Severity scale:  
  (97/100)

Mdk4y ransomware. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Lucia Danes - - | Type: Ransomware

Mdk4y ransomware is a dangerous file locking virus that uses AES encryption algorithm to lock up personal data

Mdk4y ransomware
Mdk4y ransomware is a crypto malware that locks up files and then demands ransom in Bitcoin to be paid for their return

Mdk4y ransomware is a crypto locker that was first spotted by a security researcher in mid-January 2019. The main purpose of file locking virus is to deny access to victims' pictures, music, videos, documents, databases and then demand ransom for the decryption key that is stored on a Command & Control server, only accessible by hackers. Malware uses military-grade encryption algorithm AES-256 to modify files and appends .mdk4y extension, subsequently dropping a ransom note HOW_TO_RETURN_FILES.txt into each of the affected folders. Security researchers noted that this malware sample has no connection to Kraken ransomware; instead, it mentions kraken.com cryptocurrency exchange service. In the message, hackers ask users to send an email to mdk4y@protonmail.com to finalize the price for file decryption.

Name Mdk4y
Type Ransomware
Cipher AES-256
Extension .mdk4y
Ransom note HOW_TO_RETURN_FILES.txt
Contact mdk4y@protonmail.com
Peculiarities Stops 184 commands, modifies Windows registry, etc.
Decryptable? No
Elimination Use reputable anti-malware software like Reimage, SpyHunterCombo Cleaner or Malwarebytes Malwarebytes

Just as many other crypto viruses, Mdk4y virus relies on multiple distribution methods, including:

  • Spam emails;
  • Brute-force attacks;
  • Infected installers;
  • Fake updates;
  • Drive-by downloads
  • Cracks or keygens, etc.

As soon as malicious Mdk4y ransomware payload is executed, it stops 184 commands and services related to anti-malware software and databases. Additionally, the malware attempts to delete Shadow Volume Copies and Modifies Windows Registry to retain persistence.

Due to such activities, Mdk4y ransomware removal might become a challenging task, although anti-malware software that can detect[1] the virus (we suggest Reimage, SpyHunterCombo Cleaner or Malwarebytes Malwarebytes) should be able to eliminate all the malicious components and restore the system to its original state.

Mdk4y ransomware runs the commands in order to proceed with the file encryption without interruption. It modifies data the following way: picture.jpg turns into picture.jpg.mdk4y, preventing file owners to access it. Soon after encryption, malware drops a ransom note that explains what happened to users' files and provides contact details.

Researchers highly advise users to refrain themselves from contacting criminals, as there is no guarantee that they will send the decryptor back. While unique keys cannot be acquired from anywhere else, the best way to recover your data encrypted by .mdk4y is by using backups.

In case you have no backups prepared (many users ignore this vital cybersecurity step), there is little chance of file decryption, although you can try using third-party applications that might be able to recover at least some of your files. Besides, security researchers are constantly working of free decryptors, and they often succeed in time, as proves No More Ransom project.[2]

Remember, you need to remove Mdk4y ransomware virus before you attempt to recover your files, or backups will be encrypted as well.

Use adequate security measures to avoid ransomware infections

Ransomware is one of the most damaging cyber infections there are as, even after its removal, files remain encrypted. Additionally, ransomware is often associated with other threats like trojans, backdoors, crypto-miners, and similar. All of these infections are extremely harmful for the victim, and should be avoided by any cost.

These tips from security researchers[3] can help you stay more secure online:

  • Employ anti-malware software that supports real-time internet shield function;
  • Update your system and installed software immediately after patch releases;
  • Regularly backup your files;
  • Do not casually open attachments or click on links inside spam emails;
  • Avoid file-sharing websites that host pirated software;
  • Do not use cracks or keygens;
  • Use strong passwords for all your accounts;
  • Use tools like Virus Total to scan various files or check suspicious URLs.

Delete Mdk4y ransomware and only then attempt file recovery

If you are unfortunate enough to get infected with Mdk4y virus, you will most likely lose your files, unless you are OK with paying criminals possibly a large amount of money. However, paying crooks will only show them that their scheme works and they do not even have to contact your back.

Therefore, the first thing you need to take care of is Mdk4y ransomware removal. As we already mentioned, the virus modifies Windows system heavily and tries to stop processes that are related to anti-malware software. Therefore, you should enter Safe Mode with networking, which would temporarily disable the functionality of Mdk4y.

As soon as you successfully remove Mdk4y ransomware using security tools, you can proceed with file recovery procedure. If you have no backups, do not lose hope and try using file recovery software that might be able to help you restore at least some of your data.

Offer
do it now!
Download
Reimage (remover) Happiness
Guarantee
Download
Reimage (remover) Happiness
Guarantee
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 SpyHunter.
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 Mdk4y virus, follow these steps:

Remove Mdk4y using Safe Mode with Networking

Because this crypto-virus modifies multiple Windows processes, the best way to remove Mdk4y ransomware is by entering Safe Mode with Networking:

  • 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 Mdk4y

    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 Mdk4y removal.

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

Remove Mdk4y using System Restore

System Restore might be used to stop the virus:

  • 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 Mdk4y. 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 Mdk4y removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove Mdk4y 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 Mdk4y, you can use several methods to restore them:

Data Recovery Pro is a professional restoration tool

This application is capable of restoring data that was accidentally deleted or otherwise corrupted. However, Data Recovery Pro might be able to help ransomware victims as well.

  • 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 Mdk4y ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Make use of Windows Previous Versions feature

This recovery option is only available if you had System Restore enabled before ransomware modified your files.

  • 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 might be the answer

In case you were lucky enough, and Mdk4y file virus failed to eliminate Shadow Volume Copies, you will be able to recover all of your files with the help of 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.

Decryptor is not available

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Mdk4y and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as Reimage, SpyHunterCombo Cleaner or Malwarebytes Malwarebytes

About the author

Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

If this free removal 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

References


Your opinion regarding Mdk4y ransomware