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ONI ransomware virus. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Ugnius Kiguolis - - | Type: Ransomware
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The mystery of ONI ransomware: two different versions used in attacks against Japanese companies

Oni ransomware virus

ONI ransomware is a malicious file-encoding virus that is mainly used in cyber attacks against Japanese companies. It shares similarities with the infamous Globe Imposter virus. Once installed, the malware also infects the system with a Remote Access Trojan (RAT) that is used to take full control of victim’s computer system. Researchers suggest that the malware has been developed by the same threat actors who created MBR-ONI bootkit ransomware.

As soon as cybercriminals get remote access to the target computer network, they start trying to hack domain administrator’s account and servers. Firstly, hackers steal valuable data, and then they upload the ransomware on the target computers. The initial ransomware variant encrypts files and adds .oni extensions to them[1].

It appears that there are two variants of the described ransomware – ONI and MBR-ONI viruses. As the name of the second virus suggests, it meddles with compromised computer’s Master Boot Record (a technique used by NotPetya and Bad Rabbit ransomware viruses).

Once installed, MBR-Oni drops its malicious payload, restarts the computer and then displays the following message on victim’s computer screen:

Your data is ENCRYPTED!
You will not decrypt it without our help! Your ID:
Contact us:
Password:

The ONI ransomware displays a slightly different ransom note called !!!README!!!.html. It addresses the victim in the Japanese language. The ransomware also asks to write to hyakunoonigayoru@yahoo.co.jp to get details regarding data recovery. It also claims that data was corrupted using RSA-2048 and AES-256 ciphers. Besides, this malware variant adds .oni file extensions to encrypted files.

Researchers from Cybereason say[2] that hackers used MBR-ONI virus as a wiper to hide their hacking operation. The hacking attacks lasted from three to nine months and ended with attempts to encode data on hundreds of compromised computers (fraudsters wanted to lock data on all machines at the same time).

No matter which version affected your computer, an immediate ONI removal is required, says Dieviren.de team[3]. We strongly recommend using instructions added at the end of this article and anti-malware software like Reimage to kill the ransomware as soon as possible.

Users who attempt to remove ONI virus manually often encounter problems and cause even more damage to the system, so we do not recommend making the same mistake. 

In-detail description of targeted attacks using ONI ransomware

  • Research by Cybereason suggests that fraudsters distributed Ammyy Admit RATs using forged Office documents. These documents were distributed via spear-phishing emails.
  • Next, fraudsters employed the RAT to map out internal systems of the compromised computer networks and steal valuable credentials. Later on, they gained 100% control of the network.
  • Researchers suggest that in the next attack stage the attackers create fake GPO (group policy) and push it through the entire organization. With the help of an autorun persistence, the fake GPO finds a batch script from DC server.
  • Finally, Windows event logs get deleted to hide cybercriminals’ activities. Finally, ONI ransomware binary gets executed and encrypts data on the compromised computers.
  • Also, it seems that fraudsters employed MBR-ONI version only on specific computers, while ONI was executed on almost all of them. Malware analysts guess that the MBR malware was used as a wiper to hide real motives of the operation.
  • It must be said that virus’ version that replaces Master Boot Record also used DiskCryptor program (employed in Bad Rabbit and Petya cyber attacks).

Remove ONI malware today and secure your system

If your files were encrypted by the described ransomware variant, please do not think about manual ONI ransomware removal. The malware has to be wiped from your computer professionally, so we strongly suggest using anti-malware software recommended by our team.

You can find some suggestions below the article. However, you will need to follow certain instructions to perform clean boot so that you could remove ONI virus from the system.

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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 ONI ransomware virus. 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.

More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.

Manual ONI virus Removal Guide:

Remove ONI using Safe Mode with Networking

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

To remove ONI malware, use the guidelines on how to perform clean system boot first. Once the system is prepared, download and execute anti-malware software to delete the virus for you.

  • 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 ONI

    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 ONI removal.

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

Remove ONI using System Restore

Reimage is a tool to detect malware.
You need to purchase Full version to remove infections.
More information about Reimage.

You can try to use System Restore function to fix your computer.

  • 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 ONI. 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 ONI removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

At the moment, things regarding data recovery of .oni files are obscure. At the moment, there are no known methods to recover files, however, we added traditional data recovery options for you to try.

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

Restore using Windows Previous Versions

This option can be used in case you created System Restore point prior to 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”.

Use ShadowExplorer software

In case your computer was infected with the basic version of Oni and your Master Boot Record wasn't altered, try to restore your files using 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.

No decryption tools available at the moment

Oni decryptor is not available yet.

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

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

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References