Red Alert ransomware / virus (Removal Guide) - Decryption Steps Included

Red Alert virus Removal Guide

What is Red Alert ransomware virus?

Is Red Alert virus dangerous?

Red Alert virus targets a broad spectrum of personal files stored on the computers. Malware steps inside the system using various infiltration strategies and then employs AES cryptography to damage victims’ data. During data encryption, ransomware[1] appends .locked file extension to all affected files and makes them useless. However, the developers wanted to ensure that victims learn about ransomware attack immediately. Red Alert ransomware changes targeted computer’s wallpaper with a black picture including the short message. Victims are urged to open the text file (message.txt) that has been left on the desktop. This text file is nothing more than a ransom message where victims are told that they can only rescue their data by transferring the money. The sum of the ransom might vary; however, cyber criminals might ask from few hundreds to thousand dollars. Keep in mind that Red Alert malware, as well as other file-encrypting viruses[2], is a blackmailing tool and hackers try to use people’s fears of losing personal files to their advantage. In the ransom note, they stated that people would lose their records if they do not follow the instructions.

The authors of Red Alert virus did not create a brand new code for this ransomware. They just modified a well-known open-source ransomware project – Hidden Tear[3]. However, they upgraded this ransomware enough to make it undecryptable without a unique decryption key. Hackers do not reveal this information for free; however, paying the ransom may not help as well. There are many cases where victims paid the ransom and never received necessary software. Red Alert removal will not bring back your files back; however, it prevents from losing money and causing more damage to the computer. Malware can damage computer’s system, even more, so waiting for the miracle is just a waste of time. Run a full system scan with FortectIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or other professional anti-malware tool and remove Red Alert from the device. At the end of the article, you can find detailed instructions how to get rid of this cyber threat and some data recovery option that might help to retrieve some of the encrypted files.

The picture of Red Alert ransomware virus

How can I get infected with ransomware?

Red Alert ransomware can infect computers with the help of malicious email attachment, infected link, malware-laden ad, via bogus software downloads or updates, and using many other distribution techniques. Developers became better and better in malware distribution and learned how to trick people into letting ransomware to step in the computer. For example, Red Alert hijack might occur when you click on the infected email attachment that looked like a legitimate invoice or another document. Another way to get infected with ransomware is to download programs from file-sharing platforms or unreliable websites. Instead of the useful software, you might get a Trojan horse. Also, you should avoid visiting questionable sites and clicking eye-catching ads – they might be infected as well. Lastly, we suggest strengthening computer’s protection by investing in professional security tools and making data backups regularly[4]. The last tip is crucial because ransomware attacks are expected to grow, so you can lose your files after one careless click. Make sure you follow or tips and tricks on how to avoid ransomware[5].

Red Alert removal instructions

For Red Alert removal you have to employ a strong and professional antivirus or anti-malware removal program. Investing in reputable software is necessary because cheap or free programs are not capable of deleting this dangerous virus. Our team can assure that programs like FortectIntego or SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner have no difficulties in eliminating all malicious components from your computer. However, sometimes malware resists and blocks access to security tools, but you can follow our instructions and remove Red Alert. Besides, we prepared few data recovery options and explained them at the end of the article. Feel free to try them after virus elimination. Hopefully, they will help to restore at least some of encrypted files.

do it now!
Fortect Happiness
Intego Happiness
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 Red Alert virus. Follow these steps

Manual removal using Safe Mode

If automatic removal does not work for you, try rebooting your PC to the Safe Mode with Networking.

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 Red Alert using System Restore

Try alternative Red Alert ransomware virus removal 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 Red Alert. 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 Red Alert removal is performed successfully.

Bonus: Recover your data

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

After ransomware attack, do no think about paying the ransom. Try additional data recovery methods or use data backups to restore your files.

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

Method 1: Data Recovery Pro

This professional tool allows restoring deleted or encrypted files automatically. Follow these steps and give this program 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 Red Alert ransomware;
  • Restore them.

Method 2: Windows Previous Versions feature

Have you enabled System Restore function earlier? If yes, follow these steps and retrieve some of the lost 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”.

Method 3: ShadowExplorer

If you are lucky enough and Red Alert ransomware did not delete Shadow Volume Copies of the targeted files, ShadowExplorer might be a useful tool in data recovery.

  • 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.

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

How to prevent from getting ransomware

Protect your privacy – employ a VPN

There are several ways how to make your online time more private – you can access an incognito tab. However, there is no secret that even in this mode, you are tracked for advertising purposes. There is a way to add an extra layer of protection and create a completely anonymous web browsing practice with the help of Private Internet Access VPN. This software reroutes traffic through different servers, thus leaving your IP address and geolocation in disguise. Besides, it is based on a strict no-log policy, meaning that no data will be recorded, leaked, and available for both first and third parties. The combination of a secure web browser and Private Internet Access VPN will let you browse the Internet without a feeling of being spied or targeted by criminals. 

No backups? No problem. Use a data recovery tool

If you wonder how data loss can occur, you should not look any further for answers – human errors, malware attacks, hardware failures, power cuts, natural disasters, or even simple negligence. In some cases, lost files are extremely important, and many straight out panic when such an unfortunate course of events happen. Due to this, you should always ensure that you prepare proper data backups on a regular basis.

If you were caught by surprise and did not have any backups to restore your files from, not everything is lost. Data Recovery Pro is one of the leading file recovery solutions you can find on the market – it is likely to restore even lost emails or data located on an external device.

About the author
Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Anti-malware specialist

If this free 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 Julie Splinters
About the company Esolutions