Remove Monument ransomware / virus (Bonus: Decryption Steps) - Free Guide

removal by Jake Doevan - -   Also known as DarkLocker ransomware virus | Type: Ransomware

Monument virus Removal Guide

What is Monument ransomware virus?

Monument ransomware virus: What to expect from the new member of the Jigsaw family?

Monument virus is a new version of the Jigsaw ransomware. Malware researchers managed to decrypt Jigsaw[1] quite quickly; thus, new versions of the malware keep emerging. This brand new file-encrypting virus is also known under the DarkLocker name. The virus is a splendid example of scareware.[2] It locks affected computer’s screen and informs about encrypted files. Authors of the Monument ransomware claim that virus attack is a result of watching porn. However, now victims are supposed to transfer 0.15 Bitcoin within 24 hours time in order to get back access to the files. After 24 hour deadline, the size of the ransom increase to 0.20 Bitcoins. What is more, hackers try to convince that delaying and avoiding transferring the payment might lead to unpleasant consequences. According to the ransom message, the virus might delete 1-5 files every single hour. What is more, if hackers do not receive Bitcoins within 48 hours, they will delete all encrypted files. Indeed, this might sound terrifying for the majority of computer users. However, you should not panic and focus on the things that matter the most. In fact, you should concentrate on Monument removal. Later you can think of data recovery possibilities.

All file-encrypting viruses append a particular file extension to the targeted documents, video, audio, video and other corrupted files. Though, Monument ransomware adds a quite unique extension. Corrupted filenames include payment instructions. Hence, encrypted file name might look like picture.jpg.To unlock your files send 0.15 Bitcoins to 1P87AphL2mETbyxLV18oJYXgsJxwLfgYiz within 24 hours 0.20 after 24 hours. Moreover, judging from the multilingual ransom note, hackers have ambitious goals to spread Monument ransomware worldwide. The scary ransom-demanding message is written in English, Russian and Spanish languages. Thus, it might be hard to hide from this crypto-malware. However if you already encountered the youngest member of the Jigsaw family, we want to give you a piece of advice. Do not let hackers scare you. Losing your files might look like the end of the world, especially if you do not back up regularly. Instead of rushing to pay the ransom[3], remove Monument from the PC with a help of ReimageIntego. Bear in mind that the original version of the virus is decryptable. Though, malware researchers might find the way to recover encrypted files soon. Meanwhile, you can try additional methods to retrieve encoded documents.

Monument ransomware virusMonument ransomware virus is the latest version of Jigsaw ransomware that threatens to delete encrypted files if victims do not rush to pay the ransom.

Methods of transmission

Monument malware has been noticed spreading in the bundle with Imminent Monitor remote administration tool (RAT). However, the developers of Jigsaw use various distribution methods and strategies to infect as many computers as possible. Thus, the research of previous versions of the virus allows making the assumptions that this extortionist spread similarly. The virus might get inside the computer after clicking on a malicious email attachment[4] or infected advertisement. Users might also encounter this ransomware after installing bogus software or updates, or with a help of exploit kits. Thus, if Monument virus hasn’t attacked your personal files yet, you should be careful and prepared for the worst. Apart from taking all necessary security precautions[5], you should also make data backups and keep them in the external storage. If you make a tiny mistake and file-encrypting virus manages to sneak inside, backups will save you from giving the money to cyber criminals.

Deletion of Monument ransomware virus

File-encrypting viruses belong to the group of the most dangerous cyber infections. Hence, their elimination should not be delayed and performed correctly. For Monument removal, you need to employ professional malware removal tools, such as SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or ReimageIntego. Malware might prevent you from installing or accessing security software; though, you might need to disable the virus. The instructions how to do it are presented below. Don’t forget that disabling the virus does not mean deletion. When you disable the virus, you need to run a full system scan with your chosen software several times. After ransomware attack, data recovery seems the biggest issue for the victims. Sadly, it’s not enough to remove Monument from the PC to decrypt the files. If you do not have data backups, you should try additional recovery methods presented below.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove 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 Monument virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

If you cannot run automatic Monument removal, reboot your PC to the Safe Mode with Networking and try again.

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 Monument using System Restore

If the previous method did not help to remove malware removal tools, try System Restore method.

  • 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 Monument. 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 Monument removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

If you do not have data backups, you can try to restore your files using additional methods. We cannot asure that all corrupted data will be rescued. However, at least some of them should be recovered. Bear in mind that the original version of the virus is already decryptable. Thus, you can try to use Jigsaw decrypter and patiently wait for the Monument decryption software.

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

Use Data Recovery Pro to restore files encrypted by Monument

Data Recovery Pro is a professional tool that helps to restore files encrypted, deteled and corrupted files. This tool is easy to use; though, give it a try:

  • 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 Monument ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Take advantage of Windows Previous Versions feature to restore files encrypted by Monument ransomware

Follow the steps below to restore previously saved versions of the encrypted files. However, this method will help you only if System Restore function has been enabled on your PC 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”.

Try ShadowExplorer to restore files encrypted by Monument virus

If malware did not delete Shadow Volume Copies of the targeted files, you should use ShadowExplorer to recover your data.

  • 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.

Monument decryptor

The specific Monument decryptor hasn’t been released yet. However, you can try to use Jigsaw decryptor. Maybe it will help to restore at least some of the files. As soon as the necessary decryption softwar will be released, we will update the information.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from Monument and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Access your website securely from any location

When you work on the domain, site, blog, or different project that requires constant management, content creation, or coding, you may need to connect to the server and content management service more often. The best solution for creating a tighter network could be a dedicated/fixed IP address.

If you make your IP address static and set to your device, you can connect to the CMS from any location and do not create any additional issues for the server or network manager that needs to monitor connections and activities. VPN software providers like Private Internet Access can help you with such settings and offer the option to control the online reputation and manage projects easily from any part of the world.

 

Recover files after data-affecting malware attacks

While much of the data can be accidentally deleted due to various reasons, malware is one of the main culprits that can cause loss of pictures, documents, videos, and other important files. More serious malware infections lead to significant data loss when your documents, system files, and images get encrypted. In particular, ransomware is is a type of malware that focuses on such functions, so your files become useless without an ability to access them.

Even though there is little to no possibility to recover after file-locking threats, some applications have features for data recovery in the system. In some cases, Data Recovery Pro can also help to recover at least some portion of your data after data-locking virus infection or general cyber infection. 

 

About the author
Jake Doevan
Jake Doevan - Computer technology expert

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