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Ladon ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Olivia Morelli - - | Type: Ransomware

Ladon ransomware – a cyber infection that locks files and demands a ransom in Bitcoins

Ladon ransomware virus

Ladon is a crypto-ransomware virus that uses AES encryption algorithm[1] to lock personal data on a targeted PC.Successful unravel of cipher ends up with most of the file types inaccessible due to the .ladon file extension. The victim is provided with a personal ID, which can be found on a READ_ME.txt or READ_ME.html ransom note positioned on the desktop. The amount of the redemption varies from $200 to $500.

Name Ladon
Classification Ransomware
Danger Level High. Locks personal files. Initiates unauthorized system's changes
Ransom note READ_ME.txt or READ_ME.html
File extension .ladon
Decryptable No
Reimage scan will eliminate this ransomware from the system

Ladon ransomware is a typical representative of its family of cyber infections. It is disseminated via unprotected Remote Desktop Services (RDS), spam email attachment, fake software updates, and similar illicit means. Upon revelation of a payload, the virus runs Command Prompt scrips to root deeply into OS and then enabled the AES-256 cipher to encrypt victim's files.

Upon the encryption, each file encrypted by Ladon ransomware exhibits .ladon file extension (e.g. document1.doc.ladon). Besides, one or several ransom notes can be incorporated into folders alongside encrypted files, as well as desktop. The ransom note contains the following information:

What happened to my files?
Your files are encrypted with strong and military-grade encryption. In order to recover them you must pay a fee. This fee is not very large and can range from 200-300$. Failure to pay the fee will result in the loss of your files. There is no deadline for when you can pay.

How can I trust you?
Your files will be recovered immediately after our service detects that you have paid. In order to allow this, please allow our program to continue running so that it can retrieve your files. We can help and provide assistance in chat to those who need it. (NOTE: We do not respond to requests to lower the fee.)

How can I pay?
We only accept a form of digital currency known as Bitcoin. There are many guides on how to buy this online, which you can find from googling. If you want to buy bitcoin using paypal, giftcard, and other forms of payment, then http://www.paxful.com is a great and easy way.

Where is my CONTACTID?
Your CONTACTID should be written on your background or located in the file: READ_ME.txt which can be found on your desktop. Please retrieve it as this is necesary for payment in order to retrieve your files. This may require checking to see if your antivirus has deleted this file. If it has please recover it. Without this file, there is no hope to retriving your files. It is a good idea to store your contactid in a safe spot until your files are retrieved.

I have paid, how long will it take?
Once you pay, it depends on how long it takes for the transaction to verify. This can be 1 minute – 1 day.
How do I remove this program once I have retrieved my files?
The program will remove itself from your computer. You are welcome to try an antivirus or any other program to confirm our claim.

Is there any program or any other way to recover my files?
There is no possible way to recover your files without paying us. Any attempt to use any decryptors/tools may permanently damage your files!

Ladon ransom note contains a contact ID, which allows crooks to recognize the victim and assign personal decryption key. The sooner the victim contacts developers of the virus, the smaller the redemption is supposed to be. However, it seems that it's set to demand $350 in Bitcoins[2] unless the victim is late to pay. The sum of the ransom may be doubled.

The virus may install Tor browser by default or demand the victim to install it as it is a medium for the payment. Those who opt for paying has to click on the link provided on the ransom note. It the redirects to the xxxx: //cdmsxo25y4lfht6v.onion/, xxxx: //cdmsxo25y4lfht6v.onion.casa or xxxx: //api.ipify.org/ instructions on Tor page. The user has to enter a personal ID to log in to the system and then transfer the indicated sum of money to 13B4NWgvkK518z2GjoXPktVRVdhWhEB5fW Bitcoin wallet.

Experts speculate that Russian hackers are responsible for the development and distribution of Ladon ransomware. Despite the fact that a hybrid analysis revealed the virus being distributed from the USA, once installed on the system it searches for a Russian language locale. In case of detection, it disables the encryption process and generates a notification containing several Russian swear words.

Anyway, do not fall for paying the ransom. It's not yet clear whether the virus deletes Volume Shadow Copies and System Restore Points, so you may try to decrypt files encrypted by Ladon ransomware with the help of third-party software. Paying the ransom is not recommended because you can lose your money for nothing. Hackers often ignore victims and leave them without a decryptor even if they pay the ransom.

Before initiating any decryption steps, make sure to remove Ladon ransomware virus. For this purpose, use a professional anti-virus, such as Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus or Malwarebytes Anti Malware. If you are already using one, update it before running a scan to renew the antivirus definitions. Upon successful Ladon removal, try decryption methods listed at the end of this post.

Ransomware distribution methods

This ransomware does not differ from the rest of the others regarding distribution. Its developers rely on malicious spam emails and fake software updates in particular. Nevertheless, it can also spread via unprotected Remote Desktop Services, phishing sites, and other means.

There's no hundred percent protection from ransomware attacks. Nevertheless, virukset.fi[3] team there are two things that you should mind to minimize the risk of getting your PC infected. First of all, keep your anti-virus enabled and made sure it has a real-time protection feature. Besides, update it regularly.

Secondly, propagate proper web browsing behavior. By saying “proper”, we mean that you should stay away from illegal or suspicious websites, avoid downloading questionable programs or updates, do not participate in doubtful online surveys, do not click on catchy ads, links, and other content. That's because hackers know how to spread viruses and trick people into installing them.

Ladon ransomware uninstall guide

Cyber infections, such as ransomware, cannot be eliminated from the system manually. They affect multiple system's folders and scatter malicious files in various places, so detecting each one is practically impossible. Thus, to remove Ladon virus completely, run a full system scan with a professional anti-virus.

As soon you perform Ladon removal, you can retrieve your files from backups. In case you don't have them, try alternative data recovery methods listed 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 Ladon 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 Ladon virus Removal Guide:

Remove Ladon using Safe Mode with Networking

To unblock your anti-virus, boot the system into Safe Mode with Networking. You can do that this way:

  • 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 Ladon

    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 Ladon removal.

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

Remove Ladon using System Restore

In case the above method did not work, try initiating the following steps:

  • 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 Ladon. 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 Ladon removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

Paying the ransom is not advisable. Instead of that, remove the virus and try the following data recovery methods: 

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

Try Data Recovery Pro

Data Recovery Pro is a free to use application for retrieving all kinds of data that might have been lost due to system's crash of accidental removal. 

Enable System Restore Point

Previous system version is Windows-specific feature that allows bringing the system back to the state before virus attack or crash. To get rid of Laden virus and recover your files, try to enable System Restore Point by following these steps:

  • 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”.

Export Volume Shadow Copies

Most of the ransomware run commands to remove Volume Shadow Copies. Since it's not yet clear whether this ransomware eliminates them, check if Volume Shadow Copies are still available by following these steps:

  • 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.

No Laden decryptor available.

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

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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