versions

  • 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 restores files from Shadow Volume Copies

If KCTF Locker ransomware left Shadow Volume Copies uncouched, 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.

Decryption is not possible as there is no official decryptor for this virus yet.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from KCTF Locker and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, 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
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

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References
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