MRCR1 ransomware / virus (Improved Instructions) - Bonus: Decryption Steps

MRCR1 virus Removal Guide

What is MRCR1 ransomware virus?

MRCR1 ransomware virus has been defeated

MRCR1 virus, also known as Merry X-Mas! ransomware, ruined winter holiday season for many computer users. Victims learned about the infection from a pop-up [1] that congratulated them with Christmas and gave them a horrible present – encrypted files. The malware uses a custom encryption algorithm and appends .MRCR1 file extension to all targeted files. Then, it leaves a ransom note where victims learn that they have to transfers some money within 4 days to get the decryption software. However, purchasing the suspicious tool from the hackers is unnecessary. Emsisoft specialists created a decryption tool that helps victims to recover their files after ransomware attack. Before downloading this tool, you have to start MRCR1 removal first. While ransomware resides on your computer, it can encrypt your files again. Scan your device with FortectIntego or other reputable malware removal tool.

3 days 23:59:59 0109
Your ID
Now you need to pay to recover your data
After money transfer, you will receive the decryptor
TELEGRAM @comodosecurity
Any attempts to return your files with the third-party tools can be fatal for your encrypted files! The most part of the third-party software change data within the encrypted file to restore it but this causes damage to the files. Finally, it will be impossible to decrypt your files! There are several plain steps to restore your files, but if you do not follow them we will not be able to help you!

Above you can see the ransom note that is deployed on the computer automatically as a file called YOUR_FILES_ARE_DEAD.HTA. HTA is better known as HTML-type format and refers to a Microsoft Windows program that is capable of running a variety of media files [2]. The hackers have probably chosen this particular format because it is easily customizable and lightweight so that it can be quickly downloaded on the computer. While the contents of this note are quite frightening, you should not panic if you see it on your PC, despite how disastrous the situation may look. Yes, the virus really encrypts files with a complex algorithm [3] leaving them inaccessible, but that does not mean that this code cannot be bypassed some other way. In fact, the virus experts have already come up with numerous free decryption tools helping decode similar programs. Though such tool has not been invented for the MRCR1 malware just yet, there are alternative data recovery solutions that may help get this data back. Frankly, you are never not obliged to pay for the files and support the cyber criminals. If you are in no life-or-death demand to recover some particularly important files, you should remove MRCR1 from your computer without hesitation.

MRCR1 ransomware virus screenshot

Protecting your computer from ransomwarea attack

Not all of us find computer security maintenance enjoyable. In fact, most of the users consider it rather boring and, sometimes, overwhelming activity. Unfortunately, this is one of the main factors that influence the growth of the malware distribution. Viruses like MRCR1 are only looking for less protected systems that are easy to infect. Thus, we advise you to consider computer protection very carefully. You should avoid visiting unfamiliar and obscure websites, downloading unverified software or clicking on random “claim your prize,” “you have won!” and similar ads [4]. Besides, it is highly probable that MRCR1 also employs one or several malicious spam campaigns to infect users through email. So, in addition to all of the already mentioned security precautions, you should stay away from suspicious emails as well.

Best way to remove MRCR1 virus

Some users infected with MRCR1 virus are ready to throw their computers away since they are not able to use them probably anymore. Luckily, such radical actions are not necessary. The MRCR1 removal will be sufficient enough to get your system back on track again. Besides, complete virus extermination is a crucial part of data recovery. If you do not remove MRCR1 from the device properly, it might recover itself and continue encrypting files. Thus, make sure all the virus files are eliminated from the computer before you begin data recovery.

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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Compatible with macOS
What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Fortect Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Fortect Intego has a free limited scanner. Fortect 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 Fortect, 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 MRCR1 virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

There might be that MRCR1 virus will block your security software from running system scan and detecting the malicious virus components. If this happens, please follow these instructions:

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.
  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.
  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.

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
    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):


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

Remove MRCR1 using System Restore

Do not panic if you cannot run your antivirus when trying to remove MRCR1 from your computer. Just follow the guideline below and recover the access to all of the antivirus functionalities.

  • 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 MRCR1. 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 FortectIntego and make sure that MRCR1 removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

Guide which is presented above is supposed to help you remove MRCR1 from your computer. To recover your encrypted files, we recommend using a detailed guide prepared by security experts.

Paying the ransom for cyber criminals is not an option. The free decryption tool has been already released, so you can restore using it. Additionally, we provide three more methods that might be helpful if decryptor would not recover your files.

If your files are encrypted by MRCR1, you can use several methods to restore them:

Data Recovery Pro and the option of automatic data recovery:

Data Recovery Pro is a good program to approach data recovery if MRCR1 decryptor would not help you. Just check out the instructions to use it properly.

  • 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 MRCR1 ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Windows Previous Versions feature. Recovery of the previous file versions

This method allows recovering previous versions of documents that have been backed up using System Restore function. If this feature has not been enabled pre-attack, you should skip to the next data recovery option.

  • 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 recovery option

The final thing to try out is the data recovery using ShadowExplorer. The guidelines below explain how to do it.

  • Download Shadow Explorer (;
  • 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.

MRCR1 decryptor

Emsisoft specialists have released a decryption tool to restore encoded files by the MRCR1 ransomware. You can download it from here.

Finally, you should always think about the protection of crypto-ransomwares. In order to protect your computer from MRCR1 and other ransomwares, use a reputable anti-spyware, such as FortectIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Do not let government spy on you

The government has many issues in regards to tracking users' data and spying on citizens, so you should take this into consideration and learn more about shady information gathering practices. Avoid any unwanted government tracking or spying by going totally anonymous on the internet. 

You can choose a different location when you go online and access any material you want without particular content restrictions. You can easily enjoy internet connection without any risks of being hacked by using Private Internet Access VPN.

Control the information that can be accessed by government any other unwanted party and surf online without being spied on. Even if you are not involved in illegal activities or trust your selection of services, platforms, be suspicious for your own security and take precautionary measures by using the VPN service.

Backup files for the later use, in case of the malware attack

Computer users can suffer from data losses due to cyber infections or their own faulty doings. Ransomware can encrypt and hold files hostage, while unforeseen power cuts might cause a loss of important documents. If you have proper up-to-date backups, you can easily recover after such an incident and get back to work. It is also equally important to update backups on a regular basis so that the newest information remains intact – you can set this process to be performed automatically.

When you have the previous version of every important document or project you can avoid frustration and breakdowns. It comes in handy when malware strikes out of nowhere. Use Data Recovery Pro for the data restoration process.

About the author
Linas Kiguolis
Linas Kiguolis - Expert in social media

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